The son of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has resigned as vice mayor of the southern city of Davao, citing allegations he was involved in drug smuggling as well as “unfortunate events” in his personal life.
Paolo Duterte, who told a Senate hearing in September that he had not been involved in the smuggling of 6.4 billion pesos ($179 million) worth of methamphetamine hydrochloride, spoke with his father before announcing his immediate resignation on Monday.
“There are recent unfortunate events in my life that are closely tied to my failed first marriage,” he said in a statement. He said they included reputational damage, when his name appeared in a Bureau of Customs smuggling case and a war of words with his daughter on Twitter.
“This is one of those instances in my life that I need to protect my honour and that of my children,” he added. “I hereby tender my resignation as vice mayor of Davao City effective December 25.”
On Tuesday, President Duterte told reporters that his son was fed up with the “most unfair” attacks against him, especially after he was called to the Senate to answer accusations.
“I told him you are in a position to do what is right,” the president said, in reference to his son seeking counsel. “Do what you think is right.”
Paolo Duterte denied the allegations during his appearance at the Senate hearing, but refused a challenge by an opposition senator to show if he had a tattoo on his back which would allegedly indicate he was a member of a Chinese drug syndicate.