The government of the Philippines, through Communications Secretary Martin Andanar, called out United States Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump for saying that immigrants from the Philippines and other countries with big Muslim populations are potential recruiting targets for terrorist organizations.
“Considering his major real estate ‘brand’ investment in the Philippines’ financial capital called Trump Tower, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump unfortunately mentioned the Philippines in an anti-immigration speech in a political rally in Portland, Maine,” Andanar said in a statement.
The secretary pointed out that when the 57-storey Trump Tower in Makati City was launched four years ago, the billionaire politician sang a different tune about the country.
“I’ve always loved the Philippines. I think it is just a special place and Manila is one of Asia’s most spectacular cities. I know that this project (Trump Tower) will be second to none,” Andanar quoted Trump as saying. That remark is still posted on the property’s official website.
“Let it be known that the Philippines and the Filipino people stand in solidarity with other peace-loving countries and individuals in fighting and opposing terrorism in all its forms,” the secretary concluded.
PS: Many compare our new President Rodrigo Duterte with Donald J. Trump, with many American and European outlets describing him as the “Trump of the East.” It’s because their rhetorical style can have occasionally more bluster than actual policy meat. However, the similarity ends there.
Prior to winning the presidency last May, Duterte has over thirty years of experience as a public servant while Trump has none. His only claim to fame is running a business empire that he only inherited from his father. So if we’re talking about actual record, there’s a huge difference right there.