Local officials in Davao City, the hometown of President Rodrigo Duterte, declared as “persona non-grata” on Tuesday Senator Antonio Trillanes IV and a Filipino-American businesswoman for being critical of the administration.
The declaration against Trillanes and philanthropist Loida Nicolas-Lewis was made by the Davao City Council during a regular session.
The council took into account Trillanes’ claim last year that their city is allegedly the most dangerous area in the Philippines, said Davao City vice mayor Bernard Al-ag.
Trillanes has also repeatedly accused Duterte of amassing ill-gotten wealth and linked the President’s son, resigned Davao City vice mayor Paolo Duterte, to an alleged smuggling syndicate.
The Dutertes have denied Trillanes’ allegation.
The President meanwhile has accused Nicolas-Lewis of plotting to oust him, saying she conspired with the International Criminal Court (ICC) to have him investigated for alleged crimes against humanity.
Trillanes, for his part, said his comment on safety of Davao City was anchored on police statistics in 2015, which saw Duterte’s hometown with the most number of murder cases and the second highest in terms of rape.
“The truth, definitely, hurts… The people of Davao either know it but tolerate it out of fear or they’ve actually believed the lie that was fed to them that Davao City is the safest city in the world,” he said in a statement.
Duterte was mayor of Davao City for 22 years. As President, he is rolling out on a national scale the model of government and hardline stance on crime that he honed in his hometown.