Roque tried to justify Duterte’s granting of presidential pardon to US marine Pemberton by claiming it means “all Filipinos will have vaccines being developed by America.”
What Roque is essentially saying, Duterte threw out the demand for Pemberton to properly serve his sentence in line with the desire of Jennifer Laude’s family, gave up the country’s sovereign right to mete out just punishment for violations of the country’s penal laws, basically set aside the country’s national dignity and displayed outright subservience to curry favors with the US government in the hope that the US government will give the Philippines access to vaccines made by US companies.
Roque’s justification is utterly unacceptable. It reveals how the lack of economic capacity, severe dependence on imports and debt and inability to produce necessities (from vaccines to steel), places the country at the mercy of foreign powers through collusion of their agents in control of the Philippine state.
The Duterte government has failed to align resources to invest in research and development and support Filipino scientists develop a vaccine, has chosen simply to wait, spread false hopes of an impending vaccine, and fawn to the big capitalist powers and monopoly capitalist pharmaceutical companies.
The worse thing under Duterte is that he is willing to give up every inch of the country’s sovereignty in exchange for economic and personal favors through such downright treacherous acts as pardoning a convicted killer even before he could properly serve his sentence.