President Rodrigo Duterte’s supporters have been mentioned in a column in Singapore’s biggest newspaper, the Straits Times.
In a column by Strait Times Global Affairs associate editor Ravi Velloor, the Duterte supporters, locally called DDS (Die-hard Duterte Supporters) were depicted to be unrelenting and unforgiving to the President’s critics in social media.
“Criticism is met with abuse. An army of online warriors, some of whom are perhaps employed in the booming outsourcing industry, seem to be readily on hand to troll presidential critics, putting a fright into even seasoned commentators,” it read.
Velloor was criticizing the Duterte administration’s infamous drug war, which is linked to over 2,000 deaths since June 30, the day Duterte assumed presidency.
“People with no links to the drug trade, either as consumers or suppliers, have been assassinated in the process, perhaps to settle private vendettas,” the opinion piece noted.
“The Duterte-ordered extrajudicial killings, and his gyrations on the maritime dispute with China, have raised a stench for the Philippines that is far more perverse than the haze that used to spread out from Indonesia. If it goes on for too long, it could potentially be a bone in ASEAN’s throat,” it said.
It also criticized the comparison of Duterte with late Singaporean leader and Founder, Lee Kuan Yew.
Velloor said the comparison was “laughably inappropriate”.