President Rodrigo Duterte assured troopers that he would fulfill his promise to give all of them high-powered handguns so long as they need to die combating fairly than give up these weapons to communist or Moro rebels.
“Gusto ko kayo bigyan ng armas lahat. Kasi ang sakit naman kasi ninyo pag nakalabas kayo ng kampo, paturatay kayo ng lakad diyan. Alam mo wala kayong kalaban. Kaya pagbabarilin kayo,” stated Duterte in a speech in Sultan Kudarat.
“Pero may isang kondisyon. Huwag ninyong itong ibigay sa kalaban buhay ka. Kailangan — eh mahal masyado eh. Lalo na putang ina Western side. Ibigay mo, mag-surrender ka, putulan ka rin ng ulo. Eh bakit ka mag-surrender?” he added.
Duterte stated he would give troopers who had been awarded medals with a second handgun as a present for his or her bravery.