Communications Secretary Martin Andanar issued a statement on the editorial cartoon which was published August 12, 2016 at the New York Time's newspaper.
The New York Times' William Tell-inspired editorial cartoon which depicts President Duterte holding a shoulder-launched multipurpose assault weapon aimed at a wormy apple on the head of a visibly afraid man representing the Philippines is a sad appreciation of the President's campaign against illegal drugs.
While it is true that the President employed drastic strategies, the gravity of the drug menace in the Philippines calls for such measures. The drug scourge is now a national security threat and public health concern.
Fifty-five days since his assumption to the highest office in the land, President Duterte has made headway in his anti-drug war. More than 600,000 individuals have voluntarily surrendered to authorities. Crime rates have registered significant drop. People feel safer and communities are now more secure. As a result, nine out of ten Filipinos trust the President.
Our people see and understand the President as man of action who wants to deliver on his promises. He commands. He inspires. He moves people to be good and patriotic citizens of the Republic.
Source: Philippine Information Agency