Forbes ranks Duterte as one of the world’s most powerful people



President Duterte has been listed by Forbes magazine as one of the World’s 75 Most Powerful People in 2018.


Duterte landed on the 69th spot of the list of men and women who “make the world turn”.

Forbes said its annual power ranking “identifies one person out of every 100 million, whose actions mean the most”.

This year’s list highlights the consolidation of power in the hands of an elite few,” Forbes’ contributor David M Ewalt wrote.


The magazine also cited the president’s war on drugs, which he has vowed will continue until the last day of his term.

Government data says that 72,818 suspects have been arrested in 57,554 anti-drug operations, while more than 1.2 million “drug personalities” have surrendered since the drug war was launched in 2016.

Police figures say more than 4,000 suspects have been killed while resisting legitimate operations. However, outside observers, such as Human Rights Watch, put the figure closer to 12,000.

Elsewhere on the Forbes list, Chinese President Xi Jinping was named as the world’s most powerful person, overshadowing Russia’s Vladimir Putin, who had held the top spot for four years in a row.

President Trump took third place, followed by Germany’s Angela Merkel, who is therefore 2018’s most powerful woman.

Responding to the list, presidential spokesman Harry Roque said Duterte “has many times acknowledged that the true source of power is the people”.

“As Chief Executive for almost two years, he has faithfully served our people by promoting the interests of the Filipino people and the Filipino nation first,” he added.

Roque also said the president’s war on drugs, the pursuit of an independent foreign policy and pro-poor policies were “reflective of the current government’s advancing the welfare of the greatest number of our countrymen”.

“The presidency, in the mind of PRRD, begins and ends with public trust, where real power emanates,” he added.

The president, along with Putin, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, was recently featured on a Time Magazine cover with the title: “Rise of the Strongman”.

Angered by the portrayal, the president hit back at the magazine for describing him in those terms.

In an oath-taking ceremony at the Malacanang Palace yesterday (Tuesday, May 8), the president said he was not a dictator and had never sent anybody to prison “for just talking against me”.