DAVAO CITY, Philippines – The Gabriela Women’s Party (GWP) rebuffed the advice of President Rodrigo Duterte to women to stay away from priests amid allegations of sexual abuse against them.
“Why would women take advice from a self-confessed womanizer and serial misogynist? The macho-fascist president would be the last person who could give decent advice on how women can stay away from or fight abuse,” Gabriela said in a statement on Sunday, March 10.
In an event in Negros Occidental on Friday, Duterte hit the Catholic Church anew, saying women should not be too close to priests or they would be courted.
“The women should refrain from going near the priests because when you are near him, he will just smell the scent of your body. And if he corners you in the church, patay ka, he will court you. Do you know why? It’s because he is a man,” the President said in vernacular.
GWP added: “Duterte seeks to drive a wedge between women and the Church who are now finding common ground to make his regime accountable for its crimes against the people,” Gabriela said.
Women’s groups led by Gabriela recently launched a nationwide protest on March 8, in line with the commemoration of the International Women’s Day.
The group said that the “macho-fascists remarks” of the President, do not make the situation any better for women.
They hit the Duterte’s consistent use of rape jokes during his public speeches. On 2017, Duterte reassured its soldiers that he will claim responsibility if they were to rape three women.
He also narrated how he indecently “touched” his maid when he was a teenager.
“Gabriela has never ceased to make perpetrators of abuse accountable whether they come from the ranks of the Church, police and military personnel or government officials — including the President himself,” GWP concluded. (davaotoday.com)