GenSan declares Leah Navarro ‘persona non grata, ‘ singer apologizes

Leah Navarro is no longer welcome in the city of General Santos.

The City Council has declared the OPM singer “persona non grata” during its regular session, Tuesday, after she allegedly insinuated the recent Mindanao earthquakes were a form of “retribution.”

It started when former Supreme Court spokesperson Theodore Te tweeted: “What’s with all the earthquakes in Mindanao?”

In a now-deleted reply, Navarro wrote: “Retribution?”

The council, in a resolution as quoted in Philippine News Agency (, called Navarro’s comment “un-Filipino and un-Christian.”

It maintained her “despicable behavior” insulted the sensibilities of the people of Mindanao and deserved rebuke and condemnation.

LEAH NAVARRO (Screengrab from GMA)

LEAH NAVARRO (Screengrab from GMA)

Legal books define “retribution” as a “punishment inflicted on someone as a vengeance for a wrongful or criminal act.”

“Leah Navarro has no factual or moral basis to accuse the people of Mindanao of having committed any wrongful or criminal act that deserves punishment from the Great Almighty,” the council was quoted to have said in a PNA article by Richelyn Gubalani.

Describing the singer as “self-styled moralist who fancied herself as the guardian of all good and beautiful,” the council further claimed Navarro’s callous reaction to the tragedy was borne out of her “irrational politically-motivated anger.”

“She deserves no less the widest and deepest denunciation by the people who suffered from physical and psychological trauma,” the resolution said.

Apart from declaring her persona non grata, the council said it will not issue a permit to any event that will feature her as performer.

“The island of Mindanao may not be the land of saints but I can probably say this land is a land that have lived in accordance with the will of God Almighty,” said City Councilor Frankin Gacal Jr., author of the resolution. “While our brothers and sisters were in agony, some wicked souls have reveled and jumped in joy. One of these is Leah Navarro.”

Councilor Rosalita Nuñez, on the other hand, said she does not want Navarro to ever set foot in the city.

“She will just be rebuked and might get insulted by the people here,” she said.

Navarro has since apologized via Tweet.

“I apologized, deleted my tweet, but they just can’t find it in their hearts to forgive my one word reply in the form of a question. Now they’ve twisted it into a declaration. Why not help Mindanao instead? Stop wasting time on me, I’m not a victim,” she wrote.

Te, on his part, also deleted his earlier Tweet. He also apologized for his “rhetorical, non-political, and personal” post.

“I have deleted a tweet and my reply-explanation to that tweet which, though unintended, have caused offense, pain, and hurt to family and friends in Mindanao where I am from, proud to be from, and which I love… though my tweet was rhetorical, non-political, and personal, it invited hurtful replies from others whose tweets I cannot and do not control. I apologize for giving them that platform. To family and friends from Mindanao, please be assured of my prayers for your safety,” he said.

Mindanao was jolted by powerful earthquakes on Oct. 16 (magnitude 6.3), Oct. 29 (magnitude 6.6), and Oct. 31 (magnitude 6.5).