By Genalyn Kabiling
Loving women too much is actually the problem of President Duterte, Malacañang admitted Thursday in brushing aside criticisms about his alleged misogynistic behavior.
Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque has attested that the President loves and respects women and sometimes overdoes it.
“Alam ko personally na talagang mahal na mahal ni Presidente ang kababaihan [I personally know that the President really loves women]. Ang problema [The problem is] he loves them too much sometimes,” Roque said during a press conference in Marawi City.
Duterte, a self-confessed womanizer, is separated from his first wife Elizabeth Zimmerman. They have three children, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, former Vice Mayor Paolo, and Sebastian.
He currently lives with his common-law wife Honeylet Avanceña and their daughter Veronica.
Roque also defended the President’s pro-women attitude, citing his track record as Davao City mayor as well as appointments of three women leaders in government. He said the Presidents’ action should belie allegations raised by critics about his alleged disrespect of women.
Malacañang earlier said the President’s recent remarks against were “mere play of words,” while dismissing allegations claiming he was anti-women as “unfair” and “political.”
The Palace was reacting to a social media campaign dubbed “#BabaeAko” protesting the President’s alleged misogynistic remarks that demean the role of women in society.
The campaign started after the President’s recent comments against women, most recently his preference for a male Chief Justice. He claimed he was not inclined to appoint a woman when asked by reporters about the replacement of Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.
Duterte also drew flak for ordering government troops to shoot female communist rebels in their vagina so they can’t bear children. He was furious that rebels were abandoning their children to join the communist insurgency.