Sex jokes in an official meeting about a disaster? Not cool

OCTOBER 9, 2018 President Rodrigo Roa Duterte answers questions from the members of the Malacanang press corps during the oath taking of the newly elected officers of the Makacang Press Corps. PHOTO BY JOAN S BONDOC

Today, the President finally met with other officials to discuss their response to the recent calamities that befell  the country, including two catastrophic typhoons that claimed scores of lives and left billions in damages. Not surprisingly (unfortunately), the meeting degenerated into locker room talk, laced with sex jokes because apparently people dying can’t stop old men from joking about their dicks. 

In one instance, the President reportedly made a playful jab at one Camarines Sur official, a former classmate, saying that he had gotten older from having too many women. “Classmate kami. Classmate ko ito sa law school. Brod ko pa. Pero naubos ang panahon niya sa ano. Medyo tumanda na. Nakakatanda talaga yan. Sobrang babae? Nakakatanda yan,” said the President. 

In reply, the official joked back that he was, in fact, undersexed. “Sabi nga po ni Cong. LRay (Villafuerte, who was also at the meeting), undersexed daw po ako. Undersexed. Kaya kung pwede po gawin mo na akong secretary para hindi na undersexed,” he said.

At another point in the meeting, the President reacted to news about another colleague dying of COVID-19 by saying, “P*tangina, kulang sa babae kung ganon.”

Just a refresher on the typhoons: Typhoon Rolly, which struck the country two weeks ago, left a death toll of 25. Typhoon Ulysses, meanwhile, has a current death toll of 67, with many still missing. Making sexist jokes amid a grim situation is definitely not acceptable, especially from the country’s highest official.

Gabriela representative Arlene Brosas responded to these jokes, saying, “Imagine still having the audacity to blabber inappropriate jokes when people literally drowned and died due to the series of calamities. Instead of dropping sexist remarks, the government should [do] double time in providing emergency assistance. It should also apologize and explain its lack of preparedness and inadequate response tantamount to criminal neglect.”

Brosas also pushed the call for accountability and better government action further. “Sa gitna ng sunod-sunod na kalamidad habang nasa panahon ng pandemya, ang kailangan ng mga Pilipino ngayon ay hindi payaso kundi epektibong pamumuno at konkretong plano. Ilang emergency powers pa ba ang kailangan para mabilis na kumilos ang gobyerno? People’s lives are hanging in the balance. Some families are still waiting to be rescued. Some lost their homes, livelihood and loved ones. The Duterte regime must be held accountable for its lack of immediate action, blatant negligence and abuse of power.”


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