Presidential Rodrigo Duterte another female public figure on Wednesday, this time directed at International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde.
In an impromptu speech in front of finance and central bank officials at Malacañan, the chief executive remarked that a simple kiss would change Lagarde’s mind on the “gloomy” outlook of IMF on the Philippines.
Duterte had been highly criticized for making inappropriate remarks about women, even to his female colleagues, in public speeches even before he became president.
Lagarde is just the latest of female figures that Duterte made comments about of a sexual nature.
The IMF’s latest Asia-Pacific regional economic outlook cautioned lawmakers on implementing the second phase of the tax reform package. It projected that the country’s inflation rate may go beyond the target of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. Inflation in recent months have gone above the 4-percent ceiling set by the central bank.
“You know, Lagarde, I’ve seen her… Just pull her into a corner, kiss her, son of a ****, she will change her mind),” Duterte said in Filipino following the IMF’s statement.
Duterte had openly expressed his fondness over the new tourism chief even before he appointed her.
In 2015, Duterte, still mayor of Davao City surprised Puyat, along with the audience, when he held her hand in an event they both attended.
Last year, he also quipped about being distracted by her legs while he was delivering a speech.
The president once admitted being smitten with Robredo and her “nice legs” during the third anniversary of Super Typhoon Yolanda in Tacloban city in 2016.
When Duterte and Robredo once again met in a public engagement earlier this year, the president greeted her as “my lady” and described her as “beautiful and young” amid her staunch criticisms against his drug war.
GMA reporter Mariz Umali was also a victim of Duterte’s apparent misogynistic remarks when he whistled at her during a press conference in 2016.
Her husband, fellow reporter Raffy Tima, also expressed his dismay via Facebook on the Philippine leader and the people who cheered on his improper behavior toward his wife.
Leila de Lima
Duterte once claimed at the height of the controversies and shaky drug-related accusations against De Lima in 2016, Duterte claimed that he watched a sex video of the senator, who has been one of his staunchest critics.
The video, which circulated on Facebook, did not feature De Lima but only her dead ringer.
How should a public official act?
Various groups have since cried foul over the chief executive’s sexist language.
According to Sec. 4 of Republic Act 6713, public officials should “refrain from doing acts contrary to law, good morals, good customs, public policy, public order, public safety and public interest.”
Meanwhile, lewd comments against women are forms of discrimination prohibited by the Magna Carta of Women, according to the Commission on Human Rights.