Guanzon slams Duterte over remarks on rape incident

MANILA, Philippines — A Commission on Elections (Comelec) official slammed Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte in connection with his remarks on the rape incident of an Australian missionary in 1989.

Commissioner Rowena Guanzon, who is also the head of the Gender and Development Committee of the poll body, said it was distasteful for the presidential aspirant to make fun of a woman, who had been a victim of rape and murder.

“Rodrigo Duterte, a presidential candidate, makes a disgusting ‘joke’ about it, talking about rape and murder victim Jacqueline Hamill, an Australian missionary, who was taken hostage in a Davao City prison, as if she was not a human being,” she said in her Twitter account, @commrguanzon.

The videos of Duterte publicly saying the mayor should have been first in line among those who raped the beautiful Australian lay missionary went viral and earned the ire of the public.

But, Guanzon noted that saying offensive language and remarks were not a ground for disqualifying a candidate.

“Foul, vile language is not a ground for cancelling anyone’s CoC (Certificate of Candidacy). Let the voters decide what kind of a person they want to be President, a tough job that requires competence, honesty and mental fitness,” she explained.

With this, the poll body official is looking to propose for the creation of a Code of Conduct for Candidates.

“As Chair of the Gender and Development Committee of the Comelec, I will propose a Code of Conduct for Candidates, and will reform the election rules to emphasize gender sensitivity and gender equality,” Guanzon added. PNA/