There are some jokes people would be embarrassed enough to share with their family members and even with their spouses. The joke made by Philippine presidential contender Rodrigo “Digong” Duterte was of that category, except he made the cruel joke in public and in front of the media.
“I was angry because she was raped, that’s one thing. But she was so beautiful, the mayor should have been first. What a waste.”
The mayor to whom he was referring, by the way, is himself, Rodrigo “Digong” Duterte, the mayor of Davao City on the southern island of Mindanao in the Philippines, the Washington Post reported.
In the video above, the mayor is making these sarcastic remarks to the crime of gang rape. The transcription of the video reads.
“All the women were raped so during the first assault, because they retreated, the bodies they used as a cover, one of them was the corpse of the Australian woman layminister. Tsk, this is a problem. When the bodies were brought out, they were wrapped. I looked at her face, son of a b***h, she looks like a beautiful American actress. Son of a b***h, what a waste. What came to mind was, they raped her, they lined up. I was angry because she was raped, that’s one thing. But she was so beautiful, the mayor should have been first. What a waste.”
His statements have sparked public outrage in the country. Comparisons between him and American presidential contender Donald Trump were quickly made on social medias.
“While commentators have started referring to him as another Donald Trump, this guy makes Mr. Trump look like Mr. Rogers. Among the previous nicknames for Duterte are ‘the punisher’ and ‘Duterte Harry,’ after the Clint Eastwood character Dirty Harry, says Travis M Andrews of The Washington Post.”
The video was shot during a campaign rally in Quezon City, Philippines, on April 12, CNN Philippines reported.
According to Rappler, the incident Duterte was referring to seems to be the 1989 hostage-taking by Felipe Pugoy, an inmate of the Davao City Police Office. Pugoy had taken hostage of missionaries who had visited the DCPO to preach.
One of the missionaries was an Australian woman named Jacqueline Hamill.
According to an August 16, 1989, story in the Chicago Tribune, Hamill and four other hostages were among the 20 people killed in the hostage drama in Davao City. The Chicago Tribune story reported that Hamill was “raped and had her throat slashed” by a gang inside the jail during the hostage taking.
He made the controversial statement in his speech live in Quezon city. In the full-length video on YouTube, Duterte’s joke about the Australian woman starts at 1:17:05. Just before the infamous joke, he tells the audience about how the hostage-taking incident started. Just after the joke, he shares the details about how he had the hostage-takers buried to the audience.
Duterte has been receiving a harsh response for his comments.
Manuel “Mar” Roxas II, one of the opposing presidential candidates in the May 9 election said that “anyone who laughs at the ultimate assault on the dignity of women should not be allowed to wield power,” CNN Philippines reported.
Sen. Grace Poe, another candidate quoted by CNN Philippines, said, “It is distasteful and unacceptable, and reflects his disrespect for women. No one, whoever she is and whatever her looks may be, deserves to be raped and abused. Rape is a crime and no laughing matter. We should all be outraged at abuses against women.”
Philippine Vice President Jejomar Binay took to Twitter and expressed his severe discontent with Duterte.
Straits Times reported that the election is expected to go down to the wire after the controversial statement by the front-runner.
[Image via Keith Bacongco/Flickr]