Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte will “be the primary one to obey” a new regulation banning sexual harassment, his spokesman said, after critics highlighted the outspoken chief’s appalling record on the problem.
The Safe Spaces Act (Republic Act 11313) bans groping, sexual slurs, cat-calling, wolf-whistling, stalking, and making repeated unwanted sexual comments or advances in all public areas.
Duterte has been condemned within the beyond for his sexist statements, including joking that he’d supply soldiers a new order to shoot lady rebels inside the vagina.
Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo informed nearby media Tuesday that Duterte fully supported the new law, which he signed in April but was most effective publicized this week.
“Since the President signed that law, it method he recognizes the need for the law. Since he’s the lead enforcer of all the legal guidelines of the Philippines, he will be the first one to obey the law,” Panelo stated.
He said the President’s beyond statements had been merely meant to entertain.
“When he cracks jokes, it becomes intended to make humans chortle — never to offend,” Panelo delivered.
Under the brand new regulation, which changed into signed in April but only introduced this Monday, perpetrators face fines or imprisonment relying on their
actions’ severity. The law will even penalize online sexual harassment with imprisonment or an excellent ranging from 100,000 to 500,000 pesos ($1,965 to $nine 825) or maybe both.
“It is the coverage of the country to cost the distinction of every human person and guarantee complete recognize for human rights,” the brand new regulation states.
Duterte’s brash and unfiltered style has earned him some colorful nicknames, including “Misogynist in Chief,” and he has regularly made headlines for his remarks about girls.
Last 12 months, the seventy-four-year-old kissed a married Filipina female onstage throughout a visit to South Korea in a flow that sparked complaints, consisting of accusations of abuse of energy.
In 2016, he joked about the 1989 gang rape of an Australian missionary in his place of origin Davao City, announcing, “I become angry she was raped, yes that turned into one element. But she was so beautiful, I assume the mayor has to have been first,” Duterte said, in line with a CNN Philippines translation of the remarks. His office later apologized.
Opposition Senator Rita Hontiveros, one of the predominant authors of the invoice, applauded the brand new regulation as a “landmark victory,” however also warned that “the regulation is simplest as suitable as how it’s miles carried. Out.”
Others puzzled whether the regulation could be applied similarly to anyone — together with the President.
“The maximum misogynistic President the Philippines has ever had to do the proper issue. I sure hope he doesn’t think he’s exempt from the law he just signed,” Human Rights Watch Researcher Carlos Conde tweeted.
“He is the leader propagator of a culture that degrades and objectifies ladies and that which exhorts cat-callers, sexual offenders, and even uniformed employees to disrespect women. Under this context, imposing the regulation will honestly be a task,” the Gabriela Women’s Party wrote on Twitter.