THE Gabriela Women’s Party on Monday reiterated its stance against womanizing even as one of its representatives in Congress urged the voters not to vote for a leader who has flaunted his womanizing ways.
Gabriela party-list Rep. Emmi de Jesus issued the statement following fellow Gabriela party-list member Luz Ilagan’s defense of Mayor Rodrigo Duterte over the accusations he is a womanizer.
De Jesus, GWP national chairwoman, said her group had already communicated with Ilagan “to clarify any misunderstanding on our position regarding the issue of womanizing.”
“Gabriela Women’s Party has communicated with Rep. Luz Ilagan, the organizing committee of FORWARD Women and our local chapters in Mindanao, to clarify any misunderstanding on our position regarding the issue of womanizing and we have resolved to correct the statements issued at the Mindanao Women Leaders’ Forum in Davao City,” De Jesus said in a statement.
She made her statement even as an official said the House of Representatives will join the country’s leading women organizations in celebrating International Women’s Day on March 8 this year.
Bulacan Rep. Linabelle Ruth Villarica, chairwoman of the House Committee on Women and Gender Equality, said this year’s theme, “Kapakanan ni Juana, Isama sa Agenda!” will include women’s concerns in leadership platforms and in the government’s development agenda.
“It is encouraging to note the continuous creation of avenues for women and their advocates to help close the gender gap in leadership positions,” Villarica said.
De Jesus said Gabriela regarded womanizing as “an affront to women’s rights.”
“As the national chairperson of Gabriela Women’s Party, I would like to reiterate our position that we are against womanizing and view this as an affront to women and women’s rights,” De Jesus said.
At a women’s forum in Davao City on Saturday, Ilagan took up the cudgels for Duterte and said she saw nothing wrong with Duterte’s ‘flirting’ with women.
“Womanizing, kissing-most of that is media hype,” Ilagan was quoted as saying in an interview over ABS-CBN.
“Even if he says that ‘I am a womanizer, [‘I have a girlfriend’], remember that the mayor is already separated. His marriage has been annulled.”
Ilagan also said the Filipino electorate should look at what Duterte could do for the Filipino people once he was elected president, and not at his womanizing ways.