DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 06 December) — Mayor Rodrigo Duterte on Sunday said he felt “medyo holy” (a bit holy) after his closed-door meeting with Davao Archbishop Romulo Valles at the Bishop’s Palace on Friday afternoon, and swore he’ll try not to swear anymore.
“Hindi na ako magmumura dito (I won’t use swear words here). I’ll try to behave now, medyo holy na ako (I feel a bit holy) after visiting the Bishop,” he said during his Sunday program “Gikan sa Masa, Para sa Masa.”
“I was admonished and lectured on Christian Values and in return, I told them that I would lessen my use of cuss words. I am even regulating myself and will donate P1,000 to Caritas Davao every time I would swear,” he said.
Duterte came under fire Monday after cursing at Pope Francis at the tailend of his speech during his proclamation as standard bearer of the Partido ng Demokratikong Pilipino (PDP-Laban) in Manila, while narrating how he experienced a five-hour traffic from Roxas Boulevard to the airport during the Papal visit in January.
After his friend told him the boulevard was closed because of Pope Francis, Duterte said, ’Gusto ko tawagan, Pope, p—–ina ka, umuwi ka na. Huwag ka nang magbisita dito”
On Tuesday afternoon, Duterte in a statement expressed “sadness and regret that the part of my speech mentioning Pope Francis in relation to the monstrous traffic gridlock in January came across as being disrespectful to the person of His Holiness Pope Francis. It was farthest from my mind and was never my intention.”
He said he “should have explained better my point on the matter of that monstrous traffic gridlock. My strong statement on the incompetence of those in government to address the traffic problem in Metro Manila was my expression of anger borne out of the helplessness of the millions of commuters suffering from this daily gridlock.”
In his television program on Sunday morning, he said he admitted his mistake and vowed “to obey the superior authority. In this case, sa religion, yung mga pari, yung mga bishops (In this case, on religion, the priests and the bishops).”
Eric Clark Su, co-founder and chief-executive-officer of Twidl Inc., lauded Duterte for being “humble enough to admit a mistake and how to show a sincere gesture (to express) his regret.”
Filmamaker Albert Egot Jr., described Duterte’s move as “another brilliant tactic.”
“People would not just pay attention for the meat of his speech but also to wait for ‘curses’ and Caritas Davao will surely be grateful.”
Duterte’s visit to the Archbishop came a day after he named the late Jesuit priest Paul Falvey who allegedly sexually abused students at the Ateneo de Davao, including himself, in high school.
Duterte finished high school at the Holy Cross of Digos High School after he was expelled by the Ateneo de Davao for misconduct.
Duterte revealed in a report aired by GMA-7’s “24 Oras” the night after his PDP-Laban proclamation, that a Jesuit priest sexually abused him when he was young. Two nights later, in Davao City, he named the priest.
Duterte said he has “forgiven him (Falvey) but maybe I cannot forget.”
He added the same priest allegedly figured in different sexual abuse cases in the US. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)