Lacierda to Duterte: Pols should be more conscientious with words
Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda on Wednesday said Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, who is seeking the presidency, should be more careful with his words after drawing flak for cursing Pope Francis over the inconvenience that his Philippine visit caused travelers in January.
Lacierda, who previously criticized Duterte’s cursing in a tweet, was reacting to allegations that he was using the Pope issue to spur public hatred against the tough-talking mayor, who topped a recent privately commissioned survey of potential presidential candidates in the metropolis.
“I suppose if you view the ordinary netizens, they have expressed indignation over what he said. And I think it’s not a question of using Pope Francis in the first place, if he’d not mentioned Pope Francis’ name, nothing of this sort would ever arise. So, it’s about being more conscientious of what you say as public official. It’s an expression of indignation of Catholics who love Pope Francis,” Lacierda said in a press briefing.
During his proclamation as standard-bearer of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) on Monday, Duterte took a swipe at the Roman Catholic Church and cursed the Pope in jest over the traffic congestion that his visit caused motorists and commuters.
Clarifying that he was speaking as a Catholic and not as a government official, Lacierda reacted on social media: “Mayor Duterte, you can say all you want about politicians but you don’t curse my Pope Francis! #defendthepope”
Lacierda, however, welcomed Duterte’s apology to those who might have misunderstood his strongly worded speech, saying that it was a good gesture as a Catholic.
READ: Duterte denies slur on Pope: I was cursing gov’t incompetence | Duterte camp: Mayor should’ve clarified point in ‘cursing’ Pope | Duterte loves, respects Pope Francis; statement taken out of context—Cayetano
“Bilang isang Katoliko siyempre maganda na humingi siya ng paumanhin. Maganda naman ‘yung kanyang — kung siya ay humingi ng dispensiya e ‘di talagang inaamin niya na nagkamali siya doon. Bilang isang Katoliko siguro magandang gesture. On the other political thing, that’s a matter between Mayor Duterte, I cannot speak on that,” Lacierda said.
(As a Catholic, I think it’s good that he apologized. If he’s asking for an apology, that means he is admitting he was wrong. That is a good gesture as a Catholic. On the other political thing, that’s a matter between Mayor Duterte, I cannot speak on that.) IDL
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