PWD group: Why can’t Duterte be respectful like Trudeau?
ILOILO CITY, Philippines—Why can’t he be more of (Canadian Prime Minister) Justin Trudeau instead of insulting us?
This was the reaction of Louie Posa on Friday, founder of the Association of Disabled Persons—Iloilo, Inc. (ADPI), to remarks of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte concerning persons with disabilities (PWDs).
Posa, 65, said Duterte’s jokes during a campaign speech in the capital town of Kalibo in Aklan were “hurting and depriving” to PWDs.
“He should understand our condition instead of looking down at us,” he told the INQUIRER.
Posa suffered spinal cord injuries in a car accident in 1986. He was bedridden for four years and still has difficulty walking until now.
The ADPI has about 150 members.
In his speech, Duterte described the plaza of Davao City as one of the most beautiful in the country.
He said that upon the request of PWDs, he provided wheel chairs at the plaza and designated attendants, two nurses and a doctor to take care of elderly and PDWs visiting the plaza.
When he inspected the plaza, the mayor said he observed the PWDs, one of whom was his classmate, who was suffering disability due to a stroke.
“Gusto kong sabihin, magpakamatay ka na lang (I wanted to tell him to just die), he said in jest, even suggesting that his classmate could use a barber’s shaving razor.
He also described how the PWDs would be inattentive when military trainees who were jogging passes by but would glance up if the joggers were women.
Duterte said that the attendant of one elderly PWD even helped turn the person’s head so he could continue gazing at the women joggers.
“Some would get angry but this is just the truth. I was just narrating,” Duterte said.
However, Posa said what Duterte said was “not funny at all.”
“So what if we look admiringly at women? Despite our physical disabilities, we still have feelings as any other person,” Posa said.
He said making fun of PWDs is “a wrong example for a person aspiring to be president.”
Posa said Duterte should instead show respect and understanding similar to Trudeau.
Trudeau was photographed two years ago helping carry a person on a wheelchair after an escalator broke down at a Montreal Metro station. RAM
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