Groups file complaint vs Duterte for violating Magna Carta of Women

Patricia Lourdes Viray - Philstar.com

MANILA, Philippines — Several women's groups on Wednesday filed a complaint against Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte before the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) for allegedly violating the Magna Carta of Women (RA 9710).

The presidential aspirant recently drew flak over his remarks about an Australian lay minister rape victim.

"As a public official, an incumbent Mayor of Davao City, and now seeking to win the highest position of the land, Mr. Duterte is expected to be an exemplar of a respectable, law-abiding citizen. Instead, he arrogantly flaunts his power over these women and diminishes their worth as human beings," the complaint read.

Among the complainants were representatives of the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women - Asia Pacific, the World March of Women - Pilipinas, Purple Action for Indigenous Women's Rights, WomanHealth Philippines, Kasarian-Kalayaan, and Sagip-Ilog Pilipinas.

The groups asked CHR Chairman Jose Luis Martin Gascon to investigate if Duterte has violated the rights sanctioned by the Magna Carta of Women through his controversial rape remark.

On Tuesday, several women's groups released a statement condemning the remarks of Duterte despite his apology.

"Mayor Duterte, it is not okay to disrespect women. Even if they disagree with you. It is not okay to violate a woman's dignity," the statement read.

The camp of Duterte had issued an apology over his "rape joke" and said that the presidential aspirant had no intention of disrespecting women or rape victims.

Meanwhile, Commission on Elections Commissioner Rowena Guanzon is set to propose a reform on election rules to emphasize gender sensitivity and gender equality.

RELATED: Comelec commissioner seeks election rules on gender sensitivity

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