President Rodrigo Duterte needed to think first before uttering words that could offend people’s faith or beliefs, said Vice President Leni Robredo on Thursday in Zamboanga City during a visit in the western Mindanao city.
“We need to remind, not only the President but also all public officials like us, that when we exercise our freedom of expression and freedom of religion, we also have corresponding obligations,” Robredo said.
Robredo was reacting to Duterte’s earlier rants against the Bible and God.
Duterte sparked a ruckus when, during a speech in Davao City, he made reference to a “stupid God” and discredited the Creation story in the Bible, the Christian world’s guide to belief in God.
“One of these obligations is to make sure that we do not hurt the sensitivities of people or their religious beliefs,” Robredo said. Duterte’s Philippines is pre-dominantly Catholic.
As the President, Duterte is obliged to lead by example respect for other people’s beliefs, said Robredo.
“Everyone has this obligation, but most of all our public officials and especially our President because we will all be affected by what he says.” Robredo said.