Manila: Ahead of EU chief’s visit, Andanar drops slur vs bloc

In this Feb. 3, 2017 photo, Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar speaks at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations-Presidential Communications Operations Office Roadshow at Hotel Elizabeth in Baguio City. PPD/Ace Morandante

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MANLlA, Philippines — Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar made a sexual reference against members of the European Union weeks ahead of the expected arrival of world leaders in the Philippines for the ASEAN meeting.

Andanar and Presidential Communications Officer Assistant Secretary Kris Ablan met with overseas Filipinos community in London, where the communications secretary addressed the audience.

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Andanar, seemingly adopting his principal’s “freestyle” speech, said this to the other officials of the European Union: “Yung maiingay na pala-iyot, ang problema sa kanila hanggang ingay lang. Wala naman silang napatunayan.” (Those who keep yapping are those who have a lot of sex, the problem with them is that they are all talk.)

“Yung prime ministers and presidents of other countries are all supportive of President Duterte. ‘Yung mga nasa baba lang ang maiingay dahil nga kulang sila sa ‘iyot’,” Andanar added, using the Visayan term for “sex.” (“The prime ministers and the presidents of other countries are all supportive of President Duterte. Those who rank below are all talk, maybe because they lack sex.)

The Malacañang official, whose remarks were caught on video by a member of the audience, also gave the EU’s supposed lack of credibility as reason for Brexit, or the United Kingdom’s decision to separate from the 28-member bloc.

“Kaya nga kayo mag-Brexit, di ba dahil wala na kayong tiwala sa EU, bakit sila nakikialam sa atin?” Andanar said. “That is why [they] are doing Brexit, because they no longer trust the EU. [So] Why are they interfering with us?”

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President Rodrigo Duterte has repeatedly launched tirades against the EU, even making a wordplay “EU de puta” to pertain the group of world leaders, a play with a Spanish cuss word, “hijo de puta or son of a bitch.”

Duterte has also accused the European parliamentary of meddling with the country’s politics, and even issuing an order against EU diplomats to leave the country in 24 hours, in an incident the Malacanang later labeled as a “misdirected” tirade. Presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella said that Duterte was pertaining to the seven-member group of the Progressive Alliance and Party of European Socialists that does not represent the bloc.

Leaders from the EU, including European Council President Donald Tusk, are expected to arrive in Manila in November for the 31st ASEAN Summit and related meetings, hosted by the Philippines.

Trillanes, De Lima jab

Before the London-based Filipino community, Andanar also took jabs at two of the staunchest critics of Duterte, detained Senator Leila De Lima and Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, eliciting cheers from the crowd.

The communications official said that Trillanes is allowed to give his statements and critics because the Philippines is a democratic country.

“Pwede mag-ingay ang kahit sino dahil meron tayong freedom and speech and expression, at nirerespeto ang sinasabi ni Trillanes,” Andanar said. (We can make noise because we have freedom of speech and expression, and we can respect what Trillanes is saying.)

But he warned: “Kung gagaguhin tayo, eh di gagaguhin din natin sya. (If we will be jerked around, we will fight back.)

Videos of the said meeting of Andanar and the Filipino community are posted on the Facebook page of Malcolm Conlan.

Andanar and Ablan were sought for comment, but have not replied as of posting.

 (philstar.com) 

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