Davide: Duterte’s marijuana joke inappropriate
CEBU, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte stirred controversy recently for cracking a joke on using marijuana that Cebu Governor Hilario Davide III found inappropriate.
While he takes it as a joke, Davide said it was somehow inappropriate for the president to make such a public statement.
“Dunay gamay nga inappropriateness,” the governor said.
Davide said though the president’s statement should not be taken seriously.
“It was certainly a joke. I don’t believe that he is using marijuana,” he said.
Vice Governor Agnes Magpale agreed saying, “I think it was really just a joke. Joker man gyud na sya kaayo.”
On Monday night, Duterte admitted to taking marijuana to keep him awake during international conferences, including the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) Summit last month.
Cannabis or marijuana is considered a downer or depressant.
The president, however, was quick to take it back in a subsequent interview and dismissed his earlier statement as a joke. He said only fools would take it seriously.
But Davide said the youth might take it seriously and receive wrong signals.
“Maybe ang uban malain ang ideya ba, especially ang youth maybe. Okay ra diay mag-marijuana kay ang presidente ngane mag-marijuana man,” he said.
Spokesman Salvador Panelo said Duterte’s joke that he uses marijuana to stay awake in the middle of his tight schedule will have no effect on children who heard his speech and who might take his remark seriously.
Panelo said children would not have understood Duterte’s joke on marijuana use.
“[Children are] incapable also of understanding whether it’s a joke or not. So, if they’re incapable of understanding it, so there’s no harm. Hindi nila naiintindihan eh,” Panelo said at a news conference at Malacañang yesterday.
Duterte’s joke comes amid continued criticism of his war on drugs, which has killed nearly 5,000 suspected drug dealers and users since assuming office in June 2016. — KBQ (FREEMAN)