By Genalyn Kabiling
President Duterte has stepped up his attack against Otso Diretso senatorial candidates, this time, alleging that former Solicitor General Florin Hilbay was gay.
“Si Hilbay, isang bak — ang girlfriend niya si Agot Isidro. Iyon namang boyfriend niya bakla [Hilbay is…His girlfriend is Agot Isidro. Her boyfriend is gay],” Duterte said during the PDP-Laban campaign rally in Cagayan province Tuesday night.
Duterte also accused Hilbay of filling up the Office of the Solicitor General with homosexuals during his term.
“P***** i**** Hilbay na ‘to. Naging solicitor general wala namang gawa, pinuno ‘yung opisina niya ng mga bakla [This son of a b*tch Hilbay. He did nothing when he was solicitor general. He filled his office with homosexuals],” he added.
Duterte first made the allegations about Hilbay’s sexual orientation during the administration’s campaign event in Bukidnon last Saturday. He claimed that Hilbay “acts like a man” but was merely pretending to have a girlfriend.
“Be true to yourself. You’re gay. Don’t hide behind a cover. You were made by God. God made a mistake. Just because he’s a God does not mean he is incapable of making mistakes,” he told Hilbay.
The President, however, made it clear he had nothing against homosexuals as he jokingly claimed he was formerly gay.
“Kayong mga bakla ‘wag kayong magalit sa akin ha. Bakla ako noon. Totoo [To the gays, don’t get angry with me. I was once gay. It’s true],” he said, drawing laughter from the audience in Cagayan.
Apart from Hilbay, the President voiced his suspicion about the sexual orientation of another senatorial candidate, human rights lawyer Chel Diokno.
“Chel Diokno, hindi mo nga malaman kung babae ba ito o lalaki [Chel Diokno, you don’t know if he’s a woman or a man],” he said.
He also belittled the competence of Diokno, saying he was all about arrogance. “Dean ito ng College of Law ng La Salle. Never heard man ‘yan. Wala ito. Puro yabang [He is the dean of Las Salle College of Law. He’s never heard. He’s nothing. He’s full of arrogance],” he added.
In the same speech, Duterte also expressed doubts on Senator Antonio Trillanes IV’s manhood. He noted that homosexuals usually have a keen sense of recognizing each other.
“Si Trillanes, bakla o lalaki? [Is Trillanes a man or a woman?],” he asked the crowd.
“Ayaw ninyong maniwala? Magtanong kayo ng kaibigan ninyong bakla. Sige, hinahamon ko kayo [You don’t want to believe? Ask your gay friends. I challenge you],” he added.