Davao city Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, a presidential candidate in the 2016 elections, has named the priest who he said “fondled” him when he was a teenager.
The tough-talking mayor, known for his iron-first rule to instill discipline in the city, said it was the late Fr. Paul Falvey, S.J. who sexually abused him and other boys at the Ateneo De Davao University when he was at first year high school.
“It happened during our generation, two years ahead of us and two years following us… It cost him some P25 million because other victims filed a case, it was a case of fondling—you know what—he did during confession, that’s how we lost our innocence early,” Duterte said according to a Philippine Daily Inquirer report Friday.
He said the sexual molestation served as his “sexual awakening.”
“It was a sort of sexual awakening for each of us… We realized quite early that ganun talaga ang buhay (life was like that)… Paano magreklamo (How would you complain)?… Takot kami (We were afraid),” Duterte said.
Duterte admitted that he was sexually abused by a priest after he was criticized by the Catholic Church for “cursing” Pope Francis.
During his proclamation as the presidential candidate of the Partido Demokratikong Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban), Duterte said he wanted to curse at Pope Francis for causing traffic in Manila during his papal visit in January this year.
Duterte clarified that he was cursing at government incompetence, not the Pope.
“Sabi ko, ‘Bakit?’ Sabi sarado na [ang daan]. Sabi ko, ‘Sinong darating?’ Sabi si Pope. Gusto kong tawagan, ‘Pope, putang ina ka, umuwi ka na. ‘Wag ka nang bumisita dito,’ (I said, why were the roads closed? Who was arriving? They said it was the Pope. I wanted to call him: Pope, you son of a bitch, go home, don’t go back to the Philippines!)” Duterte, known for his foul language, said in jest, according to an Inquirer.net report.
Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) President Archbishop Socrates Villegas scored Duterte for cursing the Pope, saying “vulgarity is corruption.”
“When a revered and loved and admired man like Pope Francis is cursed by a political candidate and the audience laugh, I can only bow my head and grieve in great shame. My countrymen has gone to the dregs,” Villegas said in a statement, according to an Inquirer.net report.
Archbishop Emeritus Oscar Cruz dared Duterte to file a sexual abuse complaint, according to a GMA News report. Cruz is the judicial vicar of the CBCP National Tribunal of Appeals.
Duterte, a presidential aspirant in the Philippines’ national elections in 2016, is linked to the Davao Death Squad, an alleged hitman group responsible for the summary killings of criminals in Davao city.
He is also known to have several affairs with women.
Duterte was mayor of Davao city from 1988 to 1998 and then from 2001 to 2010. He was reelected in 2013.