LOOSE CANNON

Duterte to Human Rights Agency Head: ‘Are You a Pedophile?’

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte slandered the head of the country’s human rights agency on Saturday, saying he might be a pedophile for taking an interest in teenage victims of the government’s brutal war on drugs. Duterte made the comments to lawmakers while discussing the budget for the Commission on Human Rights, which has butted heads with Duterte and his allies for its investigations into thousands of killings that critics say amounted to extrajudicial executions. Referring to the agency’s interest in teenage victims, Duterte addressed the head of the agency, Chito Gascon, to ask why he is so preoccupied “with the issue of young people, especially boys? Are you a pedophile?” “Why are you smitten with teenagers? Are you? I‘m having my doubts. Are you gay or a pedophile?” he asked. He also floated the idea of using the agency’s entire budget to buy police body cameras after his allies in the lower house of Congress voted to give the agency a budget of merely 1,000 pesos ($20) for 2018.