MANILA—President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday said House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez "can take as many wives as he wants."
"Puro kami Intsik dito, mga mixed. Kaya when he was bannered to have several wives and the press was attacking him right and left, sabi ko do not waste your time about the behavior of Alvarez. He can take as many wives as he wants," Duterte said in a speech at the 2018 Eid'l Fitr celebration in Davao City.
"Sometimes, he’s a Christian, sometimes he’s a Muslim. Depending on the situation."
In February, Alvarez introduced his girlfriend as his current wife during a public speaking engagement in Davao del Norte.
Alvarez has been in a relationship with another woman despite being married to Emelita Apostol Alvarez.
He had claimed he was not violating any law as he was a member of the Manobo tribe that allows polygamy.
According to the government website of Bukidnon, where most of the Manobo tribe are based, a Manobo member may "take another wife only if the first wife and her parents consented."