MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte will certify as urgent a proposed law against discrimination, but not the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity or Expression bill, his spokesperson said Wednesday.
Duterte on Tuesday was asked if he would certify as urgent the SOGIE bill, which seeks to protect the LGBT community from hate crimes and prejudice. He replied: "Yes, whatever would make the mechanisms, what would make them happy."
"He was referring to an anti-discrimination bill, not SOGIE bill much like the anti-discrimination ordinance existing in Davao passed when he was still the mayor there," Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a text message.
"He said, 'I have that, we have that in Davao.' He was really specifically referring to that anti-discrimination law in Davao," he clarified in an interview with CNN Philippines.
Sen. Sonny Angara has filed a measure seeking to ban “all forms” of discrimination in the country.
"Siguro mas maganda iyon, kung (perhaps that is better, if there is a) broader audience. Otherwise baka may problema ka sa (you may have a problem with) class legislation," Panelo said.
"Basta ayaw niya ng (he dislikes) discrimination, iyon ang (that is) very clear. He's outraged by any form of discrimination, against any particular class or person," he added.
Senators have tackled the SOGIE bill following the temporary detention of a transgender woman who attempted to use the female toilet at a Quezon City mall last month.
Conservative groups, including Christian denominations, opposed the measure, citing Biblical doctrine and alleging that it would be discriminatory against sectors outside the LGBT.