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Hawa-hawa na! FEU Law dean Mel Sta. Maria says Duterte’s crassness has rubbed off on his officials

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President Rodrigo Duterte’s habit of speaking his mind without thinking has unwittingly been inherited by administration officials– even though they do not curse as much as he does, said Far Eastern University (FEU) Institute of Law dean Mel Sta. Maria.

In his April 11 column for, Sta. Maria said presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella seemed to have taken after Duterte in speaking when he accused the New York Times of employing “hack writers” to write the series of unflattering articles on the President.

Sta. Maria said two of the New York Times’ reporters who wrote on Duterte, Andrew Glazer and Jeremy Rocklin, are esteemed journalists who are respected in the field.

In the Department of Social Welfare and Development, Sta. Maria said there is Assistant Secretary Lorraine Badoy, who told the European Union “mag-child porn muna kayo” after it expressed concern on the administration’s bloody war on drugs.

Another government official who Sta. Maria said seemed to have taken after Duterte’s crass way of speaking is Environment Secretary Gina Lopez, whose cursing at a young reporter recently made the headlines.

Sta. Maria said the controversies in which these government officials have been embroiled in as a result of their words prove one thing: That “[s]ome cabinet members seemed to have imbibed this uncalled-for style” of speaking that’s characteristic of Duterte.