Duterte: Women more 'prim and proper' than men

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 24) — President Rodrigo Duterte says he recognizes the strength of women, but says some jobs are better suited for men.

In a speech in Davao City Thursday, the President said, "I believe in the woman. The competence and capability pero hindi lahat sa buhay dapat… Hindi ka — hindi, hindi. Dapat lang. It's not appropriate."

He added, he has hesitations in deploying female soldiers and policemen because "unlike men, kami, maliit pa lang suntukan, bakbakan, barilan diyan [us, even as kids we'd hit each other, play with guns]. And we grew up with a sort of a mindset na sometimes prone to violence."

In contrast, the President said women were "prim and proper."

The President's comments come after allegations that he was anti-women.

Earlier, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque denied the claims.

In a press briefing Wednesday night, Roque said, "His last three appointees are women. Alam ko personally talaga pong mahal na mahal ng Presidente ang mga kababaihan [I know personally that the President deeply cares for women]... Ang problema he loves them too much sometimes."

This is not the first time the President has come under fire for such remarks.

In February, Roque said feminists should take President Rodrigo Duterte's jokes lightly.

Roque, addressing feminists critical of the President, said they should stop taking Duterte's jokes too seriously.

"Sometimes these feminists are a bit OA (over acting). That's funny. Come on! Just laugh," he said.

He said the President's humor is one of the reasons Filipinos find him endearing.

CNN Philippines' Lara Tan contributed to this report.