Duterte: Mocha Uson went overboard

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 3) — President Rodrigo Duterte on Sunday said Communications Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson went overboard with some of her actions.

"Si Mocha maraming kalaban. Sabi ko, 'There are things na tingin ko medyo nasobrahan,'" he said in a speech as he met with Filipinos in Jerusalem, Israel.

He said the highly-criticized official is free to express herself as it is her constitutional right.

"Kung ano ang gusto niya sabihin, kahit empleyado siya ng opisina ko o as a private citizen, that is not really my concern. As long as it is covered sa provision ng Constitution, freedom of expression," he said.

In August, Uson hosted a Facebook video with blogger Drew Olivar. Olivar was singing a jingle, playing with the word "federalism" using racy terms and gesturing towards female private parts - all to Uson's cheering. Uson was criticized because she was tapped to be the front-liner in the multi-million massive information drive on the proposed shift to a federal form of government.

Following the controversy, the head of the government's information network urged Uson to take a leave. The Presidential Communications Operations Office also reminded its officials and employees to mind their behavior on social media.

Aside from the federalism controversy, Uson also faces an administrative complaint for allegedly spreading fake news.