MANILA – It is only “natural” for President Rodrigo Duterte’s supporters to hit back at students who performed a cheer dance routine critical of the Chief Executive and his administration, according to Malacañang.
“It’s a free country, they can dish out jokes, criticisms,” presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said, referring to the satirical cheer dance performance of some students of University of the Philippines-Visayas (UPV) in Miag-ao, Iloilo that tackled political and social issues that also took swipe at Duterte’s policy in dealing with China.
Panelo also dismissed the chant of the students, saying “Let’s kill the President. Charot!”
Charot” is gay term, which means “just kidding.”
“Oh, it’s a joke. The President also says the word ‘kill.’ They might only be imitating the President,” Panelo said.
Following the now-viral satirical cheer, UPV has condemned the threats and harassment against its students.
“In UP Visayas, we encourage students to think critically and allow them to exercise their freedom of expression. We also assure them of protection while they are inside the campuses. We remind them to exercise prudent in their actions, thus, we denounce all forms of threats and harassment hurled against them,” the university said in a statement.
The cheering performance of the
Skimmers, an academic organization of students from the Division of Humanities,
tackled issues related to the West Philippine Sea, the removal of Filipino in
the college curriculum, and the government’s call for mandatory Reserve
Officers’ Training Corps for senior high school students among others./PN