Sunday, 24 September 2023

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Philippines court disbars Marcos adviser over ‘misogynistic’ outburst

MANILA, PHILIPPINES — The Philippines Supreme Court said Wednesday it has stripped a new adviser to President Ferdinand Marcos of the right to practise law over a “misogynistic” outburst against a journalist.

Marcos appointed lawyer Lorenzo Gadon as his adviser on poverty alleviation on Monday, highlighting his “legal expertise and extensive experience in various industries”.

The Supreme Court voted unanimously the next day to disbar Gadon over his “misogynistic, sexist, abusive and repeated intemperate language”, the court’s public information office said in a statement Wednesday.

However, Marcos’s top aide, Lucas Bersamin, said Gadon would remain in his position and the president “believes he will do a good job”.

The court cited a viral video in which Gadon “repeatedly cursed and uttered profane remarks” against a woman journalist before last year’s election, which it described as “indisputably scandalous”.

“The Court pointed out that Gadon, unfortunately, failed to realize that lawyers are expected to avoid scandalous behaviour, whether in their public or private life,” the public information office said.

Gadon, who backed Marcos’s bid for the presidency but failed in his own attempt to win a Senate seat, was previously convicted and suspended from practising law for three months for using “offensive and intemperate language”, and faced 10 other administrative cases, the statement said.

“Although these cases have yet to be decided, the volume of administrative complaints filed against Atty. Gadon indubitably speaks of his character,” it said.

Gadon said in a statement posted on Facebook he would appeal against the decision because the penalty was “too harsh”.

He claimed the reporter had been “blatantly spreading lies” against Marcos during the 2022 election campaign.

The left-wing Akbayan Party described Gadon as a “buffoon” and called on Marcos to rescind his appointment.


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