MANILA - Opposition Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Monday branded President Rodrigo Duterte an "evil man" after the latter called God "stupid."
Trillanes said Duterte's recent remarks against God is the culmination of the chief executive's "arrogance of power."
"It is the height of arrogance of power not only to disrespect and spit on an individual's faith but also to act as though he is a god," the senator said in a statement.
"It should be clear now to everyone that Duterte is one evil man," he added.
Trillanes' remarks came after the President, in a June 22 speech, called God "stupid" for allowing Adam and Eve to ruin his "perfect" creation by eating the forbidden fruit.
"Who is this stupid God? Estupido talaga itong p***** i** kung ganun. You created some -- something perfect and then you think of an event that would tempt and destroy the quality of your work," Duterte, a Catholic, said.
Trillanes, a staunch critic of Duterte, said the President's statement shows the ruthlessness of his policies as well.
"Worse, Duterte's statements betray the nature of his evil mind and is very much consistent with the deceitfulness, heartlessness and ruthlessness of his policies," he said.
MEANT TO DISTRACT?
Senator Risa Hontiveros meanwhile alleged that Duterte's comments against God serve to distract the public from pressing national issues.
"Itong sinabi ni Presidente has nothing to do with programs, with policies, 'ni walang dinadagdag sa theological discussions," she said in an ANC interview.
"Most importantly, itong mga irrational streams of consciousness, ramblings, rantings niya also serve to distract us from burning issues..." she added.
(What the President said has nothing to do with programs, with polices. It doesn't even add anything to theological discussions. Most importantly, these irrational streams of consciousness, ramiblings, and rantings serve to distract us from burning issues.)
Asked for comment on Duterte's criticism of God, Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto simply said: "May God bless his heart."
Earlier, Senator Panfilo "Ping" Lacson expressed hopes that Duterte will be forgiven after he questioned God's logic.
"May my God forgive him and make him atone for his sins," said Lacson, adding that he previously thought that Duterte was God's gift to the country.
Duterte in the past has advised his critics to take up their problems with him to God.
"Why should I change? God made me the way I am. God gave me this identity and God gave me this mouth," Duterte said in an exclusive interview with ANC last year.