Persona non grata for comedian over ‘hipon scandal’

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Sunday, August 17, 2014

DAVAO CITY -- The City Council is yet to discuss whether they will declare Ramon Bautista, a comedian who made a malicious statement against Dabawenyos during the Kadayawan Invasion, persona non grata.

Vice Mayor Paolo Z. Duterte said he will let the councilors decide on the matter.

The "hipon scandal" broke in social media, specifically in Facebook, after former mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio posted and ranted about how Bautista behaved during the Kadayawan Invasion.


"Attended this Kadayawan Invasion and heard this (Ramon Bautista) guy say 'hipon' ang mga babae sa Davao. Pila sa ako mga fb friends ang konsehal...if you do not call out this guy as a persona non grata, [you're] doing a disservice to women all over!! P at F to you Ramon Bautista! bisita ka lang, gumalang ka!," Duterte-Carpio posted.

As of this writing, the status had 1,015 shares, 207 likes and 69 comments. She also cursed Bautista in the comments.

"Hipon" is a Filipino pejorative that means a person with a sexy body but with an ugly face.

In a video posted by netizen Geneley S. Gador, Bautista said: "Tama! Ang daming hipon dito sa Davao!"

Then the comedian started to chant "hipon!"

"When I say Hi, you sya Pon!" he said, to which the crowd responded.

Bautista joined the Kadayawan Invasion held at the Crocodile Park concert grounds on Saturday as an endorser of one of the sponsors.

This did not sit well with the Dutertes who also attended the rave party. They reportedly confronted the comedian and demanded an apology.

"Wa nako palabya ug atong gistorya ning tawhana ug gipasabot nato nga gibastos ta niya, ilabi na ang atong kababayen-an (I did not let that pass and I made him understand that he insulted us, especially the women)," the vice mayor said in his Facebook page.

"Nisurok akong dugo kay sa tanang butang nga pwede niya tinuntuhan, ang mga babaye pa nato. Atong hinumduman kanunay, labi na kitang kalalakin-an, nga dapat magpabilin atong respeto ug kortesiya sa babaye bisan kinsa ug unsa ka pa. Ramon Bautista, ang maayong pamatasan di mapulihan sa kasikat ug impluwensya. Ug nahimo nimo na sa uban lugar, ayaw dad-a dinhi sa amua. Ramon Bautista, umayos ka (I was angry because of all things he can make fun of, it had to be our women. Let us all remember, no matter who you are, you should always respect women. Ramon Bautista, good manners should never be forgotten just because of fame and power. If you were able to do that in other places, don't do it here. You better shape up)," he added.

Meanwhile, Duterte-Carpio, in a text message to Sun.Star Davao on Sunday, said, "Naa man ko didto sa first sorry niya (I was there when he first apologized). I told him to turn off the music and apologize to them. What he did made it worse with loud background music, he said something like this 'O ha! Hindi kayo hipon. Sorry, sorry. Hindi kayo hipon. Mga gwapa kayooo!' then started chanting 'gwapa! gwapa!' in a voice that was condescending and dripping with sarcasm. Bastos gihapon siya (he is uncouth)."

Apparently, Bautista was made to apologize again, this time with Vice Mayor Duterte standing onstage.

"I'm here in front of you to say my apologies because sinabi ko maraming hipon dito. Oo nga, nahihiya po ako sa inyo kasi you welcomed me here sa inyong beautiful city. Andito po ako lagi at nag eenjoy po ako dito para po masabi yung mga bagay na yun na marami sa inyo ang na offend. I say my sincere apologies. Sana po matanggap niyo," Bautista said.

The crowd started booing at him.

But, he continued to ask for an apology.

"Nandito po ako para makisaya sa Kadayawan Festival para maging enjoyable ang gabing ito. Fromm the bottom of my heart sobrang nahihiya po ako sa inyo. Sana mapatawad niyo po ajko. Mahal ko po kayong lahat. Maraming salamat po at party party tayo!" he said.

Councilor Joselle Villafuerte also reacted to the behavior of Bautista.

"I read online what happened. It is such a shame when a comedian and I also read, a UP professor no less, finds it acceptable to make fun of insult women and call it comedy. We are fortunate the vice mayor was there to witness it and immediately call his attention. His public apology should remind other comedians that insulting women, or people in general, here in Davao or anywhere for that matter, is not and will never be acceptable," Villafuerte said.

Luz Ilagan of Gabriela partylist also thumbed down what Bautista did.

"Yes, I agree. The appropriate move is to declare him persona non grata. It is within the rights of city officials and his behavior naman was that of an ungrateful guest. He was disrespectful and insulting to the women of Davao. He should have known better being a professional. Besides who will take up the cudgels for Dabawenyas? Nakamenos gyud siya," Ilagan said.

Bautista is tagged as an "Internet superstar" and appears in some of the shows in GMA. (Sun.Star Davao/Sunnex)

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on August 18, 2014.

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