Rabiya Mateo: ‘We need female leaders’

Miss Universe Philippines 2020 Rabiya Mateo said she “completely disagrees” with President Rodrigo Duterte’s comment that the presidency is no job for a woman because of their emotional differences to men.

It was in early January when President Duterte made the remark when he was dismissing speculations that his daughter, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, would follow in his footsteps. 

“This is not for women. You know, the emotional set-up of a woman and a man is totally different. You will become a fool here. So… that is the sad story,” he said. 

In an interview with pageant website Missosology, the beauty queen said women are just as capable as men in handling the nation.  

“Well, I do respect the President but I completely disagree with this thought,” she said, citing that the country already had two female presidents — Corazon Aquino and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

Rabiya said even gave New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern as an example. She said the leader conquered the COVID-19 virus in her country.  

“I am a woman and I believe that my emotion do make part in my leadership skills and I have so much heart, I have so much calling in being a leader. I do disagree with this thought, I can lead my country because I have the power to do so,” she said.  

The Ilongga beauty stressed that in this era, men and women should be treated equally. 

“We need to give them the same opportunities and I won’t agree with something like this because I know my capabilities and strengths as a woman and I know that I can make a difference.  

“We need female leaders, leaders that will put their emotions in making decisions because it’s not all about experience. Sometimes, you really need to put your emotion and be the mother of your land,” she emphasized.  

In the same interview, she explained why she is going above and beyond her duties as Miss Universe Philippines’ Ambassador for Education as she works on other pressing issues like malnutrition and animal welfare. 

“I am a woman and I’m not just capable of doing only one thing. I can do different things at the same time and that is my way of extending help to people who needed it the most,” she said.  

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