By Deighton Acuin


As his presidency is nearing its end, President Rodrigo Duterte gave a fun moment in his “Talk to the People” address, referring to the Philippines as the “Republic of Marites.”

“Kung gusto mo ng tsismis, marami ako. Lahat ng ano… This is a Republic of Marites na ngayon eh,” Duterte said.

“Lahat ng tao may tsismis, babae at lalaki. Noon sa mga babae lang ‘yan. Nag-aaway mga babae na pangalan Marites talaga,” he added.

“Marites” is a layman's term in the country referring to an individual who has been known to keep track of issues, rumours, and events of personalities, even politicians, in either social media or everyday settings.

During his first and definitely one of his last addresses on Philippine television days after the polls, Duterte’s Cabinet members were also observed laughing at the chief executive's quip.

“Magsabi doon sa classroom, Marites tsismosa. Lahat naman,” Duterte said.

The address is one of the initiatives of the Duterte administration to provide weekly updates regarding the country’s status on COVID-19, vaccination, social amelioration, and the like.

Edited by Kyla Balatbat