Ecuador president says women 'Target' ugly men for harassment claims

  07 February 2020    Read: 914
Ecuador president says women

Lenin Moreno, the current president of Ecuador, has opened a controversial topic to the public. He claims women only make sexual harassment complaints against 'ugly people.'

The Ecuadorian president shared this comment during his meeting with investors in Guayaquil City on January 31. He claims that men are frequently being subject to accusations of sexual harassment by the opposite sex.

In an article from MSN, Moreno claims that he had witnessed many women make sexual harassment claims multiple times. He said that it is okay. However, he said that only 'ugly people' get accused.

According to the 66-year-old president, some parts of society don't consider it harassment if the offender is attractive. After saying these words, males in attendance let out laughter.

President Moreno Apologizes Through Social Media

In a social media post on Friday, the Ecuador president had taken back his rude comments. He explained that it was never his intention to minimize the destructive intensity of violence and any other kind of abuse. He apologized for the misinterpretation of his statement. He stresses that he is against all types of women's abuse and violence.

Despite releasing a public apology, his comments had already gone viral. The online community is reacting negatively to the Ecuadorian president's insensitive sexual harassment remarks.

Reactions from Women's Rights Advocates and Groups

According to Global News, many women's rights advocates expressed their revulsion to the remarks made by the president.

Congresswoman Soleda Buendia shared through social media that he allows and "reproduces" women abuse and violence. She said that sexual harassment is not a joking matter. 

The Women for Change organization also shared their negative view of the Ecuador president's comments. Through a social media post, it shared that for 'machos' like the president, sexual harassment is not a bad deed.

On Monday, one of the human rights authorities in Ecuador Quito's Council for the Protection of Rights had released a reaction to the sexual harassment comment of the president.

According to the council, the issue was not a laughing matter. The sexual harassment remark originating from the highest position holder in the government showed how badly this horrible act is naturalized in the country. 

The council shared how almost every woman is at risk of sexual harassment. They revealed that women may experience such horrible acts in schools, offices, and political agencies. Additionally, women are also threatened to experience violence and abuse in public places like plazas and streets. This may be the reason why it was commented by the president as something common, normal, absurd, and tolerable.

In a survey conducted by the National Institute of Statistics and Census of Ecuador in 2019 with 20,000 participants. The study concluded that a minimum of 32% of women had stated that they were victims of a type of sexual violence.

The On-Going Trial of the Government for a 2002 Sexual Harassment Case

The issue sparked a few days after the hearings for a 2002 sexual harassment case was held by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR). 

The case includes the failure of the government to convict a school official for sexually harassing one of the students of the school. The victim later died from committing suicide.

By the end of the year, the IACHR will be releasing judgment on the case.


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