In response to the issues of reproductive health and population, President Duterte said that natural family planning methods will not work as the urge to have sex cannot be stopped.
During the anniversary of the ruling PDP-Laban party on Sunday, Duterte said that natural birth control methods go against the “grain of biology” and that the urge to have sex is just instant.
He said that couples could not rely on the calendar method, wherein the length of the menstrual cycle is recorded to determine if a woman is fertile.
The Catholic Church is the primary force opposing artificial birth control methods. In recent years, efforts to implement reproductive health and sex education had been hampered due to oppositions coming from conservatives including that of the Catholic Church.
The President said that religion is not in tune with current realities.
“The Pope is now open to allowing priests to marry. You can see five families in a church. All of them are wives of priests. So the Pope said he is no longer opposed to married priests. That’s the way it should be,” he said in Filipino.
Meanwhile, the Commission on Population (PopCom) said yesterday, that there is a high demand for contraceptive implants like “Implanon” and “Implanon NXT”. A Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) was recently filed and approved by the Supreme Court. This then prohibits the Department of Health to promote and distribute the two brands of hormonal contraceptives for two years and also from approving new registrations for contraceptives. This leaves the condom as the only accepted contraceptive left on the list to be recommended to families who opt for family planning.
In response, President Duterte had signed Executive Order 12 which allows local government units to find ways around the TRO to still implement the reproductive health bill that has been approved and ruled as constitutional by the High Court in 2014.
Recent data indicate that the Filipino population is expected to reach 105.75 million by the end of 2017 with 1.69 million expected births due to high fertility rates of Filipino women.