Alan Cayetano: Unfair to judge Duterte based on psych report

CAVITE, Philippines – Vice presidential candidate Alan Peter Cayetano defended his standard-bearer Rodrigo Duterte against claims the Davao City mayor would not make a good president based on the results of a psychological test. 

The psychological test said that Duterte allegedly suffers from "Antisocial Narcissistic Personality Disorder". This was supposedly used as evidence for the annulment proceedings of the Davao City mayor with his ex-wife Elizabeth Zimmerman.

But Cayetano said the news report that detailed the psychological test results lacked context.

Hindi naman sinabi ng estasyon na ‘yan at nung reporter na lahat ng nagpapa-annul ng psychological incapacity, ganoon din ang wording,” said the vice-presidential candidate.

(That news station and that reporter did not say that all those seeking annulment based on psychological incapacity have the same wording in their test results.) 

In the Philippines, psychological incapacity is the most common ground for annulment used by couples seeking separation. (READ: Duterte and ex-wife: The ties that bind)

Other grounds recognized by courts are impotence, fraud, lack of parental consent, sexually-transmitted disease, and consent obtained by force.

Cayetano said that a look at the psychological test results of other couples who have sought annulment would show that the wording is almost the same, in many ways like a template.

“If you look at all those who filed for annulment, 60 to 70% of the wording is standard. So all those whose marriages got annulled have something wrong with their heads?” asked Cayetano.

In 2010, it was Cayetano as secretary-general of the Nacionalista Party, who coined the acronym "Topak" (slang for crazy) to refer to people in the campaign of then presidential candidate Benigno Aquino III. They were believed to be behind the smear campaign against then presidential contender Manuel Villar Jr.

Duterte himself did not want to comment on the psych report.

“It’s a very private affair. This is between me and Elizabeth,” he said on Tuesday, in Iloilo.

Though their marriage was annulled, Duterte and Zimmerman remain friends to this day. Zimmerman is campaigning for her ex-husband aboard a bus with their daughter Sara. –

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at