Pro-Duterte stance costs Pinay her resto business in NY
A Filipino restaurant in Queens, New York, has closed down after customers were reportedly "alienated" by the owner's support for President Rodrigo Duterte.
In a report on Sunnyside Post, owner Rena Avendula said she decided to close Payag New York after disagreements with a business partner and the loss of customers who did not share her pro-Duterte stance.
On a Facebook post, Avendula announced her plan to close and sell Payag as "The place that touched many Filipinos & strongly support[s] Pres. Duterte."
Customers were invited to dine in the restaurant last weekend before it officially closed on Monday, July 31.
Avendula admitted the backlash of her pro-Duterte stance affected her financially, prompting her to "go in a different direction."
She said she has no plans of opening another restaurant.
Payag, located along Roosevelt Avenue in the Woodside neighborhood, had been a known gathering place for Filipinos since 2010, the Sunnyside Post report said.
The firebrand Duterte, a former Davao City mayor, is controversial for his bloody war on illegal drugs which is blamed for the spate of extrajudicial killings in the Philippines since he assumes office in June last year.
In speeches, he has repeatedly blasted the United States, including its former president, Barack Obama, for criticizing the suspected drug-linked killings. —Margaret Claire Layug/KBK/KVD, GMA News