Duterte hia­tus not health-re­lated, Palace says

Sun Star Bacolod - - Top Stories -

PRES­I­DENT Rodrigo Duterte’s brief hia­tus had noth­ing to do with his health con­di­tion, Mala­cañang as­sured the pub­lic on Mon­day, May 6.

The as­sur­ance came after Duterte’s one-week ab­sence from the pub­lic eye once again trig­gered spec­u­la­tions about his health.

Pres­i­den­tial Spokespers­on Sal­vador Panelo in­sisted that there was noth­ing to worry about Duterte’s health.

He as­sured the pub­lic that the 74-year-old Pres­i­dent is well and just opted to work in his home­town Davao City.

“You don’t have to be suffering from any ail­ment for you to work in the house,” he said in a radio in­ter­view.

“Walang health rea­son. Nag-con­cen­trate lang siya. ‘Yung ayaw niyang mais­torbo. Kasi kung nan­doon ka sa opisina mo, eh marami ta­la­gang mangi­is­torbo sa iyo (His health is not the rea­son. He’s just con­cen­trat­ing. He doesn’t want to get dis­tracted be­cause if he’s in the of­fice, there are many dis­trac­tions),” he added.

A photo of the Pres­i­dent loung­ing on his bed with some news­pa­pers and watch­ing a Net­flix show was dis­trib­uted to the me­dia by Tourism Sec­re­tary Ber­nadette Ro­mulo-puyat on Sun­day, May 5.

The Pres­i­dent was later seen at the wake of his for­mer ri­val, the late House Speaker Pros­pero No­grales, at the Her­itage Park in Taguig City.

Panelo de­fended Duterte’s act of watch­ing Net­flix at home, say­ing that it was just the Pres­i­dent’s way of as­sur­ing the pub­lic that he is fine de­spite his “pun­ish­ing” work sched­ule.

“Si Pres­i­dente, as you know by now, he works at night. He usu­ally sleeps at ei­ther six o clock in the morn­ing or seven. Depende pa sa tra­baho iyan. Kung mas marami pang hindi sila nat­a­pos, nai-ex­tend pa. But he sleeps eight hours a day. Eight hours na­man siya. Ever since, ‘yun na­man ang kanyang work ethic or life­style since he was a mayor,” he said.

(The Pres­i­dent, as you know by now, he works at night. He usu­ally sleeps at ei­ther six o clock in the morn­ing or seven. It de­pends on his work. If there is plenty of work, he has to fin­ish it. But he sleeps eight hours a day. Ever since, that’s his work ethic or life­style since he was a mayor.)

“The only rea­son why pinakita niya ‘yung pic­ture na watch­ing siya at nag­babasa ng di­yaryo at the same time eh para maease ‘yung con­cern na may sakit siya. Ibig sabi­hin, ‘Okay ako.’ ‘Yun lang ang rea­son nun,” the Palace of­fi­cial added.

(The only rea­son why he showed his pic­ture watch­ing [Net­flix] and read­ing news­pa­pers at the same time was to ease con­cern that he is il. He wants to tell them he’s okay. That’s the rea­son.)

On Mon­day af­ter­noon, Duterte is sched­uled to lead a meet­ing with his Cab­i­net of­fi­cials at the Mala­cañan Palace.

Panelo said Duterte and his Cab­i­net are ex­pected to tackle a “long list of agenda.”

“I haven’t seen the sched­ule but it’s a long one,” he said. “Usu­ally, it’s given to us be­fore we en­ter the Cab­i­net room for the meet­ing.”/sun­star Philip­pines

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