Duterte doing well despite health issues
WORKING PRESIDENT. President Rodrigo Roa Duterte examines the injury of one of the wounded law enforcers he visited at the Divine Word Hospital in Tacloban City last Friday. Duterte can still perform his duties well, despite his health problems, Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo said on Sunday (Nov. 17, 2019). (Presidential photo of Ace Morandante)
President Rodrigo Duterte can still perform his duties “well” as the country’s chief executive despite his health problems, Malacañang said on Sunday.
“If you will notice, kahit na ganyan siya, may nararamdaman, ‘yung kanyang schedule, ganoon pa rin, hindi naman nababago eh (If you will notice, his schedule does not change, despite his health issues). And he not only does survive, he does it well,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in an interview with dzIQ.
Panelo made the comment two days Duterte admitted that his ailments are taking a toll on his health.
On the sidelines of his visit to slain soldiers in Eastern Samar, Duterte told GMA News that he was not in the best of his health, given his age.
“Lahat ng sakit, nandito na sa akin kasi matanda na ako (I have health issues since I’m already old. Kung sabihin mo, ‘okay ka ba, Presidente (If you will ask me, are you okay, Mr. President)? Are you in the best of health?’ Of course not,” the 74-year-old President was quoted as saying.
“I am old. Life has begun to take its toll on my health. At kung sabihin mong may sakit ako, meron (If you will ask me if I have an ailment, yes). You name it, I have it. Para wala na lang debate (I’ll admit it to end speculations),” he added.
The Chief Executive on October 22 learned that he has muscle spasms, which was triggered by his October 16 minor motorcycle accident at the Presidential Security Group’s compound in Manila.
On October 5, Duterte also revealed that he has myasthenia gravis, a chronic autoimmune neuromuscular disease that weakens skeletal muscles responsible for breathing and moving parts of the body.
Apart from the muscle ailment, the President previously admitted that he is suffering from Barrett’s esophagus, a potentially serious complication of gastroesophageal reflux disease, and Buerger’s disease, a rare disease of the arteries and veins in the arms and legs.
Duterte is also battling with chronic back pains and migraines.
The President also informed the public in October 2018 that the supposed “growth” found in his digestive tract tested negative for cancer.
The public’s renewed concerns over Duterte’s health surfaced anew when Panelo initially announced on November 11 that he would go on a three-day leave from November 12 to 14. The Palace official clarified on the same day that the President would not take a respite and would just work from the comfort of his home in Davao City.
Panelo said it was normal for the President to deal with health problems, since he is already 74 years old.
Duterte, nevertheless, would continue fulfilling his mandate to serve the public, despite the status of his health, his spokesman said.
“Kung ano ang sakit ng matatanda sa edad niya (Whatever ailment an elderly has), ordinarily he has that,” Panelo said.
“Trabaho pa rin. Hindi ba sabi niya, ‘Kahit na ano, basta gagawin ko ang trabaho ko kahit na anong mangyari sa akin (But he will continue working. He said, ‘I’ll perform my duties, whatever happens to me),” he added.
Duterte is expected to return to Malacañan Palace in Manila because of his “very busy” schedule starting Monday.
Panelo said the President is also scheduled to join his fellow Southeast Asian leaders in a commemorative summit with Shout Korean President Moon Jae-in on November 25 to 27 in Busan. (PNA)
President will work from home in Davao
Instead of going on a three-day break from work, President Rodrigo Duterte will work from the comforts of his home in Davao City, Malacañang said on Monday night.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo clarified his earlier announcement that Duterte will take three days off from work to rest upon the advice of his doctors, friends, and colleagues.
“The President has declined the suggestion of well-meaning friends to have a rest for a few days,” Panelo said in a statement, admitting that he merely “speculated” in his initial remark.
He, however, assured the public that the President knows how to take care of himself amid the “demands of pressing work”.
“The people can rest assured that the President can keep up with the same and is in the best position to know how he can maintain to be on top of his health,” Panelo said.
The President has been experiencing pain in his back due to a minor motorcycle accident at the Presidential Security Group (PSG) compound last Oct. 16.
Panelo said the President will attend the wake of business tycoon John Gokongwei, Jr. on Monday night.
“The Chief Executive will fly to Davao tonight after attending to the wake of the late John Gokongwei, Jr. at the Heritage and will continue working at his residence there,” Panelo said.
Panelo clarified his earlier statement about the President going on a leave.
“Pero mali na balita na may three-day leave siya. Wala siyang leave. Hindi siya mag-li-leave. Magtatrabaho lang siya sa Davao sa bahay niya. Marami siyang backlog, maraming paperwork (The news that he’s going on a three-day leave is wrong. He doesn’t have any leaves. He won’t file a leave. He’ll work in his home in Davao. He has a lot of backlogs, a lot of paperwork),” Panelo said in an interview over DZMM.
He said Duterte preferred to work from home away from the distraction due to the number of people who wanted to meet with him in Malacañang.
“Kapag sa Malacañang, eh maraming istorbo sa Malacañang. Madaming gustong makipag-usap sa kanya, gustong may private meeting. Hindi talaga siya makakapagpahinga. Samantalang sa bahay pag natapos na siya ng paperwork, pwede na siyang magpahinga (There are a lot of people disturbing him while he is in Malacañang. Too many people want to speak to him, want to have a private meeting. He really can’t rest. But while at home, after his paperwork, he can rest),” Panelo said. (PNA)
Upon the advice of his doctor, President Rodrigo Duterte will be taking a three-day break from his “punishing” work schedule this week, Malacañang said on Monday.
Citing Duterte’s former aide, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go, presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said the President will start resting for three days on Tuesday.
Panelo emphasized that Duterte’s schedule is “subject to change without prior notice.”
“Sabi ni Bong and di naman siya nag-disagree dahil tatlo kaming magka-usap, mga three days (Bong said and he didn’t disagree because the three of us were talking, he will rest for three days),” Panelo said in a Palace briefing.
“Well upon the advice of friends, of colleagues in the world scene, and most likely upon the advice of the doctors to take a rest week from his punishing schedule,” he added.
Panelo, however, clarified that the 74-year-old President was not taking a leave due to any medical concern, but simply to catch up on sleep.
“Napapansin ko kay Presidente (What I noticed from the President), as I told him every time you have eight-hour sleep, ang ganda ng hitsura mo e. Palagay ko yun lang ang kulang niya (You look good. I think that’s what he lacks),” Panelo said.
The Palace official said Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea will be designated as caretaker should the President files a leave of absence from work.
However, Panelo said he has to personally ask the President himself whether he will push through with his planned three-day break.
“Kung merong caretaker, e di may official leave. Kung wala, pahinga-pahinga (If there will be a caretaker, then it will be an official leave. If there’s none, he’ll simply be taking a break),” Panelo said.
On Oct. 24, Go announced that the President would go on a week-long break after his participation in the 35th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) Summit and Related Summits in Bangkok, Thailand from November 2 to 4.
Before that, the President also attended Japanese Emperor Naruhito’s enthronement rites at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on Oct. 22 but had to return to Manila on the same day after feeling an “unbearable” lower back pain due to a recent minor motorcycle accident.
Despite his speedy recovery, Panelo said future overseas travels of the President will now depend on the advice of his doctor.
Last Sunday, Malacañang announced that Duterte is set to join his fellow Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) leaders in a commemorative summit with South Korean President Moon Ja-in in Busan on November 25 to 27.
Amid concerns on the state of his health, the President has assured the public that his condition was not that “serious” to release a medical bulletin. (PNA)
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