President Rodrigo Duterte will deliver his regular public address “Talk to the People” on Monday, with Malacanang saying the Chief Executive was fit and healthy.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque, who is in an unidentified hospital for COVID-19 treatment, issued the statement after Duterte skipped his public address twice last week after more than 100 Presidential Security Group members tested positive with the virus.
To prove to the public that Duterte was doing well, Senator Christopher Go, Duterte’s long-time close associate, posted photos of the 76-year-old President jogging, walking, and riding a motorcycle.
Duterte was seen wearing a face mask and face shield.
Go said the President needed public support, especially as the country continued to grapple with the coronavirus disease 2019.
Duterte decided to limit his public exposure due to the spike in COVID-19 cases in the country and the implementation of the most restrictive enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal.
It was not clear when the images were taken.
The images are Go’s followup to a post on Wednesday, which showed Duterte working on a desk, and him in the frame. He had said then the President was “just here” and was “swamped with work.”
Duterte had skipped Day of Valor rites on Friday, with his spokesman saying it was because of the continuing community quarantine across the country.
Duterte tested negative for COVID-19 in his last swab test during the Holy Week, Go earlier said. Roque, meanwhile, said the President “remains fit and healthy for his age.”
Duterte had several times in public said he was struggling with back pain, migraines, and Buerger’s disease, which is linked to blockages in the blood vessels associated with smoking when he was young.
In March, he joked that he might have cancer after coughing during a public address.
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