President Rodrigo Duterte will address the nation from Davao City on Monday, Malacañang said Sunday.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque confirmed this to Palace reporters, adding that Duterte flew to his hometown over the weekend.
“Yes. He’s in Davao now,” Roque said.
Prior to the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic, Duterte usually flew home to Davao City on weekends to spend time with his family.
Last month, Duterte stayed in his hometown from Aug. 3 to 31, marking the longest he has stayed in Davao City since he assumed office in 2016.
During that time, selected members of the Cabinet particularly the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) core members had to fly to Davao City to meet him before his weekly public address on updates into the government’s Covid-19 response.
Duterte’s three-week stay in his hometown sparked rumors that he was severely ill, especially since his speeches have been televised.
However, the President himself debunked reports about his alleged poor health after visiting the site of the deadly twin explosions in Jolo, Sulu on Aug. 30.
Roque has repeatedly assured the public that Duterte is “as strong as a water buffalo” and vowed to disclose his condition if he is suffering from a serious illness.
Under Article 7, Section 12 of the 1987 Constitution, the President is mandated to declare the real condition of his health “in case of serious illness.
Duterte regularly undergoes reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction tests or swab tests, he added.
The Presidential Security Group currently employs a “360-degree protection” for Duterte and his family, considering that the threat of the Covid-19 and terrorism still persists. (PNA)