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Panelo says ‘missing’ Duterte went for a motorcycle ride in Davao City

/ 02:19 PM August 19, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte, who has been out of public sight for more than a week now, rode his motorcycle in Davao City over the weekend, his spokesman said Monday.

Duterte has not had a public engagement since August 9 when he led the 118th Police Service Anniversary in Camp Crame.

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But his spokesman Salvador Panelo said the President has been very busy with private meetings and paperwork.

“Ang sabi niya marami siyang trabaho sa mga papeles binabasa niya isa-isa. Hindi siya makapirma nang hindi niya thoroughly reading all these papers at the same time meron siyang mga private meetings at courtesy call,” Panelo said in a Palace briefing.

Asked if there’s something to worry about Duterte’s health, Panelo claimed that Duterte had told him that he rode his motorcycle in Davao City and went out of their subdivision.

“He said to me yesterday: ‘Alam mo ba na I went out sa motorsiklo?’. Nagmotorsiklo daw siya sa subdivision niya,” Panelo said.

“Kinuwento niya sabi niya lumabas siya … tapos ginanahan siya mag-motor lumabas siya ng subdiviison eh ‘di nataranta ang PSG (Presidential Security Group),” he added.

The President’s state of health has been a recurring issue in his presidency given his advanced age.

Duterte, now 74, is the oldest Philippine president upon assumption to the post.

Asked to confirm, Duterte’s former aide and now Senator Christopher “Bong” Go said the President indeed rode his motorcycle on Friday night in Davao City.

And on Sunday night, Go said Duterte again checked and “test” his bike at the PSG compound.

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READ: After absence from public eye, Duterte photo with family released
READ: Palace on Duterte: He’s well but very busy

/kga

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