Palace mulls holding Duterte live press briefing to dispel health rumors
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang on Thursday said it is in talks on the possibility of holding live press briefings with President Rodrigo Duterte to dispel doubts about his health.
“We’re talking about it,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said when asked if the President was willing to hold a live press briefing.
“Again, he’s a lawyer, he knows his obligation, he took an oath as a lawyer and as President to uphold the laws of the land and the Constitution. And the Constitution only says, if there is a serious illness is there an obligation to reveal to the public the details of his health condition,” he added.
The issue on Duterte’s health has been recurring after he admitted he has Buerger’s disease and Barrett’s esophagus, among others.
In a pre-taped address aired on Tuesday, Duterte shared being advised by his doctor to stop drinking as his Barrett’s esophagus was nearing stage one cancer.
But Roque said the doctor’s advice was given a “long time ago.”
Meanwhile, the Palace official also justified the editing of Duterte’s speeches, saying it was intertwined with his meeting with several Cabinet members.
“We’re editing it because it’s not just an address to the nation, it’s also a meeting with select members of the Cabinet,” Roque explained.
“We edit out the portions which are not for public consumption because as I said, you cannot make good policy just on the basis that they are popular policies,” he went on. [ac]
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