Duterte: My work at Malacañang starts at 1 p.m.
DAVAO CITY, Philippines — Malacañang employees won’t have to get up too early as their incoming boss—President-elect Rodrigo Duterte—will start his day at 1 o’clock in the afternoon.
“I would like to announce that my day starts at 1 p.m. I will be working straight from 1 p.m. even if you want until 12 a.m.,” Duterte told reporters in his usual midnight briefing at an hotel here in Davao City on Saturday.
Duterte said he does not care whether his schedule would have an impact on government and corporate offices, which have business hours from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
“I don’t care about your 8 a.m.-5 p.m. schedule. I’ll be sleeping by then. How can you make me work?” he said in Filipino.
Duterte said he wants to pore over the several documents in his study room, which could take him until midnight, before he signs them on behalf of the entire country.
“Unlike others, I don’t like to sign them unless I know what I’m signing about. It would take time,” he said.
Daily travel to Davao
Another factor would be his plan to commute back and forth from Manila to Davao City every day until he has adjusted to living in Malacañang.
Duterte said he will take the last commercial flight, which is usually scheduled for 9 p.m., back to Davao City from Manila every day. Then he would take the 8 a.m. flight back to Manila the next day.
“My bed is here. My room is here. My home is my comfort zone. It’s important that I can sleep and take a shower comfortably,” the Davao City mayor said.
For the government not to spend too much on his travels, Duterte said he would not bring his security escorts with him, only his executive assistant Bong Go and another person.
Ghosts in Malacañang
Duterte, who has served as a mayor of this city for over two decades, said he was also not comfortable living in Malacañang Palace, the official residence of the President of the Philippines.
Why? Because Duterte said he has a “prejudice” against Malacañang.
“Ask Imee Marcos. I spoke to her. She was here the other night. There are really ghosts there. I asked her, ‘How many did you see?’ She said ‘five,’” he said in jest.
Asked why he met with the Ilocos Norte Governor, Duterte said Marcos paid him a visit while she was in the province to attend a social commitment.
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