Where was he? Palace says Duterte went motorcycle-riding over the weekend

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 19 2019 03:51 PM

MANILA - Malacañang dismissed Monday concerns on President Rodrigo Duterte's health, saying the chief executive even went motorcycle-riding in Davao City over the weekend.

While the President had a lot of paperwork to do in the past few days, his spokesman Salvador Panelo said Duterte found time to ride his motorcycle around the Doña Luisa subdivision in Davao City.

"Ang sabi niya, marami siyang trabaho na mga papeles, binabasa niya isa-isa. Hindi siya makapirma ng hindi niya thoroughly reading these papers," Panelo said.

(He said he had a lot of paperwork. He reads it one at a time. He can't sign those until he reads it.)

“In fact, he shared to me yesterday, sabi nya, ‘Alam mo ba na I went out sa motorsiklo?’ Nag motorsiklo daw siya sa subdivision niya. Hindi ko na alam kung kahapon yun o the day before,” Panelo said.

(He said 'did you know I went out on a motorcycle?' He rode a motorcycle around his subdivision. I don't know if that was yesterday or the day before.)

Duterte's absence in the public eye for the past week fueled speculations on his health condition. He was last seen in public on Aug. 9 when he attended the 118th police service anniversary in Camp Crame, Quezon City.

"It only shows na kung nakaka-motor siya, he's in good health," he said.

(If he can ride a motorcycle, he is in good health.)

Duterte even went out of the subdivision on his motorcycle as bystanders took photos of him, Panelo said.

“Kinukwento niya sa akin, pagkatapos, sabi niya, lumabas siya, pagkatapos parang ginanahan siya mag-motor, lumabas siya ng subdivision. Eh di nataranta ang PSG (Presidential Security Group). Pero after a while daw nakita na niya,” Panelo said.

(He was telling me that he even went out of the subdivision on his motorcycle but he saw the PSG after a while.)

“Yun kinukuwento niya marami sa akin na kumuha ng picture," he said.

(He said many people took photos of him.)

Panelo, however, did not have copies of the supposed photos.

Duterte, 74, is the oldest in history to be elected Philippine president.