Duterte ‘took power naps’ during absence in Asean events — Palace
An exhausted President Rodrigo Duterte needed to recharge and “took power naps” during his absence in six key events at the 33rd Association of Southeast Nations (Asean) Summit here.
But despite Duterte’s “constantly punishing work schedule,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the President “is in top physical shape.”
“We find it amusing that some quarters are making a big fuss of the President’s skipping a few meetings in today’s Asean related summits,” Panelo said in a statement.
Duterte skipped six key events with his fellow regional leaders on the second day of the Asean Summit.
Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. represented him instead and read his remarks.
The President also did not attend the gala dinner scheduled on Wednesday night and took a rest instead.
Panelo said the President worked late on Tuesday night “and had only less than three hours of sleep.”
Duterte skipped his first event scheduled on Wednesday at 8:30 a.m.
“In those instances where he did not attend, namely, the Asean-Australia Informal Breakfast Summit, the 20th Asean – Republic of Korea Summit, the Working Lunch hosted by Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, and the Second Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Summit, he took power naps to catch on sleep,” Panelo said.
Among his 11 schedules, Duterte only attended the Asean-China Summit, Signing Ceremony for the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Eurasian Economic Commission and ASEAN on Economic Cooperation, Asean-Russia Summit, Asean-Japan Summit and a bilateral meeting with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Shien Loong.
On Thursday, Panelo said the President is set to participate in the rest of the summits and a bilateral meeting with the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
“We assure the nation that his aforementioned absence has nothing to do with his physical health and well-being which have been the subject of speculation,” he said.
“The President’s constantly punishing work schedule is proof that he is in top physical shape,” he added. /ee
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.