By Genalyn Kabiling
President Duterte has lauded Filipino weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz for winning the country’s first gold medal in the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia.
“I’d like to make an announcement. In Jakarta, we won the first gold medal — weightlifting,” the President said during the assembly of mayors in Cebu City Tuesday night.
“Hidilyn Diaz, ito yung sundalo. Sundalo ito ng Philippine Army. Wow!” added Duterte beaming with pride.
The President already ended his long speech at the Cebu event when he was informed about Diaz’s latest gold haul. He immediately returned to the podium and delivered the congratulatory message to Diaz who dominated the 53-kilograms weightlifting event.
During a recent send-off ceremony in Malacañang, the President called on the Filipino athletes and their coaches to “do your best and do it fair and square” during the Asian Games.
“Of the millions of Filipinos, only a few have been gifted with the ability and provided with the opportunity to be part of something this big,” Duterte said.
“Remember that you do not only compete for yourselves but you also carry the pride of your families, communities and the entire Filipino nation,” he added.