By Genalyn Kabiling
President Duterte is back to work after feeling rejuvenated from his family vacation in Hong Kong.
Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said the President, who returned home from his private trip abroad, was scheduled to convene a Cabinet meeting in Malacañang on Monday afternoon.
“Ang Pangulo natin ay kasama ang kanyang pamilya. Sa palagay ko naman ay he deserves a break, family time, kasi kita naman natin kung gaano rin magtrabaho si Presidente [Our President was accompanied by his family. I think he deserves beak, family time because we have seen how the President works],” Andanar said in a radio interview.
“Ang siguro pasalubong ni Presidente sa atin ay iyong fresh na fresh ng kanyang mind, ang kanyang sarili dahil nakapagpahinga. Mamaya ay meron kaming meeting dito sa Malacañang at tuloy-tuloy na naman iyan hanggang gabi [Maybe the President’s souvenir for us is his fresh mind, self because he was able to rest. We will have a meeting in Malacañang later that could last until the night],” he said.
The President made an unannounced trip to Hong Kong last weekend, a few days after revealing he underwent some medical tests. The 73-year-old leader spent the weekend with his family in Hong Kong to rest, according to Palace officials.
Andanar, however, rejected speculations that the President went on a medical checkup while on a private visit to Hong Kong.
“Tsismis lang iyan [Those are just rumors],” he said. “Nakita naman natin sa mga picture na nandoon, eh nagiikot-ikot si Presidente at tumitingin ng mga mabibiling dilaw na damit [We have seen the pictures showing the President traveling, looking to buy yellow clothes],” he said.
He explained that the President deserved to take a break and spend quality time with his family. He added that the latest bonding with the family also helps relieve stress from work.
“Palagay ko naman ang pinakamahalaga ay maintindihan natin na meron ding pamilya ang ating mahal na Pangulo, meron din siyang anak na teenager. Siguro kailangan din mag-bonding kasi lahat ng oras ng Pangulo ay nasa public service [It’s important to understand that the President has a family, a teenage daughter. He probably wanted to bond with the family because all his time was devoted to public service],” he said.
Andanar said he hopes people would understand the President’s decision to spend time with his family.
“Kailangan din mag-relax, hindi naman puwedeng puro stress lang, di ba. Kailangan ma-release iyong stress para pagbalik niya dito sa Pilipinas ay sariwa na naman ang isipan, ganoon iyon [He also needs to relax, it’s not all stress. He needed to release the stress so when he returned to the Philippines, he feels refreshed],” he said.
Read more: Duterte makes unannounced trip to Hong Kong