By Genalyn Kabiling
A man’s character is more important than his looks, President Duterte said Thursday after revealing he has consulted a dermatologist about his darker skin.
The President tried to fend off speculations about his dark complexion, saying this was simply due to sunburn from his frequent outdoor trips, not a sign of any kidney problem.
“Para sa akin ang lalaki it’s not really the color of your skin in the face. It’s your character. Hindi man ako bilib diyan sa… Gwapo-gwapo tapos ano ka pala [For me, what’s important in a man is not really the color of your skin in the face, it’s your character. I don’t believe in handsome men who turn out to be different],” Duterte said during a business forum at the Manila Hotel.
Duterte admitted though that he has a new skincare regimen following a consultation with a lady dermatologist. He said he previously used his wife’s skincare products but lamented that his face only grew darker.
“Pag tingin ko, p*** i** bakit nangitim ako lalo?” he said, eliciting laughter from the audience.
“Then a dermatologist visited me. She’s a lady but she’s very good. Maitim lang talaga ako. Lolo ko Aprikano [I really have dark skin, my grandfather is African],” he added.
He said when he showed his old skincare products to his dermatologist, she told him to avoid using some items that only aggravate skin darkening.
The President meantime rejected rumors that his dark complexion was allegedly due to his deteriorating health.
Duterte said his skin became darker due to his frequent visits to military camps as well as his recent trip to Israel and Jordan. He admitted that he was not fond of putting sunscreen because it “melts.” “I hate it,” he quipped.
Duterte also confessed that he deliberately gives wrong information about his health to mock people pestering him about his supposed ailment. He said he joked about having stage three of “cancer of the brain,” kidney failure, and even irregular heartbeat.
“Ako, tanungin mo ako, ‘Mmm, third stage.’ ‘Ano?’ ‘Cancer of the brain.’ So what else? Meron akong kidney. Part of it is already gone. And my heart beats 120 miles per hour.
Sinong hindi mamamatay niyan? Eh ‘di maghintay lang kayo,” he said in jest.
The 73-year-old Duterte also said that people should stop asking about his health since he was already old. “Huwag kayo magtanong kung may sakit ako o wala. Lahat ng 73 dito sa p*** i** mundong ito may sakit,” he said.
He said old people usually have maintenance medicines to manage their high blood, diabetes and other ailments.
The President recently declared he was not afflicted with cancer after a recent medical checkup. Duterte admitted though he was battling with Barrett’s esophagus or a bad case of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Such ailment worsened because he has been drinking brandy again, he said.