Duterte's health is fine, says Palace, after 'simple misstep' in Malolos

Published June 14, 2021, 3:11 PM

by Argyll Cyrus Geducos

“A simple misstep.”

Malacañang assured the public that there was nothing wrong with President Duterte after he almost fell during the Independence Day rites in Malolos, Bulacan on Saturday.

President Duterte is assisted by AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Cirilito Sobejana and Vaccine Czar Carlito Galvez as he loses his footing during the Independence Day rites in Malolos, Bulacan on June 12, 2021. (Screenshot from Johnson Manabat/Twitter)

Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque made the statement after the President was caught on video losing his footing as he turned around on a podium during the event’s wreath-laying ceremony.

The official live feed from Radio Television Malacañang (RTVM) showed Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief-of-Staff Gen. Cirilito Sobejana was quick enough to assist the President.

A video taken from another angle by ABS-CBN reporter and TeleRadyo anchor Johnson Manabat showed a closer look at what happened.

In his press briefing on Monday, Roque explained that the President only lost his balance.

“It was a simple misstep,” he said.

“Malinaw naman po sa (It was clear in the) video that the President was turning on a podium– some kind of a podium– so medyo na out-of-balance lang po (so he just lost his balance),” he added.

He assured the public that there was nothing wrong with Duterte’s health condition.

“Wala naman pong problema sa kalusugan (The President has no health problems),” Roque said.

It was President Duterte’s second time to attend an Independence Day celebration since he became the country’s leader in 2016. His first time to lead the rites was in Kawit, Cavite but he was heckled by demonstrators while he was delivering his keynote speech.

In his speech on Saturday, President Duterte revealed that a wall was being built at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (Heroes’ Cemetery) to honor medical frontliners who died in the line of duty due to coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

“Lahat yung mga namatay– mga doctor pati mga nurses, yung mga attendants ng nahawa ng (Everyone who died– doctors, nurses, attendants who got) COVID– will be honored by their names inscribed in that wall. It is now being built,” he said.