Opposition lawmakers Magdalo Party-list Rep. Gary Alejano and Senator Antonio Trillanes are welcome to join President Rodrigo R. Duterte in his trip to Israel if they doubt the reason for his official visit, Special Assistant to the President (SAP) Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go said Sunday.
“Pwede naman siyang sumama. He is a congressman. Kung talagang magpa-check up ang ating Pangulo, sumama na lang sila ni Mr. Trillanes at magpa-check up sila ng mga ulo nila (He is welcome to join. He is a congressman. If the President is really going to have a medical checkup there, he and Mr. Trilanes can have their heads checked),” Go said in an interview.
Alejano had claimed that Duterte would be going to Israel not for diplomacy but to have his health checked.
This, despite the announcement made by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) that Duterte would be going upon the invitation of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
According to the DFA, the official visit will be the first by a Philippine President since diplomatic ties were established between the two countries 61 years ago in 1957.
Go blasted at Alejano and other administration critics who are praying that something bad would happen to the President.
“Huwag kayong mag-alala. Sa mga kritiko, baka mauna pa kayo sa kanya (Don’t worry. To the critics, you might die before he does),” he said.
Go also addressed Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founding chair Jose Maria Sison, who dared Duterte to make public his health records.
“Bago po tayo ma-Joma muli ng balita, o fake news, e di umuwi na lang siya dito sa Pilipinas. Sabay sila ni President Duterte. Tignan natin sino ang mas malakas sa kanila, sino ‘yung clean bill of health (Before we get victimized by fake news again, why doesn’t he just come home to the Philippines? He can have a checkup with the President. Let’s see who is stronger and who will have a clean bill of health),” he said.
Sison had earlier claimed Duterte was in coma — an allegation that was quickly dashed when Go showed the President alive and well in a Facebook Live feed.
“Ako naman I assure you that the President is in tip-top condition. Kaya niyang tapusin ang kanyang termino. In fact, nakita niyo naman sa mga speeches niya na umabot pa kami ng Jolo kahapon to visit the wounded soldiers, to boost their morale lang po (He can complete his term. In fact, we even went to Jolo yesterday to visit the wounded soldiers, to boost their morale),” Go said.
Go said Duterte is strong enough to go to Mindanao to visit those who are in need.
“Si Joma, bago tayo mabalitang Joma na naman, mapeke ng nangyari sa coma mo, nasa kama lang pala, ikaw na lang ang umuwi dito. Pacheck-up kayo sabay (To Joma, before we fall victim to fake news again, just come home. Have a checkup with the President),” he said.