Expect Duterte’s future gatherings with friends, allies: Palace

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte (File photo)

MANILA – It would not be surprising for President Rodrigo Duterte to meet with “friends and allies” more often in the future, considering the drop in the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) infections, Malacañang said Wednesday.

Acting Presidential Spokesperson and Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said the Covid-19 situation and the high vaccination turnout in the country allow Duterte to catch up with his allies.

“With active Covid-19 cases now on a steady decline and now that we are feeling the positive impact of the government's vaccination, we expect the President to join similar gatherings with friends and allies in the future,” Nograles said in a press statement.

Nograles issued the statement, as he confirmed that Duterte had an “informal and relaxed” gathering with his allied lawmakers at Malacañan Palace in Manila on Tuesday night.

Nograles, however, did not elaborate on Duterte’s meeting with several lawmakers.

“It was an informal and relaxed gathering with lawmakers, many of whom are friends of the President dating back to his days as mayor of Davao City,” he said.

Nograles said Duterte merely wants to grab the chance to meet with his allies and make up for lost time because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“It was, for the President, an opportunity to see friends he had not personally seen since the onset of the pandemic due to the restrictions that had been put in place," he said.

In a separate statement, House Deputy Speaker Michael Romero said Duterte hosted a "casual dinner" for over 100 congressmen and congresswomen.

Romero said Duterte, in his "unscripted speech," also thanked the 18th Congress "for all the legislative support" it has given to his administration.

"In return, leaders of the House led by Speaker LAV (Lord Allan Velasco) thanked the President for all the programs he has coursed through the various representatives of the House," he said. (PNA)

Source: Business Diary Philippines

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