MANILA – House Deputy Speaker Johnny Pimentel confirmed on Monday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).
Pimentel said he received the result on Sunday night after undergoing reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing as part of the health protocols implemented at the Batasang Pambansa for President Rodrigo Duterte’s fifth State of the Nation Address (SONA).
“My result on the swab test done yesterday in Congress was positive. I’m in isolation now,” Pimentel said in a statement.
Attendees to Duterte’s fifth SONA were required to undergo RT-PCR tests a day before the annual event scheduled on Monday.
Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar earlier said in case one of those invited to attend the annual event tests positive for the viral disease, Duterte might deliver his SONA at Malacañan Palace in Manila instead.
Currently, a total of 50 seats are reserved for Cabinet members and lawmakers if Duterte delivers his SONA at the Batasang Pambansa.
Should Duterte deliver his SONA in Malacañan, Andanar said the number of people allowed will be further trimmed down.
“Imbes na 25-25–25 from the Senate tapos mayroon ding 25 na halu-halo na congressman at mga ilang mga Cabinet members kasi hindi naman lahat ng Cabinet members ay makaka-attend din (Instead of 25-25 where 25 will be from the Senate and 25 Congressmen and some Cabinet members because not all Cabinet members will be able to attend),” he said. (PNA) #COVID19
On photo: House Deputy Speaker Johnny Pimentel. /PNA file photo.