MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte will spend Christmas with his family in his official residence in Davao City, Malacañang said on Tuesday.
“Ang Pasko po sigurado (It is certain that [President Duterte] will be celebrating Christmas [in Davao]),” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a Palace virtual presser.
It is the fifth time Duterte will celebrate Christmas in Davao City since he became president in 2016.
This year’s celebration of Christmas is different from the previous years, as the Philippines and other countries are battling with the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) that has infected millions of people worldwide.
Duterte’s Christmas tradition is to celebrate it without fanfare and visit young cancer patients at the Southern Philippine Medical Center in Davao City every year.
Roque, however, did not mention Duterte’s possible activities on Christmas Day.
On Dec. 7, Duterte called on his fellow Filipinos to skip Christmas festivities this year to prevent the potential surge of Covid-19 cases in the country during the holiday season.
Roque said Duterte wants to make sure that all Filipinos are safe since there is a possibility that Covid-19 infections might rise during holidays, should everyone become complacent.
He reminded the public to follow the government’s health and quarantine protocols to keep them safe from Covid-19.
“Mga kababayan, ngayong panahon ng pagdiriwang, ang nais po ng Presidente eh lahat tayo ay buhay at malusog matapos ang ating mga pagdiriwang (My fellow countrymen, the President wants to keep us alive and healthy even after Christmas),” Roque said.
As of Monday, the Philippines has recorded around 461,505 Covid-19 cases, according to the government’s official tracker uploaded on the Department of Health’s website.
Some 429,207 Covid-19 patients have recovered, while 8,957 individuals have died of the coronavirus.
There are 23,341 active Covid-19 cases in the country. (PNA)