MANILA – President Benigno Aquino III said he is not joining the ice bucket challenge bandwagon.
Aquino, who is sometimes observed coughing during speeches, said doing the ice bucket challenge will only aggravate his colds.
''Huwag na muna nating pag-usapan dahil una kong ivo-volunteer si Rey Marfil; una kong icha-challenge, lalo ngayon may sipon ako,'' Aquino said in an interview on Bombo Radyo, referring to Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Assistant Secretary Rey Marfil.
The ALS ice bucket challenge has gone viral in the last few weeks. Anyone nominated to do the ice bucket challenge has to do it within 24 hours or donate to the ALS Association.
The ALS Association has raised $94.3 million as of August 27, as the ice bucket challenge has been taken up by celebrities, political and business figures all over the world.
Many Philippine government officials and political personalities have accepted the challenge, such as Justice Secretary Leila de Lima and Bureau of Internal Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares.
However, other politicians such as Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada and Vice President Jejomar Binay, declined the challenge.
ALS, also called ''Lou Gehrig's Disease,'' is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that attacks nerve cells and pathways in the brain and spinal cord, which eventually leads to paralysis.