Duterte 'is okay' after COVID-19 exposure, Bong Go says with selfie


Posted at Feb 03 2022 07:52 PM

Sen. Christopher
Sen. Christopher "Bong" Go takes a selfie with President Rodrigo Duterte after his recent exposure to COVID-19. Photo from Sen. Christopher "Bong" Go

MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte "is okay" after his recent exposure to COVID-19 and a medical checkup, his close ally Sen. Christopher "Bong" Go said Thursday. 

Go sent reporters a selfie with the President and his personal doctor on board a vehicle for a “routine medical checkup.”

“Proof lang na (just a proof) he is okay,” Go said of the photo.

He did not specify when the picture was taken. 

Duterte's acting spokesman Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said earlier in the day that the President was exposed to household staff with COVID-19. 

Nograles said though that Duterte, who is turning 77 next month, tested negative both on Monday and Tuesday, and that he "is currently observing mandatory quarantine protocols."

The Palace official also confirmed the President went to the Cardinal Santos Medical Center “for his routine medical check-up.” He did not say when. 

Asked why the President went to the hospital while still on quarantine, Go said, "Tapos na yata (it seems to be finished).”

He added the President’s check up was a decision of his personal physician.

Asymptomatic close contacts who have a negative antigen test result must quarantine and take an RT-PCR test after day 5 of their exposure, the health department earlier said. 

"There is no violation" of quarantine protocols when Duterte had his checkup, said Nograles. 

"Based on the assessment of the President’s physician, he was cleared to go and have his medical check up," he said. 

The elderly and people with comorbidity are at risk of developing severe COVID-19. 

Duterte earlier said he suffers from Barrett’s esophagus, an inflammation of the tube connecting the mouth to the stomach.

The President, in various instances, said he also struggled with back pains, migraines and Buerger's disease, which is linked to blockages in blood vessels associated with smoking during his youth. 

Duterte completed two doses of the Sinopharm coronavirus vaccine in July last year. He has also received a booster jab from the same Chinese drug maker, Nograles said in January.

— With a report from Pia Gutierrez, ABS-CBN News