Duterte's grandson sorry for skipping store's COVID-19 precautions


Posted at Mar 27 2020 11:02 AM

This composite image shows an undated photo of President Rodrigo Dutetre's grandson Omar from his Facebook page, and an ABS-CBN file photo of the Chief Executive's son, Deputy House Speaker Paolo Duterte.

MANILA - A grandson of President Rodrigo Duterte apologized Thursday for disobeying a supermarket's precautions against the coronavirus pandemic.

Omar Duterte said he had already sanitized his hands and was wearing gloves when he arrived at a branch of S&R. This was why he skipped washing his hands again at the store, he said.

The store's staff "even insisted we enter" after seeing that his group was already wearing latex gloves, he said.

Omar said he "should have insisted in washing" his hands again.

"I'm sorry for not following the protocols. I was wrong in implying that applying proper sanitation yourself and putting in gloves was enough reason for me to not wash them," he wrote on Facebook.

"But I now know that even with all your preparations, protocols are protocols and no one is above them," he added.

It was not immediately clear which S&R branch Omar shopped in.

He also said it was "rather insensitive of me" to buy shrimp, cajun spice, lemons, white vinegar, which he cooked at home to celebrate his first wedding annniversary with his wife.

"I already had in mind that a home-cooked meal and a glass of wine at home would be the perfect celebration due to the dire times we are facing with the Corona Outbreak," he said.

"But I now know that this was wrong. Trust me in saying that if I had known before, that cooking your dinner at home with your family and staying at home to celebrate your anniversary with your family was seen as a luxury, I would have chosen to sleep instead," he added.

Omar's father, Deputy House Speaker Paolo Duterte, also apologized for his son who he said "did not line up to conduct the stringent screening requirements of the establishment."

"It is with humility that I apologize for the behavior of Omar and his impertinence shall be dealt with accordingly," said the Congress representative of Davao City's first district.
The Presidential Security Group is investigating the alleged misconduct of the security team that accompanied Omar, he said.

The Philippines' tally of COVID cases surged to 707 on Thursday, including 45 deaths and 28 patients who recovered. The count could spike expected to spike with the recent arrival of additional test kits, the health department earlier said.

The entire Luzon island and the Davao Region are both under lockdown to contain the pandemic.