MANILA- "He is really a health buff."
This is how President Rodrigo Duterte's long-time partner, Honeylet Avanceña, described the chief executive's state of health, amid concerns over his wellness.
At the same time, Avanceña denied allegations that the President was ill, saying he regularly undergoes medical check-up.
"He is really a health buff. You know, we have friends na takot magpunta ng doktor, siya hindi," Avanceña, a nurse by profession, said.
(He isn't afraid to go to the doctor.)
" Honestly, 'yong sa gastro niya, mas madalas siyang magpa-check
...Masipag magpa-check up 'yan, mas masipag kaysa sa akin,"
(He regularly undergoes medical check-up for his gastro condition. He regularly has himself checked, even more often than me.)
In an exclusive interview with Mario Dumaual of ABS-CBN News, Avanceña said worries about Duterte's health were unfounded.
"I can even leave him in Davao! That's how kampante (confident) I am! Kayo lang ang nagwoworry (you are the only ones worried)," she added.
The President's state of health has been a recurring concern amid allegations that he is seriously ill.
Last month, Malacañang assured the public that Duterte will follow the Constitution and disclose the status of his health if he is afflicted with a serious illness.
Duterte has acknowledged dealing with ailments, including Barrett’s esophagus, but assured that he remains “healthy.”
“I had colonoscopy and endoscopy about a week ago. (Jose Sollano) did the procedure and he said that . . . Well, I have a bad case of Barrett. He said, if you’ll just stop drinking, you will live,” Duterte said in a speech at the Asia Pacific Association of Gastroenterology forum in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu.
Duterte is also dealing with a spinal injury, which he sustained in a motorcycle accident.
Avanceña added that Filipinos have nothing to worry about Duterte's health, noting that she can even "let him be by himself."
"Pag nakita mo akong nakadikit na lang sa kaniya, ibig sabihin there's something wrong, but if I can leave him by himself okay siya walang problema." she said.
(If you see me always with him, that is the indication that something is wrong but if I can leave him by himself it means he's okay.)
"The Lord will sustain him (Duterte) because He was the one who put him there," she added.
Catch Mario Dumaual's full report on TV Patrol, September 27, 6:30 PM.