MANILA -- As part of his Christmas tradition, President Rodrigo R. Duterte on Sunday night visited young cancer patients at the Southern Philippine Medical Center in Davao City to give them gifts.
Duterte’s former aide, Christopher “Bong” Go, shared photos of the President’s visit where he gave them toys and treated them to a hearty meal.
“Naki-halubilo si Tatay Digong at Kuya Bong sa mga bata. Kasama ang mga hospital officials, binisita nila ang ward ng mga bata. Namigay din ng mga regalo ang dalawa at naghandog din ng pagkain (Tatay Digong and Kuya Bong interacted with the kids. Together with hospital staff, they visited the children’s ward. They also gave gifts and treated them to a meal),” Go said in his Facebook post.
“Malapit sa puso nila Tatay Digong at Kuya Bong ang mga batang ito. Walang ibang gusto ang dalawa kundi ang magbigay kasiyahan lalo na ngayong Pasko (These kids are close to Tatay Digong and Kuya Bong’s heart. The two want nothing more than to give happiness to them this Christmas),” he added.
It has been a tradition for Duterte to visit cancer patients, starting when he was still mayor of Davao City
Earlier, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the President will spend a “no frills” Christmas in his hometown with his family.
"Every Christmas naman ganoon siya eh (He is like that every Christmas), birthdays spend it with his family always. No frills," Panelo said.
Last year, Duterte spent the holidays visiting families of individuals killed in a Davao City mall fire.
In his Christmas message, Duterte urged the Filipino people to be guided with ideas of compassion and reconciliation as he wished them a "meaningful" Christmas.
“To my countrymen, my sincerest and most heartfelt greetings to all Filipinos, both here and abroad, as we celebrate Christmas,” Duterte said in his Christmas message aired over government-run People’s Television (PTV).
“Once again, it is the time of the year where we honor, gather our families and friends to celebrate the nativity of Jesus, share life’s many blessings and demonstrate our love and gratitude for each other,” he added. (PNA)