President Rodrigo Duterte was keeping himself warm while monitoring the situation when many Filipinos were asking where he was during the height of monsoon rains that resulted to massive flooding in most parts of Luzon over the weekend, Malacanang said Tuesday.
Last Saturday, August 11, when monsoon rains started lashing Metro Manila and other regions in Luzon, the 73-year old President was in Davao City. He went back to Manila on the following day, Palace officials said.
“Like everyone, keeping warm, monitoring the situation. The President is a news junkie like everyone in this room. So he was very concerned. He talks about resilience. He talked about readiness of government agencies to provide assistance. He was in contact with individuals to make sure that delivery of assistance would be facilitated,” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque in a press briefing when asked where the President was during the height of the heavy downpour over the weekend.
Some social media users were asking during the weekend where Duterte was while many parts of Metro Manila and other provinces in Luzon experienced flooding. A hashtag #NasaanAngPangulo trended on Twitter.
Duterte was supposed to conduct an aerial inspection in Metro Manila and nearby provinces Monday, August 13.
But according to Roque this was canceled due to bad weather.
He said if the President would visit the families displaced by flooding, he might not want it to be made public.
“I do not know actually if he wants that made public, because I know that when the President goes around and assist individuals, he really does not want media coverage,” Roque said.
According to the latest data of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), over 154,000 families or about 691,000 individuals were affected by the weather disturbances in Luzon, including the National Capital Region.
Of the affected residents, over 173,000 are being served inside and outside the evacuation centers.