MANILA, Aug 17 (Mabuhay) — President Rodrigo Duterte has been in “perpetual isolation” to keep him safe from COVID-19, Malacañang said Monday.

In a televised briefing, Duterte’s spokesperson Harry Roque praised the Presidential Security Group (PSG) for ensuring that the 75-year-old Duterte is protected against COVID-19.

“He is in perpetual isolation in the sense that the PSG has done a very good job in making sure that no one really comes close to the President,” Roque said.

He also said the President undergoes a regular swab test for COVID-19.

“Nagrereklamo siya dahil paulit-ulit na ‘yung pagsundot sa ilong niya,” Roque said.

Roque’s statement comes after Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, who was present in a meeting with the President in Davao City on August 10, revealed on Sunday that he tested positive again for the virus.

Año also urged people with whom he had close contact to go on self-quarantine and check possible symptoms.

“Ang Presidente naman po, technically wala siyang close contact at kung we will go by the book hindi siya nag-close contact dahil malayo po kami lahat kay Presidente at naka-face shield at tsaka naka-face mask,” Roque said.

Roque, who also attended the Davao meeting, said he would be under self-quarantine for five days before getting a swab test to determine if he has COVID-19.

“I believe the others po are also in self-isolation now even if it is not required,” he said.

On Sunday, Roque had denied circulating rumors that Duterte went abroad over the weekend, saying the President is in the country “closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation.”

The real state of Duterte’s health has been a constant subject of curiosity among many sectors, with a lawyer even asking the Supreme Court (SC) to compel Malacañang to disclose the President’s health records.

The tribunal has denied the petition. (MNS)

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