Roque goes on leave
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque has gone on official leave for one week starting on Monday.
In a message to reporters, Roque said he would not be joining President Rodrigo Duterte in his trip to Bali, Indonesia for the October 11 ASEAN Leaders Gathering.
He said he will go abroad on Wednesday.
"Please be advised that Presidential Spokesperson will be on leave starting today, Monday, October 8," an advisory from Roque's office told reporters.
In his unscheduled press briefing last Friday, Roque said he would use the weekend to think what his options would be.
He indicated that he might quit his post as a spokesman after he was kept in the dark about President Rodrigo Duterte's further medical check-up last Wednesday.
When he was asked if Duterte sought medical help after skipping an event in Malacanang that day, Roque denied and stressed that the President just had a private time.
But in a speech last Thursday with the military men in Malacanang, Duterte admitted that he underwent again endoscopy at Cardinal Santos Medical Center in San Juan City a day before.
He said that if he has a Stage 3 cancer, which is hard to cure, he might as well not prolong his stay in office.
"I was in the dark… and now how can people believe me when I just said that he had private time, and apparently he had a diagnostic examination," Roque said a day after Duterte's admission.
Last Saturday, Roque apparently was not also aware that Duterte flew to Hong Kong to "take a break."
When reporters asked him, Roque said Duterte was in Davao City.
In the same speech last Thursday, Duterte offered Roque a position, which is to be created yet. Apparently, Duterte was referring to the Press Secretary post.
The President told Roque not to run for the Senate anymore in the 2019 midterm polls as he would not win because the military does not support him.
Roque is said to be planning to run for the Senate next year.
The filing of certificates of candidacy ( COC) of those who will seek elective posts next year will be on October 11-17. Once an appointed government official files his/her COC, he/she is considered resigned. Celerina Monte/DMS