Captain of sunken boat in Recto Bank says sorry to Duterte
Marje Pelayo • June 19, 2019 • 5563
MANILA, Philippines – The captain of the Filipino fishing boat hit by a Chinese vessel in Recto Bank on June 9 apologized to President Rodrigo Duterte following reports that he snubbed the Chief Executive in their supposed meeting in Malacanang.
F/B GEM-VER 1’s boat captain Jonel Insigne said he didn’t know that it was Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol who asked to meet him and not the President.
“Humihingi po ako ng paumanhin sa ating mahal na presidente na hindi pala ako ipinatawag niya kundi si Secretary Piñol ang nagpatawag sa akin,” Insigne said.
“Hindi po ako natuloy, umatras ako dahil masama ang pakiramdam ko,” he added.
This was clarified by the Secretary himself during the hand over of assistance to the affected fishermen in San Jose, Oriental Mindoro on Wednesday (June 19).
“There was no any invitation from Malacañang. It was I, the Secretary of Agriculture, who wanted to talked to them and they came,” Piñol said.
The group of fishermen, through Insigne, appealed to President Duterte to help them and bring justice to what they have suffered at sea.
“Gusto ko po sana mapanagot po iyong kapitan nang bumangga sa amin, iyon lang po ang hiling ko sa ating mahal na presidente.” Insigne said. (with details from Sherwin Culubong)
Malacañang said President Rodrigo Duterte is still pondering on whether or not to attend the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the United States Summit in March.
In a press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the President expressed willingness to visit the United States, however the president is not sure whether his visa will be approved.
Panelo added Duterte might not want to visit the US since some US senators “would be unhappy to see him”. This is amid the resolution of banning the entry of Philippine officials involved in imprisoning former Senator Leila de Lima.
The Palace official also clarified that the President is not enforcing conditions regarding his visit in the US.
“From what I look at his responses, gusto niya pumunta, iyan ang naisip ko, (he wants to visit, that’s what I think),” Panelo said. “[Duterte] just expressed certain sentiments relative to some issues that may affect his entry.”
Duterte has been previously invited by US President Donald Trump but he refused due to the extreme weather conditions in the US as well as the long-hour flight.
Panelo cited that the recent invitation was not a personal one so the President is still pondering on whether to accept the invitation or not.
President Rodrigo Duterte’s satisfaction rating has reached a new record high, according to the recent survey of Social Weather Stations (SWS).
Based on the 4th Quarter 2019 SWS Survey, Duterte got a 72% excellent net satisfaction rating, which is seven points higher compared to his September rating of 65%.
Malacañang welcomed the survey result saying President Duterte still has the support of the people.
“This means that the President has the support of the people, for which he is very thankful. But more than that, the people support him because they feel his legacy of real change,” said Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar .—AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
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