Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque on Wednesday clarified that the President is still “fit for his job” despite the latter’s earlier statement concerning his health condition.
On Wednesday, during a news forum, Duque said that President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is “okay” and is able to do his duty as the Chief Executive of the country, adding that he does many things that media and the public are not able to follow.
“There is no indication that the illness or illnesses being mentioned has any effect on the effectiveness, or this is not debilitating the president’s work, ability to function and work,” Duque said.
During his speech before the Filipino community in Moscow, Russia, the President said that he has a neuromuscular disease, which he described as a “nerve malfunction.”
“May talent ako. Magtingin ako sa ‘yo, ‘yung isang mata ko bumaba. Tingnan mo maliit ‘yung isa. ‘Di ba maliit? Nagsasariling biyahe ‘yan,” Duterte said.
“Actually, that’s myasthenia gravis. It’s a nerve malfunction. I got it from my grandfather. Ganun rin siya. So I believe, really, in genetics,” he added.
The name myasthenia gravis, which is Latin and Greek in origin, means “grave, or serious, muscle weakness.”
The hallmark of myasthenia gravis is muscle weakness that worsens after periods of activity and improves after periods of rest. Certain muscles such as those that control eye and eyelid movement, facial expression, chewing, talking, and swallowing are often (but not always) involved in the disorder. The muscles that control breathing and neck and limb movements may also be affected.
Duterte’s health has been a caused of controversy in the country, following his several absences in important events. With this, Filipinos has been more concern on his health, with everyone believing that the President has health problems.
Despite the wide concern of the public, Malacañang remains mum on the issue.