ICYMI, Typhoon Rolly passed by the Philippines and pretty much wrecked the place. The strongest typhoon of the year damaged billions worth of properties, forced the evacuations of thousands, and left 20 people dead.
During the initial chaos, the Internet noticed that our fave softboi/president Rodrigo Duterte was nowhere to be found. He notably skipped the first pvblic briefing intended to assess the damages done by Rolly.
His absence prompted the hashtag #NasaanAngPangulo to trend on social, along with the usual memes, critique from the opposition, and general outcry on the supposed indifference of The Chief.
His usual defenders, which include presidential aide/senator Bong Go, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, and allies such as Senator Richard Gordon either assured that Duterte was monitoring the situation while in Davao City or argued that even Presidents need their beauty rest.
Fast forward to today, with him safely back in Malacañang, Duterte has offered an explanation/clapback on why he seemingly ghosted the nation during such a crucial time.
Apparently, he got stuck in Davao City and was simply waiting for the typhoon to pass. He also adds that it’s normal for people from provinces to return to their hometowns during holidays such as All Souls Day.
‘Kaya nga ako nauwi. Itong mga ugok naman sabi wala ako. I was waiting for the typhoon to pass…. Kaming may mga patay, kailangan kami umuwi doon sa amin’, he said in a briefing.
He also seemingly didn’t see the importance of his presence during the calamity, defending that he does his job even behind closed doors.
‘Do you want me to stand at the white sand [of Manila Bay] of [Environment and Natural Resources Secretary] Roy Cimatu just to see that I am here?’, he quipped.
Hard to argue with that logic