Panelo denies rumors Duterte is sick, confined in hospital

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Palace spokesman Salvador Panelo denied the rumors circulating on social media that President Rodrigo Duterte was sick and confined in a hospital, Thursday.

Panelo refuted rumors online that the President is currently confined at the Cardinal Santos Medical Center in San Juan City. He assured the 75-year-old Duterte is “fit and healthy.”

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The rumors appeared after Duterte garnered massive criticisms online after he ordered the PNP to shoot dead those who will violate the enhanced community quarantine.

“My orders to the police, the military, and the barangays: If they become unruly and they fight you, and your lives are endangered, shoot them dead! Let’s see. Dead. Instead of causing chaos, I’ll just bury you,” Duterte said in Filipino.

However, PNP chief Director General Archie Gamboa clarified they would not shoot unruly quarantine violators dead, saying “the President just overemphasized on implementing the law in this time of crisis.”

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Also read: Duterte returning early from Japan due to ‘unbearable pain’ in spinal column

Panelo denies rumors Duterte is sick, confined in hospital

“We wish to inform the public that such information is absolutely false. The President is fit and healthy and is currently doing his presidential duties at his official residence at the Bahay Pagbabago,” Panelo said.

The President is currently on self-quarantine following exposure to government officials who had contact with persons infected with COVID-19. His quarantine is set to end on April 17.

“We caution our people to be wary of purveyors of false news and information,” he added.

Meanwhile, the NBI confirmed that its cybercrime division already started issuing subpoenas to netizens who post fake news on different social media platforms.

“Ang pagkaintindi ko sa investigation division ng computer crimes may ipinadala na silang subpoena. Wala lang akong complete list kung ilan ang exact number because they want to stop ‘yung proliferation of fake news,” NBI spokesperson Ferdinand Lavin told ABS-CBN News.’

(My understanding of the investigation division of computer crimes is that they already sent a subpoena. I just don’t have a complete list of the exact numbers because they want to stop the proliferation of fake news.)

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