PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte is fine, his top aide assured the public, after a powerful earthquake yesterday struck near Bali, Indonesia, where the Chief Executive and other leaders were gathered.
“Nagising s’ya. Ok lang naman (The President woke up but he is fine),” Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go said in a text message.
Go said Duterte met with his Cabinet officials following the quake.
“During our meeting napagusapan namin paano kaya kung mag- tsunami dito,” he said.
Reports said the magnitude 6 quake, located in the Bali Sea, killed three people in the neighboring Java Island, damaging buildings and causing panic among residents.
Duterte is in Bali for the gathering of leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.
Yesterday, Duterte met with nine other ASEAN leaders in informal round table talks, where they were expected to discuss terrorism and other mutual concerns.
He also had bilateral meetings with at least three ASEAN leaders, including Indonesian President Joko Widodo, on the sidelines of the event.
Duterte only has a small delegation to the one-day ASEAN Leaders’ Gathering slated for Thursday. They include Go, Foreign Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia, and Communications Secretary Martin Andanar.
The President was expected to fly back to the Philippines immediately after the event’s gala dinner last night.