President Rodrigo Duterte spent the weekend in Hong Kong to celebrate the birthday of his common-law wife Honeylet Avanceña, the Palace said Sunday.
“Yup, he [Duterte] is in Hong Kong with Honeylet [and other members of his family]. It’s the latter’s birthday today,” Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo told reporters.
Avanceña turned 49 on Sunday.
According to former top aide Christopher Go, the President’s visit to Hong Kong was requested by his daughter Kitty Duterte.
“It was actually Kitty who requested her father for the trip as a gift,” Go said.
“They have been doing this even before the President was Davao City Mayor. The weekend getaway is for rest and recreation.
“Before the President left the country, he directed Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea as the OIC [of the government] and the everyday operations of the Office of the President.”
The President and his family, who left the country on Friday night, were expected to return on Sunday.
The South China Morning Post reported said the 79-year-old President was seen shopping in a shop at the World Trade Center in Causeway Bay.
It was the second time that the President was seen in Hong Kong with his family since he went on an unscheduled trip there in October 2018.