Communications Secretary Martin Andanar is hinting that President Rodrigo Duterte will change his work schedule in 2017 as he spends less time in his hometown and more time in Malacanang poring over government documents after midnight.
“Soon he will be used to the chugging of the tugboat as he crosses the river from where he lives to the Palace where he works. Soon he might even learn to stray away from Davao for longer periods to attend to the demands of national leadership and international responsibilities.,” said Andanar in his Philippine Daily Inquirer column.
In his first six months in office, Duterte has regularly flown to Davao either Thursday or Friday and coming back to Manila Sunday night or Monday morning. “Before he took office, he threatened to commute to Davao each working day. In office, realizing the pressures of the job, he goes back to Davao on a weekly basis. Some meetings have been scheduled in Davao to adjust to the President’s schedule,” said Andanar.
Andanar said that Duterte considered Davao City his “womb” from which “he never strays too far from it for too long.”
“It is as if he is weakened if he does not inhale Davao air. He seems irritable if he is unable to sleep in his own bed for too many days. Surely he misses his children. Although he growls in public, he transforms into a tender soul when his grandchildren clamber up his lap,” said Andanar.
But the growing demands of running the country hands-on have prompted Duterte to rethink his work and travel schedule.
“He might devise an arrangement so that he sees little Kitty more often and probably help her with her homework,” said Andanar referring to Duterte’s youngest daughter.