The President of the Philippines has a rare medical condition which causes him to say the opposite of what he means, often with unfortunate consequences, Filipino diplomats have revealed. The news comes after a particularly bad series of outbursts which has culminated in President Duerte telling US President Barack Obama to “go to hell”.
Mr Rodrigo Duterte’s latest outburst against Obama should be seen in light of his condition, according to Mr Garcia, a senior diplomat working for President Duterte’s government.
“Obviously when our President used strong language in reference to Mr Obama, he meant no offence”, Mr Garcia said, laughing nervously.
The diplomat explained that the President had really intended to express his wish that Obama would “go to heaven – but not prematurely, of course!”
Furthermore, when Mr Duterte called Obama a “son of a whore” in September, he was really trying to “complement the President on the nobility of his ancestry, and on his mother’s unquestionable integrity and moral upstanding”, Mr Garcia gulped.
Asked to explain the feeling with which President Duterte had made the comment, the official was at pains to stress that this was an indication of how keenly he felt that Obama was of “a very good family. No question!”
The diplomat extended an apology to “all those foreign leaders who have misunderstood his messages of good will, which were expressed in… an unconventional manner.”
Britain’s Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, has already expressed the UK’s sympathy and understanding.
“I quite understand that Mr Duterte sometimes says things he wishes he hadn’t”.
“As it happens, there have been occasions when the same thing has happened to me. So for example, when, in a Telegraph article some years ago, I described Hillary Clinton as having “dyed blonde hair and pouty lips, and a steely blue stare, like a sadistic nurse in a mental hospital” what I was trying to say was that Clinton has remarkable blue eyes which are full of understanding, and which betray a fierce intelligence only to be found among the greatest intellects of our time…”
“It’s obvious when you think about it.”