Former President and now Lower House member Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will not be present during President Benigno Aquino III’s first State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday, since she has to accompany her husband for a medical checkup abroad, Arroyo’s party spokesperson said on Saturday. Mrs. Arroyo will be flying to Hong Kong on Monday afternoon to join husband Jose Miguel “Mike" Arroyo for a checkup on his heart condition, Lakas-Kampi-CMD spokesperson Raul Lambino told GMANews.TV on Saturday. “She has to go to Hong Kong with Attorney Arroyo. Magpapacheck-up po siya. Mayroon silang appointment with doctors abroad (He has to undergo a checkup, They have an appointment with doctors abroad)," Lambino said in a phone interview.
The former President will also likely skip the election for House speaker earlier in the day, but will attend the plenary session in the morning to take her oath of office, he added. Lambino said “there is nothing political" about Mrs. Arroyo’s absence during Aquino’s first SONA on Monday, even as the President himself earlier said that his speech will focus on the “anomalies" during previous administration. (See: Aquino says SONA will 'shock' Filipinos) “Maraming nagsasabi na (Many are saying that) she [Mrs. Arroyo] does not want to hear what President Aquino has to say. How can she avoid listening to the SONA with all the media covering it? Makakarating din naman sa kanya lahat ng sasabihin sa SONA (All that will be said in the SONA will eventually reach her anyway)," he said. The Lakas-Kampi spokesperson said that the former President and her family would just like to make sure that the former First Gentleman’s health is already well after undergoing spinal column surgery last month. (See: Mike Arroyo leaves hospital sans back pains) “After consultation at the hospital last Thursday, Atty. Arroyo was cautioned by the doctors about the high risk of acute attack of aortic aneurysm. The family would just like to make sure the former First Gentleman will be fine," he said. Mr. Arroyo was brought to the hospital twice during the past months—first, in March, due to his heart problems, and the latest, in June, to undergo spinal operation for his recurring back pains. (See: First Gentleman rushed to St. Luke’s due to heart trouble)—JV, GMANews.TV
Reposted From GMA News.TV