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Walang matatago! Cayetano belies Alejano claim on Duterte’s Israel trip

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by Xave Gregorio

Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano belied claims made by Magdalo party-list Rep. Gary Alejano that President Rodrigo Duterte’s upcoming state visit to Israel is related to his supposedly failing health.

Cayetano said Duterte would not be able to hide anything during his official state visit to the Middle Eastern country from September 2 to 5 as all eyes would be on him.

“In a state visit, bawat galaw mo tinitingnan eh. So whether a doctor goes to him or he goes to a hospital, hindi mo masisikreto iyon,” Cayetano told reporters Tuesday (August 28) before the Senate finance committee deliberated on the proposed budget of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) next year.

In a tweet last Friday (August 24), Alejano claimed that Duterte’s Israel trip is related to his supposedly failing health and has nothing to do with dealing with issues faced by overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).

However, several Palace officials have denied Alejano’s claim. Cayetano also accused Alejano of being a “purveyor of fake news” in a bid to boost his senatorial candidacy for the 2019 polls.

“I thought nakuryente lang si Congressman Alejano nung sinabi niya we stopped all patrols kasi that’s absolutely not true. But ngayon sinasabi na sinasabi niya may bubwit siya,” Cayetano said.

Cayetano said Duterte’s Israel trip would be to “strengthen bilateral ties,” and would touch on labor, IT and agriculture issues.

He added that they are “rushing a labor agreement” with Israel, similar to the pact signed by Kuwait and the Philippines guaranteeing protections to OFWs.

According to the DFA, there are around 25,000 OFWs in Israel as of 2015.