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Duterte, Bolkiah meet at Palace ahead of SEA Games opening

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MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday afternoon welcomed Brunei’s Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah at Malacañang Palace in Manila, just hours before the formal opening of the 30th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games.

Bolkiah arrived in Manila on Saturday morning for a two-day official visit.

Duterte and Bolkiah held a bilateral meeting to discuss the Philippines’ hosting of the biennial regional sports meet.

Palace has yet to release a statement on the two leaders’ meeting.

The Philippines, for the fourth time, hosted the SEA Games.

Around 8,750 athletes from Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand, Timor Leste, Singapore, and Vietnam will compete in 530 events in 56 sports from November 30 to December 11.

Bolkiah’s children, Prince Abdul Mateen and Princess Azemah, are part of the Sultanate’s polo team that clinched an early victory in the sporting event.

The Brunei team won over the Philippines’ polo bets on November 24 at the Iñigo Zobel Polo Facility.

The sultan’s nephew, Faiq Jefri Bolkiah, is Brunei’s football team captain. Faiq was rushed to the Manila Doctor’s Hospital last weekend after suffering an allergic reaction to peanuts.

Bolkiah will fly back to Brunei on Sunday. (PNA)

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