Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Aquino belies rumors of ill health

By Gil C. Cabacungan Jr.
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 04:20:00 12/30/2009

Filed Under: Eleksyon 2010, Inquirer Politics

Original Story: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/nation/view/20091230-244643/Aquino-belies-rumors-of-ill-health

MANILA, Philippines—He’s not sick, not even tired, just very busy.

Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III has shrugged off speculation that the rigors of preparing for next year’s election campaign have taken a toll on his health.

Aquino said he was fit to take on a nationwide campaign beginning February, adding that his rivals should change their tactics and stop making up stories about his supposedly failing health if they intend to catch up to him in the surveys.

“Yes I’ve got a cold but a lot of people I know have it because of the weather. If I were them (his opponents), I’d stop spreading these rumors because I won’t quit,” said Aquino who boasts a commanding lead in the surveys along with his running mate, Sen. Mar Roxas.

The state of Aquino’s health has been the subject of speculation the past few months due to his absence at rallies and other forums and his supposedly sickly appearance.

Aquino dismissed the rumors as “black propaganda,” asserting that he was holding up very well considering that he was attending to his duties as a legislator while at the same time preparing to undertake an intense campaign for the May 2010 presidential election.

“I am third in terms of attendance among senators, next only to the Senate president and the majority leader. I have taken a direct hand in approving the [national] budget as I have done in all my years as a legislator,” he said.

He said his schedule these days was much heavier and more packed than those of the other presidential candidates since he began his presidential bid only a few months ago while his rivals had been on campaign mode for years.

“My handlers are maximizing my provincial sorties with 12 to 15 engagements per trip. They must be testing my limits but I’m not complaining, I’m up to it,” Aquino said.

If he does get sick along the way, Aquino said it would be the normal illnesses that strike people his age.

“I have sinusitis and it has gotten worse but it is nothing I cannot handle,” he said.

Original Story: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/nation/view/20091230-244643/Aquino-belies-rumors-of-ill-health

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