Golfing became a meme among some Filipinos as a video of President Rodrigo Duterte supposedly playing the sport was released amid speculations on his health condition after skipping public appearances.
Actress Alessandra de Rossi quipped that she plans to play “golf” after the Department of Health reported 11,681 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday a day before the Greater Manila Area eased into modified enhanced community quarantine.
The new tallies brought the total count of confirmed COVID-19 cases to 864,868. Deaths stand at 14,945 while recoveries are at 703,404.
“11k cases naman. ‘Di bumababa (crying face emojis). Lord, heal us and lead us. Golf muna ako,” she tweeted.
A Twitter user asked if she wanted to ride a motorcycle first before golfing but the actress responded that it should be a “jet ski,” another reference to the chief executive.
“Jetski dapat. ‘Yun ang usapan!” De Rossi exclaimed.
Duterte in a presidential debate in 2016 vowed to personally ride a jet ski and plant the Philippine flag in the Spratly Islands or Scarborough Shoal to assert the country’s sovereign rights amid China’s encroachment in the West Philippine Sea.
Two years later, his younger son and his then-special assistant rode jet skis in the calm waters of Casiguran, Aurora, around 900 kilometers away from the Spratlys.
Meanwhile, De Rossi’s tweet about golfing has reached more than 54,400 likes and more than 5,700 retweets on the microblogging platform as of this writing.
When she was criticized by some of the president’s supporters, she quipped by tweeting, “I was just following the leader!”
Another actress, Yen Santos, likewise took a jab at Duterte’s reported activities amid the continuous rise in COVID-19 cases through the platform.
“P******!!!!!! Kulang kulang mag-report!!! Ipagpapabukas pa kung ano pagkakaiba ng ECQ sa MECQ! Pero dami time mag liwaliw sa Malacañang!!!! Basurang gobyerno!!!!!!” she tweeted on Sunday.
Cainta-based artist Kevin Eric Raymundo, also known as “Tarantadong Kalbo” posted a cartoon on social media. It represented Duterte with a golf club while an illustration of the coronavirus in the form of a golf ball looked at him.
“Not even a whiff,” the post’s caption reads, pertaining to Duterte’s activity after postponing his public address twice in a public health crisis.
Duterte’s former aide-turned-lawmaker shared photos and a video of the president playing golf, riding a motorcycle and jogging in Malacañang over the weekend amid speculations on the president’s health condition.
The pictures and video clips came after Duterte’s address to the nation was postponed two times last week. It was reported that several members of the Presidential Security Group contracted COVID-19.
Duterte tested negative for COVID-19 on his latest swab test, as reported last week.
His golf photo further made online buzz after a sports website updated its 2016 article about a former caddie sharing how the president was as a golfer by replacing its featured photo with the one recently released.
This led some Filipinos to speculate that the recent photo was taken in 2016 and that it was only “reposted.”
Duterte is set to address the public on Monday.
He has previously admitted to having chronic and relatively serious ailments in the past such as Barret’s esophagus and myasthenia gravis.