DAVAO CITY, Philippines – President Duterte did not take time off during the All Saints’ Day break as he paid a visit to soldiers wounded in an encounter with Abu Sayyaf bandits in Sulu on Monday afternoon.
Duterte visited the eight wounded soldiers in a hospital at Camp Teodulfo Bautista in Jolo at around 3:30 p.m.
Duterte’s visit to Sulu was not planned, surprising military and local officials.
The President flew to Jolo despite the bad weather to give moral support to the troopers. He pinned medals on six of the troopers of the Army’s 21st Infantry Battalion.
Two of the eight soldiers were transferred to a hospital in Zamboanga City, the military said.
Duterte gave each of the soldiers a check for P100,000, P10,000 in cash, a Glock handgun and a wounded personnel medal.
The soldiers were wounded in a clash with around 100 Abu Sayyaf bandits in Barangay Panglayahan, Patikul town on Sunday.
Duterte has been visiting military camps during his first months in office.
After visiting the soldiers, the President flew back to Davao City.
Duterte was scheduled to visit the tombs of his parents at the public cemetery here yesterday.
He is expected to be in Manila today for a scheduled Cabinet meeting on Thursday.