Aquino recovers from upset stomach, resumes events in Australia-A A +A
Thursday, October 25, 2012
MANILA – President Benigno Aquino III is now feeling better and has resumed his activities in Sydney, Australia, after falling ill due to bum stomach Wednesday night.
Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said the President has recovered and will attend all activities lined up for him Thursday.
"Secretary (Ricky) Carandang texted me and he told me that President Aquino is okay now. He's expected to attend all the events for today (Thursday)," Lacierda said.
Lacierda said the President failed to attend the state dinner hosted by Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and the usual coffee meeting with the Philippine media Wednesday night in Australia.
"He was not able to attend the State dinner. After his speech, he excused himself and he rested early," the Palace official said.
The President's last two days in Australia will be loaded with meetings with various company executives and other leaders.
The President attended a state luncheon hosted by Premier of New South Wales Barry O'Farrell at the Parliament House in Sydney.
In his speech before offering a toast during the luncheon, O'Farrell praised Aquino's leadership and described him as a "phenomenon."
He noted the continued friendship and bilateral relations between Australia and the Philippines. He also congratulated Aquino for the signing of the Framework Agreement between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
The Premier reiterated Australia's commitment to welcome more Filipinos to Sydney and New South Wales "to grow the trade and investment that is critical to the future success of both our countries, both of our societies and the future opportunities that our communities have."
Following the luncheon, Aquino delivered a keynote address at the Philippines-Australia Business Forum and meet with top CEOs in a roundtable setting.
He also addressed The Asia Society of Australia and the Australia Philippine Business Council.
On Friday, the President will attend the unveiling ceremonies of the statue of Dr. Jose Rizal in a park named after the same in Campbelltown City.
The statue was sculpted and donated by Mr. Eduardo Castrillo to the Philippine Government. It portrays Rizal dressed in a European suit and holding his book "Noli Me Tangere," hand raised in readiness for an approaching "storm," a trait considered by the sculptor to be a common trait among heroes.
President Aquino will then meet with members of the Filipino community in Australia, which will provide him with the opportunity to thank them for their contributions to the country and encourage them to remain united and relevant to their community.
There are 224,732 Filipinos in Australia as of June 2012. Filipinos in Australia are highly regarded for their active involvement in socio-civic activities and vital contributions to the economic development and multicultural enrichment in Australia.
The President is also scheduled to attend the Counter Terrorism Demonstration by the 2nd Commando Regiment, an Australian Army Special Forces Unit and one of three combat-capable units within the Australian Special Operations Command.
At 10:30 a.m. (Manila time), the President will depart for Manila and is expected to arrive at 6:30 p.m. Friday. (Jill Beltran/Sunnex)