PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte will spend his 73rd birthday on Wednesday, March 28, in his home province in Davao City without a "lavish" party, Special Assistant to the President Christopher "Bong" Go said Tuesday, March 27.

"Mayor Rody will be celebrating his birthday at home, with his family. He has never been known to throw lavish birthday parties even when he was mayor of Davao City," Go said in a statement.

Last year, the President opted to celebrate his 72nd birthday "quietly without fanfare." Duterte merely got a surprise visit at home from his granchildren as he turned 72 last March 28, 2017.

Go said a simple prayer would make Duterte "very happy" during his birthday.

"Prayers from his well-wishers during his birthday would surely make him very happy," he said.

Go, Duterte's long-time aide, wished the President a "long and healthy life."

"My wish for my boss is long and healthy life so he can continuously serve th country. And I wish that he will have more time to be with his family and loved ones. To my adviser, my mentor and my boss, happy birthday!" he said.

Communications Secretary Jose Ruperto Martin Andanar, in a statement, hoped that the President would be "blessed with more years, strong health, and the wisdom of fine age."

Andanar was also all praise for Duterte for the latter's contributions to the country.

"Our Mayor-President,Rodrigo Roa Duterte, has set himself to be the man for people, before whom his oath was pledged, and to whom he vowed to make peace the bedrock platform for the country's progress. His words arise from the jugular: passionate, intense, committed, and focused," he said.

"A grateful people celebrate his seventy-third year and pray that he be blessed for more," he added. (SunStar Philippines)