The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines – Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Sunday asked President Benigno Aquino III to stop smoking in support of his administration's push for the Sin Tax bill and its drive to reduce the number of smokers in the country.
“He was told by his doctor to quit smoking, and since his administration wants to reduce smoking in the country by imposing higher taxes on tobacco products, why not start from him?” he said in a radio interview.
Marcos said it is ironic that the government seeks to reduce smoking incidence, but its chief executive, who pushed for the enactment of the Sin Tax bill, could not quit smoking.
“Mahirap naman na gusto ng gobyerno nya na mabawasan ang naninigarilyo, pero naninigarilyo pa siya. Siguro (It would be difficult to tell its citizens to quit when he still smokes. Maybe) he should start quitting slowly,” he said.
Marcos added that he does not smoke because he is asthmatic.
Earlier, President Aquino’s smoking became an issue again when he delivered his keynote speech at the 9th Media Nation Summit in Tagaytay City on Friday; many observed that he was coughing and sneezing, common symptoms of smokers.
But Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said Aquino was coughing and sneezing during the event because he had not yet recovered from the influenza and allergic rhinitis he contracted before his trip to Cambodia last week to attend the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit
"At a certain point, he would like to quit pero right now, ito ang nakakapag-destress sa kanya. Hayaan muna natin ang Pangulo na hanapan ng paraan. Alam naman niya kung ano ang importante (Smoking de-stresses him. Let us let the President find a solution to his smoking. He knows what are important),” presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said on Saturday in an interview over state-owned radio station dzRB Radyo ng Bayan.