Duterte brings top Marawi soldiers to Japan to 'unwind'
MANILA, Philippines – After 5 long months of battle in Marawi, the top military officers who served there were rewarded with a trip to Japan, care of President Rodrigo Duterte.
Duterte said he allowed some top commanders to accompany him on his recent visit to Japan.
"The ones I brought along are really the top commanders. I just invited them for a respite," said Duterte on Monday night, October 31, after arriving from Tokyo.
"I just brought them to unwind. At least they have time for sight-seeing," he added.
The President previously brought along retiring military and police officers in his trip to Russia, which had been cut short by the Marawi crisis.
Duterte also said he was making good on his promise to treat female soldiers to a Hong Kong vacation.
"They're there already. They went ahead of us," he said.
He bared that Cebu Pacific Airlines sponsored the airfare of the lady soldiers. Government would only have to spend for their allowance and hotel accomodations.
"It was Cebu Pacific who answered for – noong nalaman niya na – na sabi ko, sabi niya, 'Sige, ako na lang ang – iyo na lang ang baon pati hotel,'" said Duterte, without naming the airline official he spoke to.
(It was Cebu Pacific who answered for – when he found out that I said – he said, "Okay, I will pay for it. You take care of allowance and hotel.")
The President spent two full days in Japan, where he had meetings with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Emperor Akihito, and Japanese businessmen.
Among the topics discussed during the trip was Japan's official development assistance for the rehabilitation of Marawi. – Rappler.com