Duterte to test for COVID-19

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 12) — President Rodrigo Duterte will get tested for the novel coronavirus disease or COVID-19, Senator Bong Go said Thursday.

Go said that he and Duterte will undergo testing for the viral disease after some Cabinet members and senators have gone on self-quarantine.

“We are not doing this because we have symptoms of COVID-19. We are doing this to ensure that we are fit and healthy to engage the public and perform our duties in the coming days and weeks. As always, the President and I remain ready to serve and die for the Filipino people,” Go said.

Despite this, he told CNN Philippines via text message that he will not yet go on quarantine.

“Not yet. Serbisyo muna ako [I’ll continue to serve],” he said.

Senators Sherwin Gatchalian and Nancy Binay announced Wednesday night that they will go on self-quarantine after finding out that one of the resource persons at a March 5 hearing of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture tested positive for COVID-19.

“Considering that some Cabinet members we engage with regularly have been exposed to individuals who were tested positive of COVID-19 and have decided to undergo self-quarantine, it is just prudent for us to take precautionary measures in compliance with the advice of our health officials,” Go added.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III and Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade also decided to go on self-quarantine after they interacted with people who have the viral disease.

Furthermore, Presidential Security Group Commander Col. Jess Durante said that the Malacañang Palace’s main palace will “undergo precautionary disinfection and decontamination on areas frequently used by the President.”

RELATED: Malacañang’s main palace, Senate to be disinfected as officials go on self-quarantine

The Senate will also close down to be disinfected.

The country now has 49 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus disease, including two deaths. A 67-year-old Filipino woman died Wednesday due to COVID-19, and is the first Filipino national to die of the viral disease.

CNN Philippines correspondent Triciah Terada contributed to this report.