Bongbong Marcos in isolation after exposure to COVID-positive staff; sorry for skipping Comelec hearing

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 7)— Presidential aspirant Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr. is currently under isolation after getting exposed to staff who have tested positive for COVID-19.

"Two personalities who're with Marcos almost every day have been tested positive of the coronavirus - his chief of staff, lawyer Vic Rodriguez and his security escort, prompting the former senator to go in isolation," his camp said in a statement on Friday.

On the same day, Marcos failed to show up for the Commission on Elections' pre-conference for the disqualification petitions lodged against him — despite an order from the poll body to attend physically or virtually.

The hearing was delayed as presiding commissioner Rowena Guanzon demanded a medical certificate to justify Marcos' absence.

"Why don't you ask your client to go on Zoom? Even if he's in isolation he can have a laptop or a phone," Guanzon said.

READ: Marcos camp, 2 petitioners given until Sunday noon to file final points on disqualification case

Marcos' camp explained the former senator suffered from fever and had "difficulty in speaking due to a painfully congested throat."

This was also cited in the medical certificate which the group presented during the last few minutes of the proceedings.

The camp has since apologized to Comelec — particularly Guanzon — for Marcos' absence during the hearing.

CNN Philippines Correspondent Melissa Lopez contributed to this report.