MANILA, MAY 6, 2011
 (MALAYA) BY JOCELYN MONTEMAYOR - PRESIDENT Aquino had a "medical appointment" Wednesday while the Cabinet security cluster was assessing the security situation after the killing Sunday in Pakistan of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, Ramon Carandang, head of the Presidential Communications Planning and Development Office, said yesterday.

"Nagkataon din kahapon (Wednesday) na nagkaroon ng medical appointment si Pangulong Aquino kaya iyong unang schedule niya kahapon ng umaga ay isang meeting sa kanyang doctor," Carandang said.

Aquino was not expected at the security cluster meeting but he had been scheduled to receive Archbishop Edward Joseph Adams, the papal nuncio to the Philippines who has been re-assigned to Greece, Wednesday morning. The meeting with Adams was moved to Wednesday afternoon.

Col. Ramon Mateo Dizon, head of the Presidential Security Group, said Aquino "is okay." He said Aquino followed his schedule the rest of Wednesday and even went to Samar and Cebu yesterday.

Dizon said a family doctor attends to the President’s health.

The last time that Aquino cancelled his engagements was on February 17 when he had fever and hoarse voice.

Last December, Aquino also caught the sniffles and suffered from sore throat and an upset stomach, prompting him to decline chance interviews. Last July, the President arrived about an hour late for Mass at the Manila Cathedral, because of a bum stomach.

He has been observed coughing a lot during speeches in the past.

Aside from meeting with Adams Wednesday afternoon, Aquino also attended a meeting about informal settlers.

Yesterday morning, he flew to Calbayog City to attend the wake of City Mayor and Liberal Party leader Reynaldo Uy. After the event, he flew to Cebu City to attend the wake of Cebu Vice Gov. Gregorio Sanchez Jr.

Upon returning to Manila, he attended the 32nd national conference of the Employer’s Confederation of the Philippines at the Marriott Hotel in Pasay City. This was followed by a staff meeting in Malacañang, and a courtesy call by officials of Singapore Technologies Telemedia, ABS-CBN and Sky Cable.

Aquino is also set to leave for Indonesia this afternoon for the 18th Association of Southeast Asian Nation summit. He is expected to return on May 9.

Noy to critics: Me not working hard enough? Come on, give me a break BY REGINA BENGCO

PRESIDENT Aquino yesterday took exception to column items that his ratings plunged in the first quarter because he does not work hard enough.

Aquino, in opening his speech before the National Conference of Employers in Pasay City, said the two "critical" columns came out on May 5.

"For their information, this is my third engagement for the day. I started out rising at 5:30 in the morning not because I have to plant some seeds but because I have to board a plane by 6:30 to go to wakes—one in Cebu, one in Samar—to attend the wakes of two of our party mates, one killed by assassination and the other due to health concerns," he said.

Aquino visited the wake of Calbayog City mayor Reynaldo Uy in Samar and Cebu Vice Gov. Gregorio Sanchez Jr in Cebu City.

From Cebu City, Aquino traveled back to Manila to attend the National Conference of Employers. At 2:30 p.m., he had a staff meeting.

His last official function on Thursday was a meeting with officials of Singapore Technologies Telemedia, ABS-CBN and Sky Cable at 4 p.m.

Aquino also tried to dodge questions about his love life by saying: "Let’s focus on goals that are doable."

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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