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MANILA, Philippines – It was a bunch of unusual requests for the President of the Philippines.
On Friday, December 19, President Benigno Aquino III was the apple of children’s eyes who asked him for simple requests that ranged from helping find their parents to a hug.
At the Pasko ng Batang Pinoy (Christmas of the Filipino Child), an event in Malacañang for street children organized by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), a game Aquino acceded to requests except one – sing a Christmas carol.
Aquino chose not to deliver his prepared speech to instead answer questions from the children, which began with a boy asking the President for help to find his parents and to continue studying, to which Aquino responded, “We will try to find them. We will work on it together to try and find your parents.”
He added, “As for school, I’m sure (DSWD) Secretary (Dinky) Soliman can ensure your continued education.”
A young girl then gave the President a present, before asking for a hug which Aquino obliged to.
Later, a boy asked Aquino if he used to carol as a child. The President said it was Martial Law when he was young so he was unable to. The boy then asked Aquino to sing a carol for them.
“Me, sing a carol for you? It’ll depend on my voice on that day,” Aquino said. “Do I need to schedule carolling at your home? Or you will carol for me? Your voices might be better than mine!”
The boy instead got a photo with the President as his “last request.”
Not all requests were light however. Another girl also expressed hope that her father would be freed from jail. Aquino said he would look at the father’s case.
Aquino then distributed gifts to the 1,000 children present.
The President vowed to the children they were being cared for.
“This occasion is very important for me to see you because I want you all to feel that like all Filipino families that wish to be with their families, there are many who love you and will help brighten your future,” he said.
“Count on the fact that we will not stop until your future is good and that is what you can expect from all of us.” – Rappler.com