TOUGH-TALKING President Rodrigo Duterte was teary-eyed when he met a soldier who lost his eyesight in clearing operations in Maguindanao last March.
A video sent to reporters by Radio-TV Malacanang showed Duterte getting emotional as he saluted and hugged 2nd Lt. Jerome Jacuba of the Philippine Army.
Jacuba was among the soldiers Duterte met when he visited the Armes Forces of the Philippines (AFP) General Hospital in Quezon City Tuesday afternoon.
The 28-year-old soldier, who was married with two children, became blind after he was hit by an improvised explosive during the Maguindanao operation.
Speaking to reporters, Maj. William Recuenco said the blast caused total blindness in Jacuba’s right eye and retinal detachment in his left eye, where Jacuba only sees “light perception.”
Recuenco, Jacuba’s attending physician, said the latter would no longer see again.
Jacuba is staying at the AFP hospital for visual rehabilitation, or to learn how to live with his condition.
Jacuba, who went to the Officer Candidate School, is up for promotion to first lieutenant, Recuenco added. CATHERINE S. VALENTE