- Presidential granddaughter Isabelle Duterte’s pre-debut photo shoot sparked questions over presidential seal misuse
- Palace defended Isabelle’s private pictorial, saying the session did not violate any rules
- History showed Malacañang Palace can be used both as a seat of power or a party venue
President Rodrigo Duterte and his family have projected an image of people with simple means and lifestyles. However, the recent private pre-debut photo shoot of Duterte’s granddaughter Isabelle have attracted the attention of many critics.
KAMI learned that Isabelle’s controversial pictorial was criticized because of using the Palace for her private shoot. One of the reasons why it earned several negative criticisms from the public was due to proper use of the presidential seal.
In one of the photos, Isabelle was seen posing by the Seal of the President of the Philippines. According to Rappler, Executive Order No. 310 that was issued in 2004, explains the limitations on the proper usage of the presidential seal.
Based on the EO, the seal should be “exclusively used to represent” the Philippine President. When it comes to photographing the seal, the EO states that it can only be done for “bona fide news content” related to the President of the Philippines.
Other uses can be permitted as long as it is for “exceptional historical, education, or newsworthy purposes,” and is “authorized in writing by the Office of Presidential Protocol.”
With that said, it is safe to assume that some people do have a point in raising the question whether the venue of choice was appropriate. But Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque was quick to defend the presidential granddaughter.
According to Roque, Isabelle’s pictorial did not violate any protocols. Roque also stressed that she has the right to use the Malacañang Palace as a presidential granddaughter.
Apart from Isabelle, President Duterte himself also became a subject of criticisms for hosting various private events and parties for his pals and cronies inside the Malacañang estate.
Among those celebrations were the birthday party of Marinduque Representative Allan Lord Velasco and the aqiqah for Robin Padilla and Mariel Rodriquez’ daughter. Both events were held at the Malacañang Golf Clubhouse aka Malago.
Due to these events, Roque assured the public that no government money was used to host those parties. Roque explained that the parties were held inside the Malacañang compound because President Duterte wants to limit his engagements outside the Palace.
Roque added the president is worried his attendance to social events would cause traffic and inconvenience to the public. That is why Roque said if Filipinos want the President to attend their events, they should bring their caterers and party to the Palace.
Meanwhile, history showed that this was not the first time that the Palace opened its doors to private functions. In fact, five presidential children have used the Malacañang for weddings or wedding receptions including Victoria Quirino, Linda Garcia, Jo Ramos, Jackie Estrada and Mikey Arroyo.
Perhaps, it was President Duterte who was highly criticized for using the Palace for private events because of dubbing it as the “People’s Palace.” The president also promised to open the Palace’s doors to the public.
But as of writing, only the Malacañang Museum at the Kalayaan Hall grounds is accessible to the public.
KAMI wishes Isabelle Duterte all the best as she enters the adulthood stage in January.
As for other teens out there, check out our video below that shows why teenage life is fun and exciting. And for more interesting and informative clips, check out KAMI's official YouTube channel.