Barack Obama offers Noynoy Aquino advice on quitting smoking
United States Pres. Barack Obama is "ready to offer" President-Elect Noynoy Aquino advice on how to quit smoking "at the time [he] decides to quit," Aquino told the press, reports AFP via ABS-CBNNews.com.
The two leaders touched on the smoking issue when Obama called Aquino on June 9 to congratulate his presidential win. Aquino was proclaimed winner of the national elections a few hours before Obama's phone call.
Aquino said, "At some point, I attempted some humor. I said, 'Mr. President I understand we have the same issue with smoking.' He told me, 'Well, I quit that already. I quit; it's your sole problem but I'm ready to offer advice.'"
Aquino, 50, reportedly smokes up to two packs a day. He said during the campaign season that he intended to quit, as reported by ABS-CBNNews.com: "I assume 'yung smoking ko will eventually go. Hopefully ma-weather natin 'yung pressures with the job that we can give it up sooner other than later."
However, at the time he was leading the elections, he said he was not ready to kick the habit since it might affect his decision-making skills, reports GMANews.TV. He said he would quit at the "appropriate time."
During the approximately 20-minute phone call, Obama praised the recent elections as "a model of transparency," according to an ABS-CBNNews.com report. Aquino said he found Obama "very sincere" in strengthening their countries' ties.
They agreed to meet at a "mutually convenient" time but Aquino stressed to reporters that he would focus on local concerns first.