MANILA, March 1 (Bernama) — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim will be holding discussions with President Ferdinand Marcos Jr, better known as “Bong Bong”, at the Malacanang Palace today, at the start of his two-day official visit to the Philippines.

Upon arrival at the palace, which served as President Marcos’ official office, Anwar, who was wearing a songkok and batik shirt, was given a red carpet welcome by the Philippine leader. 

Also present were the prime minister’s wife Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and the Philippines’ first lady, Marie Louise Araneta Marcos. 

After Malaysia’s national anthem Negaraku and the Philippines’ Lupang Hinirang (Chosen Land) were played and followed by a 19-gun salute, Anwar, who was accompanied by Marcos, inspected a guard of honour mounted by 165 soldiers of the Philippine armed forces. 

The prime minister was then introduced to members of the Philippine Cabinet. 

Anwar was accompanied by Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir, Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail, Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives Minister Ewon Benedick and Foreign Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Amran Mohamed Zin. 

Later, both leaders are expected to hold a bilateral meeting to discuss various matters involving both countries. 

Anwar and Marcos are expected to hold a joint press briefing after the bilateral meeting. 

Tonight, Marcos will host Anwar and the Malaysian delegation at an official dinner at Malacanang Palace. 

Tomorrow, Anwar is expected to visit the University of Philippines to give a public lecture entitled “30 Years after Asia’s Renaissance: Strategic Takeaways for Asean”.

He will also receive an honorary doctorate from the university’s senate and later meet with Malaysians in the Philippines.

The prime minister is expected to leave for home later on Thursday evening. 


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