The latest statement of Presidential spokesman, Harry Roque, that the government does not actually have a plan for mass testing and that they are passing the responsibility onto the private sector is an admittance of this administration’s incompetence and neglect of duty to the Filipinos. We must recall that billions of peoples money was alloted as emergency fund for #COVID19 after Duterte was granted emergency power. If that wasn’t enough, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) granted a P300 billion credit to support the COVID19 response, the $100 million loan from the World Bank and another $1.5 billion from Asian Development Bank (ADB); the US government donated a total of $15.2 million and millions more from foreign lenders, private donors and conglomerates, what happened to all these hefty sums?
Weeks have gone by and all we heard from the President are aimless personal rants and nothing on the urgent need to address the health crisis. After being subjected to a two-month long militaristic lockdown with little to no economic assistance, many families from marginalized sectors like IPs especially in urban centers have depleted resources. This traitorous administration has dropped them like hot potatoes without a second thought. While we grapple with the corona virus, the government is trying to shake off their mandated responsibility to ensure the health and safety of the public and they’re getting away with lined pockets.
Without mass testing, the 2 months lockdown will be useless because the spread of the virus cannot be prevented if we do not know who are infected. Gov’t should focus its resources in resolving the budget for mass testing instead of spending for the red-tagging, harassing and threatening of CPA leaders and activists who are taking initiatives for what should be government responsibilities like relief distributions.
We must hold these bureaucrats accountable for their negligence in this time of crisis. We must demand that the peoples’ money be used to fund pursuits that ensure the peoples’ welfare.
We call for mass testing now, especially for indigenous communities that has long been denied of basic social services and for the vulnerable and marginalized sectors.