Calls for #DuterteResign trend on PH social media


MANILA — #DuterteResign trended on the Philippines’ social media platforms, after the country’s capital and its neighboring provinces were put yet again on a stricter lockdown. This after an all-time high of active COVID-19 cases in the country and with the health department logging not less than 9,000 new cases in the past two days.

On Saturday evening, the President’s spokesperson announced that the National Capital Region and the provinces of Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal, earlier referred to as the “NCR Plus Bubble,” will be put on Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) from March 29 to April 4. Under the strictest lockdown, only “authorized persons” are allowed to leave their homes for essential travels only.

Harry Roque, in his speech, pointed out that people would not find it difficult since this is not the first time that an ECQ has been put in place. He said that guidelines for the government’s social assistance to the poor will be provided on Monday, but went on to say that he is “sure na sure” (very sure) that there will be an increased presence of uniformed personnel, referring to state security forces, to implement the lockdown on the ground.

In a tweet, the League of the Filipino Students said the imposition of the ECQ resulted in panic buying as the public prepares for the week-long lockdown.

Netizens also aired their doubts on how another ECQ can curb the spread of the virus if there are still no mass testing and concrete solutions.

The Philippines has not gone beyond its last year’s 50,000 daily testing target, as they continue to log only about 30,000 to 40,000 at best. The government earlier admitted that contact tracing remains their weakest link.

A year into the world’s longest and strictest lockdown, the Filipino poor suffered from hunger and homelessness while frontline health workers were denied due protection and better working conditions.

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In a statement sent to the media, Ibon Foundation executive director Sonny Africa said that “stopping people from work and taking your time vaccinating is not a COVID response strategy — it is making people suffer from incompetence or worse, for some sinister agenda.” (With reports from Janess Ann J. Ellao)


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