REITERATES CALL FOR FILIPINOS TO STRICTLY OBSERVE QUARANTINE PROTOCOLS
Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go said that the coming days will be critical in President Rodrigo Duterte’s decision on whether the enhanced community quarantine measures presently being implemented to control the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) will be extended or modified further.
Go, also a member of the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee overseeing the implementation of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act, confirmed in a radio interview with DZBB of GMA News TV on Sunday, April 19, that the President will be meeting with experts to assess the current situation and determine the next course of action.
” The President will probably decide this week whether to extend or loosen (enhanced community quarantine). So tomorrow he will talk to the health experts, he invited many as well as the former secretaries of health of different administrations, they might be able to give advice,” Go said
” Actually, our situation is difficult right now. Filipinos are a clip of clip. As far as I know, it should be tightened for the next 11 days until April 30,” he added, referring to the need to strictly implement the existing guidelines imposed by the government at this time.
Go, also the Chair of the Senate Committee on Health, said that he continues to monitor the situation of many Filipinos affected by the ECQ in Luzon as well as in many parts of the country. As legislators, Go said that the Senate is also focused on overseeing the implementation of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act, especially the Social Amelioration Program targeting the poorest of the poor and other vulnerable sectors.
” I am the senator and Committee Chair of Health, I prioritize (how to protect) the lives of every Filipino. That’s why they also need to eat. Let’s look at the economy too. Problem here we don’t have medicine yet. Our problem first, human life. Secondly, human food. Third, economy. Fourth medicine, we still have no medicine for COVID disease,” he enumerated.
Go then reiterated his appeal to the Filipino people to cooperate with authorities implementing the quarantine protocols. While the government continues to address the further spread of COVID-19 and mitigate the adverse socio-economic impacts of the outbreak, Go believes that the people also have to do their share in this fight to defeat the virus.
” President (people) and I beg to just stay at home. Don’t go out so you won’t get infected because the more you come out are (the more) will get infected, you will go (to the place) tenacious, there is no end. It’s difficult for now is tracing, whenever you become positive, who is beside you, a lot, hard work, it adds even more to the work of healthworkers, in tracing. So, it’s good to stay at home for now.”
Go also shared the relatively positive developments regarding the greater number of recoveries than deaths caused by COVID-19. For a little less than a week already, the Department of Health has reported consistent increase in the numbers of recoveries which now totals more than the number of those who have succumbed to the disease.
” For now, recoveries are rising compared to death but we don’t want someone to die. That’s what’s important right now, the patient gets well and dropped, it should be flat, not to rise. Mass testing continues for now, in different places,” he said.
Go also commended the initiatives of local government units and emphasized the importance of their role in protecting their communities.
” Congrats to the different municipalities, cities, provinces who had their initiative to have their own testing,” he said, reminding LGus that such initiatives must be in line with policies and guidelines imposed by the national government.
” Let’s have a solidarity. LGUS and national government agencies should collaborate, as well as the private sector, so that whatever is lacking in the needs of the people,” Go said.
Recently, Go has successfully appealed to the Executive branch to grant a one-time Bayanihan financial assistance to cities and municipalities equivalent to one-month of their respective 2020 Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA), and for provinces amounting to half-month of their respective IRA share.