By ROGER M. BALANZA
“If only I had the power like a magic wand to make this problem vanish. ”
President Rodrigo Duterte made this wish on Monday as he admitted that he has a hard time addressing the COVID-19 pandemic with infections continuing to surge and the country’s vaccination program hobbled by limited supply of vaccines.
“I’m having a hard time. I’m grappling with the issue of Covid. It takes most of my time actually. More than any other papers, it’s the Covid that is taking my time or most of my time looking for ways and kung ano na ang nangyayari doon sa labas kung saan tayo makakuha (what happens outside),” Duterte said during a pre-recorded public address on Monday, his first since placing Metro Manila and the nearby provinces of Laguna, Cavite, Rizal and Bulacan on lockdown.
“I’m like passing through purgatory at this time,” he added.
Duterte said the government difficulty to have available supply of COVID-19 vaccines is his biggest problem that makes him want to cry.
“If only I had the power – kung nandiyan lang sa akin ‘yong poder na like a magic wand na maalis kaagad itong problema natin, mawala, gagawin ko (like a magic wand to make this problem vanish, I’ll do it),” he said.
Amid criticisms over his decision to place Metro Manila and the nearby provinces under the strictest quarantine status anew, Duterte said the Philippines is not the only country under a lockdown.
Duterte said many countries including Ukraine, France, Germany, Poland, and Italy also had to reimpose lockdowns to curb the spread of Covid-19 and prevent the healthcare systems from collapsing.
Duterte said he would be the last person in the country who wanted to inflict suffering on Filipinos by limiting their mobility.
Categories: PRESIDENT RODRIGO R. DUTERTE