Chiz Escudero urges public to demand more from gov’t amid pandemic


MANILA, Philippines — Filipinos should refrain from being contented with the government’s COVID-19 response and instead demand more from public officials, Sorsogon Gov. Francis “Chiz” Escuder said in a Facebook post on Tuesday.

Escudero, a former senator, said people should not settle for less.

“The ‘it could have been worse’ argument is actually a fallacy designed to make people feel good and contented with whatever is given them,” Escudero said in his post.

“We can and should demand more from our leaders who I believe can and will do more! ‘Di na dapat pwede ang ‘pwede na’,” he added.

[The “that will do” mentality is no longer acceptable.]

Escudero did not specify which statement, project, or government official he was referring to, but presidential spokesperson Harry Roque noted early July that the situation in the Philippines could have been worse if lockdowns had not been enforced.

Last May 28, President Rodrigo Duterte also noted that the nationwide COVID-19 numbers were not so bad compared to those of other established countries, back when the Philippines only had 15,588 confirmed COVID-19 cases, of which 921 died and 3,598 recovered.

Aside from these statements, Escudero also chided the Department of Health for supposedly just waiting for a coronavirus vaccine and not being serious in efforts to minimize COVID-19 transmissions.

Earlier, activist group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan made a similar observation — that the Duterte administration’s game plan on the pandemic revolves around asking for a vaccine from China.

“I think DOH is just ‘riding out’ COVID-19 until a vaccine is invented. I don’t see nor feel any active/serious efforts being done by it,” he said in another Facebook post.

“The DOH, as the lead agency of the IATF, should do precisely that — lead in a proactive way and not simply be content in reporting out statistics,” he added.

As of now, the Philippines has over 83,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases, with 1,947 deaths and 26,617 recoveries.

/atm



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