Action on COVID, not discussion on rev gov: Pangilinan

September 2, 2020

INSTEAD of discussing a revolutionary government, Senator “Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan on Wednesday said government should work on improving its abysmal COVID-19 pandemic response.

“Ang dapat na ginagawa ay ayusin ng gobyerno ang COVID response. As of September 1, nine months after the first COVID case was monitored, mahigit 224,000 ang confirmed cases at halos 3,600 na ang namamatay na Pilipino dahil sa COVID,” Pangilinan said.

“The COVID situation is horribly out of control. That’s why the open discussion that needs to be done is on how to overhaul the government’s COVID response which is marred with incompetence and corruption,” he added.

Pangilinan pointed out that the country’s COVID tally for one day (3,446 additional cases for August 31, 2020) is equivalent to the total number of cases in Thailand (3,417 as of August 31, 2020).

“Yan ang grade natin sa COVID response: bagsak, fail,” he said.

In his address Monday, President Duterte reacted to initiatives to institute a revolutionary government and said the issue should not be discussed secretly, but in public and including the military.

Last August 22, around 300 individuals online and offline gathered at the Clark Freeport in support of a Duterte-led “revolutionary government.”

Pangilinan said discussions should center on stopping the spread of the disease, and addressing the consequent joblessness and hunger.

“Pag-usapan ang mahalaga sa ating mamamayan, hindi yung walang kwentang rev gov,” Pangilinan said.

According to a Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey, almost 1 in 2 adult Filipinos in the labor force is jobless in July 2020. The estimated number of jobless adults in July 2020 was 27.3 million, more than three times the 7.9 million in December 2019.

Over 1 in 4 businesses (25.9 percent) has shut down since the pandemic hit the country, Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said, citing his department’s June 4 to 17 survey.

The number of Filipinos who were hungry in May 2020 due to lack of available food nearly doubled while most areas were under COVID-19 lockdowns, an SWS survey noted. In a May 4 to 10 virtual survey, 16.7 percent of the respondents or 3.9 million families experienced involuntary hunger in the past three months — a huge spike compared to the 8.8 percent recorded last December 2019, and the highest hunger rate registered under President Duterte’s term.

“Dagdag pa sa problema at hindi solusyon sa problema yang rev gov na yan,” Pangilinan said. “Failed gov, hindi rev gov, ang kailangan pag-usapan.”