MANILA, Philippines – The imposition of an enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) should not become a case of “Endless Community Quarantine,” Senator Risa Hontiveros said Monday after Metro Manila and four other provinces were once again placed under lockdown.
According to Hontiveros, the public is forced to accept a reimposed ECQ “because of gross negligence and incompetence” from the national government.
“Season 2 na raw ng ECQ, sana tapusin na dito at huwag nang gawing Endless Community Quarantine. Let’s break this vicious cycle once and for all,” Hontiveros said in a statement.
(They say ECQ is now on Season 2. I hope we can end this and let’s not make it an Endless Community Quarantine.)
The senator likewise said that the placing of Metro Manila and other nearby provinces on another round of lockdown revealed the type of management of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).
Hontiveros said that as long as the same people are in charge of the pandemic response and there is failure to address the problem head on, enforcement of mobility restrictions will still be inadequate, and it will be the ordinary Filipinos who will continue to suffer.
“We need better leadership. We need health experts who will carry out scientific, evidence-based solutions. We need competent and empathetic medical professionals to get us through this crisis,” Hontiveros said.
“We cannot expect better if they can only praise their own past actions and blame the viral mutations — October pa lang, alam na nating may variants sa ibang bansa at pagdating ng January 1 ay naging dominant na nga ang mga ito,” the senator added.
(Back in October, we already knew there were variants from other countries and when January came, they already became dominant.)
Hontiveros likewise reiterated her call to implement a new round of cash aid for those unable to work, and enhance the support to key sectors, including public employment programs for job creation.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque earlier announced that the NCR plus (Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal) will be placed under ECQ from March 29 to April 4 amid increasing number of COVID-19 cases. Liezelle Soriano Roy, trainee
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