Press Release
March 12, 2020

Senator Risa Hontiveros on the Imposition of Community Quarantine in Metro Manila due to COVID-19

Tama na ang pagiging magulo. The people have the right to a coherent government.

The Filipino people have been expecting a cohesive plan from our leaders. They deserve and need the government to exercise competent leadership in order to shepherd us out of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, the government should strive to express clear communication of its policies and guidelines surrounding the containment of this pandemic.

There is a lot to clarify. I urge the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases to immediately release specific guidelines and parameters of the community quarantine being imposed in Metro Manila, especially its effects on the daily lives of Filipinos and of those who work within the metro but reside elsewhere. Our public health and local government authorities must be at the helm of this community quarantine, subject to proper parameters and regular review, in order to guide and assure the worried public.

At the same time, we must not forget those who are most vulnerable and who have the least among us: the daily wage-earning poor and the loss of jobs that is already following in the wake of this pandemic.

I call on the Department of Social Welfare and Development and our local government units to ensure sufficient food supply through local food banks. Dapat may pagkain sa bawat hapag-kainan. Likewise, I am urging the Department of Labor and Employment to facilitate immediate cashflow to families who will lose their livelihood in the same light due to COVID-19.

I have full trust in the capacity of our health professionals to carry out the necessary measures to contain the virus' transmission. I thank our frontline health workers who have been working tirelessly in the name of public health and safety. You are the real heroes and I am thankful for your service to our people. In this same line, the protection and welfare of health workers must be prioritized. They must have ample protective gear, compensation, and other forms of support in the conduct of their duties.

This pandemic is a test of our humanity and institutions. Getting our act together means life or death to many Filipinos. A difficult path to recovery lies ahead. But I have faith in the strength of our people; that as one nation we will overcome, as we Filipinos always have.

News Latest News Feed