The House Minority bloc has opposed the proposed lockdown of the National Capital Region (NCR) to prevent the spread of coronavirus or COVID-19, saying it would bring more harm than good.
House Minority Leader Benny Abante of Manila and his deputies, Janette Garin of Iloilo and Stella Quimbo of Marikina issued the response following the proposal made by their colleague, Albay Representative Joey Salceda.
“Mahirap ang lockdown because NCR is the center of our economy. Ang dapat na nila-lockdown iyong mga POGO and prostitution dens,” Abante told reporters, referring to the increased crime incidents linked to the Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators.
Garin and Quimbo, for their part, said that the lockdown should be followed by clear policies to aid the affected communities and the local economy.
“Dapat maging maliwanag muna ano ba dapat ang mag-trigger ng lockdown. There should be a sustained human-to-human transmission that could not be linked. From my experience, mas mabagal po sa atin kumalat ang virus because of our geographical location. Hindi pa po panahon para sa lockdown,” Garin, a former Health Secretary and a medical doctor, pointed out.
“At tandaan po natin, wala pa pong gamot para sa COVID-19. Wala pa pong solusyon. Kung mag-lalockdown tapos hindi mo naman alam kung anong gagawin, tapos isa’t kalahating taon na temporary lockdon, paano na? What we need to do is to take care of the sick,” Garin added.
Garin also cited that while a lockdown was implemented in Hubei province in China which is the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Philippines could not resort to the same measure because it does not have enough resources like China to subsidize the needs of the workforce and the communities which will be affected by the lockdown.
“Hindi natin kaya ang ganyang kalaking subsidy,” Garin added. —LDF, GMA News