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Use Cha-cha roadshow fund for COVID-19 prevention measures —Binay

Government funds for roadshows promoting federalism must be redirected to COVID-19 awareness programs during the pandemic, according to Senator Nancy Binay on Monday.

“Sayang po 'yung milyun-milyong budget ng DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government) at PCOO (Presidential Communications Operations Office) na ginagasta sa federalism roadshows na sana po ay sagot sa kumakalam na sikmura. Ang priority dapat ng gobyerno ngayon ay solusyon sa problema, 'di pirma sa cha-cha," Binay said in a statement.

Beefing up the risk communication plan should be prioritized by these agencies, the lawmaker stressed.

“May krisis 'di ba? Bakit cha-cha ang inuuna? Matagal na po nating sinasabi na we are at a crucial point where communication is vital in confronting a state of public health emergency,” she said.

“More than two months na puro presscon, pero wala pa ring flyers, primers, posters, infomercials na nagagawa ang PCOO o DILG para madaling intindihin ng mga tao ang protocols,” she added.

Binay also suggested that the “hefty” budget of the DILG for roadshows aimed at building up federalism in 81 provinces of the country could be used to boost contact the tracing capacities of local government units.

Further, she stressed the irony that while the DILG is busy in gathering two million signatures in support of the charter change, only over 200,000 individuals have undergone COVID-19 testing in the Philippines since February.

On Sunday, several senators thumbed down the reported directive of the DILG to its regional offices to continue strengthening the campaign and gather up to two million signatures over the next couple of months to support "constitutional reforms." —LDF, GMA News