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Panelo says no one dies of hunger, even for a month

Malacañang on Sunday downplayed concerns of Metro Manila employees living outside the region, whose livelihoods might be affected by the implementation of the community quarantine.

In a radio interview, presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo pointed out that a month-long community quarantine will not be too difficult for workers, especially in putting food into their family's mouths.

"Walang namamatay sa gutom. Sa isang buwan hindi ka mamamatay," he said.

"Konting sakripisyo tayo,... [dahil] ikaw ay maaaring carrier [ng virus]," he added.

Concerns have been raised regarding the implementation of the community quarantine in Metro Manila, which restricts the movement of people going in and outside the region.

While non-essential travels are banned, workers would be allowed in and out of Metro Manila as long as they could show their company ID or any proof of employment.

Likewise, the movement of goods to and from Metro Manila would not be affected by the quarantine.

Despite this, Panelo said food packages have already been set for individuals whose access to food and other basic commodities will be affected by the community quarantine.

"Yung ating social department meron nang hinanda na mga packages. Daang-daang libo na nga ang naka-ready sa kanila na mga packed goods. Lagi tayong naka-ready," he said.

In the same interview, Panelo also praised the implementation of the community quarantine over Metro Manila.

Panelo downplayed criticisms that the community quarantine being implemented in Metro Manila is similar to a martial law, stressing the need to deploy military and police personnel to ensure peace and order in Metro Manila amid the threat of COVID-19. —Erwin Colcol/LBG, GMA News