By Ben Rosario
A senior administration lawmaker Saturday appealed to mall and other commercial establishment operators to grant a rental holiday or cuts to tenants who are facing severe sales losses due to the one-month implementation of the community quarantine.
San Jose del Monte Rep. Florida Robes made the appeal even as Quezon City Rep. Alfred Vargas lauded members of the media for risking their own safety in order to deliver news of recent developments regarding the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) situation in the country.
“Along with the sacrifice of health workers, media reporters and researchers are risking their lives as well. With just one tap on our devices, we get access to information online, or via radio and television,” Vargas said. “We then learn how to react and take proper steps to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe and healthy.”
Robes aired her call for mall rental discounts even as government, through the Metro Manila Development Authority, decided to impose curfew hours running from 8 a.m. to 5 a.m. all over the national capital region. The implementation of the curfew, however, still depends on ordinances to be passed by local government units within the region.
Robes said sales and service earnings in many businesses will suffer further as a result of the curfew hours.
“Many businesses in the retail industry are experiencing a slowdown and even losses. Many of them are small businessmen. Many workers also rely on these establishments and many of them are in danger of losing their jobs because of the slowdown,” Robes said.
Meanwhile, Robes disclosed that San Jose Del Monte (SJDM) has recorded its first COVID-19 positive patient.
The 58-year old patient who has no travel history is said to be in a stable condition in a hospital in Caloocan City.
The city of SJDM has started the deployment of more than 800 city and barangay health personnel for a massive monitoring and information campaign to curb the spread of the virus in the city.