By Noreen Jazul
The Philippines has the highest number of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases in the Southeast Asian region, according to the tally of US-based John Hopkins University.
With a total of 5,223 reported cases, the Philippines stands as the Southeast Asian country with the most number of COVID-19 cases, followed by Malaysia with 4,987 cases, and Indonesia with 4,839 cases.
Singapore and Thailand were also among countries in Southeast Asia with the least number of COVID-19 cases with 3,252, and 2,613, respectively.
In terms of the number of deaths, the Philippines comes second with 335, behind Indonesia with 459.
The lowest recorded number of cases in Southeast Asia is in Timor Leste with six cases and zero deaths. Other SEA countries with zero reported deaths are Vietnam and Cambodia.
Meanwhile, Malaysia has recorded the most number of recovered cases at 2,478, followed by Thailand (1,405), Singapore (611), Indonesia (426), and the Philippines (295).
Leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) recently held an online meeting on the COVID-19 situation in the region.
During the videoconference, Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc urged Southeast Asian leaders to set up an emergency fund to tackle the pandemic.
President Duterte, for his part, called for closer collaboration and solidarity within and beyond the SEA region to overcome the coronavirus pandemic.
“We are in the middle of an unfolding catastrophe – unprecedented in scale and devastating in impact for all. We face a new and different kind of enemy. In the most visceral way, COVID-19 is upending the totality of our way of life. And this virus threatens to exact the highest tolls – on our peoples and our economies,” Duterte said during the virtual special ASEAN summit on COVID-19 Tuesday. (With a report from Genalyn Kabiling, and AFP)