‘Do not engage in panic buying,’ says Roque; ‘high’ level of basic goods stocks assured

Published August 3, 2020, 4:25 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

There is no reason to engage in panic buying of basic goods during the modified enhancement community quarantine (MECQ) in Metro Manila and nearby provinces in the next two weeks, Malacañang said Monday.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque Jr.

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque assured the public about the adequate stocks of food and other items in supermarkets during the community quarantine period. 

He explained that the revival of MECQ status in the capital region and four provinces was aimed to meet the appeal of health frontliners for a timeout to ease the strain of the coronavirus pandemic on the healthcare system.

“Mga kababayan walang dahilan para tayo ay mag panic buying. Unang-una ang ang pagsara natin muli ito’y katugunan natin doon sa kahilingan ng ating mga frontliners na kinakailangan lang nila ng break. Ibig sabihin wala talaga tayong plano mag lockdown. Ang ating supply ay napakataas (To our countrymen, there is no reason to engage in panic buying. First, the lockdown is meant to respond to the appeal of our frontliners to take a break. It means we had no plan to impose a lockdown. Our supply is real high),” Roque said during a televised press briefing Monday.

“Huwag kayong mag-alala. Handa ang ating mga supermarkets at mga ibang nagbebenta para sa mas malaking demand. Hinay-hinay lang po  (Do not worry.  Our supermarkets and other retailers are ready for the higher demand. Let us slow down) No need to panic,” he said.

The President has approved the Cabinet’s recommendation to bring back Metro Manila, Bulacan, Laguna, Rizal and Cavite under MECQ status from August 4 to 18 to limit the spread of the coronavirus infections.  The MECQ lockdown includes home quarantine except for essential work and other activities, limited business operations, suspension of public transportation, ban on domestic travel, and restriction on certain mass gatherings.

“This is primarily to accede to the demand of the frontliners for a break, for a timeout at pagsasamantalahan lang ng gobyerno yung timeout para mas mapaigting ang ating tracing, testing at treatment (the government will use the timeout to strengthen tracing, testing and treatment),” Roque said.