Duterte says threat of COVID-19 continues; public warned against opposition’s posturing

Published September 15, 2020, 12:35 AM

by Argyll Cyrus Geducos

President Duterte urged the public not to believe the claims of critics about the supposed lapses in the government’s COVID-19 response efforts, saying the government has no business to lie to the people.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte talks to the people after holding a meeting with the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) core members at the Malago Clubhouse in Malacañang on September 14, 2020. ACE MORANDANTE/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

In his public address on Monday evening, Duterte, in particular, told the public to be wary of the opposition, particularly the “Dilawan,” who do nothing but “make noise”.

The President explained that the threat of COVID-19 is still in the country even though the Philippines has a fewer number of cases compared to other countries. To date, the Philippines has recorded 265,888 COVID-19 cases.

“Huwag ho sana kayong maniwala diyan sa mga dilawan, opposition na hampas dito, hampas doon kung anong pinagsasabi (Please do not believe the opposition who just keep on yakking),” he said.

“For as long as the virus lives on this planet, we are put in real danger. Kaya ho naman kung maniwala kayo (So if you will believe them) you get to be despondent… Huwag ho kayong maniwala. Dito lang (Believe only us),” he added.

According to Duterte, the government has no business to lie to the public about the situation.

“Kami dito lahat (All of us here)…  we are not here, we did not join government to lie. We do not have any obligation at all to lie,” the President said.

“Bakit kami magsinungaling na hindi namin trabaho ‘yan at hindi naman kami pumasok sa trabaho para ‘yan lang magsinungaling? Maski Grade 1, Grade 2 alam na namin kung ano ang pagmamahal sa bayan (Why would we lie? That is not our job. We did not come to work just to lie. Even as elementary students we know how to love our country),” he added.

“So I hope that everybody would listen to reason. Huwag ‘yang basta na lang maniwala ka na ganito, ganito (Don’t just believe everything you hear),” he continued.

The President, in particular, eased the public’s worry about the economy, saying the Philippines would really fall into recession because of the pandemic.

Malacañang said that the National Task Force COVID-19 is now on the second phase of its National Action Plan where it will balance health and the need to reopen the economy.