Pacquiao, Roque events had ‘obvious lapses’ in observance of quarantine protocols —Año

Published December 10, 2020, 5:21 PM

by Chito Chavez

Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año admitted Thursday, Dec. 10, that there were “obvious lapses” in the implementation of quarantine protocols where huge crowds were present during the recent separate events attended by Senator Manny Pacquiao and presidential spokesperson Harry Roque.

In an interview over CNN Philippines, Año said the local government units (LGUs) should have prepared for such events where the people should n have been allowed to violate health and safety protocols.

If quarantine protocols are violated, Año stressed that the event should be stopped right at that time.

However, Año noted that he has yet to receive the final report of the Philippine National Police (PNP) probe with regards to the events attended by Pacquiao and Roque.

Roque was criticized on social media after photos of him attending an event in Cebu, with a large crowd ignoring physical distancing measures, surfaced.

Pacquiao, meanwhile, was chided for addressing a crowd in Batangas where physical distancing was also allegedly violated.

The DILG discouraged public officials from attending gatherings where social distancing is disregarded, stressing that it is better for them to reject requests to be guest speakers and instead be role models.

With the country having one of the world’s longest Christmas Season celebrations, Año feared a spike of COVID-19 cases.

Despite measures being undertaken by authorities, like the prohibitions on traditional carolling, parties, and karaoke singing in public, Año said that stubborn individuals continue to ignore these and violate quarantine protocols.

The DILG chief also noted that there is already a traffic build-up several weeks before Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.