PH's low COVID-19 resilience reflects poor governance — Robredo

Published July 4, 2021, 12:23 PM

by Raymund Antonio

Vice President Leni Robredo told the government to stop questioning the latest Bloomberg Resilience Ranking that ranked the Philippines 52nd out of 53 countries in the “worst places to be as the world finally reopens,” noting that its non-competitiveness caused such low ranking.

(Vice President Leni Robredo/Facebook)

“Iyong problema sa atin kasi sobrang satisfied na tayo sa ginagawa natin. Kaya hindi tayo nag-e-exert ng effort para humusay. Para sa atin, ang husay na natin. May problema talaga (The problem with us is we’re satisfied with what we are doing. We are not exerting effort to be better. For us, we’re so good. There’s really a problem),” Robredo said during her Sunday radio show.

“Kasi kung competitive tayo, ayaw natin maunahan tayo. Dapat dito sa Southeast Asia kami iyong pinakamahusay, wala tayong ganun eh. Kasi para sa atin, kuntento na tayo lagi sa ginagawa natin (Because if we are competitive, we won’t like that someone else is ahead of us. It should be that here in Southeast Asia, we are the best, we don’t have that. Because for us, we are contended with what we’re doing),” she added.

Released on June 28, the Bloomberg COVID-19 Resilience Ranking ranked the Philippines 52nd out of 53 countries, with a score of only 45.3. The country bested only Argentina with a score of 37.

Ranking first is the United States with a score of 76, followed by New Zealand (73.7), Switzerland (72.9), Israel (72.9), France (72.8), and Spain (72).

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III expressed displeasure over the country’s low ranking, adding that it was unfair for the Philippines since the parameters used by the media company are “skewed” to favor a high vaccination rate.

He admitted that the country does not have enough vaccine supply yet because rich countries secured the bulk of the available vaccines in the market.

READ: Palace remains confident of PH recovery from COVID-19

The vice president said the government should stop questioning the study even as Duque said they may write Bloomberg to question the parameters.

“Dapat kapag nakakatanggap tayo ng mga study na ganito, mag-assess. Saan ba iyong problema natin? Ako ba iyong kulang sa atin? (When we receive this kind of study, we should assess. Where is the problem? Am I the one lacking?),” she added.

The opposition leader admitted that there is a problem with the vaccine supply in the country, but that the government cannot fault Bloomberg for considering vaccination as one of its parameters.

“Kung nakita mo iyong mga nauna, hindi na naman lahat iyon first world na mga bansa. In fact, marami iyong bansa sa Asia na unang-una sa atin doon sa ranking (If you saw who were ranked before us, those are not all first-world countries. In fact, there are a lot of countries in Asia that ranked above us),” Robredo said.

South Korea ranked 10th with a score of 68.6, Singapore at 13th with a score of 67, Thailand at 39th with a score of 54.1, Indonesia at 49th with a score of 48.2, and Malaysia at 51st with a score of 46.6.

Even conflict-torn Iraq was ranked higher than the Philippines. It is ranked 37th with a score of 54.6.

“Syempre isasali iyon sa basis kasi iyon naman talaga iyong parang measure kung how soon ka makakabukas ng ekonomiya, di ba (Of course, that will be part of the basis because that’s really the measure how soon the economy can reopen, right),” Robredo said.

She suggested that instead of questioning the Bloomberg study, the government should create programs for the families who lost livelihoods, as well as for the small business owners who needed to close because of the pandemic.