Heads must roll in the Philippine National Police for the deployment of 51 COVID-19 afflicted police officers for crowd control duties at a feared “virus super-spreader event like the protest rally during the State of the Nation Address in Quezon City.
“It’s almost like biological warfare against protesters eh,” declared Bayan Muna Rep. Ferdinand Gaite in a press statement released on Thursday, July 29.
Gaite demanded the imposition of disciplinary sanctions against PNP officials who were responsible in endangering the safety of demonstrators by fielding QC policemen found positive for COVID 19.
“Not only did they block the march, they blocked it with virus-carrying cops,” Gaite said.
In a press conference, Director PBGen. Antonio Yarra, Quezon City Police District commander, confirmed that out of the 82 QC policemen who tested positive for COVID 19, 51 were deployed at the SONA rally near the Batasan Pambansa complex.
QC Mayor Joy Belmonte disclosed that the police officers underwent swab tests three days prior to the SONA.
“Sa kagustuhan ng pamahalaang ito na hadlangan ang pag-exercise ng mamamayan sa kanilang kalayaan na mag-protesta at singilin ang pamahalaan, kahit mga dapat ay naka-isolate na infected policemen ay idineploy nila (In government’s bid to stop citizens from exercising their rights to protest and air their demands to the government, infected policemen who were supposed to be isolated were deployed),” said Gaite.
The opposition lawmaker noted that while government continues to warn citizens against joining protest actions, it also violates safety protocols against COVID-19 that it imposed..
“They should have been isolated pending results of their tests pero dineploy nila para maghasik ng infection (but they were deployed to sow infection). said the Makabayan solon.