DOLE chief Bello tests positive for COVID-19

Published August 17, 2021, 2:27 PM

by Ellson Quismorio

Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III has tested positive for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), a statement from the department bared Tuesday afternoon, Aug. 17.

(Photo from DOLE Facebook page)

However, Bello, 77, was said to be “asymphomatic and remains on top of his health”. He is fully vaccinated against the disease.

According to DOLE, Bello is on self-quarantine in his hometown of Ilagan in Isabela where the COVID test was carried out on him Saturday. “Even while in isolation, the Secretary continues to discharge his functions,” it said.

“Prior to contracting the virus, the secretary has been receiving officials and guests at his office, and traveled to various parts of the country distributing assistance to displaced and disadvantaged formal and informal sector workers affected by the pandemic,” the agency said.

“The secretary wishes to thank the public for their prayers, and expresses hopes to resume leading DOLE officials in the distribution of assistance funds under its Serbisyong TUPAD as soon as his quarantine period is over,” it added.

TUPAD, which stands for Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers, is one of the programs that DOLE tweaked in order to provide assistance to Filipinos affected by the pandemic.