News Release

President Duterte: ‘Gov’t did its best to fight coronavirus’

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 Arcadia Active Lifestyle Center in Davao City on September 21, 2020. ALBERTO ALCAIN/ PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

The government has done a good job combating the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), President Rodrigo Roa Duterte said on Monday, as he lashed out at his political opponents saying they haven’t contributed anything helpful by criticizing.

His political adversaries, the President said, have been muddying the issue, trying to paint a gloomy picture of government’s response against the pandemic.

“They are trying to delude people about — they are trying to picture that there is a failure of government. We have done our best. We have responded to the medical needs of the… Hirap na nga at a very high cost of human effort kay Secretary Duque with all the — mga atake,” he said during his televised address to the nation.

“Huwag na ninyong palakihin ang problema. Do not add something to the pandemic by making such reckless statements that we are not doing enough. Ginagawa na ni Secretary Duque ‘yung… Halos na nga hindi na kumakain, hindi na — hindi na natutulog sa trabaho. So huwag ninyo masyadong pasobrahan.”

The government is working to slow down the spread of the virus as it waits for a vaccine, which may be available early next year, according to the President. He asked for public patience until an effective inoculation becomes available.

“We are surviving and we are only waiting for the vaccine. Iyon lang man talaga ang ano ko. When you talk COVID, what about COVID? It’s vaccine. Wala tayong pag-usapan diyan na… Unless the vaccine is there available and effective, the efficacy is proven, then we can really say that we are moving as far as we are…” he said.

At the same time, President Duterte appealed to the public to continue observing strict health protocols to stop the spread of COVID-19 such as wearing mask and face shield.

He also assured everyone that the government will raise the necessary fund to purchase vaccines for mass immunization.

“Sumunod lang muna kayo tutal malapit na. ‘Pag nandiyan na ‘yung vaccine, mag-utang ako. Utangin ko kung wala tayong pera, and as I said, we follow the program laid down by the IATF na ‘yung mga tao na mauna,” he said. PND