Experts slam Duterte admin's militaristic approach against COVID-19 response

Experts slam Duterte admin's militaristic approach against COVID-19 response

A professor from the University of the Philippines said the coronavirus situation in the county could have been managed more efficiently and orderly if the government had tapped at the first get go the public health experts.
Dr. Gene Nisperos of the UP College of Medicine said during a virual forum that “the pandemic was framed in a discipline narrative.”

He pointed out that instead of considering it on a public health approach, the government ended up berating citizens who were “pasaway” or disobedient, accusing the people of being at fault for the spread of the virus.

(photo credit to owner)

“Itong nangyari kahit yung quarantine, which is a public health measure naging very militaristic (What happened with the quarantine, which was supposed to be a public health measure, is that it became militaristic),” he said. “The tendency of those implementing the quarantine is to punish.”
Dr. Nisperos gave as an example the shooting of a discharged Marawi veteran suffering from a mental illness in Quezon city and the inhumane punishment of some quarantine violators.
“Human rights are totally violated,” he said.

Military men in the IATF

IBON Foundation executive director Sonny Africa,points out the mismatch with respect to the country’s response team to the COVID-19 are mostly headed by retired military generals.

He named dropped the following: National Task Force (NTF) Chief Implementor Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., NTF Chairperson and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año and Social Welfare Secretary Rolando Bautista. 
He said the inefficiency of meeting the problems brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic “actually falls on their laps.”

“Siguro pwedeng i-attribute yung ating problema sa health response sa isang public health emergency is the fact na walang expertise yung mga military officials natin,” he said.
(Perhaps we can attribute the problem of our response to a public health emergency to the fact that our military officials do not have the expertise needed.)
“At the same time, very worrying din ung ang ating Health Secretary ay hindi kaya mag-assert ng maayos doon (Inter-Agency Task Force) at ang mas umiiral na boses ay economic managers. It makes sense kung bakit ganito ang health response natin, even ang economic response,” Africa said.

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Report from ABS-CBN News

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