Finance Sec. Carlos Dominguez III gave a briefer on the Philippines being No. 6 among 66 countries in the world rated for resiliency. Inflation is 2.2 percent which is within the 2-4 percent target. To revive the economy, Sec. Dominguez outlined the following economic policies:

  • Acceleration of the Build! Build! Build! program;
  • Hiring of contact tracers (to provide employment to many Filipinos who lost their jobs during the enhanced community quarantine);
  • Passage of Phase 2 of the government tax program before June 3;
  • Drive food production and logistics and support the whole value chain of food products.

Sec. Carlito Galvez, Jr., the chief implementer of the National Task Force (NTF) COVID-19, on the transition of areas presently under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) to general community quarantine (GCQ):

  • In the absence of a vaccine, all that can be done is to prevent, contain, and mitigate the coronavirus disease;
  • Philippines cannot endure ECQ for an extended period as its resources are very limited;
  • Easing quarantine restrictions should be carried out gradually and in a phased manner to prevent the resurgence of COVID-19;
  • Strong and resilient health system needs to be set up, like testing/tracing;
  • Consider WHO interim protocol on rapid operations to contain the initial emergence of pandemic influenza, specifically the zoning concept that can be effectively applied in the LGU barangay level;
  • Updated national action plan operational framework to prevent/contain the COVID-19. The plan is for the country to be COVID carrier-centric which means focusing intervention on the carriers to contain the virus;
  • Prevention prior to the detection phase, and the adoption of end-to-end T3 management system for COVID-19 carriers which means TEST, TRACE, AND TREAT;
  • The government should address the influx of returning OFWs and transport of locally stranded individuals. There is more or less 20,000 OFWs stranded in Metro Manila; continuously coming for this month is more or less 42,000.

President Rodrigo Duterte on allowing the movement of people, social distancing and others:

  • “It’s important that the “common tao” (knows) that he is… at present not allowed at yong iba allowed. It must appear to him very clear that … he belongs to this category and why he is allowed to work at ito namang iba (are) not allowed to mix with the outside world”
  • “No corruption allowed…kung may makalusot at mahuli ka, sorry ka na lang”
  • “We cannot afford a 2nd or 3rd wave na mangyari”
  • “Wearing a mask is a must”
  • “Social distancing, ito yong new life until such time na meron nang vaccine. Meron ng mga medicine, but no vaccine. Sundin na ninyo yan, importanteng masyado”
  • Orders soldiers and policemen to “kill” NPA members. “Kasi kung hindi niyo papatayin, papatayin talaga kayo”.
  • Offers P2M to anyone who can tip off where NPA commanders are hiding. “P2 million basta yong top commander, P1 million yong…”.


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has been with Palawan News since January 2019. She is its managing editor, overseeing and coordinating day-to-day editorial activities. Her writing interests are politics and governance, health, defense, investigative journalism, civic journalism, and the environment.