By MAYOR ISKO MORENO
Mayor Isko Moreno
I join the ranks of law enforcers and barangay officers who are now up to their necks in exasperation and desperation at how hard-headed, or bullheaded even, some Filipinos can really, really be. It’s just so frustrating.
In the wake of the enhanced community quarantine and social distancing ordered by no less than President Rodrigo Duterte, some continue to loiter around, even engaging in definitely non-essential activities like gambling, drinking, playing basketball or even holding parties like there is no COVID 19 claiming the lives of people here and around the world. Needless to say, they do these things of course in total disregard of all other rules relative to the home quarantine orders and curfew being enforced nationwide.
Just like in every part of the country, Manila, admittedly, also has its own share of ‘pasaway.’ I am appalled at how some can still be rounded up for gambling and drinking in a public place for instance and even beyond the designated curfew hours and in the absence of a quarantine pass at that.
I am at a loss for the right words to describe the frustration this causes us, local and national officials who cannot sleep thinking of ways to prevent community transmission of the dreaded virus and most specially the health workers who risk their very own lives attending to COVID 19 patients just so the rest of us, including the ‘pasaways,’ may live.
At the rate the number of COVID19 positive patients increase on a daily basis, not to mention the recent deaths even in the ranks of our health sector, there is really reason to fear, specially since the enemy we are fighting cannot be seen.
I hate to sound like an alarmist but extreme situations do require extreme measures.
In this light, I would like to inform Manilans that as of March 26, the number of COVID 19 patients in the city has reached 36, four being the latest addition. Of the number, 11 are from Sampaloc where, based on information reaching him, people continue to loiter around with some even drinking on the streets and beyond curfew hours.
And then, unfortunately, we have a total of 144 persons under investigation or PUIs. Of this number, 30 percent are from the first and second districts of Tondo.
To date, mass testing is yet to be carried out and the cure for the virus is yet to be finally found and would still require human testing once discovered.
What is even more fearful is that fact that anyone could already be a carrier of the COVID 19 virus without knowing it as in the case of at least two lawmakers who said they have been rigidly taking all the precautions needed to avoid getting the virus and yet got it just the same.
This is because not all coronavirus carriers necessarily manifest any of the known symptoms like fever, cough or colds, among others. As such, they carry out their daily routine normally, unaware that they are already infecting others and at no fault of theirs, since, as I said, they do not have any symptom at all.
Those who were unknowingly infected, on the other hand, may also not manifest symptoms and thus transmit the virus to others. And so on and so forth.
I would like to reiterate my repeated calls for everyone to please, heed the national government’s orders for all to strictly follow the enhanced community quarantine, if we all want to outlive the coronavirus. This is for our own good. If you don’t care about your own good, at least do it for the welfare of your loved ones who are also not immune to contracting the said virus.
Let us take the orders seriously because as we all know by now since it’s all over the news, the coronavirus knows no race or borders. Anyone can have it –rich or poor, young or old, popular or not.
Even leaders of rich countries are not spared and their governments are also overwhelmed by how the virus has paralyzed the world. Even doctors and health workers die from this virus.
Do not make things more difficult for local and national officials and all frontliners than they already are. Time is of the essence and we don’t want to waste it on running after violators.
If you cannot be of help to your society and country, at least do not be a burden. Please.
Walang magmamalasakit sa Maynila kundi tayo ding mga Batang Maynila. Manila, God first!
For updates on latest developments in the city of Manila, please visit my Facebook account— ‘Isko Moreno Domagoso.’
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