Leni: Controlling, mitigating effects of COVID-19 is #1 priority in my platform of governance
Presidential candidate Vice President Leni Robredo said Friday (Oct. 29) that controlling and mitigating the effects of the pandemic is the number one priority in her platform of governance, stressing that the country should start moving forward despite COVID-19 and ensure that the people’s new normal “will be better than the previous normal”.
“Ang unang dapat tutukan natin, iyong pagsugpo ng pandemic. Yung pag-sigurado na iyong bansa natin, magmumove forward tayo despite COVID-19… ‘pag ako pinalad, ‘yun ‘yung una ko’ng gagawin: siguraduhin na makabukas na tayo, makabalik na tayo sa normal. Siguraduhin na yung magiging bagong normal natin, better than the previous normal,” Robredo said in a press conference in Sorsogon.
Robredo stressed the importance of being able to control the transmission of COVID-19.
“Hindi siguro mazi-zero yung transmission dahil we need to live with it, pero yung sa akin, we did such a terrible [job] in the last one and a half years, na kahapon lang lumabas ulit yung Bloomberg na ranking – pinakahuli ulit tayo,” she said, referring to the Bloomberg Covid Resiliency Ranking that described the Philippines anew as the worst place to be in during the pandemic among 53 economies tracked despite the downtrend in COVID-19 cases in the country.
Robredo said the country will not be able to re-open and build back better if the government keeps on imposing lockdowns whenever COVID-19 cases surge, putting everyone on a “rollercoaster” where the country’s pandemic situation alternately improves and deteriorates.
Robredo said that the vaccination for a greater part of the population is a necessary first step towards the re-opening of the economy. There is an immediate need to re-open schools, strengthen the healthcare system, and make regions like calamity-prone Bicol more resilient against climate change, she added.
She emphasized the need to have enough funds for the recovery of sectors that have suffered tremendously during the pandemic. These include the micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), considered the backbone of the country’s economy.
“I have said this many times over already na pinu-push ko na yung mga MSMEs natin mabigyan sila ng conditional grants na makatulong sa employment. Gusto ko sabihin na yung mga maliliit na negosyo na either nagsara, nahihirapan ngayon, dapat tulungan yun ng pamahalaan kasi yung unemployment natin ang taas-taas ngayon,” Robredo said. (end)