Senator Leila de Lima on Wednesday said that President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration should be held accountable for the thousands of Filipinos who succumbed to COVID-19 due to the government’s botched COVID-19 response.
In a statement, De Lima demanded justice for over 13,000 deaths related to COVID-19 saying that these are more than just numbers but real lives that suffered due to government’s negligence.
“Nakakakilabot mabasa ang iba’t ibang kuwento ng mga kababayan nating hindi man lang nabigyan ng angkop na lunas dahil puno na ang mga ospital. Hindi sila basta numero. Totoong tao, totoong buhay, totoong pamilyang naulila at nagdurusa. At bawat araw, parami nang parami rin ang mga mahal sa buhay nating tinatamaan ng virus, at nalalagay sa peligro ang buhay,” she said in her Dispatch from Camp Crame.
“We ought to seek justice for all the Filipino lives lost due to this administration’s deplorable incompetence, negligence and botched pandemic response… We deserve better! The day of reckoning will come. Justice will be served. Panagutin ang mga palpak at pabaya sa tungkulin,” she furthered.
The lawmaker lamented that thousands of Filipinos will be saved had the those people in position to stop the pandemic only acted swiftly and addressed the health crisis better instead of focusing in maintaining friendly ties with China.
She also hit the Duterte’s militaristic approach to pandemic.
“Nakalulungkot isipin na maraming buhay sana ang nailigtas kung naging mabilis at maagap ang pagtugon sa pandemya, kung nakinig tayo sa mga totoong eksperto at ipinairal ang solusyong medikal hindi militar,” she said.
She also took a swipe on the government’s rhetoric of blaming the new strains of the virus, lack of discipline, and the rich countries’ ability to obtain the vaccines on why COVID-19 cases are still on the rise.
“As usual, sa iba ibinunton ang sisi: Kasalanan ng lahat maliban sa gobyerno,” De Lima quipped.
“Remind us again who decided to open up the economy without an effective testing, tracing and treatment system in place? Or who ‘dropped the ball’ in the vaccine negotiations? Or who downplayed the threat of the virus way back in February last year?” she added.
The lawmaker also called Duterte government ‘delusional and unfit to hold office’ for insisting that they did an excellent job in handling the pandemic.
“Mahigit isang taon na tayong nagdurusa sa pandemya pero ang tanging solusyon ng gobyerno ay LOCKDOWN. Walang katapusang lockdown.
De Lima added that a year into the pandemic, the government had nothing to show aside from a crumbling economy and a healthcare system on the brink of total collapse.
“We’re worse off than where we were a year ago,” she said. (RA)