President Rodrigo Duterte said Sunday he could no longer give food and money for financial assistance to the poor as he again placed Metro Manila, Bulacan, Rizal, and Laguna under the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ).
“I’m sorry Manila, ngayon magsabi kayo i-lockdown mo na ang Manila, ang ibang lugar, kahit Philippines, para talagang mahawa—wala ka nang mahawaan, wala ka nang mahawa,” he said.
(I’m sorry Manila, you told me now to lock down Manila, other areas and even the Philippines so no one could get infected.)
“Problem is wala na tayong pera. I cannot give food anymore and money to people,” Duterte added.
(The problem is we don’t have money anymore. I cannot give food anymore and money to people.)
In the same televised briefing, Duterte said critiques should not compare the Philippines with other countries which he claimed have bigger savings.
“Unang una, wala nang makain. Iilan lang ang tao talaga na may savings for a rainy day, while our savings is just good for a drizzle,” he said.
(Firstly, there’s no food to eat. Only few have savings for the rainy day, while our savings is just good for a drizzle.)
“Ambon lang, ibang preparation an for a typhoon. Hindi tayo mayaman,” added Duterte.
(Just for a drizzle, a preparation for a typhoon is different. We are not rich.)
Duterte announced Sunday night that Metro Manila, Bulacan, Rizal, and Laguna would revert to modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) starting Monday, August 3.
The decision was made after medical health workers in the front lines pleaded to the President to give them at least a two-week break to “breathe” and recover from exhaustion due to surge of COVID-19 cases.
During ECQ and MECQ, the government was able to provide food and financial assistance to the people through the Social Amelioration Program (SAP), which were distributed twice.
The outstanding debt of the national government now swelled at P9.054 trillion as of end-June, as the country continues to increase borrowings for COVID-19 response and economic recovery, the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) data showed.