Robredo seeks 'more compassionate' COVID-19 lockdown policies

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 27 2020 02:09 PM

Police and military personnel man the streets of Sampaloc Manila, a few hours before the “hard lockdown” of the district on April 23, 2020. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday said she hoped law enforcers could be "more compassionate" as they keep watch over millions of residents locked down in their homes to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

"Mayroon din talagang matitigas ang ulo at tingin natin kailangan isktrikto ang enforcement pero sana, hindi siya humahantong sa karahasan," Robredo told CNN Philippines. 

(There are some hardheaded ppeople and we think enforcement should be strict. However, I wish that it will not lead to violence.) 

"Dapat maging mas compassionate, dapat may flexibility iyong lahat... Ako, nag-a-agree na iyong enforcement kailangan maayos, pero sana naman hindi ito humantong sa karahasan," she added. 

(It should be more compassionate, everyone should have flexibility. I agree that enforcement should be smooth, but it shouldn't end up in violence.) 

Police last week shot dead a former soldier who had post-traumatic stress disorder for alleged violation of lockdown measures in Quezon City. 

Some police officers also face investigation for alleged trespassing into a condominium compound in Taguig, where they supposedly shouted at residents who were practicing physical distancing. 

"Kailangan naiintindihan ng tao bakit ba kailangan natin itong gawin (lockdown). Kailangan inaaasikaso natin iyong pangangailangan nila para hindi sila nagpupumilit," said the Vice President. 

(The public should understand why we have a lockdown. We need to take care of their needs so they won't disobey.) 

Some 50 million people in Luzon are on home quarantine in Luzon until April 30 to stop the spread of COVID-19. President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday extended the lockdown in some areas, including Metro Manila, until May 15. 

The lockdown extension should be used to beef up healthcare facilities, said Robredo. 

"Tingin natin kailangan talagang i-extend doon sa mga areas na napakataas pa rin ng risk," the Vice President said. 

"Mahirap siyang desisyon kasi kailangan mong ibabalanse lagi sa ekonomiya. Malaki iyong tama sa mga ordinaryong mamamayan, pero kailangan gawin," she added. 

(We think the lockdown should be extended in areas where the risk is still very high. It's a difficult decision because you always have to balance it with the economy. The impact on ordinary citizens is big. But it is necessary.)