Some Kamuning residents experience discrimination amid COVID variant fears
MANILA - Some residents of Barangay Kamuning in Quezon City were allegedly not allowed to come to work after a resident tested positive for the new variant of COVID-19 after returning from Dubai, village chief Armida Castel said Friday.
"May ilang residente nag text po sa amin, sa akin personally, na may mga kasama sila na hindi po pinapasok muna dahil nga po doon sa naging balita,” Castel told TeleRadyo.
(Several residents texted us saying some of them were allegedly prohibited from going to work after news broke out.)
Castel said the residents did not elaborate the reason, but she believes this is connected to the news that one of their residents tested positive for the new coronavirus variant.
The Department of Health and the Philippine Genome Center confirmed Wednesday the detection of the B.1.1.7. SARS-CoV-2 variant (UK variant) in the country after samples from a Filipino who arrived from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on January 7 yielded positive genome sequencing results.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said the 29-year-old male patient is a resident of Barangay Kamuning who left for Dubai for business purposes last Dec. 27 and returned to the Philippines on Jan. 7 via Emirates Flight No. EK 332.
Mayor Joy Belmonte said in a press conference that the patient did not return to the barangay as he and his partner were immediately quarantined.
“Wag mangamba, 'yung pasyente na na-infect nito ay dinala sa facility, never po na ito ay pumunta sa kanilang bahay at wala pong na-expose na kamag-anak o sinoman sa ating mga kabarangay kaya wag po kayong mangamba,” she said.
(Don’t worry, the patient infected was brought to the facility and he never went back to their house and no relative nor neighbor were exposed, so don’t worry.)
The village chief warned that charges will be pursued against those violating the city’s existing ordinance on anti-discrimination.
“Kapag naramdaman nila na sila ay na-discriminate, pumunta po sila sa aming opisina para magawan ng solusyon ang problema. Maaari kaming gumawa ng sulat doon sa kanilang company at patuloy naman po ang coordination ko sa Quezon City government patungkol sa mga nangyayari,” she said.
(If they feel they are discriminated, please go to our office so we can find a solution to the program, We can write a letter to their company and we continue to coordinate with the Quezon City government regarding this issue.)