Saying 'hello' in a pandemic: Lawmaker pushes for 'Bating Pilipino' over common greetings

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 24 2020 07:11 AM | Updated as of Jun 24 2020 07:12 AM

Watch also in iWantTFC

MANILA - Marikina 1st District Rep. Bayani Fernando is pushing to replace common greetings that initiate physical contact with "Bating Pilipino," to help the public avoid coronavirus infections.

In the "Bating Pilipino" greeting, one places his or her hand on his or her chest, and bows to that person he or she is addressing with a verbal greeting.

Fernando told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo early Wednesday that this lessens a person's risk of contracting coronavirus, which one can get from handshakes or hugs.

"Tinanggap na ng siyensiya na 'yung bacteria, 'yun 'yung [nagpapakalat] ng sakit, ano. At ang pinakamabilis na pagkalat ng sakit, ay 'yung pagkakamayan na 'yan. 'Yung physical contact. 'Yan 'yung natutunan natin sa COVID," he said.

Fernando said he's been pushing for it long before the coronavirus pandemic, when he filed in Congress the "Act To Promote A New Pilipino Gesture Of Goodwill And Praise" in August 2019.