Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday addressed the nation to call on the government to prioritize the needs of the healthcare workers anew amid the continued rise of COVID-19 cases in the country.
This was her same message during her last address last July 30, which was days after President Rodrigo Duterte’s more than an hour Fifth State of the Nation Address on July 27.
For some, Duterte’s penultimate speech failed to provide the much-needed health-oriented solutions to help solve the worsening health crisis in the country.
Robredo also shared this live stream on her official social media accounts on the day that Duterte was scheduled to give his weekly national address about the government’s COVID-19 response.
[A] NOW HAPPENING: Vice President Leni Robredo addresses the nation. Watch it here: https://t.co/o8av2Rjqv6
— Leni Robredo (@lenirobredo) August 24, 2020
Focus on medical front liners, needs of Filipinos
In her 20-minute report and recommendations on the national economy and message for leadership and unity, Robredo stressed the importance of addressing the public health crisis first.
The country’s total number of COVID-19 cases is now at 194,252. Of these, 59,200 are active cases and 132,042 are recoveries and 3,010 are deaths.
“Ang paglalatag ng masinsin, mabilis, at malinaw na mga hakbang para tugunan ang pandemya. Idinidiin ko: Hindi magkatunggali ang mga suliranin ng kalusugan at ekonomiya. Address the pandemic, and we set in motion the gears of the economy,” she said.
She also reiterated the importance of providing the needs of medical front liners and improving the country’s health care system.
“Ibayong tulong at pagpapahalaga sa medical frontliners, pati na sa mga ospital; at ang pagpapatibay ng pambansang healthcare system,” Robredo said.
“Efficient at mabilis na pagkalap ng datos, at ang pagdedesisyon batay sa datos na ito. Malawakan, mabisa, at agarang turnover ng mga COVID-19 test—sapat para makatulong sa pagbaba ng pinakahuli nating positivity rate na 10.5 percent, na malayo sa less than five percent na itinakdang standard ng World Health Organization,” she added.
Robredo also provided feasible steps in contact tracing such as standardized use of efficient apps among local government units, utilization of the cash-for-work programs for contact tracers, empowerment of online businesses of medical supplies and launch of comprehensive programs to help other small and medium business owners.
She also tackled anew the consistent delays in providing financial assistance to Filipinos who have lost their livelihood due to the economic crisis and the earlier tough lockdown measures.
She also laid out suggestions anew on how to revive the economy which just entered into one of the worst recessions in the country’s history. These include prioritizing the agriculture sector and improving the Philippines’ digital infrastructure.
Message of hope
For the vice president, the main problem of the national government is complacency and lack of empathy for the needs of its constituents which therefore left the public feeling abandoned by their leaders and hopeless amid the ongoing health crisis.
Robredo hoped for the government to cooperate, empathize and listen to the needs of Filipinos to overcome the pandemic.
She ended her speech with another hopeful remark.
“Buo ang loob ko. Sa pananalig, sa paninindigan, at higit sa lahat, sa pagkakaisa, madadaig natin ang krisis na ito. Tiwala ako: kaya natin ito,” Robredo said.
As of writing, Robredo’s video message on Facebook earned more than 26,000 reactions after, wherein 13,000 were heart reacts and 8,300 were likes.
Her statements were also well-received on Twitter as the names “VP Leni” and “Leni Robredo” immediately trended on the micro-blogging platform.
“This is the clarity, sobriety, and empathy in leadership that we deserve,” one user said.
“Akalain mo, pwede pala mag address the nation na primetime, you know, kung kailang gising pa ang mga taumbayan at nakatutok sa telebisyon nila habang naghahapunan,” another user said.