Hence, law enforcement authorities may not be legally equipped to conduct arrest unless local ordinances are available for its enforcement.
For its part, Congress may need to amend R.A. 9271 to adapt to this new normal, the COVID-19, and God knows what else would come to hit us in the future. Hopefully we’ve seen the last of its kind even as we pray that cure will come sooner than soon.
Having said that, the people are enjoined to fully cooperate. After all, these are extraordinary times that call for extraordinary measures.
The Metro Manila “lockdown,” “community quarantine,” or whatever the authorities may call it, is one decisive action taken by the government that needs the support of our people, no matter the sacrifices or inconvenience it brings.
But then again, government must lose no time in coming up with practical but effective ways of implementing it to serve its real purpose for our country to survive this unprecedented crisis that we are facing.
For its part, the Department of Health’s Inter-Agency Task Force (DOH-IATF) should issue clear, simple and concise guidelines on dealing with COVID-19 to prevent confusion among the public, as so many doctors and medical experts have been expressing different opinions on it, particularly on its transmission.
There is every reason to be concerned as far as the Senate, since an invited resource person who has been tested positive for COVID-19 had not only entered the Senate premises, but even interacted with at least two senators and their staff.
In my case, since I shared the elevator with Sen. Gatchalian yesterday afternoon on our way to the session hall, I am taking precaution by doing self-quarantine while waiting for the result of his test. If he tests positive, I will have to undergo the test myself.
We agreed to disinfect the Senate starting today. I would encourage my fellow senators who may have interacted with our two colleagues, Senators Binay and Gatchalian, to follow their lead and do self-quarantine for two weeks as well, not only for our sake but for others.
In an interview on DWIZ, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– lifting of travel ban on Taiwan
– issues involving P/Lt. Col. Jovie Espenido
– possible actions after VFA abrogation
– franchise of ABS-CBN
Just like the termination of the Visiting Forces Agreement, the Philippine government’s travel ban to Taiwan is a policy decision implemented by the executive department which may not necessarily be correct, health-wise and politically.
Politically, it seems that the China lobby has become a very powerful force under this administration. Only time will tell if this major shift in the country’s foreign policy will benefit our people in the medium and long term – even as in the immediate term, the travel ban may already have potentially dire consequences for our Filipino workers there.
We elected a President who does not appear to give much importance to counsels and consultations with sectors that could very well help him arrive at well-informed decisions. While I do not question his sincerity in trying to solve the problems besetting our country since the time the millennials of the world were not even born, I still hope he can leave his own legacy worth remembering.
Having said that, I continue to support his leadership but I will not stop calling him out on major decisions which I don’t think serve the best interest of our country and people.
At the Senate hearing on the 2019-nCoV situation, Sen. Lacson emphasized the principle of unity of command in addressing the problem, with the Department of Health taking charge because “this is a health issue.”