Lacson: Jinggoy's 'arrest' shouldn't deter volunteerism amid pandemic | Inquirer News
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Lacson: Jinggoy’s ‘arrest’ shouldn’t deter volunteerism amid pandemic

/ 07:48 AM May 04, 2020
Jinggoy Estrada

Former Sen. Jinggoy Estrada gives a statement to reporters outside the San Juan City Police Station on his being held for allegedly violating quarantine rules on Sunday, May 3, 2020. (Photo from a video on his Facebook page under the name CitiSen Jee)

MANILA, Philippines — The “arrest” of former Senator Jinggoy Estrada for allegedly violating quarantine rules when he distributed food to residents in San Juan City should not discourage volunteerism during the coronavirus crisis, Senator Panfilo Lacson said on Monday.

“I hope ex-Sen Estrada’s arrest will not discourage volunteerism during this time of crisis when Filipinos want to share whatever they can with those who direly need help. Regardless of the motive, help given still helps,” Lacson said.

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Police, however, said Estrada was only invited to the San Juan City police station for his supposed violations of enhanced community quarantine rules.

Local authorities said Estrada did not secure a mayor’s permit for the activity and that physical distancing was not observed during the distribution.

When he was at the police station, Estrada was made to explain his actions and was warned that its repeat will be “dealt with accordingly,” read a police report.

He was released in the evening.

Estrada said he was singled out and that politics might have been involved.

“In my own opinion, I never violated any law, especially to ECQ [enhanced community quarantine]. I don’t blame the police. They’re just doing their job. I do not have anything against them. This is local politics. The current administration of San Juan does not want us to help.” he said, referring to San Juan Mayor Francis Zamora, who defeated Estrada’s daughter in the 2019 mayoral race.

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“People are hungry, have no work, He should understand that. What he’s asking me again is for a permit,” he added, speaking partly in Filipino.

“There are a lot of civic organizations, non-government organizations, private citizens, civilians like me who are distributing or donating relief goods here in the city of San Juan without any permit. Why are they singling me out? Just because I’m an Estrada?” he also said.

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TAGS: Coronavirus, coronavirus disease, coronavirus Philippines, COVID-19, enhanced community quarantine, Jinggoy Estrada, Ping Lacson, San Juan City
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