Duterte remarks on ‘stubborn’ Cebuanos a ‘total challenge’— Cebu City vice mayor
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte’s recent remark blaming the “overconfident” and “stubborn” Cebuanos for the surge in coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in Cebu City has become a challenge for its residents, Cebu City Vice Mayor Michael Rama said Thursday.
“Mas mabuti ‘yung prangka-prangka. That expression of sentiment ng Presidente, it has become a total challenge sa amin,” Rama said in a televised Palace press briefing.
(It’s better to be frank. That sentiment of the President has become a total challenge for us.)
Earlier, Duterte said too much confidence and complacency led to the increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in Cebu City, which health authorities now considered a coronavirus hotspot.
But Vice President Leni Robredo said it is wrong as it is “self-defeating” to just blame Cebuanos over the rising coronavirus infections.
“Kapag sinabi na natin na iyong tao iyong problema, parang baliktad ito sa dati nating –sa dapat nating ginagawa. Kasi iyong tao nga iyong dapat proteksyunan, bakit sila iyong salarin?” Robredo said.
(When we say that the problem is the people, it seems like the opposite of what we used to do — what we should do. You have to protect the people, why are you blaming them?)
Cebu City is the only area in the country that remains under strict lockdown due to high transmission rate of the virus, and the increasing demand for critical care.
Duterte has named Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu as his point man in the Queen City of the South’s COVID-19 response.
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