Palace says baby boom due to lockdown ‘not a bad news’
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang on Tuesday refused to view the projected 2.5 million unplanned pregnancies in the country by yearend as bad news, saying that the Philippines’ greatest resource remains to be its population.
According to the University of the Philippine Population Institute (UPPI) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), 2.5 million unplanned pregnancies are expected to be recorded in the Philippines by the end of 2020 amid the imposition of one of the world’s longest COVID-19 lockdowns. This number is 42% higher compared to the 2019 data.
“Unang-una po, bagamat dapat pinaplano ang pagpapamilya, hindi naman po bad news na marami rin tayong naging anak. (First of all, while family planning is ideal, it’s not a bad news that we are expecting more children.) Our greatest resource is still our population,” Roque said Tuesday in a televised Palace press briefing.
“We don’t view the children who will be born as a problem, we view them as a blessing,” he added.
Nonetheless, the Palace official encouraged Filipinos to plan their families.
He noted that concerned government agencies must intensify their family planning campaigns and that parents must take advantage of the lifting of the curbs to avail of family planning programs.
“We welcome these newborn Filipinos as blessings to the country (but) we would like to encourage people to plan their families,” Roque said.
The government has placed several areas in the country under lockdown since mid-March to curtail the spread of COVID-19. Since the, quarantine restrictions have been eased to pump life into the pandemic-hit economy.
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