Robredo: Can PH wait until 2023 to get back to normal?
MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Leni Robredo has expressed her concern about President Rodrigo Duterte’s pronouncement that the Philippines might go back to normal by the first or second quarter of 2023, wondering if the country can wait that long as the people are currently suffering.
“Nakakatakot ito, kasi kakayanin ba nating maghintay until 2023, considering na ang dami na ngayong naghihirap?” the Vice President said in an interview over the GMA News program “The Mangahas Interviews” aired Wednesday.
(This is disturbing, because can we wait until 2023, given that many are already going through hardships?)
“So sa akin, bilis-bilisan natin. Bilis-bilisan natin itong vaccines. Bilisan natin dahil dito nakasalalay iyong reopening ng economy,” she added.
(For me, we should act a little faster. We should hurry up to get the vaccines. We should hurry up because our economy depends on them.)
In Duterte’s encouraging words, the Philippines will be better off a pre-pandemic situation by the year 2023, with 600,000 doses of Covid-19 vaccines donated by the Chinese government.
“Early in the first, maybe the first or second quarter of year 2023, baka, sa tulong ng Diyos (by God’s grace),” Duterte said during a press conference after the turnover ceremony of the Sinovac vaccines at the Villamor Air Base in Pasay City.
Meanwhile, Robredo cited a New York Times article in which the United States could return to normal by the end of 2021, as its government predicted that all its citizens could be vaccinated by May.
“Pero tayo, wala tayong ganoon. Hindi nga natin alam iyong timetable. Hindi nga natin alam kung kailan ba dadating iyong mga bakuna,” she said.
(We don’t have that here. We don’t even have a timetable. We don’t know when the vaccines will come.)
The Vice President later said that despite the 600,000 doses of the Sinovac vaccine that arrived, it’s still not enough to achieve herd immunity, which, she said, is the answer to revive the country’s economy.
“Kahit anong gawin natin na promote ng ating tourism sites, kapag mataas pa iyong transmission, mahihirapan pa tayo kasi takot iyong tao,” she added.
(Even if we market our tourism spots, if the transmission rate is high, we will fail because people are afraid.)
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