Back to square one? Roque says it's because of mutating virus, not gov't | Inquirer News

Back to square one? Roque says it’s because of mutating virus, not gov’t

/ 09:19 AM March 29, 2021
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque holds an online press briefing while on self-quarantine after testing positive for COVID-19

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque  (Screengrab from RTVM)

MANILA, Philippines — “It’s not because of [the] government. It’s because of the virus.”

Malacañang on Monday reiterated that it is not the government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic that should be blamed for the country’s seeming return to “square one” after Metro Manila and four other provinces were placed back under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) after more than a year into the health crisis.


“It’s not because of [the] government. It’s because of the virus, it’s because the virus mutated. There’s now the U.K., South Africa, Brazilian, and even the Philippine variant,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel.

“Unfortunately, all these variants made the disease more infectious and more transmissible. So I’d like to stress, it’s not just foreign variants. Even the Philippine variant now, that’s something that no one could have done anything about because it’s in the nature of viruses to mutate,” he added.


Over the weekend, Malacañang announced that Metro Manila and four adjacent provinces — Rizal, Bulacan, Cavite, and Laguna — will be placed back under ECQ status from March 29 to April 4 due to the surge in COVID-19 cases in the country.

It was in March last year that the government first placed Metro Manila and other areas under an ECQ.

“What we need to do now is to adapt to these new variants, if they are more transmissible, then we will be more vigilant in our ‘Mask, Hugas, Iwas’ and of course our bakuna,” Roque added.

“So yung mga nagse-second thoughts pa about the bakuna, it’s more transmissible, although it is not deadlier…with more people getting sick, there will be more people inevitably who will get sick in a serious and critical manner, so have your vaccine if you are able to have it now,” he added.

On Sunday, the Philippines logged 9,475 new COVID-19 infections, pushing the country’s total to 721,892 cases (105,568 active cases).


Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link .

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Coronavirus, COVID-19, ECQ, Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and
acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

© Copyright 1997-2022 | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.