Gwen slams group for discrimination

Lorraine L. Ecarma (The Freeman) - March 29, 2020 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia slammed a group in Bogo City for reportedly starting a petition to ban the entry of local medical frontliners in their subdivision.

During a press briefing yesterday, Garcia addressed an organization of residents who have moved to expel frontline doctors and nurses from the Cebu Provincial Hospital in Bogo from their subdivision for fear of COVID-19 contamination.

The governor went on to point out that the medical workers are putting their lives at risk in order to combat COVID-19.

“Ilang gibutang ang ilang tagsa-tagsa ka kinabuhi sa peligro para lang nga ato ning masugpo ning coronavirus. Mao na nga makaguol kaayo nga huna-hunaon nga duna pa gyuy mga wala’y kasing-kasing nga gi-ostracized na nuon ni sila, atong mga nurses ug mga doctors,” the governor said.

Info from tining

Garcia disclosed that she received this information from Association of Barangay Captains (ABC) President and ex-officio Board Member Celestino “Tining” Martinez.

In a phone interview, Martinez elaborated that they have not yet received a copy of the petition. Nonetheless, he assured that he will continue to raise this matter to the governor and the mayor of Bogo.

He added that this movement has sufficiently lowered the morale of health workers in the Provincial Hospital, only adding to the burden already being caused by COVID-19.

For her part, Garcia warned that if this matter continues to develop, she will proceed to bring in police to intervene.

“Kung mahitabo man gali na, ako na ang inyong kontra. Ako ma’y magpadala ug police diha, ipadakop ta mo kay wa mo’y mga puangod,” she said.

She added that the same warning goes out to any resident in the province who would discriminate medical workers.

“Pasakaan ta mo ug kiha. Ako mismo ang moreklamo batok ninyo.  Mga Sugboanon tang tanan duna ta’y katungod nga nagpuyo niining atong Dakbayan sa Sugbo. Dili ta motalikod ug mosalikway sa isig ka Sugboanon nato,” Garcia reminded.

There are now two confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Province of Cebu-- one in Mandaue City while the other case’s location has not been identified by the Department of Health (DoH).

While Garcia decried the discrimination against health workers, she also lauded seeing Cebuanos for their initiative to produce personal protective equipment (PPE) for the frontliners.

Yesterday, together with Garcia, representatives and designers presented in a press conference the different designs for the full-body PPEs and face shields.

At present over 700 of the 5,000 produced full-body PPEs have now been distributed by these private firms. GAN (FREEMAN)

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