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Pushback

THAT DOES IT - Korina Sanchez (The Freeman) - July 17, 2020 - 12:00am

It has always been a clear intention of this administration to have the boots of police and military on the throat of the people, ala George Floyd. The DILG secretary recently announced a house-to-house search for persons positive for COVID-19 so they may be placed in the government's quarantine facilities. If they deem their respective houses are not suited for self-quarantine, then they will be sent to government facilities. The operative words here are "if they deem". PNP chief General Gamboa even likened it to a search for criminals and accomplices. Wow.

Who decides whether the house is adequate for self-quarantine or not? Have the police undergone the proper training for this? They can enter your home without a warrant as they have to look around. Do they have the medical training for this? Thousands of police officers will surely have different opinions as to what constitutes adequate self-quarantine facilities. Most hospitals have a protocol for asymptomatic or mild cases that is to stay at home for 14 days after which they undergo another swab test. But of course, what the administration wants, it gets, right? What if the person refuses to go with the police? Will he be forced or even tackled just to be dragged away like a criminal? Will he face a gun like Winston Ragos? He was after all disobeying quarantine and deserved to have a gun aimed at him. We all know how that turned out.

Fortunately, there was pushback to this plan, mostly coming from opposition legislators. Thank goodness for them. Many sectors have also added their voices against such a plan, likening it to the notorious Oplan Tokhang against drug users and pushers, at least on paper. A big-time drug lord has yet to be brought to justice. DOJ Secretary Guevarra said the department was neither informed nor consulted on the DILG plan. What else is new? Secretary Año was a former military man so naturally, he would favor the plan. Secretary Guevarra added that if such a plan would be executed, barangay health workers should decide if a home is not suitable for self-quarantine, and not the police. Barangay health workers are truly at the frontlines so they would know. Don't you wish Secretary Guevarra would always be like that?

The Palace is once again on spin mode. There will be no house-to-house search but those positive for COVID-19 should inform authorities if they cannot self-quarantine to be transferred to a suitable facility. We are already familiar with the Palace having to explain what has already been said. As if those uttering statements do not know what they are saying. I hope this house-to-house search plan is shelved. This is not the time to let strangers into your home, no matter who they are.

COVID-19 GEORGE FLOYD
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