'Everything must be done instantly, whatever means necessary' - PRRD

PRRD addressed the issue on the DOH’s procured PPEs and that everything that occurred was to his discretion. As PRRD instructed, he advised that everything must be done – whatever means necessary.

Addressing the nation Monday night, May 25, PRRD opened his statement by addressing the 200-B budget given to him and his advice to manage the fund correctly. PRRD also affirmed that the procurement from the Department of Health (DOH) was his orders, or was given with a go-signal from him, to say the least. PRRD takes full responsibility in what is happening in terms of procurement because as he has ordered, ‘everything must be done instantly, whatever means necessary’.

Regarding the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), PRRD reiterated that the DOH must always procure medical grade equipment and not jeopardize the health of Filipino doctors. Even though it is more expensive than usual, PRRD insists that procured PPEs must pass the DOH’s qualifications and must ensure the safety of the frontliners.

On the issue of the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), PRRD ordered Local Government Units to accommodate returning OFWs. With reports coming in that various LGUs deny entry for their local repatriates, PRRD emphasized that this is a matter of national prerogative, and so as ordered, the order from the national government bypasses any local laws that restrict the entry of OFWs. If the LGUs would contest, PRRD stated that they must coordinate with the Inter-agency Task Force (IATF) to clear things out.

Regarding the classes tentatively scheduled to resume this August, as of the moment, PRRD would not allow it, “unless I am sure that they are really safe”, he said. PRRD wants to ensure that vaccines are available first before classes start so as to not endanger the well-being of students.

Concluding his speech, PRRD cautioned that the pandemic is still on and that the easing of restriction does not mean that the COVID-19 is already gone. He advised everyone that the COVID-19 is a deadly virus and that everyone must avoid being reckless. He reminded everyone to take all the precautions necessary and always observe the health standards prescribed.