Local roundup: Hospital workers up in arms; Imee hits utility firms

from June 29, 2020 01:00 am to June 29, 2020 01:00 am

 Health workers in different hospitals in Metro Manila held an online protest during their lunch break to announce their appalling situation after nearly five months of the COVID-19 pandemic.


“We have been fighting the COVID-19 pandemic for nearly five months now, but the DOH [Department of Health] and the Duterte administration still have no clear and comprehensive plan on how to combat the deadly virus and the health workers’ situation is getting worse,” said Robert Mendoza, Association of Health Workers national president.


As of June 20, DOH data showed there have been 3,122 infected health workers, of which 2,235 recovered, 33 died and 854 are active cases.


READ: Government to verify COVID health workers’ list 


Suspend disconnections


Senator Imee Marcos on Sunday urged public utility companies to suspend disconnection for unpaid electric and water bills while the COVID-19 crisis is affecting the country.


Senator Bong Go also requested the power companies to defer disconnection should some of their consumers fail to pay their electricity bills incurred during the ECQ.


"We were electric shocked with our electricity bill the past months. And then, they're saying it's not like that coz its automatically generated daw," Marcos said.


Lockdown to be lifted


Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said Sunday the 11-day lockdown of the Department of Justice’s offices along Padre Faura, Manila, which was imposed on June 18 after five of its employees and one outsourced personnel tested positive for coronavirus, will be lifted today, Monday.


Guevarra said they decided on the lockdown lifting after they conducted daily sanitation and disinfection activities in all buildings and rooms at the main office.

He ordered the lockdown from June 18 to June 28 to give way to the disinfection and sanitation of the offices.


Ready to serve


The government is ready to serve more returning Filipino workers displaced by the pandemic, the Labor department said Sunday.


Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the assistance programs and other measures to aid migrant workers would be in place the moment they arrived in the country.


READ: Not all OFWs can be brought home—Bello


Bello made the statement as he welcomed the assurance of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines that more airlines would fly more Filipino workers home.




Quezon City Rep. Precious Hipolito-Castelo on Sunday appealed to the government to immediately repatriate 16,000 Filipino workers stranded abroad "who are ready to go home."


Citing the testimonies of resource persons during a House committee inquiry, she said those Filipinos “have plane tickets and exit visas and permits from their employers and host countries.”


Out of the 16,000 who were prepared to fly home, 8,000 were in Saudi Arabia, 4,000 were in the United Arab Emirates and another 4,000 were in Qatar, Castelo said.