In a country, which has imposed the longest, and one of the strictest lockdowns in the world, the madness continues in the Philippines. Face shields are now mandatory whenever you leave home. The Inter-Agency Task Force, IATF, issued this latest draconian rule. The IATF is mainly composed of generals. Its leader and COVID-19 Vaccine Czar is retired Philippine Army General Carlito Galvez Jr.
Military Generals in Charge of Philippine Response to COVID-19
Amazing isn’t it. That a cadre of military officials, and not medical professionals, are in charge of the Philippine government response to the WHO, media-hyped, coronavirus “pandemic.”
Furthermore, the only medical expert on the Task Force, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, is in hot water. Cited by 14 Filipino Senators for his “failure of leadership” in the country’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. The Senators wanted his resignation. President Duterte has kept Duque in office.
Switch to the “Big Story” with Roby Alampay
I was watching the CNN Philippines 6:00 pm news report last night. It’s usually in English. However, if anchor Pia Hontiveros interviews a Filipino, she always switches to Filipino regardless of whether her subject responds in English. I switch the channel.
In addition, Hontiveros still insists on broadcasting from her home. In contrast, anchors like Mai Rodriguez broadcast from the main CNN studios. While channel surfing other networks, I don’t see any other anchors in the Philippines broadcasting from their homes.
Moreover, if you’re an English-speaking expat in the Philippines, I highly recommend “The Big Story.” I watch it on weekdays at 8:00 pm on ONE News. Roby Alampay broadcasts from the main studios. The majority of the 30-minute show is in English.
While I could learn Filipino, I’m too old and too lazy.
Madness Continues in Philippines: Face Shields Mandatory Whenever You Leave Home
Face shields have been mandatory in business establishments like malls for months. However, this new ruling imposes even stricter regulations on a pandemic-fatigued nation.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque made the announcement.
Aside from protective masks, people should now wear face shields whenever they go out.
The face shield regulation is part of measures to lower the transmission of the coronavirus Roque said.
The Philippines has gone into panic mood during the Christmas season. Therefore, the new mandatory face shield law. Office Christmas parties and caroling? Forget it. Metro Manila mayors won’t allow them.
Roque said Filipinos would not have difficulty complying with the regulation. Everyone was supposed to wear a face shield when going to work, shopping mall, church and taking public transportation.
A face shield costs as low as P5 nowadays, he said. Really? In our region, face shields cost from 50 to 100 pesos. Frankly, I don’t know where Roque is buying his shields.
“So let’s just say it is added protection and it is here to stay until we are vaccinated,” Roque said.
25 Million Chinese COVID-19 Vaccines on the Way
However, don’t worry. Vaccine Czar Carlito Galvez Jr said that Chinese pharmaceutical company Sinovac is to deliver supplies of its COVID-19 vaccine to the country by March 2021.
That’s right. A CHINESE pharmaceutical company accused of bribery will be providing the vaccine to Filipinos. Sinovac founder and CEO Yin Weidong has admitted to giving out a total of $83,000 in bribes.
Why? To secure speedy approvals from Chinese drug regulators for the company’s SARS vaccine in 2003, and swine flu vaccine in 2009.
Former Task Force Adviser Appalled
The processing for the local use of COVID-19 vaccines developed in China is moving at an “unusual speed,” says former adviser to the Task Force against COVID-19, Dr. Anthony Leachon. Dr. Leachon also questioned the government’s plan to purchase 25 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines from China’s Sinovac even if it is yet to show enough safety and efficacy data.
(Don’t worry, Doc, the Philippine government isn’t worried about the bribery charges against Sinovac. The government’s response? “When it comes to the bribery allegations, I don’t think that will happen in the Philippines.”)
Now only Full-Face Shields Approved
Roque said the task force approved only full-face shields. He did not say, however, whether wearing half-face shields would now be a violation of public health rules.
Roques said local governments, which would amend ordinances or issue new executive orders requiring the wearing of face shields, would determine the penalty for not wearing face shields. No word if the Philippine National Police will cane anyone not wearing a face shield. That was the PNP’s threat against those who don’t practice social distancing.
We’ve been wearing half-face shields for a couple of months now. Many of the people in the shopping malls in Iloilo City also use them.
We haven’t had any problem with wearing the half-face shield when shopping. In addition, the full-face shields are too hot and fog up, obscuring my vision.
The madness continues.
With reporting from the Inquirer.net