Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has threatened Coronavirus lockdown violators that they could be shot for causing trouble and said abuse of medical workers was a serious crime that would not be tolerated.
Philippine President’s warning
According to Times of India, while addressing the media, Duterte said it was necessary everyone cooperates and follows home quarantine measures, as authorities try to slow the infection and spare the country’s weak health system from being destroyed.
Till now, the Philippines has recorded 96 coronavirus deaths and 2,311 confirmed cases, all but three in the past three weeks, with infections now being reported in the hundreds each day.
“It is getting worse. So once again I’m telling you the seriousness of the problem and that you must listen. My orders to the police and military … if there is trouble and there’s an occasion that they fight back and your lives are in danger, shoot them dead,” Duterte said late on Wednesday.
“Is that understood? Dead. Instead of causing trouble, I will bury you,” he added.
Taking his comment under criticism
His comments came in after media reports revealed a disturbance and several arrests on Wednesday of residents in a poor area of Manila who were opposing adequate government food aid.
The outrage was also followed aginst the medical community about social stigma and cases of hospital workers suffering physical abuse and discrimination, which Duterte said must be stopped.
However, activists mock Duterte over his rough speech and accused him of encouraging violence and vigilantism, as shown in his war on drugs, during which police and mystery gunmen have killed thousands of people accused of using or selling drugs.
Police say their actions in the anti-drug campaign have been lawful. Moreover, Duterte’s office typically calls his remarks exaggeration to underline his point.
According to the sources, the national police chief on Thursday said police understood that Duterte was demonstrating his seriousness about public order, and no one would be shot.