MANILA — Actress Angel Locsin did not mince words as she called out President Rodrigo Duterte for his remark that seemed to belittle the COVID-19 pandemic which has been affecting the country for more than a year already.
The veteran Kapamilya actress reacted to a Duterte speech, urging the public not to despair over the pandemic, one year since the lockdown was imposed in the Philippines that left millions jobless.
"Maliit na bagay ito sa buhay natin. Marami tayong dinaanan mas ano, mas grabe, mas mahirap, mas magluluha… Huwag kayong matakot at hindi ko kayo iiwanan," the President said.
Locsin, in an Instagram story, pointed out the pandemic's huge impact on many Filipinos as cases continue to rise.
“Maliit na bagay? Baka po sa inyo, Sir. Para sa amin po kasi malaki. Malaking utang. Malaking taas ng cases. Malaking human rights violations,” Locsin said.
The Palace was also quick to downplay the President’s message, explaining that he only meant that life goes on for the Philippines despite the coronavirus.
"Ang sinasabi po ng Presidente ay patuloy naman pong ang Pilipinas ay nabubuhay sa kabila ng COVID-19," Presidential spokesman Harry Roque had said.
"Hindi po minamaliit ng Presidente ang ating paghihirap pero ang sinasabi po niya, babangon naman po tayo d'yan, we will heal as one."
Locsin, who hosts the weekly show “Iba ‘Yan” on ABS-CBN, is known for her active role in providing help to Filipinos affected by the pandemic. She also led several relief operations in the past when calamities hit the country.
Locsin recently received the Cinemadvocate Award from the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) for her humanitarian efforts.
The 35-year-old actress also made headlines for her hard stance against red-tagging and the non-renewal of ABS-CBN’s franchise.
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