Repudiate and resist martial law solution to Covid-19 crisis in Cebu

Translation/s: Pilipino

The Party calls on the Filipino people and the people of Cebu City and Cebu province to repudiate and resist the martial law solution to the Covid-19 crisis in Cebu.

The appointment of Gen. Roy Cimatu, former AFP chief of staff, as Duterte’s representative to “exercise all the powers” to “fix the situation” in Cebu with regard rising cases of Covid-19 infections, shows Duterte’s bullheaded insistence on applying the military solution to the ongoing health crisis.

By giving Gen. Cimatu blanket authority over local civilian officials and agencies, and the concomitant deployment of additional police and military forces, Duterte has practically imposed martial law in Cebu City and nearby cities in the guise of stopping the rise of Covid cases in the island.

Cimatu’s first order was to put three cities under “hard lockdown” and cancel all quarantine passes. Cimatu joins the ranks of bungling, inept Duterte generals who have been in charge of the country’s pandemic response from the start.

The Filipino people, the people in Cebu in particular, are disgusted that Cimatu has superceded dozens, probably, hundreds of doctors and health professionals in province, who are infinitely more qualified in handling the rise of Covid cases in the area.

They believe the management of the jobs should be given to epidemiologists, public health doctors and other specialists who are able to discern necessary health measures from ineffective and devastating large-area population control measures.

After three months, Duterte’s military-first solution to the pandemic has proven an epic failure. It has been shown ineffective in managing the pandemic, devastating to the people’s livelihoods and wellbeing and extremely prejudicial to the people’s democratic rights.

The imposition of martial law in Cebu further reinforces Duterte’s scheme of establishing a full-blown fascist regime, and using the Covid-19 pandemic to pursue his ambition of establishing a dictatorship.