‘COVID-19 is the enemy’: Stars defend medical frontliners against Duterte’s tirade

Celebrities defended the country's medical frontliners after President Rodrigo Duterte lashed out at them for airing their concerns over the continued rise in COVID-19 cases via the media.

Actress Angel Locsin, who has been active in helping frontliners during the start of the lockdown reminded the government that COVID-19 was the enemy – and not the people.

"Nung una, UP ang kalaban, ngayon naman health workers,” she wrote in an Instagram stories Monday, August 3, a reference to Presidential spokesman Harry Roque’s earlier comment about "beating" projections from university researchers last June.

(First, UP was the enemy, now it’s the health workers.)

Pagsuporta ang kailangan, hindi pagsindak. COVID po ang kalaban, hindi ang mamamayan.”(What they need is support and not threats. COVID is the enemy, not the people.)

In a separate post, Angel apologized to medical frontliners and assured them that everyone is behind them in the struggle against the virus.

Patawad kung minsan ay pasaway. Ngunit nais iparating, kakampi niyo kami, health workers. Mag do-doble ingat para makagaan sa pasanin kahit paano. 'Wag sanang panghinaan ang inyong loob,” she said.

(Please forgive me if I'm stubborn. But I want all health workers to know that we are on your side. We will be extra careful so as not to be a burden to you. Please don't give up.)

Mahal namin kayo. Naka-suporta kami sa inyo. Kailangan namin kayo. Kayong mga bayani sa giyerang ito. Maraming salamat sa sakripisyo para sa amin.” (We all love you. We're all supporting you. We need you. You are the heroes of this war. Thank you for the sacrifices you've done for us.)

TV host Bianca Gonzalez-Intal tweeting: "To our frontliners, words will never be able to express how thankful we are to all of you, pero sasabihin pa rin namin, maraming, maraming, MARAMING SALAMAT."

TikTok comedian Macoy Dubs sympathized with medical workers who've been working 'round the clock, saying: "More than physical stress, bugbog na bugbog na rin sa mental stress ang mga medical / healthcare frontliners natin." (More than physical stress, our medical/healthcare frontliners are also mentally stressed out.)

Actress Janine Gutierrez said: "Gulong-gulo sa mga pangyayari but one thing is for sure - salamat frontliners ." (So confused with that's happening but one thing is for sure – thank you frontliners.)

Sportscaster and TV host Cesca Litton-Kalaw could not help ask why the medical workers were blamed during the speech.

Director Gino Santos and radio DJ and host Sam YG posted on Instagram: "It will take 20 years to replace a physician but only 3-6 years to replace our politicians. Let's save our doctors!"

Batangas representative Vilma Santos-Recto earlier called on the government to listen to the medical workers.

On Sunday, it was announced that Metro Manila, Cavite, Bulacan, Laguna, and Rizal would again be placed under modified enhanced community quarantine.

Members of the medical community later released a statement to remind Duterte of the same thing: that the virus – and not the medical community – was the enemy.

As of Monday, August 4, coronavirus cases in the Philippines reached more than 106,000. – Rappler.com