The 2021 Blog of DILA

looking into the adversities of our constitutionally disadvantaged non-Tagalog peoples


April 8, 2021

IATF recommended 1 more week of ECQ.
The Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases recommended an extension of the Enhanced Community Quarantine for the NCR+ Bubble (Metro Manila plus Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal) from April 4 to April 11, as new COVID-19 cases reached a new record high of 12,000 cases. Active cases also reached 165,715 cases, the highest since the pandemic. Prof. Guido David of OPTA Research Group said a week of ECQ is too short to bring a reduction in new cases, though he said there was a reduction in reproduction rate.
On the West Philippine Sea, China said that it owns Julian Felipe Reef, said its fishermen had a right to be there, and cautioned against Philippine emotionalism.
Sen. Ping Lacson said the Philippines should file a diplomatic protest, and former Justice Carpio said China is sending Sinovac vaccines as payment for occupying Julian Felipe Reef and other islands.
New CJ named.
President Duterte announced the appointment of Associate Justice Alexander Gesmundo as the new Chief Justice. He replaces Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta, who has retired.
New COVID positives remain high.
Over 8,000 new China virus cases were reported April 5. This was less than over 10,000 new cases for much of the week, though some testing centers were closed during the holidays. Prof. Guido David of the OPTA Research Group said that while the reproduction rate has been reduced, the number of recorded cases is expected to reach a million.
Meanwhile an application for an FDA license has been made by Lloyd Laboratories. Many doctors and patients have attested to the effectiveness of ivermectin, used to combat parasites in animals, against coronavirus.
Roque says reef matter can be resolved amicably.
Presidential spokesman Harry Roque says the discussion over China's vessels in Julian Felipe Reef, which is owned by the Philippines but has been overrun weeks back by China's ships, which have not departed allegedly because of the weather, will be resolved amicably because China is a close friend of the Philippines.
16 Pekingese with fake health certificates nabbed.
Sixteen China nationals who presented fake health certificates in connection with their applications for China virus vaccines were arrested by the police. According to the police, they were based in Binondo, but citizens of China.
US vows support for Philippines in China row.
The United States assured the country of assistance in the wake of escalating aggression by China. According to the US, it is bound by a mutual defense treaty with us, and will send vessels to the area. China vessels in the Julian Felipe Reef have refused to leave the area, which it says is part of its Nansha Islands.
New 2022 survey results released.
Another survey firm has come up with results of its 2022 survey. It was topped by Manila mayor Francisco "Isko Moreno" Domagoso, Davao City mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, Sen. Manny Pacquiao, former Sen. Bongbong Marcos, and Vice President Leni Robredo.
For vice president, the race was led by Davao City mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, Manila mayor Francisco "Isko Moreno" Domagoso, former Sen. Bongbong Marcos, snd Sen. Manny Pacquiao.
Senatorial poll topnotchers included the Manila mayor, Sen. Manny Pacquiao, Dr. Willy Ong, a physician and broadcaster, Sorsogon Gov. Chiz Escudero, Davao City mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio , Sen. Risa Hontiveros, Sen. Joel Villanueva, Batangas Rep. Vilma Santos-Recto, and Antique Gov. Loren Legarda.
Go lashes out at Duterte bashers.
Sen. Bong Go criticized those reponsible for the Twitter hashtag 'Patay na ba ang Pangulo?' for spreading malicious and misleading information, after the president did appear for a presscon. This was also fueled by many Presidential Security Group officers developing COVID (most of them were earlier vaccinated with Sinovac).
Hospital given ivermectin CUA.
The Bureau of Food and Drugs gave an unnamed hospital compassionate use authorization to administer the drug to patients against COVID-19. This comes after many doctors and patients attested to its efficacy here and abroad. Ivermectin is an animal antiparasitic drug. Two firms have applied to manufacture it. An emergency use authorization has yet to be granted by the FDA.
New cases exceed 12,000 (April 9).
Towards the end of the second week of Enhanced Community Quarantine of the NCR+ Bubble, 12,225 new cases were tallied, raising further the number of active cases.
Still on pandemic-related news, an adverse reaction to Sinovac.
A Quezon City resident was vaccinated on March 29, and exprienced dizziness, headaches and sleeplessness the following day. He was admitted to the hospital and then was discharged, but experienced more severe symptoms. After being refused admission the next time because hospitals were full, he was eventually admitted to the East Ave. Medical Center where he had kidney failure, underwent dialysis, and is being intubated. He is fighting for his life.

US warns China over moves on Philippines, Taiwan
China sends more jets; Taiwan says it will fight to the end if there's war
Voice of America - VOA
Vietnam Joins Opposition to Chinese Activity Near Disputed Sea Reef
DND calls for restraint amid presence of US carrier strike group in WPS

Dismissing rumors, Malacañang said President Rodrigo Duterte is fit and healty, and is performing his duties and responsibilities. Duterte ‘fit and healthy,’ Palace says
Duterte 'busy with paperwork' amid heart attack rumors, says Go
The apparent lack of planning and coordination on the distribution of assistance to residents in some parts of Metro Manila and four adjacent provinces. Senior citizens, PWDs expose themselves to COVID infection just to get cash assistance
FDA grants a hospital compassionate special permit for ivermectin use
'Hitler', 'Spongebob' not making COVID-19 contact tracing easier
Crematoriums in Metro Manila struggle with hike in COVID-19 deaths

Duterte to choose among Isko, Bongbong, Pacquiao if Sara, Bong Go not running in 2022 —Roque
Palace spokesperson Harry Roque has incorrectly claimed that the country has yet to receive a single COVID-19 vaccine from the US despite it being the top donor of the COVAX facility vaccines. 'Where is Uncle Sam now?' Roque twits US, a top COVAX funder


April 3, 2021

China holds military exercises in disputed islands.
In the midst of a pandemic, China staged military exercises in the Paracel and Spratly Islands, which are claimed by several other governments including the Philippines. Despite Philippine diplomatic protests, over 200 Chinese vessels, which it claims are fishing vessels but have military markings have been staying for weeks at Julian Felipe Reef in the West Philippine Sea.
Meanwhile, a million doses of Sinovac have arrived in the Philippines. Despite a ban on mass gatherings, a welcoming party was at hand for the arrival of the vaccine from a Philippine friend, which happens to occupy several Philippine islands.
New COVID-19 cases shoot past 10,000.
Coronavirus positive cases tallied on March 29 reached 10,016, intensifying the shortage in hospital rooms. More prominent people tested positive, including former President Joseph Estrada, who was in serious but stable condition at the Cardinal Santos Hospital.
Quezon City mayor Joy Belmonte tested positive but is asymptomatic eight months after recovering from the disease. A former mayor of Pakil, Laguna died of COVID after the mayor of Famy, Laguna died earlier. Former Calauan mayor Antonio Sanchez, who was jailed for the Sarmenta-Gomez rape-slay, tested positive and was found dead over the weekend.
Rep. Mike Defensor, who tested positive, batted for the approval of ivermectin, an antiparasitic drug, to be used for COVID.
NEW RECORD-HIGH TALLY: DOH logs highest single-day tally with 15,310 new COVID-19 cases. The total reported cases has reached 771,497 on April 2, 2021.
-New deaths: 17
-Total active cases: 153,809


March 29, 2021

NCR+ Bubble placed under ECQ.
Following a record-breaking week, in which daily additions to the list of China virus positives were at an all-time high, Metro Manila and the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal were placed under Enhanced Community Quarantine from March 29 to April 4.
Many hospitals were running out of space, and quarantine facilities were also close to full capacity. The OPTA Research Group said the NCR+ Bubble ECQ was inadequate, as cases were also surging in Pampanga and Batangas. The Red Cross and the Philippine Genome Center said 20 percent of their samples were now positive, compared to the usual 5 percent.


March 22, 2021

New cases reach 5,400.
New China virus cases reached 5,400, setting a new record. The decision to open some Intramuros historical sites was withdrawn as a result of the surging incidence. Sec. Harry Roque tested positive, and blamed the galloping cases on the more transmissible new variants.
Ban on travel to Philippines imposed.
A travel ban has been put by the government into effect whether by incoming foreigners or Filipinos. This follows a surge of COVID-19 cases. March 17's 4,300 and 4,500 the previous day followed days of over 5,000 new cases, resulting in overcapacity of many NCR hospitals.
Suicide cases increased by 26 percent over 2019, accompanied by increases in mental illness and admission at NIMH.
PNP reports peaceful conduct of Palawan plebiscite.
No untoward incidents were reported by the PNP in the plebiscite to divide the province on Saturday, where 'no' prevailed.
COVID-19 cases on March 18 increased to 7,000 new ones, the highest since the pandemic.
With the accelerating number of cases in the metropolis, vaccines deployed to the provinces have been recalled to the NCR.
Sputnik V given EUA.
Russia's COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V, produced by Gamaleya, was given Emergency Use Authorization by the FDA. This comes amid numerous new cases, which have caused more and more hospitals in the NCR to reach full capacity.
A proposal by Metro mayors for closing borders was called premature by the Department of Health, though. Thirty-seven areas in Pasig were subjected to localized lockdowns, and the OPTA Research Group predicted a rise in daily cases to 10,000.
New COVID-19 cases reach almost 8,000.
As new cases of the China virus exceeded 7,900, the president issued directives for the next two weeks. Mega Manila (NCR, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal) was placed under stricter GCQ. Nonessential travel outside the locality will be forbidden along with restaurant dining in, mass gatherings/meetings and religious services. Those below 18 and over 65 cannot leave the house. Delivery services will be allowed, and as much as possible, working from home is encouraged.
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana appealed to China to remove its ships from the West Philippine Sea.
Twelve ships of China were spotted by the National Task Force on the West Philippine Sea. In addition, the National Security Adviser said that over 200 fishing vessels were found in the West Philippine Sea last March 7.
Day 1 of the new quarantine.
On the first day that NCR+ or Mega Manila (NCR and Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal) was reclassified to a stricter form of General Community Quarantine, the largest number of new cases since the beginning of the pandemic hit 8,019.
Leading hospitals like Asian Hospital and St. Luke's Medical Center have reached full capacity. Outside of essential travel, movement to and from NCR+ is forbidden until April 4 as with mass gatherings, religious services, dining in in restaurants, and going out for people under 18 and over 65.
The UK and South African variants are now widely diseminated in the NCR, and the Brazilian and P.3 (Ph) variants have also been reported elsewhere including Central Visayas. As a result of the spikes, vaccines sent to the provinces have been recalled to the NCR. Baguio has barred NCR tourists again.
The OPTA Research group has warned that daily cases will reach 12,000 if present trends continues.
- 8,019 new COVID-19 cases is new PHL record, total soars to 671,792
- COVID-19 variants now present in all NCR cities, says DOH
- Caloocan Bishop Pablo Virgilio David, vice president of the CBCP, Why ban masses but allow gyms, spas in NCR Plus?
- Most vaccines will be from China, Russia until July — Galvez,

Presidential survey results released.
A reliable source has revealed the results of a survey of the preferred president in the 2022 elections. Manila mayor Francisco "Isko Moreno" Domagoso came first (significantly ahead), followed by Davao City mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, Sen. Manny Pacquiao, former Sen. Bongbong Marcos, Sen. Grace Poe, and Vice President Leni Robredo, who came sixth.
The survey was conducted in the last week of February. A significant thing about the survey was that the candidate who commissioned it was not the one who came on top, giving it an additional measure of reliability.


March 15, 2021

Bulacan gets 1 more district: Palawan holds plebiscite on split.
With the approval by the Senate, Bulacan gains another district, covering the towns of Angat, Santa Maria and Norzagaray. Palawan's voters on the other hand, will decide whether to split the province into Palawan del Norte, Palawan del Sur and Oriental Palawan. Detractors say that this will bloat the bureaucracy and dissipate resources, inadvisable especially with the pandemic. Others point to more chilling scenarios, such as China's takeover of Palawan del Norte, which is near the islands it is occupying.
No is reportedly leading but official results are not expected until March 17. Palayan mayor endorses Duterte for veep in 2022.
Palayan City mayor Ryan Cuevas said that she supports the candidacy of Pres. Duterte (who cannot run for reelection in 2022) for vice president this time. This sentiment was previously voiced by presidential legal adviser Sal Panelo, who favors a Duterte-Duterte ticket. Since Davao mayor Sara Duterte has ruled out running for the presidency, attention has shifted to Sen. Bong Go, who said he would run if endorsed by the president.
Highest COVID-19 cases in 7 months recorded.
March 12 set a new record as China virus cases climbed to their highest in seven months. New cases doubled in just a week in the National Capital Region, due to both more liberal rules and the spread of the new virus variant. As a result a metrowide curfew from 10 pm to 5 am was agreed upon, in addition to localized lockdowns in many areas. The opening of moviehouses and other liberalization measures were postponed as hospital facilities approached critical levels.
Pacquiao calls for unity, setting aside politics.
Amid calls for the PDP-Laban to endorse Pres. Duterte for vice president in 2022, Sen. Manny Pacquiao, who heads the PDP-Laban, said the people should unite behind efforts to fight the pandemic and turn to politics later. He said PDP-Laban leaders behind this were not authorized. In any case, the leading 2022 tandems were surfacing. According to one survey, Poe-Sotto, Pacquiao-Marcos, Go-Duterte and Robredo Pangilinan were ahead.
Meanwhile, with the plebiscite to break up Palawan in three under way on March 13, radio commentators called on voters to reject it, saying it will only divide the internal revenue allotments of the three provinces while increasing expenses and expanding the bureaucracy. A radio commentator from Cavite said that Palawan has only 500,000 people compared to 3.5 million in Cavite, yet there are no moves to similarly divide Cavite.
New cases reach 5,000.
The number of new cases of COVID-19 reached 5,000 on March 13. This came after two OFWs were found to be positive with the Brazilian variant, which is 50% more transmissible. Brazil has the highest number of fatalities after the US. While reports that a lockdown has been declared was debunked as fake news, some public health experts, like Dr. Tony Leachon, have called for a return to Enhanced Community Quarantine following the surge in cases.

The active cases in the National Capital Region (NCR) have tripled in a span of two weeks, Parañaque City Mayor Edwin Olivarez said Friday (March 12). Active COVID-19 cases in NCR tripled in two weeks - Olivarez
3,749 infections push active COVID-19 cases to nearly 48k
Philippine Star
5,000 new COVID-19 cases in a day on Saturday, March 13, the highest since an increase in COVID-19. 5,000 COVID-19 Cases Logged In Phl In A Day, And This Is Not Fake News
With Duterte's 'shoot-to-kill' order, 'all hell breaks loose' -- Lacson
Calbayog intel chief relieved for seeking court list of communists’ lawyers
Will you support current President Rodrigo Duterte if he runs for vice president in 2022? Labella, Rama support Duterte for VP plans
Gordon pushes for creation of police courts
The Department of Health (DOH) confirmed Saturday, March 13, a new variant of the coronavirus called P.3 which was first found in the Philippines.
UP-OCTA VS OCTA Research, they're not actually the same group.
Partial unofficial results in Palawan show 'no' votes leading in plebiscite regarding dividing province
Two leaders pushing for the division of Palawan province concede defeat ahead of Monday’s official tally for the plebiscite.


March 9 & 11, 2021

Robredo denounces Calbayog mayor killing.
Vice President Leni Robredo said the killing of mayors, journalists, lawyers and other people should not be regarded as normal. This followed the killing of Calbayog City mayor Ronaldo Aquino by policemen after an alleged shootout with his party. The policemen were members of the PNP Integrity and Monitoring Group and provincial drug enforcement unit. The PNP said the mayor's party fired first, which was disputed by witnesses. Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said the VP should wait for an investigation before jumping to conclusions.
Biggest COVID-19 cases in 5 months recorded.
New cases in March 4 exceed 3,000, the biggest figure in five months. This coincided with elevated numbers in several NCR cities especially Pasay, and the arrival there of the more contagious South African variant. The Astra-Zeneca vaccine also arrived on a KLM flight. DOH Sec. Duque is scheduled to be vaccinated - significantly with Astra-Zeneca, because he is a senior rather than the expected Sinovac.
Emergency Use Authorization is being prepared for Sinopharm, which is preferred by Pres. Duterte. Meanwhile, presidential spokesman Roque denounced VP Robredo's criticism of Sinovac, saying that she is playing politics in a time of pandemic.
Inflation rate highest in 2 years.
Inflation rate has risen to 4.7 percent according to figures released by the Philippine Statistics Authority. It is the highest figure in two years. It was mostly due to increases in prices of food. Prices of round scud (galunggong) rose to P250, prompting the government to put price controls on the fish.
New COVID-19 cases top 3,000 for 4th straight day.
Figures from the Department of Health revealed that new China virus cases exceed 3,000 for the fourth straight day on March 8. In addition, cases of the South African variant were found in Paranaque. Earlier, the SA variant was also found in Pasay. Dr. Guido David of OCTA Research Group said that in addition to increased overall cases, more pediatric cases are being observed, and that entire families are being infected, consistent with the faster transmission of the new variants.
Daily new COVID-19 cases in NCR may reach 5,000 by March 31 —OCTA


March 1, 2021
"Maluha-luha kami noong dumating ‘yung Sinovac," Galvez said in a speech at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) _ President Rodrigo Duterte said Sunday that he intends to visit Chinese President Xi Jinping by the end of the year to thank him for the donated doses of Sinovac
UP-PGH director Dr. Gerardo Legaspi gets inoculated with Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine. He is the first PGH healthcare worker to receive COVID-19 vaccine.
Twenty health care workers are slated to receive the Sinovac-made Coronavac today, March 1, at the Lung Center of the Philippines (LCP).
Health workers from the Veterans Medical Memorial Center receive the Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine
Philippine Star
Department of Health says Sec. Francisco Duque was not inoculated with Sinovac COVID-19 vaccines
Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. receives Sinovac vaccine at PGH
Thirteen people who received the vaccines from Sinovac biotech firm experienced negative effects during the first day of the government’s immunization program on Monday, the Department of Health (DOH) said Tuesday.


THE BLOG in 2020 Part2

THE BLOG in 2020 Part 1

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