I originally had this as a tweetstorm/rant, but it ended up quite long, so I’m posting it to the blog too. It is mostly frustration at how poorly the people in charge are handling things.
Instead of asking for more budget, the govt should be telling us first how they are planning to spend the money they are already allocated, which they claimed was sufficient.
Instead of saying we can’t do mass testing because of limited kits, they should be telling us about their plans for getting more testing kits, ppes, hospital capacity, etc.
Instead of telling off the LGUs for being creative, they should tell us how they plan to support the LGUs in keeping the quarantine under control and in feeding the poor people who are most affected. It’s the difference between “Sumunod ka na lang!” and “Ok, we can see you’re having trouble, ano pwede namin matulong?” or “Sige, eto itutulong namin para hindi nyo yan kelangan gawin.”
Instead of sending just confirmed cases home due to lack of hospital capacity, tell us what measures you are doing to set up new isolation units etc. Maybe seek out private enterprises that have now unused buildings that can be used?
Instead of complaining about the haters, tell us what you are doing to address their concerns.
It would be ok to admit to mistakes. “We tried this, it didn’t work, these are the other things we want to try now.”
Instead of increasing fear, uncertainty and doubt with poor messaging, lay out your plans and principles and tell us clearly what we should expect. Messaging should aim to reassure people, not to threaten or confuse or to make excuses for past mistakes.
Instead of asking for emergency powers, maybe use your existing powers better! Not everything can be solved by throwing more authoritarianism at it.
The private sector is stepping up to do what it can. Ordinary citizens are stepping up to donate and support and help where they can. Now is not the time for the government to be mediocre. Be better!