Villamor Air Base, Pasay City
7 November 2014
President Benigno S. Aquino III called on to the Filipino nation to stop spreading false information regarding the deadly Ebola virus as he answered questions from the members of the press regarding the government measures being undertaken to prevent the spread of the disease in the Philippines.
The President advised the people to stay as calm as possible, saying the country is prepared in case the epidemic enters the country. As a proof of the government’s quick response on several diseases that threatened the country before, President Aquino cited the incident of the MERS-Coronavirus danger, where he said no time was wasted in preventing the further spread of it.
“Maigting po tayong nakikipag-ugnayan sa World Health Organization ukol sa mga epektibong hakbang upang mapaghandaan at matugunan ang paglaganap ng mga nakakahawang sakit. Inilatag po natin ang epektibong paraan upang masubaybayan ang exposure ng mga kababayan natin sa mga sakit,” he said.
In his statement, President Aquino gave updates on the status of the 142 peacekeepers that were sent to Liberia, where the Ebola virus is evident. Those peacekeepers were pulled out from the said country as part of the measures to ensure the safety of every Filipinos worldwide. They will be quarantined for 21 days in an isolated island, where they can relax for a little while. With this, the President asked for forgiveness from the peacekeepers and to their families as well, saying this is a part of the process the government conducted to ensure the Ebola virus will not enter the Philippines.
“Hindi naman nating pwedeng sabihin sa kanila, ‘maraming salamat sa serbisyo ninyo sa amin, pero bahala na kayo sa buhay ninyo diya.’ Wala naman sigurong magsasabing ‘hindi ko na problema iyan, wala akong pakialam sa kanila.’ Dahil anuman ang ating pananampalataya tinuruan po tayong magmalasakit at ituring na kampatid ang ating kapwa,” President Aquino told the press.
Prior to the conference, Acting Secretary of the Department of Health (DOH) Dr. Janette Garin briefed the nation on the current status of the Ebola virus and what it is to know about the deadly disease.