MANILA (Philippine Daily Inquirer/ANN): More than 500 individuals from various fields have signed a petition calling for the resignation of President Rodrigo Duterte over the government’s pandemic response.
Those who signed the petition, posted on change.org, include medical frontliners, members of the academe, artists, and journalists, youth leaders, religious leaders, lawyers, civic leaders, and businessmen.
“We deserve and demand better. Our country is on the brink of disaster. At the time the nation needs him most, Duterte is a total failure as a leader. He must step down, ” the petition read.
According to the petition, Duterte’s leadership over the past five years has been marred with “incompetence, brutality, corruption and kowtowing to foreign powers.”
“The Covid-19 pandemic only magnified his failures of leadership, ” the petition noted.
The petition further noted that the government’s pandemic response was “unforgivable, ” saying that the country’s public health system “is at breaking point” while the economy “ is just as bad.”
“As much as the Duterte regime has relied on force to combat the pandemic, it rejects sound scientific advice for a comprehensive health crisis program, ” the petition read.
“The President’s ‘czars, ’ economic advisers, and generals leading the Covid-19 Inter-Agency Task Force have deliberately and recklessly endangered our people with their failure to deliver a credible, competent, compassionate, and science-based response to the pandemic, ” it added.
The petition further noted the country is in need of competent leadership that can ramp up free mass testing, expand contact tracing, and build the isolation and treatment facilities to strengthen the healthcare system.
But instead of ensuring the safety of Filipinos from the virus, the petition said Duterte “remains obsessed with the drug war, attacking his critics and ordering the deaths of those he considers his enemies”.
“We do not need a leader who fuels fear or division. We need one who can unite all Filipinos of various beliefs in this one big fight to save the nation.
"Duterte is not this leader. He has done too much damage to our people. He will never change. He must resign, ” it noted. - Philippine Daily Inquirer/ANN