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Politicians take advantage of COVID-19 to campaign for themselves

Several politicians were called out after plastering their names and faces on the supplies given to citizens to fight COVID-19.

  • Netizens stated that they should not do such as the funds they’re using are the taxpayers’ money.
  • An Anti-Epal Bill was filed last year to prohibit such things. 

In the time of the COVID-19 pandemic, cooperation and donations are needed more than ever.

As the government declared an enhanced community quarantine on the whole island of Luzon, many citizens are hoping for help from their local government unit (LGU) for sanitizing products and basic necessities.

There are those LGUs who don’t need to be reminded of what to do and how to govern. But there are also those who do their job just to campaign for themselves.

One example is a tweet from Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte. “I have decided to distribute these essential health items…” she wrote along with a photo of the health items she’s giving away.

Netizens began criticizing her and her decision to include the hashtag #JoyParaSaBayan in her tweet that many deemed was unnecessary.

They also pointed out that she should not have had to “decide” to give out essentials as it is supposed to be her job to serve the public as mayor.

Caloocan Congressman Along Malapitan was also called out for plastering his face on the bottles of alcohol they gave away.

Manila counselor Princess Abante and congressman Benny Abante were also caught including their names and faces on the gallons of alcohol distributed to the city’s barangay halls.

The Anti-Epal Bill

Last year, Surigao del Norte 2nd District Rep. Robert Ace Barbers filed the House Bill No. 71 or the “Anti-Epal Bill” which seeks to prohibit and penalize government officials who post their names and faces on government projects funded with taxpayers’ money.

“Crediting individuals instead of the government on any public work, project, assistance or program is unethical and a manifestation of the nation’s deeply troubling political patronage,” Barbers stated.

“This system of political advertising also promotes corruption among our officials, sending a wrong sense of accomplishment among the citizens.”

Written by J M

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