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Senator Bong Go Helps Gensan Fisherfolks

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Senator Bong Go Helps Gensan Fisherfolks
« on: October 29, 2020, 11:18:32 PM »
Various vulnerable sectors in General Santos City receive aid from Bong Go as he reaffirms commitment to ensure poor Filipinos’ access to COVID-19 vaccine

As the health crisis still threatens the lives of many Filipinos, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go continues to deliver assistance to the poor and the vulnerable, such as the market vendors, fisherfolk, and fish port workers in General Santos City on Tuesday, October 27 in two separate distribution activities.

He also provided aid to patients and medical frontliners of the Dr. Jorge P. Royeca Hospital, which also hosts a Malasakit Center whose launching the Senator personally attended last February 2019.

Go personally went to both distribution activities in the public market and fish port. The first distribution activity conducted benefited 350 fisherfolk and fish port workers, held at General Santos Fish Port.

The second distribution activity was for 306 market vendors from the General Santos City Public Market. It was held at the Fatima National High School Gym in the afternoon.

Go’s staff then proceeded to DJRH to distribute assistance to 62 patients who are currently admitted in the hospital.

All beneficiaries in the three distribution activities were provided with food packs, meals, masks, face shields, medicine packs and vitamins. The activity was conducted while adhering to necessary health and safety protocols to avoid the further spread of COVID-19.

“Gamitin ninyo ang mga binigay naming masks at face shields para maiwasan natin ang transmission ng sakit. Delikado ang panahon ngayon kaya magtulungan tayo at sundin ang mga health protocols na binigay ng gobyerno, tulad ng mag-social distancing,” Go said.

Due to limited transportation and the need to commute to work, Go also provided bicycles to selected beneficiaries during all distribution activities.

He also gave away tablets to another set of selected recipients of the first and second distribution activities for their children to use in the online learning platform.

“May ibinigay akong mga tablets. Para sa mga bata, mag-aral kayong mabuti. Ito lamang ang aming kasiyahan bilang mga magulang at puhunan ninyo na rin sa inyong kinabukasan,” Go said.

Personnel from different government agencies were also present during the first two distribution activities.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development provided financial assistance to all beneficiaries through their program which intends to help individuals in crisis situations. The patients in DJRH were also given medical assistance by the agency.

The Department of Trade and Industry, Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Labor and Employment profiled and assessed qualified beneficiaries in the first two distribution activities for their own respective livelihood programs.

In addition, the DTI will provide entrepreneurial starter kits, and DOLE will provide livelihood packages, especially for disadvantaged or displaced workers. On the other hand, the DA will provide zero-percent interest loans under their credit policy program and also distributed vegetable seeds.

“Tulong ito mula sa gobyerno. Huwag kayo mawalan ng pag-asa dahil bagamat nahihirapan kayo, hindi kayo iiwan at pababayaan ng gobyernong palaging nagmamalasakit sa inyo lalo na sa oras ng inyong pangangailangan,” he said.

Addressing the country’s current health situation, Go assured beneficiaries that once the vaccine for COVID-19 is made available, the poor and the vulnerable will be prioritized and be given access.

“Magtiis lang tayo ng konti. Kapag may vaccine na, sisiguraduhin namin ni Pangulong Duterte na i-prioritize ang mga mahihirap at vulnerable,” Go said.

As the Senate Chair of the Committee on Health, Go told reporters in an interview that the process to acquire the COVID-19 vaccine is underway as clinical trials are to be conducted.

“‘Yan po ang pinaghahandaan ngayon at parating iniisip ng ating Pangulo. Kakakausap ko lang sa kanya... Napag-usapan po na ‘yung vaccine, kakausapin niya po ‘yung Ambassador ng China kung paano po mapabilis at maumpisahan ang clinical trial ng Chinese vaccine,” he said.

“Not only vaccines from China but as well as from other countries. Ang importante dito ay safe po, ulitin ko, dapat safe ang vaccine na ituturok sa bawat Pilipino,” he added.

The country is currently collaborating with various bilateral and multilateral partners for the development and equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.

The Philippines is also a participant in the World Health Organization Solidarity Trial for vaccines and treatment drugs where a vaccine list will soon be released, and start of clinical trials will start in the country on December.

In addition, the country is also participating in the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access (COVAX) Facility, as endorsed by the Department of Science and Technology on October 9.

Independent clinical trials for potential COVID-19 treatments are alsobeing conducted and the government is eyeing on public-private partnership schemes for vaccine self-sufficiency. (Cathy Apelacio / PIA)

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