Presidential mouthpiece Harry Roque on Friday, September 10, said he got ’emotional’ when he castigated health care workers, which resulted in him getting called out by celebs, personalities, and even medical professionals.
Earlier on Thursday, September 9, Roque scolded the HCWs after he heard the proposal of Dr. Maricar Limpin, president of the Philippine College of Physicians and Dr. Antonio Dans, convenor of the Healthcare Professionals Alliance Against COVID-19 to impose a two-week hard lockdown.
“Do not sit there as if you are the only ones right. We’re trying to achieve total health. Who wants COVID to kill people?
“Are you saying that only medical frontliners are concerned about the health of the people? We all want to save lives.
“We’re crying out loud. No one in the government wants a single life lost. No one! How dare you think that we are not considering steps to prevent the loss of lives?” an agitated Roque said in a video.
After seeing how government officials behave against these modern-day heroes, Kapamilya actress Agot Isidro reminded Roque how he was taken care of by medical professionals after getting infected by COVID-19 twice.
Dalawang beses ka na nagka-COVID. Kung di dahil sa mga HCW, ewan ko kung ano nangyari sa yo.
Maybe third time’s the charm.
— Agot Isidro (@agot_isidro) September 10, 2021
Comedian and director John ‘Sweet’ Lapus even poked fun at Roque’s face saying that the Secretary may have undergone cosmetic surgery given that his forehead did not move while ranting.
Parang di gumagalaw ang noo nya? NagpaBotox kaya? 🤪 https://t.co/upRX09QcJI
— John Lapus (@KorekKaJohn) September 10, 2021
Talent manager Ogie Diaz sarcastically urged health workers to try and understand the spokesperson.
Sa mga health workers natin, kayo na po ang umunawa sa kanya. https://t.co/J1uqWuDwfP
— ogie diaz (@ogiediaz) September 10, 2021
TV personality Kiko Rustia advised the public not to vote for Roque for any government position because of his arrogance and unprofessionalism.
Wag iboto ang gago na to SA KAHIT NA ANONG GOVERNMENT POSITION sa 2022 AT MAGPAKAILAN MAN.
Hindi dapat nasa gobyerno tong arroganteng animal na to. https://t.co/JevDJtsgsw
— kiko rustia (@kikorustia) September 10, 2021
Another TV personality Justin Dizon also took a swipe at Roque by concluding that he should ‘kiss his dreams goodbye’ as the spokesperson aims to run for senator in the 2022 elections.
HAHAHAHA bye-bye na sa pangarap niya maging senador.
Even if you see him everyday, he is not really likable and is super annoying. Tapos ngayon viral pa ang paninigaw niya sa mga doctors. https://t.co/Tc1TBc9Ztn
— Justin Dizon (@iamjustindizon) September 10, 2021
Roque also drew the ire of medical professionals as they criticized him on twitter as well.
Then try harder. Kasi obviously hindi enough. Huwag mong kalimutan na madami kang pasyenteng na overtake sa room prioritization nung nagka COVID ka. Dapat sa kalsada ka nilagay kasi basura ka. https://t.co/SlwPyEsn4D
— Tom (@MATom_MD) September 10, 2021
Wala bang puputok ng ugat diyan yoohoo Taning https://t.co/5aPkM2GXAE
— Raquel Fortun (@Doc4Dead) September 10, 2021
Blatantly disrespectful Mr. Roque. Terrible person. https://t.co/YxlkQfTh3a
— Dr. Gia Sison (@giasison) September 10, 2021
"The reason for anger is always fear."
– Eloise Lownsbery https://t.co/Gvz04iYX6r
— Iris Thiele Isip Tan MD, MSc (@endocrine_witch) September 10, 2021
Nasira ang araw ko sa video ni Roque😡
— DocHappy🎗 (@iamtix95) September 10, 2021
Akala ko ba kalma lang. 🙄
What do you want us to do, praise the govt for their 'impeccable' covid 19 response? 🙃 https://t.co/W3XwdHtI21
— Kenn Samala (@Keniji) September 10, 2021
Meanwhile, Dr. Limpin, who was the target of Roque’s outburst, was shocked at how he behaved, even described the reaction as uncalled for.
“I cannot understand and very surprised that that is his reaction, wala akong sinabi that can be interpreted as being arrogant,” she told Super Radyo dzBB.
“I cannot understand really what brought about the reaction and for me, that is an uncalled-for remark.”
Dr. Leni Jara of SHAPE UP glared at Roque’s harsh comment saying that his statement was rude.
“Pwede ba?! Tumigil ka. Sumusobra ka na. Binastos mo na ang nagtatrabaho at nagliligtas ng mga pasyente.
“Binastos mo! You should apologize to them. You owe them an apology,” Dr. Jara scowled during an interview with ABS-CBN.
Roque apologizes for being ’emotional’
A day after things blew up, the Spokesperson issued an apology and said that he got carried away when he heard the proposal of Dr. Limpin and Dr. Dans.
“Kinukumpirma ko po na tayo’y naging emosyonal at pasensiya naman po kayo at tao lamang,” he started.
However, he only sought forgiveness for his behavior but insisted that his message was not wrong.
“That’s the first time that I lost my bearing in an IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases) meeting, but as I said I may apologize and I have in fact apologized for the manner but never for the message.”
According to Roque, he got angry when the health experts emphasized the need for lockdowns and were not thinking about the country’s general populace.
“Nagalit po talaga ako dahil sa tingin ko panahon na po na marinig ang inyong boses ng IATF. Tama na po ang lockdown, magtatagal po talaga ang COVID hindi lang sa Pilipinas kundi sa buong daigdig,” he reasoned.
The Philippines continued to experience a surge of COVID cases and as of this writing, over 27,887 confirmed cases were recorded, climbing to a total of 2,161,892, with 61 deaths, and 12,287 recoveries.