Asians fear martial like-law treatment because of the coronavirus

Joan Nygbah

Everyone has now seen the mass panic in the media because of the widespread coronavirus. Many people seem to take the threat very seriously and decide to stay home and follow protocols while others tend to not take it as serious. Now in the Philippines a lot of people are in fear after president Rodrigo Duterte   threatened to have the country on a martial law like lock down.Protesters hold up pictures of victims of extrajudicial killings during Human Rights Day protests in Manila on Dec. 10, 2017.

“President Duterte said in a televised speech Thursday that he would order the military to enforce strict social distancing and curfews if the spread does not decrease”. President Duterte had already caused major concern in the media for his violation of human rights for his anti-drug crackdown which resulted in thousands of poor drug suspects killed. Some officials have already started implementing his rule by locking  up anyone that decided to violate curfew. Not only are they locking them up but in Santa Cruz laguna province, five kids were locked up in dog cages for violating the curfew.

There has been reports coming out about the beatings and shooting of police officers around the country, a police officer even came out and said on a radio report march 26 that “anyone out at the wrong time will be shot you sons of b***hes “. In the speech Duterte gave on Thursday he  stated “My orders to the police and military … if there is trouble or the situation arises where your life’s on the line, shoot them dead”. This speech was criticized by many for weeks and many people began to question the government’s authority over handling the virus. Another tragic incident occurred where a 63 year old farmer was shot dead after reportedly “refusing” to put on a face mask.

Many Filipinos have seen these incidents and have calledDuterte an outcast for the way he has been treating his citizens  instead of giving help to the many people that don’t have access to help as much as others. Matthew Jzac Kintanar, a student active in online protests states ““The government should prioritize mass testing, aggressive contact tracing, protection of front-liners, and economic support for all individuals, but instead we get threats.”While President Duterte might think he is helping limit  the spread of the virus by locking people up in jails he is actually contributing to the spread by ignoring the social distancing and packing citizens up close.Filipino policemen wearing face masks and gloves staff a checkpoint as authorities begin implementing lockdown measures in Las Pinas, Philippines, on March 16.

Not only have natives come out and protested or raised concern over the government’s use of measurements to tackle the virus but Europeans have always come out and spoken up. A group of 13 European union members have stated that they are deeply concerned about the measures used to tackle the virus and fearing that some powers could threaten democracy and fundamental rights. While these outcry’s are occurring Duterte feels no remorse over his  doings and constantly spreads wrongful measures to decrease the spread of COVID-19.

People of the  Philippians are dying because the government is more concerned about retaining control and power rather than protecting and serving the people of that country. Human rights organizations have expressed outrage from this tragedy and called the release of 21 protesters who were in custody.This disgusting and wrongful treatment of innocent humans in the Philippines  needs to stop and needs more people aware of what is going on in order to help those in need.