MANILA, July 29 (Mabuhay) — Despite the spike in confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases in the country, Malacañang on Wednesday said the fight against the novel coronavirus remains “successful”.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said there are improvements in the government’s Covid-19 response because the country’s mortality rate is “still way below” the global average.

Roque made the statement when quizzed if he believes the government is failing to address the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We’ve been rather successful because we have limited mortality rate, and in the end, that’s what matters – how many people perished because of the pandemic,” he said. “The mortality rate is below world average. We’re more or less around two percent. So, we can’t say we’ve been an absolute failure.”

In his fifth and penultimate State-of-the-Nation Address delivered on Monday, President Rodrigo Duterte presented his administration’s plans on how to help the country recover from the Covid-19 crisis.

Critics, however, claimed that Duterte failed to present clear plans for the country’s recovery from Covid-19.

Touting the effectiveness of the government’s Covid-19 interventions, Roque said the implementation of measures against the novel coronavirus has prevented the surge in cases to up to 3.5 million, as predicted by the University of the Philippines (UP) OCTA research group.

“I keep telling the people that do not forget that the same UP OCTA research group, that is so accurately forecasting the numbers of Covid-19, forecasted it should have been 3.5 million and even more by now, [had we] not resort to the steps that we did,” Roque said.

‘100%’ cooperation

Roque also believed that the country’s fight against Covid-19 is successful because of the cooperation of majority of Filipinos.

“We are achieving great stride,” he said. “So people, let’s give ourselves credit because it’s not just government that succeeded. It’s the Filipino people [who] succeeded to be where we are.”

Roque, however, acknowledged that the government needs the “100 percent” cooperation of all Filipinos to stop the spread of Covid-19 in the country.

He reiterated that the public needs to continue following the government’s call to observe strict physical distancing, wash their hands, and use face masks to prevent the further transmissions of the disease.

“It’s still not [observed] 100 percent. We should strive for 100 percent wearing of mask and 100 percent washing of hands and social distancing,” Roque said.

As of Tuesday, the Philippines has reported 83,673 Covid-19 infections. (MNS)

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