Malacañang on Monday rejected Interior Undersecretary Martin Diño’s proposal for a “shame campaign” against quarantine violators, saying it went against the Data Privacy Act.

“Rerespetuhin pa rin natin ang privacy ng mga magkakasakit bagama’t kinakailangan i-report sa DOH (Department of Health) iyong mga nagkakasakit, pero hindi naman po para isapubliko ang kanilang mga pangalan,” Palace spokesman Harry Roque said in a virtual presser.

Roque clarified that the proposed “shame campaign” was not a policy of the Department of Interior and Local Government.

On July 17, Diño said a “shame campaign” was needed to run along with the government’s Oplan Kalinga, which aims to send “mild” or “asymptomatic” Covid-19 cases to government quarantine facilities.

“Kaya nga ngayon, tama nga rin siguro na magkaroon na din tayo ng shame campaign dahil hindi na biro itong Covid,” he said in an interview with Radyo 5.

Diño has released a statement claiming he was “misquoted.”

“While I did I mention the need to launch a shame campaign, my suggestion was directed not against Covid-19 patients but against quarantine violators such as those who still refuse to wear face masks, observe physical distancing, and abide by the minimum health standards set by the DOH,” he said.

Diño, interior undersecretary for barangay affairs, added that he would “never personally champion a mentality of shaming Covid patients.” and that he would “always uphold the rights of patients especially during a global pandemic.”

“Nonetheless, I sincerely regret the confusion brought about by this issue…. At this time of pandemic, we should help one another bring out the good news and positivity among our people,” he said. John Ezekiel J. Hirro