Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo and Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez on Sunday slammed the government’s handling of locally stranded individuals (LSIs) crowded at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in Manila.

Robredo and Gomez were disturbed by the images of hordes of people waiting at the complex without observing social distancing.

“Noong nakita ko iyong mga pictures noong isang gabi pa, talagang nanlumo ako na grabe iyong ine-exert natin na effort sa social distancing, pero tayo mismo iyong violators,” Robredo said in her Sunday radio program with broadcaster Ely Saludar.

She urged the government to fix “Hatid Tulong” program’s system of assisting LSIs by providing organized temporary shelters, making a schedule of free rides, and putting people in groups.

“Dapat sana mina-nage itong maayos. Inuna na iyong mga nasa shelters, in-organize,” Robredo said.

Gomez posted photos taken at the sports complex and wrote an open letter to President Rodrigo Duterte on his official Facebook page.

“Mr. President, this is the situation right now at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum for the Hatid Tulong program. Just in case no one is showing the real pictures (the other one from Inquirer was from yesterday’s news),” he wrote.

“No social distancing for more than two days! How many of them will be infected with Covid as they head home to their provinces this week because of this arrangement!?” he wrote.

Gomez concluded his letter by saying that whoever was heading the program should be fired for insensitivity and for having no regard for public health. Jessica Zapata

Preview image: Jojie Alcantara/Philippine Information Agency