Palace spokesman Harry Roque on Thursday urged Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo to “just ask” about the government’s efforts to address the Covid-19 pandemic, after Robredo criticized the lack of urgency in crisis response.

“I invite the good Vice President to just ask what she needs to know, we will respond. That’s part of my duty as spokesperson,” Roque said in a Palace briefing.

Robredo earlier in an interview over ANC’s Headstart said the country was facing “gaps” brought about by the government’s lack of urgent response.

“My sense is that we did not act urgently kaya nararamdaman natin ngayon iyong mga gaps kasi naging complacent tayo… [A]nd hindi ito maganda in the sense that China was supposedly an example already for us. We should have learned the lessons of Wuhan already,” she added.

She also questioned the slow procurement of personal protective equipment.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III previously justified the delay by saying that the country did not act late, but other countries just acted faster.

“‘Yong late at early kasi, relative iyon. Kapag naunahan tayo ng iba, late pa rin tayo,” Robredo said.

Roque said the government’s response, especially the lockdowns it had imposed, helped minimize the number of cases.

“Buong mundo po – we’re far from beating COVID-19. I hope the Philippines can break this worldwide trend. Pero kagaya po nang sinabi ng UP at ni Secretary Vince [Dizon] kanina, milyun-milyon po dapat ang nagkasakit na kung hindi po tayo nag-lockdown, at minimum 200,000 na po ang namatay sana kung hindi tayo nag-lockdown,” he explained.

The country had 142 Covid-19 cases prior to President Rodrigo Duterte’s order placing Luzon island under lockdown.

Today, June 25, 100 days after the since the start of the country’s quarantine measures, the country’s total cases rose to 33,069 with 8,910 recoveries and 1,212 deaths. John Ezekiel J. Hirro