By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
Former congressman Alfredo Benitez told critics to offer solutions after drawing flak from some sectors that he should be blamed for the non-approval of the national Inter-Agency Task Force of the 4-day timeout weekend mass testing program.
“To our critics, may you emulate our frontliners. Instead of maligning us, help us. I am not competing with anyone nor have any personal agenda out of this. Covid-19 is our common enemy. Let’s focus on how to combat this crisis,” Benitez said on a post on his Facebook account on Saturday.
“If our direction serves, in your mind, a greater good, then join us. If not, then speak out and offer actual solutions,” the Negros Occidental Provincial Capitol consultant said.
Meanwhile, Benitez congratulated the sectors who supported the timeout weekend.
“We called for a timeout weekend to facilitate mass testing for everyone’s benefit, not for any one’s personal gain. Our LGUs mobilized resources to make this happen. Healthcare workers have answered our call to swab and test people despite the risk from exposure. Businesses have also voluntarily suspended operations,” he said.
He also thanked them for their sacrifice and support, as well as the public for their trust and cooperation.
Benitez is considered as the brainchild of the planned 4-day timeout weekend which is aimed at curbing the local transmission of Covid-19 in Bacolod City and Negros Occidental.
However, while he got approval from the regional IATF, the national IATF thumbed down his idea to have a four-day lockdown.
The plan aims to test 10,000 suspected Covid-19 and their close contacts in Bacolod City, Silay City, Talisay City, Bago City, and the town of Murcia./DGB, WDJ