Palace warns hoarders of alcohol, masks, basic commodities amid COVID-19 situation will be arrested

Malacanang slammed those people who are taking advantage of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) situation in the country hoarding basic commodities and selling them at a very high price saying they will be arrested and face jail time for their actions.

“The Office of the President hereby gives warning to those hoarding vital commodities, which create a hike in the prices, as well as selling them beyond their regular prices, that their actions will be dealt with accordingly in pursuance of public safety and order,” Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement.

Several unscrupulous sellers were reported hoarding supplies like face masks and alcohols and sell them double or triple from the regular prices.

“Those who unscrupulously take advantage of the health crisis will also be arrested and dealt with in accordance with law,” he added.

Hand sanitizer and disinfectant | Photo from ABS-CBN news

Due to the surge in the number of cases of COVID-19 in the country, reports in social media that a lot of consumers continue to stock up on key necessities such as disinfectants and foods.

He also called on the public to refrain from panic-buying and advised to just buy what they need this came after the reports of hoarding.

“The Palace appeals to our people to buy only what they need. There are reports of panic-buying in some supermarkets, groceries, or pharmacies. This would only result in undue hoarding and price increases,” he said.

Panelo also reminded the public to cooperate as the government addressed the threat of the disease in the country urging them to observe and practice the protocols on personal hygiene and social distancing established by the Department of Health (DOH) to help contain the disease.

“We cannot stress enough the importance of everyone’s cooperation during this time. Let us not circulate unverified information that may only cause unnecessary anxiety among the members of our respective communities and instead maintain good hygiene and observe proper etiquette at all times,”

He assured the public that the government is doing all the necessary and appropriate measures to contain the virus in order to protect the people from being contaminated.

“The Palace also reiterates its appeal to our countrymen to stay calm yet vigilant, as well as not to believe or spread any false information on Covid-19,

“The resort to hate messages or posts in social media channels and other platforms will do more harm than good, especially during this time which should be seen as an opportunity for the Filipinos to unite in the face of the health threat,” he said.

“We similarly ask media outlets to refrain from exaggerating or amplifying reports that may only affect the mindset of the public and instead help in disseminating helpful tips on how to prevent the spread of the virus,” he added.

President Rodrigo Duterte earlier declared a state of public health emergency throughout the Philippines, allowing the government to impose price freeze on all basic commodities for 60 days.


Source: Manila Bulletin

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