Social media was abuzz with government’s sudden National Capital Region (NCR) ‘general community quarantine’ cum lockdown announcement on March 12. It came without guidelines and the only solution then-presented (even until now?) was to lock ourselves away.
President Rodrigo Duterte made two public announcements—that one on March 12 and another on March 16 placing the whole Luzon under ‘enhanced community quarantine’ cum ‘total lockdown’ (in the words of DILG Sec. Eduardo Año) that was somewhat digested in the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) press con that ended with only two hours left before the Luzon lockdown started.
Every day from that day up to this day, there is a nightly vigil for briefings on the clarifications and changes still being made on the guidelines. So many were affected—suffered, if you may—stranded on checkpoints, doubly paying for rebooking flights, walking two to four hours to work and then home. Those affected and those who did not quite agree with the hapless (but could have been avoidable) turn of events expressed their opinions on social media platforms such as Twitter. It was as expected since under lockdown, most are locked in on the internet, Netflix or social media.
To say these late and ever-changing orders and guidelines created confusion and panic would not be exaggerating—there was panic-buying and mass exodus from NCR before March 15. There was panic-buying until March 17.
Since March 12, there were two camps between favoring the lockdown as the solution offered by the government to curb the disease and to just obey, while others are looking for ‘medical solutions’ that continue to be lacking in the government’s set of solutions to the COVID-19 spread and seeking the answers to what will happen to the less fortunate during the lockdown order.
In pushing the point to just follow the government and stop criticizing, “anong ambag nyo?” [what is your contribution] have been hurled at those still raising questions and criticisms.
so this is our President whom you bashed, risking his health for us. ONE MORE TIME " ANO BANG NAI AMBAG MO?" https://t.co/ZVta3NYzsE
— abalimbingan (@norphoria) March 17, 2020
WE NEED MORE OF THIS!!!! SALUTE TO ALL THIS KIND HEARTED INDIVIDUAL WHO CHOOSE TO HELP DESPITE OF THE CRISIS WE ARE FACING RIGHT NOW. DI KATULAD NG IBA, NA WALA NAMANG AMBAG PURO REKLAMO PA HEHEZ. GOD BLESS U KUYA!!!💙 https://t.co/gFCu62HPrm
— Jenny Lyn (@amjustjenny) March 18, 2020
Call me DDS or even MARCOS APOLOGIES but I'm not gonna let my guard down kse sila may na ambag sa lipunan yet kayo wala u all just babble and talk shits cause u have a bias. I amm Not gonna dictate those who have done something for the country.
— Dyakeeé🌤️ (@aymjakeyyy) March 14, 2020
People are calling out the government for solutions, actions and accountability.
Those who favored the lockdown or staying at home have been called out for privilege, for they have the home, money, food and resources to stock up and stay in. “Bakit di na lang kayo sumunod? (why don’t you just obey?)–the poor need to earn the money with which they buy their food daily.
Hi, ito po yung sinasabi ko why the lockdown is problematic. Anong ambag ko? Ideas and questions that are critical and crucial to improve our solutions. https://t.co/RdgnUJQV82
— Wayne (@winteruyseco) March 16, 2020
“Sigeg yawyaw uy”
“Way gamit mag yawyaw”
“Follow nalang mo”
“Unsay ambag ninyo”
FRIENDLY reminder that ppl complain not solely for themselves but mostly for the majority of our people such as the poor, the less unfortunate, the homeless, the ones who wont be heard by the govt ~
— Kate Enad ♡ (@enadkk) March 18, 2020
"Wala ka namang ambag sa bansa dami mo pa kuda"
I believe all of us has contributions in this country. We are directly and indirectly paying tax which contributes to the public service of this community. Everyone has the right to kuda. If you can't take it, leave it. 🙂 simple.
— 𝔫𝔦𝔠𝔬𝔩𝔢 (@yoitspaaat) March 17, 2020
ah yes, the greatest hit in the album “edi sana ikaw ang nagpresidente” with the bonus track “wala ka namang ambag”, i love this song 🤩 https://t.co/CNCeCMcdmI
— vivienne 🖋 seryes (@dubumochi) March 15, 2020
Ok, let's answer. Ano na ambag ko?
Well, I am no waste of my scholarship, I exercise basic human rights, and I make sure that I am educated enough when I criticize political issues.
Not easy to run a country, true. But it's also not easy to stay ignorant when you're educated. https://t.co/2fwgcZwifp
— aJaja (@klowidulos) March 17, 2020
By responding with "edi sana ikaw na lang presidente!" or "ano ba ambag mo sa lipunan?" DDS discourage critiques of their government. They want everyone to be as compliant as they are and also make everyone think that here are no better alternatives out there.
— les fleurs du mal (@decadentdespair) March 15, 2020
To those na agitated when we vent thru socmed how frustrated we are to this govt, we all have the right to do so. Anong ambag namin? Ang magbayad ng buwis na ginagamit sa maling paraan. So enough of your “sumunod nalang” bullshit BECAUSE WE ALL DESERVE A BETTER GOVERNMENT
— Jm Tagumpay (@jmtagumpay) March 15, 2020
It’s not the end. Lahat may ambag, buwis man o serbisyo. Lahat may karapatang magtanong at humiling ng nararapat. Speak up, especially if you voted for him. The success of the government lies in airing demands for their accountability and feedback from those they must serve—US. pic.twitter.com/Gy4Lw1qUB0
— Mikhail Quijano (@mikhailquijano) March 17, 2020
Some use wit to expose the ironies of the current situation.
Treasurer ba ng classroom tong mga DDS baket laging nanghihingi ng ambag
— SMILEY CYRUS (@MINGAWKU) March 14, 2020
To those asking: we decided to release Bar Boys for free: TBA and Cinema One graciously released their films. We thought it was the right thing to do during this time of intense boredom bec of the community quarantine. Hopefully it helps.
Ambag namin. jk hahaha
— Kip Oebanda (@kipoebanda) March 16, 2020
Some are actually rallying contributions.
word of the year: ambag
ustokoyan hahaha. let's donate to the urban poor too if we can!! they're the most vulnerable with their livelihood affected bc of the lockdown pic.twitter.com/Z71b8T3nYW
— kristel (@kyungstel) March 17, 2020
DDS and insensitive privileged people be tellin us "wala naman kayong ambag"
Yet, they don't even initiate!
Anw, check it here!!! https://t.co/EpogTzK0Dh
— Millennials PH #BotoKaGhorl (@MillennialsPH_) March 18, 2020
answering the infamous "aNo bAnG aMbAg mO sA LiPuNan" quote:
I, alongside the founder/s of #MayTwentyAko movement are asking for your kind donations that would bring a big impact for the true victims of this pandemic: the poor
information down below (please spread 👉👈) pic.twitter.com/E6k4xn4Vrk
— Kristine Espejon #MassTestingNowPH (@kristineespejon) March 17, 2020
Some press cons and interviews showed that the avoidance of the calling the situation a ‘lockdown’ or ‘total lockdown’ was so that people do not think it too restrictive or to think this a martial law. One Cabinet secretary, meanwhile, said that this is not a lockdown because in a lockdown, like what was done in other countries, the government provides food, salary, everything their constituents need while on lockdown to be able to properly enforce it.
And yep, that’s probably it. For the middle class or ‘maykaya’, ‘kanya kanya’ the Cabinet Secretary said so himself. And for other needs like food assistance to the poor, the local government units are expected to provide—and that is based on their budget and capacity. Basically, the national government have yet to commit to provide most of the urgent needs of the poor and the needs that will arise over the next four weeks.
Tatay Digong cares:
1. Passes the bucket to LGUs to tap calamity fund for food assistance
2. No plan for PUV drivers, poor
3. No plan for mass testing
4. Appeals for compassion from private sector
Teka, ano ambag ng national government? #COVID19PHQuarantine
— lenolea (@LenOlea) March 16, 2020
So, “anong ambag nyo sa gobyerno?” Whatever the government is doing is not their contribution. It is their job, otherwise why would they have the mandate to lead and decide for everyone if it is not their job or if they are not doing their job? They are even doing their job using the people’s money. Hindi nila ito pagkukusa o kawanggawa. (This is not their initiative or charity.)
Stop giving us that "Ikaw anong ambag mo?" mamser we're all here trying to make the world a better place in our own ways. Activism is a right. We are where we are today because of activism.
— Lish (@Awishamazing) March 14, 2020
Ambag? Paying taxes, not spreading fake news, and criticizing what's wrong and suggesting what should be done is enough contribution. Without us, this government cannot move. Don't defend this shitshow. It's our rights they have to protect, and it's us they're supposed to serve. pic.twitter.com/cWWRBUYMHO
— Raphael Pascual (@matteo_aquino) March 14, 2020
If you think about it, criticism is also an ambag to governance. How else would improvements be made if shortcomings are not pointed out? Passive citizenry, however, is not an ambag. Nobody has any use for floating dead fish.
— Bern (@prodeeboy) March 17, 2020
And it is our charge as citizens to speak truth to power for the good of all.
The essence of democracy is being guaranteed the right to express one’s thoughts whether or not there is a crisis. When government falls short or makes mistakes, or appears so, it is the duty of a citizen to criticize. Iyan ang ambag niya sa kanyang bayan.
— N F Rodriguez Jr (@junrodriguezph) March 17, 2020