#ProtectVico trends as netizens defend Pasig mayor’s coronavirus measures

Nicolas Czar Antonio

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

#ProtectVico trends as netizens defend Pasig mayor’s coronavirus measures
'Vico Sotto is on the ground in Pasig. He knows what people need,' says one netizen

MANILA, Philippines – Netizens rallied behind Pasig City mayor Vico Sotto after administration officials and supporters blasted him for allowing tricycle drivers to operate while Luzon was on lockdown.

On Thursday, March 19, the Twitter hashtag #ProtectVico trended and has since garnered almost 33,000 tweets, mostly in support of Sotto who has led numerous “pro-people” initiatives in Pasig City.

A day after the start of the Luzon lockdown, Sotto urged national government to allow tricycles to continue operations, citing health workers and people in need of medical attention, for example, who have no cars and could not all be accommodated in the local government-provided shuttles.  (READ: Vico Sotto urges nat’l gov’t to allow tricycles during coronavirus lockdown)

On Wednesday, March 18, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles rejected Sotto’s appeal, saying that he could not see how social distancing can be practiced in a tricycle. (READ: Pasig to comply with ban on tricycles during coronavirus lockdown)

Interior undersecretary Jonathan Malaya also said on Thursday that Sotto should just be more creative in dealing with the transportation problem.

This did not sit well with netizens who pointed out that allowing tricycles on the streets was actually based on a risk assessment study conducted by the city’s local government.

Actress and comedian Ethel Booba, who has since gained a formidable online following from her comical way of criticizing the government, also chimed in on the conversation and pointed out an obvious way to address the supposed social distancing concern in tricycles. 


Even pro-administration blogger and Overseas Workers Welfare Administration deputy executive director Mocha Uson got involved and insinuated that Sotto was just being childish and needed to heed the national government’s commands – a comment which drew flak online. Uson clarified later, that what was posted on her blog was not her opinion and was posted by another admin of her page.

Netizens immediately defended the popular Pasig City mayor, with many posting memes from the film Four Sisters and a Wedding where Sotto’s mom Coney Reyes and Uson starred together. 


Some netizens also pointed out that Sotto’s clear-headed and empathetic way of handling the coronavirus threat is supposed to be the standard for any political leader, but Filipinos have just grown accustomed to their leaders’ incompetence. 

In the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, the Pasig City government led various initiatives to help workers cope with the community Luzon lockdown such as the early release of salaries for local government employees and the setting up of mobile kitchens for frontline workers.

Sotto also put up “sanitation tents” in key public areas. The city government also procured 3 drones to be used for aerial spraying of disinfectants.

Netizens pointed out that Pasig City’s example is something that local governments can replicate and enforce in their areas. They also discussed how local leaders are rising to the occassion, as the country grapples with impact of the coronavirus.



One netizen also pointed out that aside from Sotto, other mayors have been acting sensibly for their constituents in this time of crisis.

How is your local government faring so far? Tell us in the comments section or in the replies! – Rappler.com

Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.

Summarize this article with AI