#KokoResign, #KokoKulong: Netizens rage vs Pimentel for breaking quarantine protocols
MANILA, Philippines – "Koko Pimentel" and #KokoResign – in reference to Senator Aquilino Pimentel III – topped Twitter's trending list Wednesday evening, March 25, as users raged against the lawmakers for breaking coronavirus quarantine protocols, exposing other people to risks.
Pimentel, head of President Rodrigo Duterte's PDP-Laban party and former Senate president, confirmed to reporters on Wednesday after that he had tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.
What incensed netizens was the fact that Pimentel, while waiting for the results of his virus test, got out of quarantine and accompanied to the Makati Medical Center his wife, who was about to give birth. He was at the hospital when he got the call from the Department of Health that he was positive for the virus. (READ: TIMELINE: When Pimentel tested for coronavirus)
At around 10 pm Wednesday, "Koko Pimentel" and #KokoResign had been tweeted 118,000 and 5,804 times, respectively.
Running the risk of wasting efforts
Following the deaths of a number of doctors who had attended to COVID-19 patients, citizens and frontliners have been strongly calling for people to just stay at home and do their part in preventing the spread of the virus. The national government has put in place a Luzon-wide lockdown since March 17.
The Makati Medical Center administration denounced in a statement the senators’ "irresponsible and reckless" behavior.
Netizens want to Pimentel to be held accountable, to resign from office, or even be arrested.
Sen. Koko Pimentel's actions are the epitome of selfish careleness and how ironic na ginamit mo pa yung #useyourKOKOte pero hindi mo naman naapply sa sarili mo, shame on you— Mika (@MikaBatocabe) March 25, 2020
You are being called out for being irresponsible Senator Koko Pimentel. It's not discrimination. The rule is simple: You are a PUI hence you should observe a strict 14-day HOME quarantine. Stay at home and DON'T GO OUTSIDE. You've put so many people at risk of getting infected!— (@pointdevue__) March 25, 2020
Read the rest of what online users have to say about Senator Pimentel here:#KokoResign - Curated tweets by rapplerdotcom
Actress Angel Locsin, known to be vocal on various issues, denounced Pimentel's actions. Replying to a netizen who had asked if she regretted campaigning for the senator in the past, she apologized and called it a “mortal sin.”
#KokoKulong tops trends as S&R speaks up
On Thursday morning, March 26, membership shopping center S&R confirmed that Pimental had been to its Bonifacio Global City branch on Monday, March 16.
Pimentel started showing mild symptoms of the disease on March 14.
JUST IN. S&R confirms that Senator Koko Pimentel was at the BGC branch on March 16, 2020. Employees who were in contact with Pimentel were placed in quarantine.— Rappler (@rapplerdotcom) March 26, 2020
TIMELINE: When Pimentel tested positive for coronavirus https://t.co/lNX1du4gmu pic.twitter.com/rgK2mwZoWP
Filipinos picked up the conversation again, reiterating calls for the senator’s resignation and arrest.
As of Thursday afternoon, #KokoKulong led the Philippines’ top trending list with over 15,000 tweets and counting.
One user asked, “Naiintindihan niya ba ‘yung repercussions ng pinaggagawa niya?” (Does he understand the repercussions of his actions?)
Another gave another meaning to the acronym PUI.
Others assert that “no one is above the law,” calling on the Department of Justice to hold the senator accountable.
It's time we do something about this situation already.— ราลโยน มารค(@itisrallion) March 26, 2020
AGAIN! NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW. EVEN THAT PIMENTEL. IT'S TIME FOR HIM TO FACE THE CONSEQUENCES OF HIS ACTION#KokoKulong #KokoResign #useyourKOKOte https://t.co/qXBS6wWBsR
Read more #KokoKulong tweets here:#KokoKulong - Curated tweets by rapplerdotcom
The Department of Justice had said that citizens could be arrested if they didn’t follow the guidelines for the lockdown. When it came to Pimentel, however, the agency said it "will not automatically investigate" the senator if no complaint is filed against him.
What do you think should be done about Senator Pimentel’s actions? Let us know. – Rappler.com