The presidential adviser for entrepreneurship said the poor should be allowed to go back to work because they are “somehow resilient to the virus” and those who are sick should be separated from the healthy through isolation.

Presidential Adviser Joey Concepcion said in an online seminar that he talked to those involved in relief operations in poor communities about infection rates where they bring aid. They were “unanimous in saying that it’s very minimal,” he said.

“Many of the poor are somehow resilient to the virus,” Concepcion said.

“Maybe because they are so used to so much exposure that they have a better immunity than us who are sheltered in well-protected environments,” he said.

“That’s the same case I make why [we should] shelter and lockdown the healthy when we should, you know, isolate the infected. Moving forward, that should be the case. That should be the strategy,” he added.

Concepcion, president and chief executive officer of major food and beverage company RFM Corp., was one of the panelists in a free online seminar hosted by the Shareholders’ Association of the Philippines on Wednesday (April 29).

The seminar was themed “Economic Recovery through Fiscal Stimulus,” and featured lawmakers who are proposing ways to restart the economy.

These speakers were Rep. Stella Quimbo, Rep. Joey Salceda and Rep. Sharon Garin.

When asked for his reaction on the speakers’ notes, Concepcion said there should be emphasis on the importance of massive testing, which had been the speakers’ common premise for reopening the economy.

Concepcion is leading a private sector initiative, called Project Ark, which would have employers, on a voluntary basis, bankroll the cost of coronavirus testing.

Before the Enhanced Community Quarantine had been extended to May 15 in selected areas, Concepcion had been a strong advocate of village-based quarantines, arguing villages with no COVID-19 cases should not be penalized.

Edited by TSB


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