A Philippine lawyer and former senatorial candidate, Larry Gadon, who opposes the compulsory use of face masks has been slammed after he was snapped wearing a mask incorrectly on the visor of his face shield.
Gadon was snapped wearing a face mask taped to the inside of his face shield in public last week, and even insisted that masks in open spaces are not necessary and ineffective in combating the spread of COVID-19.
The Philippine lawyer said: “I don’t believe in [a] mask outdoors, [a] face shield is okay. Masks may be good for small enclosed places like elevators or small conference rooms…In my case, the mask is only for a show because stores will not allow entry if you don’t have [a] mask.
“If [a] mask is really effective, how come there are more than 100,000 people afflicted with COVID? And more than 2,000 dead victims?”
He also referred to the virus as “curable” and said “the government has overreacted to the COVID paranoia”.
The lawyer last year drew attention during his senatorial campaign when he called a student “stupid” for calling him out for his defence of the Marcos family, a political dynasty in the Philippines, who he denies were corrupt.
But local news media Coconuts said it was Gadon that was now being branded stupid.
In response to his mask snap, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire was among those that slammed the outspoken lawyer for endangering the public.
She said: “First of all, this is no joking matter. Everybody knows that a lot of people are dying and getting sick, the economy is suffering, and the only way for us to fight and to overcome this situation is for all to cooperate.”
Vergeire added: “To those who are public figures, you have a role when you spread misinformation. We are already having a hard time enforcing the minimum health standards, so we seek the help of everybody in giving the accurate information.”
The World Health Organization (WHO) has advised the use of face masks in public along with other unprecedented measures for the novel coronavirus pandemic.
However, the WHO then said that healthy people do not need to wear face masks to prevent the spread and later changed its position.
Wearing face masks in public is mandatory in all parts of the Philippines, with President Rodrigo Duterte ordering the arrest of all violators.
The ViralTab page is created by and dedicated to professional, independent freelance journalists. It is a place for us to showcase our work. When our news is sold to our media partners, we will include the link here.