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EDITORIAL: Advent of Truth

Strange as it may seem, fate has a way to manifest its presence. Usually it comes in tandem with the moment of truth, no matter how cunning entrepreneurial ingenuity is resorted to. This holds true to the circumstances surrounding the use of face shields.

It will be recalled that the idea of making mandatory the wearing of face shields originated from the Department of Transportation (DOTR), specifically the Land Transportation Office (LTO), by initially requiring travelers using passenger vehicles to wear the gadget over and above the wearing of face mask and observance of social or physical distancing.

The protocols also included limiting the number of passengers aboard public utility vehicles, aside from installation of plastic barriers in between the seats. Eventually the face shield requirement also covered those aboard private vehicles.

As events turned out, the practicability of wearing a face shield became a center of controversy with health officials themselves casting doubt about its efficacy. As if to add insult to injury, even President Duterte himself joined the confusion by asserting that wearing of face shield should only be a must for those within the surroundings of hospitals.

It was too late though. So much damage and inconvenience had already been suffered by the people. Over and above that, additional expenses had to be incurred by the already financially-burdened citizenry. Huge sums have been squandered. People, just to comply with the requirement, had to purchase the gadget, even if it meant skipping meals. Manufacturers must have made a killing. Some government officials in the know must have received a share.

Admittedly, those with expertise should have the exclusive prerogative to tackle this matter. At the rate however that events unfolded, the doctors themselves are not in unison in defending this additional burden. Besides, there is no showing at all that front liners themselves got infected with the virus for not wearing face shield.

For this reason, it is morally proper to hold accountable those responsible for the imposition.

Reason and propriety also demand that a deeper inquiry into the issue be conducted. It bears pointing out that billions of pesos are allegedly involved in the government purchase of PPE’s, which necessarily includes face shields and face masks, some of which allegedly were purchased from a hardware.

Entertaining suspicions on the voluminous acquisition of medical equipment and supplies is reasonably on time. The moment of truth has come.

Indeed, there is truism to the belief that when it rains, it pours. Truth, once it unfolds, comes in heavy volumes, thereby making the cheaters and liars scampering for a hideout, or a defense as demands for accountability come not in single file but in battalions.

The advent of truth will undoubtedly last for more than a quarter. On this score, it is just proper that proponents for the compulsory use of face shields be held answerable, not only for the irregularities attendant thereto ,but also for being partly responsible in causing a certainly more alarming ecological imbalance the moment the face shields are dumped.

The moment of truth has come. Perhaps the season of hope shall follow soon.


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