Taiwanese groups give 10,000 face masks to Cebu hospital – TECO
MANILA, Philippines – Taiwanese organizations have donated 10,000 medical-grade face masks to the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in Cebu City, the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) said Thursday.
According to TECO, the Taiwanese Compatriot Association in the Philippines and the Taiwan Association in Cebu spearheaded the initiative to help health workers fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.
“On 5 May 2020, Secretary-General Yao-I WANG of Taiwan Association in Cebu, on behalf of his own Association and Taiwanese Compatriot Association in the Philippines, jointly donated 10,000 medical masks to Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center,” TECO said.
“It is hoped that these medical masks will assist the Philippine medical frontliners in Cebu with the containment of COVID-19 pandemic. More power!” it added.
Earlier, other Taiwanese groups also donated 1,500 personal protective equipment kits to the Philippine National Police, Chinese General Hospital and Medical Center (CGHMC), and National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI), and another 5,000 face masks to the Department of Health.
All these efforts came despite recent issues between the Philippines and Taiwan in which after a Philippine labor attaché in Taiwan sought for the deportation of a Filipina worker who criticized President Rodrigo Duterte’s COVID-19 response — despite deportation being the sole responsibility of the host country. Taiwan rejected such a move of the Philippine labor attaché and asserted that its laws protect the rights of its citizens, including foreign workers in its soil.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque consequently issued a statement saying the Philippines respects Taiwan’s decision on the matter, even while also saying they will leave the fate of the Filipina worker to Taiwan and China — despite Taipei maintaining independence from Beijing.
This has prompted condemnation from Filipino and Taiwanese alike, with Taiwan’s foreign affairs ministry asking Philippine officials to stop misrepresenting Taiwan as part of China. Manila’s official representative to Taipei also chided Roque for bringing the issue up, when it should have not been discussed in the first place.
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