Sand is the key, apparently
Taking a page from Mental Gymnastics 101, Presidential Spox defended the Department of Environment and Natural Resources’ (DENR) move to spread Cebu white sand on Manila Bay.
When asked if the project was necessary amidst the literal global pandemic, Roque shared that it actually aims to do good for our mental health.
‘Kasi alam mo, sa gitna ng pandemya, kinakailangan din na pangalagaan ang mental health,’ Roque shared last Saturday, September 5.
‘I think, yung pagpapasyal sa mga lugar kagaya ng Manila Bay, hindi mo maka-quantify ang epekto niyan pagdating po sa mental health ng ating mga kababayan yung kapayapaan ng pag-iisip.’
Aside from the fact that there’s a literal lockdown and not everyone can go out, Roque ended the interview by saying he’s looking forward to the final look this September 19, as he’s long been a fan of lounging in Manila Bay.
Naniniwala si Sec. Harry Roque na makatutulong sa mental health ng publiko kapag natapos na ang rehabilitation na ginagawa sa Manila Bay. Mas gaganda raw kasi ito kapag nagkaroon ng white sand doon. @News5PH pic.twitter.com/UGsjmjrhdL
— Camille Samonte (@camillesmnte) September 5, 2020
ICYDK, the bay walk construction is part of DENR’s Manila Bay Rehabilitation Program to bring the beach experience to Manileños, with Manila Mayor Isko Moreno explaining it was planned pre-pandemic.
‘Kung hindi man sila makapunta ng Boracay, Bohol, Palawan, or Cebu, itong mga kababayan sa Maynila, ilalapit natin sa kanila ang white sand dito sa baywalk area,’ shared DENR Undersecretary Benny Antiporda.
Contrary to early reports, DENR also clarified that the ‘white sand‘ is actually crushed dolomite boulders from Cebu. The Department of Health has since said that the dust could cause respiratory problems.
While it’s true that taking a break can do wonders for our mental health, we can’t help but think there’s more to ease our troubles than pleasing views. Like, you know, an actual COVID-19 recovery plan.