Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong filed his resignation as the country’s contact tracing czar after he and his wife attended a party where health protocols were violated.
Magalong wrote to Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., the vaccine czar and chief implementer of the National Task Force Against COVID-19, on Jan. 28, Thursday, to “formally tender my resignation as Contact Tracing Czar,” showed a copy of his letter that ABS-CBN News obtained.
The mayor said “several lapses in protocol were committed” in the birthday party for host and celebrity Tim Yap that was held at The Manor in Baguio City.
“I should have done an immediate spot correction of the errors that I witnessed during that time,” Magalong wrote.
“Much as I have been given my best to discharge my duties for the Task Force [on COVID-19], this incident has been a reminder that a higher standard is always expected of me,” read the letter.
“It pains me to see my family, and my constituents, in anguish over this but I am committed to hold myself accountable and do what is necessary to rectify this misstep,” he added.
Magalong files resignation as contact tracing czar
“Meron pa rin. Even my wife violated it kasi nagtanggal yan because may picture-taking,” Magalong said in an interview over Teleradyo. “May picture-taking, may umiikot na picture-taking, syempre siguro sa excitement, yung iba na-excite, nagtatanggal ng masks pampicture picture. Pero ako po, lagi akong nakamask.”
(There is. Even my wife violated it because she removed her mask due to the picture-taking… There were picture-taking, a photographer was roaming to take photos, but maybe because of excitement, some removed their masks for pictures. But I always wore mine.)
The mayor also admitted that there are times guests forgot to obey health protocols due to their excitement.
“Nagkataon lang po na tao lang po tayo na sometimes when we’re so engaged in a particular po na activity na masayahin, minsan nakakalimutan po natin,” he said.
(It just so happened that we’re only human and sometimes, when we’re so engaged in a particular activity that is fun, we forget to comply.)