JAKARTA, Indonesia 

Nearly half of the Philippines’ residents think their government does not provide enough assistance for those left unemployed in the wake of the novel coronavirus, a survey released on Monday found.

According to a Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey, 46% of respondents thought the government’s measures were inadequate in ensuring the wellbeing of people who had lost their jobs.

Based on the national poll taken on Sept. 17-20, 44% believed that the assistance was enough, while 9% were undecided.

By area, 54% of respondents in the capital Manila disapproved of the government aid, while 39% said it was adequate and the remaining 8% were unsure.

On the country’s northern island of Luzon, 47% of respondents see the existing measures are inadequate and 44% support their current extent. Further south in Mindanao, 45% think the measures should be expanded and 44% view them as sufficient.

The two groups are similarly close to each other in the central archipelago of Visayas, with 43% saying existing aid is inadequate and 47% thinking the opposite.

Millions of Filipinos have lost their jobs and livelihoods due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Most have said the government response to the pandemic has been adequate in terms of information, contact tracing and affordable testing.

As of Monday, the total COVID-19 cases in the Philippines reached 359,169, including 310,303 recoveries and 6,675 deaths.

*Writing by Maria Elisa Hospita from Anadolu Agency’s Indonesian service in Jakarta

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