GABRIELA party-list Rep. Arlene Brosas on Wednesday confirmed being the 10th lawmaker who fell ill with coronavirus disease-19 and suspected that she got the virus at the House of Representatives, which has so far recorded 75 cases.
Brosas, who even participated during the budget hearing of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) on Wednesday afternoon, said the House of Representatives was the only place with known COVID-19 cases that she had visited recently.
“I tested positive for COVID-19 and probably contracted the virus from exposure at the House of Representatives last September 2 because that’s the only place where I’ve been to with known active cases,” Brosas said.
Aside from regular plenary sessions, the House of Representatives has been very busy conducting hybrid and virtual briefings for the proposed P4.5 trillion national budget for 2021.
Prior to Brosas’ confirmation to reporters, House Secretary General Atty. Jose Luis Montales announced that she tested positive for COVID-19.
“We are sorry to inform you that Rep. Arlene Brosas (Gabriela party-list) has tested positive for COVID-19… Let’s pray for their speedy and complete recovery,” said Montales.
“She’s the 10th Member to have tested positive. Grand total is 75. But only 15 are active cases,” Montales said.
Brosas said she “experienced mild symptoms in the past few days and got myself tested immediately.”
“I also immediately went under quarantine. As soon as the result came out today (Wednesday), I immediately informed the House of Representatives and all close contacts,” Brosas said.
“Currently, I am no longer experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms. Moreover, I vow to participate in the budget deliberations via Zoom and will continue to push for higher budget to health and other social services,” Brosas added.
On September 8, 2020, the House of Representatives lost its second lawmaker in one month with the passing of Sorsogon Rep. Maria Bernadita “Ditas” Ramos, 76, who earlier tested positive for COVID-19.
Last August 10, then Senior Citizens party-list Rep. Francisco “Jun” Datol died of complications brought about by COVID-19.
Ramos was the fifth fatality among the 75 persons in the House of Representatives who were diagnosed with COVID-19 next to Datol and three House employees.
Other lawmakers who have tested positive for COVID-19 are Deputy Speaker and Basilan Rep. Mujiv Hataman, Deputy Speaker and Agusan del Sur Rep. Johnny Pimentel, Sulu Rep. Samier Tan, Bulacan Rep. Henry Villarica, Cavite Rep. Luis Ferrer IV, Northern Samar Rep. Paul Daza, and 1-Pacman party-list Rep. Eric Pineda.