Even Kim Jong-Un can say sorry to his people for his COVID-19 response failings

Image: Yahoo News Australia

If even one of the most dreaded dictator in the modern world, North Korea’s Kim Jong-Un, can apologize for failing to quell the pandemic, then our government should be able to do the same.

The following video, taken from news agency The Guardian, shows the North Korean leader shedding a tear and begging for his citizen’s forgiveness for not being able to uplift them from “difficult livelihoods.” This was during his speech at a military parade in Pyongyang celebrating the 75th anniversary of the ruling Workers’ party.

Here’s a clip of his emotional apology:

He delivered his remorse amidst his regime’s insufficient effort to respond to various national disasters, including recent severe typhoons and the COVID-19 outbreak. Kim said that the people put their faith and trust in his leadership, and he has not been able to repay them.

For the record, North Korea never had a confirmed case of the coronavirus. They only had one suspected case sprouting last July in the city of Kaesong, after which Kim immediately declared a state of emergency, ordered a lockdown in the city, and tested the suspected case and all who came in contact with them. 

(By the way, this was reported by Dr. Edwin Salvador, a Filipino doctor serving as the World Health Organization’s envoy to North Korea.)

Currently, the Philippines has tallied almost 350,000 coronavirus cases, just breaking the list of top 20 countries with the most number of infections. Since the pandemic struck, we’ve never heard of a single apology save one: when health ministry head Francisco Duque III apologized last April for his shortcomings in dealing with the virus, but only after 14 senators called for his resignation (he didn’t). It’s already October, and that’s still probably the closest to accountability as we will get.

So let’s get this straight: the dictator of a communist country just beat our democratically-elected leader to apologizing for his faults in fighting COVID-19? Keep up, Philippines.


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