Duterte expects PH to reach COVID-19 vax goals by yearend

November 29, 2021 People's Tonight 112 views

WITH the launch of the country’s three-day nationwide vaccination drive, President Rodrigo Duterte expects the Philippines to achieve its coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccination target before the end of the year.

“By the end of 2021, we expect to fully vaccinate a total of 54 million Filipinos; we also aim to inoculate 80 percent of the population of minors aged 12 to 17 years; and complete the booster shots for those belonging to A1, A2, and A3 sectors,” Duterte said in his speech during the launch of the three-day national vaccination event, dubbed “Bayanihan, Bakunahan” held in SM Masinag, Antipolo City, Rizal.

Bayanihan, Bakunahan, which will run from November 29 to December 1, aims to vaccinate around 9 million individuals in 8,000 sites across 16 regions nationwide.

Duterte described the event as the country’s “single biggest push” to fast-track vaccination and reach its goals.

He called on Filipinos continued cooperation in fighting COVID-19 by getting vaccinated and continuing to follow minimum public health standards, emphasizing the importance of a “whole-of-nation approach” to win against COVID-19.

“With God’s abiding grace and with our genuine malasakit (compassion) for our fellow Filipinos, we will overcome this pandemic and come out stronger and better as a nation,” he added.

Meanwhile, Duterte thanked national government agencies, and local governments, along with their private partners, for the launching of this Bayanihan, Bakunahan vaccination drive.

He said the event is a resounding expression of the Filipino bayanihan spirit, which coincides with the nation’s observance of Bonifacio Day on November 30.

“Indeed, the heroic example of Gat Andres Bonifacio’s courage resonates in each of us as we work together to fast-track and intensify our efforts to overcome this pandemic,” he said.

He also commended the Department of Health, the Department of the Interior and Local Government, and the National Task Force Against COVID-19 for the successful vaccination campaign and collaboration with private sectors to sufficiently supply the country with Covid-19 vaccine doses and distribute them across the country.

During the event, Duterte led the ceremonial simultaneous vaccination of individuals under A1 to A4 categories and pediatric 12-17 age group.

The A1 category refers to workers in frontline health services; A2 category (senior citizens); A3 category (persons with comorbidities); and A4 category (frontline personnel in essential sectors including uniformed personnel).

He also gave out free milk tea to some vaccine recipients.

Also present were Senate Health committee chair Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, National Task Force (NTF) Against Covid-19 chief and Vaccine Czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., NTF deputy chief Vince Dizon, Cabinet Secretary and Acting Palace spokesperson Karlo Nograles, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana , Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade, Philippine National Police chief, Lt. Gen. Diosdado Carlos; Armed Forces of the Philippines chief, Lt. Gen. Andres Centino; SM CEO and president Steven Tan, along with local officials of Rizal province and representatives from the private sector. Philippine News Agency