MANILA City’s aggressive and innovative campaign to provide booster shots to as many people as possible amid the spike in Omicron infections is indicative of Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso’s leadership and “heart to serve the people,” Aksyon Demokratiko senatorial bet Carl Balita said Monday.
Balita made the remarks during a visit to the Luneta 24-hour drive-thru facility for 4-wheel vehicles Monday evening where he witnessed the 47-year-old local chief executive checking on the people lining up for booster shots and thanking them for heeding the call of the government to get added protection.
“Ito yung buhay ni Yorme. From a whole day’s work, pupunta dito, nagche-check,” Balita said in a live Facebook post, while noting that Moreno has been daily checking the facility even at the wee hours after a full day of activity.
Balita pointed out that Moreno’s leadership has brought to fore the bayanihan spirit among Filipinos, especially the netizens, as people began sending in food parcels as their little own way to support Mayor Isko’s initiative, as well as to the dedicated employees of city hall manning the round-the-clock booster shot facility, and the people lining for their booster shots.
“Tapos yung mga tao dito nagdadala ng kung ano-anong food kasi yung mga taong nakapila, kung minsan may nagugutom, nauuhaw, meron tayo. Masaya. Imagine, maliliit na bagay. Alam niyo sa buhay, yung maliliit na bagay, yun ang importante,” said Balita.
But even before Moreno was thrust into the political limelight due to his presidential run, Balita said Moreno has already displayed a heart of gold in his readiness to help the needy.
The registered nurse and midwife recalled the time when he approached the then Vice Mayor Isko for help about a 7-month-old infant with Biliary Atresia who needed an immediate liver transplant to save his life.
While Balita was only able to raise P500,000 of the P2.5 million needed for the operation of Kal-El Sumalpong, he said Moreno did not hesitate to provide the P2 million just to save the infant’s life.
Baby Kal-El was one of the 20 children born with Biliary Atresia that were sent by then Vice Mayor Isko to Taiwan for the needed liver transplant surgery.
All were successful. But then, Mayor Isko Moreno is not the person who brags about his assistance to poor people, nor does he like to publicize his good deeds.
“Kaya noong tinawag niya ako na tumakbo bilang senador niya, hindi ako makatanggi. Kasi alam ko ang laman ng puso nito na maglingkod. Tignan niyo naman andun lang siya nakuupo, nagkakape, kumakain ng pandesal,” Balita said.
Mayor Isko’s highly successful Luneta drive-thru booster shot facility is part of his aggressive and innovative campaign to protect as many people as possible, in as many ways possible, and in the shortest time possible to prevent possible deaths amid the Omicron surge in the country.
Aside from the Luneta facility, the city government also has a drive-thru booster shot facility for motorcycle and bicycle riders at the Kartilya ng Katipunan, and a similar facility for tricycle, pedicab, kuliglig and jeepney drivers at the Bagong Ospital ng Maynila.
These are on top of the continuing vaccination at community health centers, designated malls, and public schools, and on-site booster shots for construction workers in all ongoing city projects across Manila.
Moreno’s initiatives come as the government tries its best to administer at least half a million daily booster shots to achieve the target of giving boosters to 72 million Filipinos in 2022. Currently, only an average of 267,900 booster shots are administered in the country per day.
To date, government data shows that only 4,765,771 Filipinos have gotten their booster shots.
In view of this, Moreno reiterated his call for the people to get their booster shots as soon as possible, saying Manila City’s various booster shot facilities are available to everyone.
“Kahit taga-saan kayo, when you come, we will be here. Go get yourself vaccinated. Get your booster,” Balita said in the same Facebook post.