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Duterte: Military to lead distribution of COVID-19 vaccine

/ 10:01 AM July 31, 2020

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte talks to the people after holding a meeting with the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) core members at the Malago Clubhouse in Malacañang on July 30, 2020. ROBINSON NIÑAL JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte wants the military to lead the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine in the country once it becomes available.

(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

In an address to the nation aired Friday morning, Duterte said only the military would be trusted to hand out the COVID-19 vaccine, noting that he wouldn’t trust barangay captains to do it since the process may be politicized.

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“Sino ang magdala nito? Military lang. I am asking the Armed Forces, I am asking Gen. Lorenzana. The implementing arm (would be the) military,” Duterte said.

The President said this as he expressed confidence that the country will be back to normal by December because of anti-COVID-19 vaccines from China.

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“Meron akong nakuha from China, magtiis lang kayo ng konti. I could not utter a single thing about the roadmap to recovery kasi ang una talaga diyan, medicine,” Duterte said.

“By December, we would be back to normal. By December, tapos ito lahat. Ito ang guarantee ko, ang unang makakatanggap, ‘yung sa mahirap, ‘yung binibigyan ng assistance ng gobyerno, iyong mga nasa ospital, tapos middle income. Libre ito,” he added.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez said the vaccine would cost the country around P20 billion.

On Thursday, the Philippines logged a record-high 3,954 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total caseload to 89,374. Meanwhile, 65,064 have recovered although 1,983 died.

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TAGS: Coronavirus, COVID-19, Health, lockdown, Malacañang, NcoV, Outbreak, Philippines, vaccine
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