Duterte to LGUs: We won’t meddle in your purchase of vaccines
MANILA, Philippines — The national government will not meddle with local government units that opted to buy on their own COVID-19 vaccines for their constituents, President Rodrigo Duterte said in a taped speech that aired on Wednesday.
“I’m now addressing the mayors and governors: You can choose any vaccine you like to buy. We don’t care which one you choose. We won’t interfere in all things related to the purchase,” Duterte said, speaking partly in Filipino.
The President said the LGUs were not being forced to join the national government’s COVID-19 vaccination drive.
“You know, there are many local government units who opted to go on their own. They are the ones buying. They have money and they will be the ones to buy their vaccine or whatever. As long as they want that, then let them. And they insist that they be given the freedom to choose because they have money,” Duterte said.
Several LGUs, most of them in Metro Manila, have already signed deals with the national government and British vaccine drugmaker AstraZeneca to buy vaccines.
Earlier, Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr, the chief implementor of the government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, assured LGUs that could not afford to buy their own vaccines that the national government would give them a supply.
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