Go dares Robredo: Get immunized to inspire public trust in Covid vaccines
MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Leni Robredo has been challenged by Senator Bong Go to have herself immunized against the 2019 novel coronavirus disease to stimulate public’s trust in the vaccines.
According to Go, Robredo can do it alongside him and President Rodrigo Duterte to show Filipinos that vaccines work, especially since many people worry about the vials’ efficacy and their alleged side effects.
“Pagkatapos ni Pangulong Duterte or sabay, ikaw naman VP Leni Robredo ang magpaturok din, ipakita mo rin sa… sabay-sabay tayo,” Go told reporters on Tuesday.
(After President Duterte or you could also do it together, it’s your turn, Vice President Leni Robredo, to have yourself vaccinated, show it publicly, we could do it together.)
“Ako po ay hinahamon ko kayo para makuha natin ang kumpiyansa ng bawat Pilipino, ipakita natin na sabay-sabay tayong magpa-turok,” he added.
(I am challenging you for us to spur the confidence of each Filipinos with the vaccines, let us have ourselves vaccinated together.)
The senator relayed that he also told Health Secretary Francisco Duque III and Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) chief implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. — officials responsible for the vaccine procurement — to have themselves vaccinated too when the vials arrive.
“Nagsalita na po ang ating Pangulo, willing naman po siyang mauna no, importante po dito to gain the confidence of the Filipino people, kaya sabi ko Secretary Duque, Secretary Galvez, ‘pag nandyan na ‘yong vaccine paturok agad kayo,” Go said.
(The President has already said it, he is willing to have himself vaccinated first, what is important here is to gain the Filipino people’s confidence, which is why I asked Secretary Duque, Secretary Galvez, if the vaccines are already there, have yourselves vaccinated immediately.)
“Pakita niyo na mapagkatiwalaan ‘yong vaccine na binili ninyo, ang ating Pangulo naman willing siyang magpa-vaccine para kunin po ang kumpiyansa. Kaya sabi ko, kailangan nating ipa-intindi sa Pilipino na dapat po pagkatiwalaan itong vaccine na ating binili dahil takot po ang Pilipino,” he explained.
(Show the public that the vaccines you bought are trustworthy, our President has expressed willingness to be vaccinated for you to be confident. That’s why I said, we need to let Filipinos understand that the vaccines should be trusted because as of now, Filipinos are afraid of it.)
Early this month, Robredo’s Office of the Vice President (OVP) questioned whether the government’s communication plan for the vaccines are effective, especially since surveys indicated that not all Filipinos would want to be immunized against COVID-19.
This was after presidential spokesperson Harry Roque claimed that Robredo’s suggestion — the creation of a communication plan — is already being acted upon.
A survey from Pulse Asia released last January 7 found out that nearly half of Filipinos would not have themselves vaccinated against the 2019 novel coronavirus strain even if they are free of charge.
On the other hand, Social Weather Stations’ survey last November said that 66 percent of Filipinos are willing to get a COVID-19 vaccine — higher numbers than Pulse Asia’s results. However, it still shows that over 30 percent do not want themselves immunized.
More alarming numbers were obtained in a separate study from the OCTA Research, as only 25 percent of Metro Manila residents are willing to be inoculated.
Currently, the national government is in talks with Chinese pharmaceutical company Sinovac Biotech and other manufacturers for its national vaccination plan. However, doubts about Sinovac’s vaccine came about after reports of low efficacy ratings and changing prices.
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