LGUs can require COVID-19 vaccination of residents sans national law — Guevarra | Inquirer News
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LGUs can require COVID-19 vaccination of residents sans national law — Guevarra

By: - Reporter / @KAguilarINQ
/ 04:16 PM September 30, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Local government units (LGUs) can compel its residents to get vaccinated against COVID-19 even without a national law though this may still be challenged in court, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said Thursday.

“Yes, local government units, through their legislative organs, may also exercise police power,” Guevarra told reporters when asked if local legislation by LGUs can be a basis to make COVID-19 vaccination mandatory.

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Guevarra likened this exercise of police power to a local ordinance prohibiting video game arcades within a certain distance from schools.

“Theoretically, a local ordinance compelling all residents within the territory of the LGU to get themselves vaccinated against COVID-19 may be enacted even without a national law on the matter,” Guevarra said.

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“But like all other laws and ordinances invoking police power, it may be challenged in court by anyone on the issue of reasonableness, among others,” he added.

In a recent public address, President Rodrigo Duterte said people may be compelled to get vaccinated against COVID-19 under the government’s police power.

The President also previously threatened to arrest those refusing vaccination against COVID-19 despite the absence of a law making the inoculation mandatory.

In a bid to further boost vaccination coverage in the country, the government will open COVID-19 inoculation to the general public in October. 

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TAGS: coronavirus Philippines, COVID-19 Vaccine, Department of Justice, DoJ, mandatory vaccination, Secretary Menardo Guevarra
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