Lacson, Sotto twit Duque’s mandatory vaccination push
MANILA, Philippines — Independent presidential candidate Sen. Panfilo “Ping” Lacson and his running mate, Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III, questioned Health Secretary Francisco Duque III’s “push” for a law to make vaccination mandatory.
Duque had said it would be a welcome move if Congress “can muster that political will to make vaccination and booster mandatory” in the country.
“He is passing the burden to us. Why is he talking about political will? Political will is not applicable if violation of human rights is involved,” said Lacson in a mix of Filipino and English, in an interview with reporters in Argao, Cebu on Wednesday.
“I do believe that forcing vaccination on a person is a violation of that person’s basic rights.”
Lacson also pointed out Duque could have been proactive from the start of the vaccination program by conducting house-to-house campaigns along with a massive information drive.
For his part, Sotto said Duque’s call may be an attempt at face-saving.
Sotto said that while Congress will convene briefly after the May 9 elections, it will be mostly to act as the National Board of Canvassers – and there is little time if at all to pass pending bills.
“So I think that’s just an attempt at media mileage and face-saving because the DOH has had so many failures in handling the pandemic since March 2020,” he said.
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