Palace denies favoritism in COVID-19 vaccine distribution

Jamaine Punzalan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 28 2021 02:06 PM | Updated as of May 28 2021 02:20 PM

A health worker demonstrates as Marikina Mayor Marcy Teodoro explains the preparation process during a simulation exercise for the administration of Pfizer vaccination at the newly opened Pfizer Vaccination facility at the Marikina Sports Center on May 19, 2021. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

MANILA — Malacañang denied on Friday accusations that government could be favoring some areas in the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. 

Palace spokesman Harry Roque made the statement after reports that several vaccination sites in Davao City, President Rodrigo Duterte's hometown, would get coronavirus vaccines from US-based Pfizer-BioNTech, which is favored by many Filipinos. 

Pfizer shots go to Metro Manila, Metro Cebu and Metro Davao because they have ultra-cold storage facilities the vaccines requires, Roque said. 
 
"Wala pong preferential treatment ‘yan. Realidad lang po na talagang Pfizer was made for first world conditions," he said in a televised public briefing. 

(There is no preferential treatment. It's just a reality that Pfizer was made for first world conditions.)

A recent Social Weather Stations survey revealed that US is the most preferred source of COVID-19 vaccines. Pfizer and China's Sinovac Biotech are the most popular brands, the same poll found. 

Duterte this month banned local authorities from announcing the brand of COVID-19 vaccines available at an inoculation center, after a huge crowd flocked to a site offering Pfizer jabs. 

The Philippines has received some 193,000 Pfizer doses. 

In total, authorities have taken delivery of about 8.279 million COVID-19 shots. Authorities have administered at least 4.495 million of these doses nationwide, as of May 25. 

Video courtesy of PTV