MANILA (UPDATE) - The Manila city government said it will not be accepting anymore walk-in individuals in three of its mall-designated vaccination sites on Thursday after reaching the limit for the available slots.
"Ito ay matapos umabot na sa 2,500 ang dumating sa naturang lokasyon para mabakunahan ng first dose," said the Manila City Public Information Office on its Facebook page.
(This after we 2,500 people came to the said locations to get the first dose.)
The LGU said they are currently administering the first dose for health workers, seniors, those with comorbidities, essential workers and indigent population priority groups at Lucky Chinatown, Robinsons Place Manila, and SM Manila.
The LGU also cancelled Thursday's vaccination at the SM San Lazaro for the public's safety and security after thousands turned up hoping to get inoculated, a day before the capital region is placed under the toughest lockdown level.
Police told those who did not make it to the cut-off to go home.
Many residents have lined up since Wednesday night outside the malls designated as vaccination sites after the City of Manila announced on its social media page that it would resume first and second dose vaccinations for A1, A2, A3, A4 and A5 priority groups.
Social distancing was no longer observed as the crowd swelled and the lines from the SM City mall extended up to Ayala Bridge.
One of those who lined up at the vaccination site at the SM San Lazaro was Geraldine Ripil. She wanted to get inoculated in order to get a quarantine pass for the 2-week lockdown in Metro Manila.
“Hindi raw makakakuha ng quarantine pass kapag walang vaccine. May asawa po ako, may sakit. May mga anak po ako maliliit. Kailangan po namin yung vaccine,” Ripil said.
(Only those vaccinated will be given a quarantine pass. My husband is sick. I have small children. We need the vaccine.)
A man who was also in line said he is following Mayor Isko Moreno's advice to get vaccinated for his own protection.
“Ngayong nagpapa-vaccine kami, ayaw naman nila ngayon. Bukas lockdown na. Paano kami ngayon? Paano kami maghahanapbuhay? Gutom kami ngayon.”
(Now we wanted to get the jab but they cancelled it. Tomorrow is the lockdown. What's going to happen to us now? How are we going to continue working? Will go hungry now.)
Meanwhile, second dose vaccination is ongoing at the San Andres Sports Complex in Ramon Magsaysay High School.
Authorities say that the vaccination program of LGUs would continue even during the period of the enhanced community quarantine from August 6 to 20.
The ECQ is meant to mitigate the spread of the highly transmissible COVID-19 Delta variant.
- With reports from Jervis Manahan and Lady Vicencio