MANILA – National Task Force against COVID-19 chief implementer and vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. on Thursday appealed to candidates seeking a post in the 2022 elections not to politicize the government’s COVID-19 vaccination program.
Galvez made the remarks at the sidelines of a turnover ceremony of oxygen concentrators by the Australian embassy.
He said that based on their observation, many candidates are working to ramp up vaccination.
But his appeal seems to be a contradiction of another statement he made second earlier.
“If we will invest on health, palagay ko yung lahat ng mayor na incumbent ngayon mananalo yan kasi titignan ng tao kung pinabayaan ng isang mayor ang pagbabakuna.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque also said that the issue on ramping up vaccination would provide “good exposure” for candidates, a direct contrast to Galvez’s appeal not use vaccines for politics.
“Kung ia-advocate nila ang vaccination, magkakaroon sila ng mas magandang exposure. At ito mararamdaman ng taumbayan na talgang health advocate sila and their championing vaccination,” Duque said.
The Philippines continues to lag behind some of its Southeast Asian neighbors in terms of COVID-19 vaccination, with only around around 30% of its population being fully vaccinated and protected from contracting severe forms of the disease.