Press Release
February 16, 2021


Senator Joel Villanueva

An Act Expediting the Procurement and Administration of Vaccines for the Protection Against the Coronavirus Disease 2019, Providing Funds Therefore and for Other Purposes

Mr. President and distinguished colleagues:

In many emergencies and calamities in the past, our local government units were always first on the scene. They are the first responders, whether in benign or life-threatening situations.

Lagi pong una sa pagsaklolo ng mga LGUs. Bagyo, baha, lindol, putok ng bulkan, natumbang poste ng kuryente, o aksidente man sa kalsada, walang makakauna sa mga lokal na pamahalaan.

I have personally witnessedin my home province in Bulacan, particularly in Bocaue especially in the time of my late sister Mayor Joni, how our local Chief Executives can make decisions at lightning speed and how they can think of solutions to the problems that have resisted traditional approaches.

Our LGUs and the private sectors saved us many times over in the past. Should we not trust them now?

Mr. President, we fully support the measure to allow LGUs and private entities to purchase vaccines in cooperation with the DOH and the National Task Force Against COVID-19.

But we are fully aware, not all LGUs and private companies have the resources and capability to procure the vaccines. We also know that there can be an "equity issue" along the way.

While it is true that richer LGUs with the capacity to pay like Metro Manila cities would be the first to purchase vaccines, we should also remember that Metro Manila is a pandemic hotspot that accounts for about half of our country's total Covid-19 cases in our country.

Kahit na LGU funded o private entity funded pa ang pagbili ng bakuna, kailangan pa rin naman pong sumunod sa mga panuntunan, lalo na po kung sino ang mga dapat unahing bigyan ng bakuna.

Prayoridad pa rin ang mga vulnerable at disadvanatged tulad ng ating mga health care workers, senior citizens, indigents, at mga essential workers.

Wala naman pong dapat ipag-alala ang ating mga kababayan kung walang kakayahan ang LGU nila dahil sigurado na rin naman ang pagbili ng bakuna ng national government.

As we speak, more than 176 million shots have already been administered across 78 countries.The latest estimate was at a rate of 5.99 million doses a day, but not a single shot has reached our shores.

Let us pass this measure so that once the vaccines are here, they can easily reach the arms of every Filipino adult who wanted one.

Thank you, and God bless.

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