Press Release
March 5, 2021

Bong Go says public vaccination of officials to boost public confidence on COVID-19 vaccines

Senator Christopher "Bong" Go on Thursday, March 4, expressed his support to suggestions to inoculate government officials in public in a bid to allay fears and boost public confidence on the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines.

Go, however, emphasized that this should be done without prejudice to the priority list of the government's national COVID-19 vaccination program which identified essential sectors as priorities, such as frontliners as well as poor and vulnerable sectors.

During the launch of the Malasakit Center in Rafael Lazatin Memorial Medical Center in Angeles City, Pampanga, Go was asked if he supports putting local officials in the priority list to get COVID-19 vaccine. The Senator responded favorably, saying, "Bakit hindi? Kumpiyansa po ang kinukuha natin dito. Eh, kung ibig sabihin nga nito, kung ang Mayor ninyo nagpabakuna nga, so ibig sabihin magtiwala kayo."

If it will help allay the fears of the public on getting vaccinated, Go said that he will support such recommendation.

"Ang importante nito, to get the confidence of your constituents po sa lugar. Kung mayor, to get the confidence of your constituents sa inyong lugar," Go said.

"So, ako naman po pabor ako kung 'yon na po ang magiging desisyon ng ating IATF, na pangungunahan po ng mayor ay sang-ayon po ako, para makuha natin ang kumpiyansa," he added.

While getting vaccinated is voluntary, Go stressed its vital role in attaining herd immunity in the country.

"Wala naman po itong pilitan. Buhay po nila 'yan. So boluntaryo naman po ito. Kami naman po rito sa gobyerno ay pinapaintindi namin sa kanila na tanging bakuna lamang po ang susi o solusyon dito sa ating problema kontra COVID-19," Go said.

"Importante po dito ay ma-attain natin 'yung herd immunity sa community. Ulitin ko, ang importante dito ma-attain natin 'yung herd immunity sa community. 'Pag 'yung komunidad ninyo ay na-attain na 'yung herd immunity, maiiwasan na ang pagkalat... kakayanin na po ng ating anti-bodies dahil po sa bakuna na ituturok sa tao," he added.

Meanwhile, Go and President Rodrigo Duterte were set to witness the turnover ceremony for the AstraZeneca vaccines which are expected to arrive in the country at 7:30pm on March 4 based on a letter sent by United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF) to the Department of Health.

The AstraZeneca jabs, which will be the second batch of COVID-19 vaccines to arrive in the country, are from the World Health Organization-led Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) facility, a global initiative that guarantees access to COVID-19 vaccines worldwide.

The Senator said during the interview that a plan has already been laid out identifying the strategic locations where the vaccines are going to be stored to ensure equitable access throughout the country.

"Nakaplano na 'yan sa mga strategic regions. Lahat po ay bibigyan, ang mga frontliners, i-priority muna natin ang mga frontliners," Go said.

"Armasan natin ang ating mga frontliners, unahin natin ang ating mga frontliners. Sila ang isinabak natin dito sa giyerang ito. Dapat bigyan natin sila ng sapat na armas para labanan ang COVID-19," he added.

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