Senator Christopher “Bong” Go, also the chair of the Senate Committee on Health, said that there should only be a single line of authority when it comes to the negotiation, purchase, management and distribution of vaccines for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Cocid-19).
“He is the central authority for the Covid-19 vaccines. In short, he is the captain ball. If there is a saying that somebody dropped the ball, that means that the ball was passed to him by the coach, and the ball should be given to the captain ball, who is in charge. Just like in basketball, it is the captain ball that calls the plays,” Go said in Filipino during a radio interview on Friday, referring to vaccine czar and National Task Force Against Covid.-19 Chief Implementer Carlito Galvez Jr.
Go also expressed his support for Health Secretary Francisco Duque 3rd amid criticisms.
“Duque did everything he could. We and President Duterte pity Duque because he became a punching bag. As far as I know, the President trusts Duterte,” he said in Filipino.
The Health Secretary maintained in an interview on December 18 that he had to “err on the side of caution” in his decisions that would affect lives of Filipinos.
Galvez also came forward in defense of Duque saying that the Confidentiality Disclosure Agreement was “one of the many phases of the negotiations’ which can stall when ‘legal challenges, public interest, and safety are at stake.”
Hence, Go reiterated his call to Cabinet members to put an end to any finger-pointing that could adversely affect the success of the administration in overcoming Covid-19 crisis, and appealed to Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin.
The senator also reiterated his challenge Duque and Galvez to inject themselves first with the vaccine to allay fears and build their confidence in the safety and efficacy of Covid-19 vaccines.
The Senator added that much work still needs to be done in order for the government to roll out the Covid-19 national vaccine plan. He stressed that government officials must remain focused on saving lives by acquiring safe, effective and sufficient vaccines regardless of what country these may come from. SOVEREIGNPH