President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday said he has ordered vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. to sign any document that will allow the private sector to import vaccines for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
“I have ordered Secretary Galvez to sign any and all documents that would allow the private sector to import at will, as many as they want to import, it will be fine with me,” he said in Filipino in a pre-recorded public address.
Duterte welcomed private sector efforts to buy their own Covid-19 vaccines since there were “limitations” in the number of doses that the national government could purchase.
“We in the government, this is how much we can get, this is how much they give us,” he said in Filipino.
He also noted that many employers have decided to purchase Covid-19 vaccines for their employees so that they can go on with their business operations.
“There are many businesses that want to purchase vaccines for their employees. You know what is the reason? So that the economy can be open,” he said in Filipino.
Duterte added that many factories had to close down because their employees could not go to work.
“Their factories don’t have workers because there are many restrictions in the mobility of people. There are so many restrictions and workers come from all places,” he added in Filipino.
On Feb. 26, Duterte signed Republic Act 11525 to fast-track the administration of Covid-19 vaccines and establish a P500-million indemnification fund for those who may show adverse side effects after getting the shot.The law also allows local government units (LGUs) and the private sector to purchase Covid-19 vaccine. SOVEREIGNPH