It’s either Russian or Chinese vaccine for Duterte’s personal jab — Roque

Published February 4, 2021, 4:41 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

President Duterte only has two choices on the vaccine he intends to receive to fight the new coronavirus disease.

The President prefers to be vaccinated by the life-saving drug developed either by Russia or China that would get approval from local regulators, according to his Spokesman Harry Roque.


Roque disclosed the President’s vaccine preference Thursday after welcoming a study that shows the high efficacy rating of the Russian-made Sputnik V vaccines to protect people from the coronavirus.

“Basta naman aprubado ng ating FDA (Food and Drug Administration), at binigyan ng EUA (Emergency Use Authorization), kukunin po ‘yan ng Presidente (As long as it is approved by our FDA and received EUA, the President will take it),” he said during a televised press briefing Thursday when asked if the President now prefers the more effective Russian-made vaccine.

“Of course ang sinabi niya ang choice ay (Of course he mentioned his choices) It’s Chinese or Russia so that Russian vaccine has always been one of his early choices,” he added.

The President initially offered to be the first to receive the coronavirus vaccine in public to boost confidence in the immunization drive. 

Duterte however changed his mind and decided to be among the last to be inoculated and let the poor and vulnerable sectors be among the first in line. The 75-year-old leader also now preferred that his vaccination would be done in private since he wants to be injected in his buttock area.

Malacañang has also cited the study showing the high efficacy rate of the Russian-developed vaccine, saying it would help boost the supply to protect more people from the coronavirus. Roque noted that the country was already negotiating for its vaccine supply from the Russian manufacturer.

“We welcome this dahil alam naman natin dahil kulang nga ang supply galing sa western companies, kinakailangan ibsan (sic) ang ating supply sa pag-aangkat galing sa Russia at bansang Tsina (because the supply from the western companies is insufficient, we need to boost our supply by securing them from Russia and China,” he said.

Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine reportedly has 92 percent efficacy in protecting people from the developing coronavirus systems based on a study published by the Lancet medical journal. The latest results on the vaccine efficacy were reported following the clinical trials in Moscow hospitals and clinics.

The Sputnik vaccine triggered skepticism last August when Russia announced it has developed the world’s first vaccine.  The use of the vaccine has already received approval from the Russian government late last year.