Duterte to be among the first Filipinos to receive COVID-19 vaccine

Published February 8, 2021, 3:40 PM

by Argyll Cyrus Geducos

President Duterte will be enjoying priority in the government’s vaccination program against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) which is set to start this month, Malacañang said.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque made the statement as he announced that the government is “100 percent ready” for the vaccine rollout with the first batch of vaccines from the COVAX Facility arriving next week.

Roque said that as a senior citizen, the 75-year-old Duterte will be prioritized in the program.

“Ang Presidente (The President) will enjoy priority dahil nga po siya ay (since he is a) senior citizen,” he said.

Senior citizens are the second on the government’s vaccination priority list next to healthcare workers.

According to Roque, President Duterte wants to be one of the first Filipinos to receive the vaccine to boost the confidence of the public.

“Importante rin po na magpabakuna siya para sa vaccine confidence. So inaasahan natin na isa siya sa pinaka-una (It’s important that he gets vaccinated to boost vaccine confidence. We expect that he will be one of the first people),” he said.

“The issue is if he will do it public or privately and that’s his right. Pero yung pagpapabakuna po niya is intended to tell everyone na ang bakuna ay ligtas at epektibo kapag inissuehan po ng EUA ng ating gobyerno (But his vaccination is intended to tell everyone that the vaccines are safe and effective once they are issued the emergency use authorization),” he added.

President Duterte has expressed willingness to be the first Filipino to receive a vaccine jab in the Philippines.

However, Roque said last month that Duterte will receive the vaccine in private and will be injected into his buttocks.