An official of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) still could not just let pass that incident when actor Mark Anthony Fernandez skipped the vaccination priority list in Parañaque City.
In an interview over ABS-CBN’s Teleradyo, DILG Undersecretary for operations Epimaco Densing III insisted that what Fernandez did, along with the local officials who allowed him to be vaccinated against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), was legally and morally wrong.
“The actor being part of the quick substitution list is not a valid excuse. In case the person in the priority list is unavailable for vaccination, the substitute should also come from the same roster,” said Densing.
“Kung ikaw ay A1 (health worker), A1 pa rin ang substitutes (if you are in the A1 (health worker) bracket, the substitutes should also be in the same A1 roster.), he added.
Densing issued the statement after Fernandez in a separate ABS-CBN interview explained being part of Parañaque City’s quick substitution list makes him qualified for inoculation.
“No violation was made because I’m on the second priority list and some people on the list didn’t show up,” Fernandez told ABS-CBN News in a text message.
But, Densing maintained that the vaccination of Fernandez ahead of the others in the priority sector is erroneous in whatever angle you want to look at it.
Ironically, some high-ranking government officials and soldiers who are in charge of guarding President Duterte also defied the rules on vaccination when they had themselves inoculated last year even if the Food and Drug Administration did not yet approve the use of any vaccine. Critics said the vaccines used on the soldiers and some government officials appeared to be smuggled ones.