On Friday last week, April 9, the whole nation observed its ‘Araw ng Kalayaan.’
The Day of Valor commemorates the heroism of Filipinos and American soldiers who fought side-by-side when the Japanese occupied the Philippines during World War II.
Apart from honoring our war heroes who laid down their lives for the country’s freedom, we in the city of Manila also took the opportunity to give a fitting recognition to the city’s frontliners during this pandemic.
It is but proper to ask everyone to celebrate our Day of Valor by honoring our unsung heroes who have exemplified utmost bravery in their respective fields of endeavor by serving in the frontlines of the nation’s continuing fight against COVID-19.
I pay tribute to all the medical and health frontliners, the city personnel involved in the delivery of all forms of assistance from the national and local governments and those who continue enabling the city government to function fully amid the pandemic.
Particularly, I commend the local government’s vaccinating teams, led by my indefatigable Vice Mayor, Honey Lacuna, who is in charge of the city’s health cluster. She and her husband, Manila Health Department chief Dr. Arnold Pangan, along with their vaccinating
teams, have been working fully even on weekends and specially during the Holy Week, so that the city was able to vaccinate the most number of individuals by far.
Commendations are also in order for those physically behind the operations of the six city-run hospitals, for their dedication to duty amid the surge in coronavirus cases, over and above the non-COVID cases that also require their attention.
I am really grateful to God and the people of Manila for having given me a vice mayor like Honey Lacuna, who is not only dedicated to her duty but has also been willingly going over and beyond her duties to be of help to the executive department and me, particularly.
Ditto with all the city hall personnel who, just like their medical frontliner counterparts, have also been running the risk of infection. I thank God for having given me such hard-working colleagues.
As of this writing, our vaccination rollout has so far resulted in the successful inoculation of about 70,000 individuals and this is greatly due to the aggressive vaccination rollout we are implementing citywide for the top three priority categories covering medical and health frontliners, senior citizens and persons aged 18 to 59 with comorbidities, identified in the list as A1, A2 and A3.
A total of 271,038 have already pre-registered for the city government of Manila’s free vaccination program.
At the very fast rate at which Manila had been vaccinating, our MHD is now asking the Department of Health (DOH) to allow its vaccination program to already move to the next category.
This would enable us to cover a much wider scope of individuals that may include other frontliners like barangay watchmen, barangay officials and ordinary workers, among others.
In his request forwarded to the DOH, Dr. Pangan has certified that the city of Manila is already qualified to go to the next level after meeting the minimum requirement of individuals vaccinated under the A3 category.
Based on the data of DOH, a minimum of 19,000 individuals or one percent of the city’s population of 1.9 million must be vaccinated and the city has exceeded that when the city’s vaccination program covered more than 21,000 people or 110 percent of the required number. In the case of A1 category, the city also went over the required number by inoculating 13,000.
Once the request of our MHD is approved, the city government can already proceed to the vaccination of people in the A4 category in the priority list set by the national government and also expand the vaccination program to more sites so as to decongest the long lines and shorten the waiting time.
In the meantime, the distribution of the national government’s social amelioration program funds and the city government’s food boxes are also being done simultaneously by our dedicated personnel from the social welfare department, Manila Traffic and Parking Bureau, the city engineer’s office and the department of public services, among others.
Indeed, with the support and participation of all city government workers, we can help alleviate the sufferings of our dear Manilans. They are the unsung heroes who deserve a pat in the back. Kudos to all my fellow workers in the city of Manila!!! Truly, you all make me proud.
Gaya ng paulit-ulit kong sinasabi, kailangan ko ang tulong ninyong lahat. Walang mag mamalasakit sa Maynila kundi tayo ding mga Batang Maynila. Manila, God first!
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