President Duterte has reiterated his appeal to Filipinos to get vaccinated against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), saying it was the only way to protect themselves and the people around them, and to overcome the pandemic.
Duterte made the statement as the government ramps up its efforts to convince the public to get vaccinated against COVID-19.
In a video message posted on the official Department of Health (DOH) Facebook page on Wednesday, the President urged the public to be vaccinated as soon as possible.
“I invite all our kababayans (countrymen) to be vaccinated at the earliest possible opportunity because this is the most, if not the only way, effective way, to defeat [the] COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.
“Let us all keep in mind that the vaccine will not only protect you from the virus, it will also protect your loved ones, especially the sick and elderly,” he added.
Duterte said getting vaccinated is also how the public can help in reopening the economy.
“Your participation in the “Resbakuna: Kasangga ng BIDA” campaign is therefore key if we are to reopen our economy and reclaim our normal lives,” he said, referring to the DOH’s vaccination drive.
Meanwhile, the President renewed the government’s commitment to protecting the public from the effects of the pandemic.
“To the Filipino people, let me assure you that the government will continue to do its best to protect you until we overcome this health crisis together,” he said.
“Let us heal as one nation. Kapwa Pilipino, magpabakuna na po tayo (My fellow Filipinos, let us get vaccinated),” he added.
Although a controversial move, President Duterte himself got vaccinated with the Chinese-made Sinopharm vaccine last month.
The country rolled out its vaccination program against COVID-19 on March 1. So far, the Philippines has administered 5,180,721 doses of COVID-19 as of May 30, with 1,206,371 individuals fully vaccinated.