‘Jail for non-vaccination?’ Only Duterte’s ‘strong words’ to convince public — Guevarra

Published June 22, 2021, 11:33 AM

by Jeffrey Damicog

Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra (2)

President Duterte has no intention of jailing those who refuse to get vaccinated against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra assured on Tuesday, June 22.

Guevarra made the assurance after the President in his public address last Monday, June 21, threatened to jail those who refuse to get vaccinated

“I believe that the President merely used strong words to drive home the need for us to get vaccinated and reach herd immunity as soon as possible,” Guevarra said.

“As a lawyer he knows that not getting vaccinated is a legal choice,” he explained.

He said that “there is no law as yet that compels vaccination against COVID-19, much less criminalizes it, as presently available, vaccines are still in their trial phases.”

Last Monday, the President said: “Mamili kayo: magpabakuna kayo o ipakulong ko kayo sa selda? (You choose: Get vaccinated or I jail you?).”

The President also said he will start asking the barangay captains, through the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), to list down the names of their constituents who don’t want to get the COVID-19 jab.

“I am just exasperated by, you know, Filipinos not heeding the government. Eh total, tayo dito wala naman tayong hangarin kung ‘di kabutihan ng ating bayan (For all of us here, our goal is for the betterment of the country),” the President added.