As President Duterte threatens to haul off to jail those who would refuse to get vaccinated, the Philippine National Police (PNP) would instead assist in the aggressive information drive to convince more people to be inoculated amid the continuous threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the recent development was the confirmation that a more transmissible Delta variant was already detected in the country.
PNP Chief Gen. Guillermo Lorenzo Eleazar said they will be coordinating with the Department of Health to replicate the success of the information drive in the police organization wherein those who signified to be vaccinated jumped to the current more than 93 percent from merely 51 percent in February this year.
“We in the PNP believe that the aggressive information drive is necessary to counter all the wrong information and the disinformation that our kababayan see especially in the social media on the safety and efficiency of the available vaccines,” said Eleazar.
“We believe that if we could just properly explain to the people the benefits of the vaccine, they would really change their mind. This happened to the PNP so I believe that this will also be effective for the public,” he added.
Last month, Eleazar has directed all police commanders to maximize the PNP’s OPLAN BANDILLO in the information drive on COVID-19 vaccination for the people in their respective Areas of Responsibility.
OPLAN BANDILLO is a community awareness and information dissemination program against criminal elements and was eventually used to encourage people to observe the minimum health safety standard protocol since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. In implementing OPLAN BANDILLO, local police forces use megaphones and speaker system during their regular beat patrol to communicate with people in the community.
President Duterte earlier threatened those who would refuse to get vaccinated of arrest but PGen Eleazar said that the President’s statement is just a strong reminder for the people to get protection from COVID-19, especially with the threat of the Delta variant.
Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra earlier said that that there is no law that compels anybody to be vaccinated. Malacañang, for its part, said a law or an ordinance is needed before any arrest is made with regard to those who refused to get vaccinated.