The disorderly rush to get vaccinated–coupled with misinformation–comprise a “formula for chaos”.
Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) traffic czar Edison Bong Nebrija gave this assessment Thursday, Aug. 5 after watching the viral video of what appeared to be hundreds of people trying to get inside a shopping mall in Manila.
Reports said that the crowd–which practically ignored the physical distancing rule–wanted to avail of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine shots that were being administered there at that time.
Nebrija can’t help but recall the time in the pandemic when “vaccine hesitancy” among Filipinos was viewed as a challenge in the national government’s inoculation program.
“Natatandaan ko yung panahon na nilalangaw ang mga bakunahan at halos kinakantsawan pa ang mga nagpapabakuna na magiging zombie o magkakabuntot (I remember the time when vaccine site where being ignored and those who availed of vaccinations were being teased that they would turn into zombies or grow a tail),” he wrote.
“Ngayon, nagkakagulo na para magpabakuna. Nakakalungkot lang panoorin, na kung saan may sisigaw na dito bakunahan lahat na dagsaan dun kahit wala naman (Now, there is a rush to get vaccinated. It’s saddening to watch how people troop to wherever they’re told there’s a vaccination taking place, even if there isn’t).”
Nebrija further said: “Beware of this kind of situation because frustration may eventually turn to desperation and that ladies and gentlemen is a formula for chaos.”
The EDSA traffic disciplinarian shared a video of the incident via Facebook post, which can be seen here.
Also on Thursday, MMDA Chairman Benhur Abalos dubbed as fake news the claims made on social media that only vaccinated individuals would be eligible to receive cash assistance or “ayuda” in connection with the reimposition of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) from Aug. 6 to 20. He said the spread of such news triggered the unruly behavior of the vaccine-seekers.
The local rollout of anti-COVID jabs began last March 1.