DILG: Fake COVID vax card holders face imprisonment, fines

Published December 5, 2021, 11:29 AM

by Chito Chavez

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) warned the public that individuals with fake coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) vaccination cards will face prison terms and other penalties.

This was pointed out by DILG Region 10 Director Arnel Agabe after his office got a report that a person in Cagayan de Oro City was nabbed by the police for selling fake vaccination cards.

“Atong pahimandosaatongkatawhanngaayawninyo peke-a ang inyongmga vax cards kay kamopwede ma-priso (We remind the public to avoid faking your vax cards to avoid imprisonment),” Agabe said in a statement.

Under the Revised Penal Code and Republic Act 11332 otherwise known as “the Mandatory Reporting of Notifiable Diseases Law’’, persons caught falsifying, tampering or using fake vaccination cards face fines of between P20,000 to P50,000 fine or imprisonment ranging from one to six months or both.

The DILG in a statement noted that “public officers and employees or licensed professionals committing such criminal acts, will be meted a higher penalty and an administrative case shall be filed with the Civil Service Commission (CSC) or Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) for the revocation or suspension of their license or eligibility.’’

No vax, no entry

Authorities had relaxed travel restrictions in a bid to open businesses and boost the country’s economy.

With most establishments in the region implementing the “no vaccine, no entry” policy, the DILG regional office noted that erring persons, especially those unwilling to get the COVID-19 vaccines use fake vaccination cards.

“Your unfounded fear caused by fake news will only hinder the whole nation’s race to herd immunity,” Agabe said.

In encouraging the unvaccinated to avail of the government’s free vaccination, Agabe cited that “legitimate studies confirm that vaccine benefits outweigh the risks.’’ (Chito A. Chavez)