Pro-administration Senator Francis ‘’Tol’’ Tolentino on Saturday, Jan. 22 said Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) chief Persida Acosta should have herself inoculated with COVID-19 vaccine being part of the Duterte administration.
In a DWIZ radio interview, Tolentino said that Acosta might have her reasons for refusing to be vaccinated as he does not know her religion or her health reasons.
In another development, Tolentino, a reserve general in the Philippine Army, said he would study the proposal of vice presidential aspirant Davao city Mayor Sara Duterte for a mandatory military service and pending bills on the revival of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (R.O.T.C.).
Tolentino said his bill seeking the revival of ROTC has been pending in the Senate.
On Acosta, Tolentino said that as part of the administration, the PAO chief should follow the administrative regulations issued by the government being her employer.
Critics said there should be no double standard on the COVID-19 issue by the Duterte administration.
Earlier, Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon told Malacanang yesterday that “before you convince the Filipino people to get the vaccine, you must first convince each member of your government to get the shot.’’
‘’The President must persuade Acosta that the vaccine that he is giving to millions of Filipinos is safe and necessary in order for us to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic,” Drilon said.
“Otherwise, the credibility of your vaccination programs will suffer and people will be more reluctant to get the shots,” he added.
Acosta’s colleagues in government had also called on the PAO chief to get vaccinated including Health Secretary Francisco Duque III.
On the adoption of Sara Duterte by the Partido Demokratikong Pilipino (PD)-Laban party for the vice presidential race, Tolentino said he has been very supportive of Sara.
He said there is no ‘’Cusi wing’’ at PDP-Laban but a Duterte party because people ally themselves with the President but not with Cusi.
Sara has been adopted by the PDP-Laban wing of Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi.