(Eagle News) — President Rodrigo Duterte was vaccinated on Monday night, May 3, with the first dose of China’s Sinopharm vaccine.
In photos and a Facebook live video posted by Senator Chrisopher “Bong” Go, the 76-year old Philippine leader is seen being vaccinated by Health Secretary Francisco Duque III just before 7 p.m.
Go said that President Duterte’s doctors chose the vaccine Sinopharm for him.
“Ayon kay Tatay Digong, nagpabakuna siya para hindi lang maprotektahan ang kanyang kalusugan mula sa COVID-19, kundi para rin hikayatin ang ating mga mamamayan na magpabakuna. Bilang isang senior citizen, kasama siya sa prayoridad na dapat mabakunahan,” the senator said in his Facebook post.
(According to Tatay Digong, he decided to get vaccinated not only to protect his health from COVID-19, but also to persuate our citizens to also get immuinized. As a senior citizen, he is part of those prioritized to be vaccinated)
Go advised the public not to be scared of getting vaccinated.
“Matakot tayo sa COVID-19. Suportahan natin ang ating National Vaccination Program at magtiwala tayo sa bakuna dahil ito ang solusyon upang malampasan ang krisis na ito at ang tanging susi tungo sa ating pagbalik sa normal na pamumuhay,” he said in his post that accompanied the photos of President Duterte getting the Sinopharm jab.
(Lets’s fear COVID-19. Let’s support our National Vaccination Program and trust the vaccines because this is the solution for us to overcome this crisis, and the only key so we could go back to our normal way of living)
After the President got the Sinopharm jab, he also posed with Duque and the other medical frontliners who were there to assist him.
The President’s close-in security, or the members of the Presidential Security Group (PSG) were the first ones to be vaccinated with Sinopharm in December last year to protect the Philippine leader.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has earlier given a “compassionate use” license for Sinopharm vaccines for the PSG members. Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque in February said that President Duterte could be vaccinated with Sinopharm citing the “compassionate use” license.
The second Sinopharm dose is recommended about three to four weeks after the first dose. Like Sinovac, Sinopharm uses inactivated virus (vero cell) in its vaccine.
President Duterte had repeatedly said that getting vaccinated against COVID-19 was the only way for Filipinos to beat the pandemic. The Philippines hopes to achieve herd immunity by vaccinating 70 percent of the population by year-end at the earliest.
(Eagle News Service)