Duterte to give NPA COVID-19 vaccine if they ‘stop fighting’

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President Rodrigo Duterte said New People’s Army (NPA) could also get the COVID-19 vaccine if they would “stop fighting” the police and military amid the pandemic.

“If you stop fighting for a while during the period or until December, kasi my soldiers will be busy monitoring, supervising, ‘wag lang niyong galawin, puwede kayong sumali, pumila doon,” Duterte said in a public address aired Friday.

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(Just don’t fight against the soldiers, you can join the vaccination.)

“And even if you announce that you are an NPA, it’s okay. Wala munang… pagamot ka muna, pa-vaccinate ka, para mahusay kang lumaban sa puwersa ko,” he added.

(No more fighting for now. Have yourself vaccinated so you would be strong when you fight my forces.)

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Duterte, however, clarified that it is not a unilateral ceasefire. He just asked the rebels not to attack the military to “allow the normal process of helping the country.”

“As a matter of humanity, because it is not our money, and because you are a Filipino, okay lang sa akin,” Duterte said.

The President said soldiers would be tasked to implement the COVID-19 vaccination program.

Also read: Xi Jinping promises to make ‘friendly neighbor’ PH a ‘priority’ for COVID-19 vaccine

Meanwhile, Duterte said in the same briefing that drug pushers would not COVID-19 vaccine from the government.

“Drug pusher, wala kayo [you don’t have vaccine],” Duterte said.

Duterte said he would instead give the vaccine to poor communities than to drug pushers and drug lords who he called “dogs.”

“‘Yun ang utos ko. ‘Yan ang gusto ko. Hindi maganda? Hindi talaga maganda. Mga tao, hindi pala tao sila, tingin ko [sa] mga drug pusher, drug lord, aso. Tingin ko sa kanila… hindi ako magtulong sa inyo, sinisira niyo ang Pilipinas, pinapatay niyo ang tao,” he said.

(That’s what I want. It’s not really good. They are not humans. I see them as dogs. I will not help you. You are destroying the Philippines. You are killing people.)

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III also announced Friday at least 20 million Filipinos would get a free COVID-19 vaccine once it is developed.

He added the government would pay for the P20 billion worth of COVID-19 vaccines, which are expected to be available by December 2020.

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