The Palace welcomed the validation by the World Health Organization (WHO) of the Sinovac vaccine and its inclusion in the WHO’ Emergency Use Listing (EUL) of COVID-19 vaccines.
In a press briefing on June 3, 2021, Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque Jr. said that this validates the safety and efficacy of the Sinovac vaccine because it passed not just the evaluation of the Philippines’ Food and Drug Administration, but also the stringent standards of the WHO.
Citing the statement released by the WHO on June 1, Secretary Roque said that the vaccine efficacy results showed that Sinovac prevented symptomatic disease in 51 percent of those vaccinated, and prevented severe COVID-19 and hospitalization in 100 percent of the studied population.
“Dahil dito, tiwala kami na tataas pa ang kumpiyansa ng ating mga kababayan na magpabakuna gamit po ang Sinovac,” remarked Secretary Roque, reiterating that the vaccines are free and that the best vaccine is the one that is available.
On another vaccine-related news, the Palace official confirmed the conversation between President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin on the occasion of the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Philippines and Russia.
“Nagpasalamat si Presidente kay Presidente Putin dahil sa ginawang available ang Sputnik V sa Pilipinas at inulit ng ating Pangulo ang kahalagahan ng expeditious delivery ng mga inorder na bakuna,” said Sec. Roque.
On the other hand, Sec. Roque said that President Putin committed to increase the volume of Sputnik V vaccine deliveries for the Philippines.
Roque reported that as of June 2, 2021, there are already 8,279,050 doses of vaccines that have arrived in the Philippines. Furthermore, Roque said that of this number, a total of 5,383,172 doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered as of June 1, 2021, with some 1,293,750 Filipinos who have already received two doses of vaccine.
On another matter, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, in the said press briefing, said that the supply of electricity for today is normal and is more than sufficient to meet the projected demand for the day. He also reported that all transmission lines in Samar that have been affected by Typhoon Dante have been re-energized since yesterday, June 1.
Sec. Cusi also mentioned that the rotating brownouts in the last two days was caused by the simultaneous breakdown of four big power plants that resulted in electricity supply shortage. On reports of sabotage, Sec. Cusi said that such allegations are already being investigated.
Meanwhile, in the same press briefing, Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III said that repatriation of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) continues on a daily basis with as many as 1,000 to 1,500 OFWs being brought home to the Philippines every day. Sec. Bello said that a total of 564,000 OFWs who have been affected by the pandemic have been repatriated as of date.
Sec. Bello also disclosed that President Duterte had provided a one-time cash assistance of 200 dollars to OFWs who were affected by the pandemic and are still waiting to be repatriated, while those who have been repatriated received P10,000. The DOLE Secretary further pointed out that the President provided more than P5-Billion as repatriation expense to cover for the accommodation, medicines, food, and transportation expenses of the repatriated OFWs. ### OPS-PCOO