President Rodrigo Roa Duterte asked the Filipino public on Monday to support the government’s mass immunization drive by getting inoculated as he receives more than 2.8 million doses of Russian-manufactured Sputnik V vaccine procured by the national government.
“Let us work together to put an end to this disease and its harmful effects to our people and economy for nearly two years now. Rest assured that this administration is committed to securing safe and effective vaccines for all Filipinos,” President Duterte said in a speech after he welcomed the delivery of the jabs at the Villamor Air Base in Pasay City.
“On this note, I appeal to all our kababayans to cooperate and do their part to help overcome this pandemic. The government cannot do this alone and we need your active participation by getting vaccinated and strictly following the minimum health standards.”
He encouraged Filipinos to recognize the country’s meaningful victories against the COVID-19 pandemic, noting the nation is winning the battle against the coronavirus.
At the same time, the President expressed his gratitude to the Russian government for the continued supply of life-saving COVID-19 jabs to the Philippines.
These deliveries, he stressed, affirm Russia’s commitment to achieving global vaccine equity and improving vaccine accessibility to countries, especially the Philippines.
“I deeply appreciate Russia’s efforts in fostering cooperation in various areas, including the fight against COVID-19. Goodwill initiatives, such as this vaccine donation and others, demonstrate the strong ties and friendship between Russia and the Philippines,” he said.
The chief executive also acknowledged the strong efforts of the Department of Health (DOH), the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), the National Task Force Against COVID-19, and other institutional partners for ensuring a steady supply of vaccines in the country.
“Amidst the threat of variants, you attended to the prompt, safe and effective delivery, distribution and administration of the vaccines across the country,” he added.
The latest vaccine delivery is one of the biggest shipments of Sputnik V in the country to date, and has brought the Philippines closer to attaining the total shipments of the vaccine developed by Russia.
So far, Russia has delivered 7.9 million vaccine doses out of 10 million doses it committed.
Consisting Component 1 and Component 2, the latest vaccine delivery will enable the government to administer first and second doses of Sputnik V.
Vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said it will benefit 3.5 million individuals and allow the government to scale up its vaccination output to achieve its goal of inoculating at least 54 million Filipinos with at least one dose this month.
The government targets to completely inoculate them before the end of the year, he said.
Also present Monday were Russian Federation Ambassador to the Philippines Marat Pavlov, Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año, Presidential Assistant on Foreign Affairs and Chief of Presidential Protocol Robert E.A. Borje, Health Undersecretary Ma. Carolina Vidal-Taiño, and Special Envoy to the Russian Federation Olivia Limpe-Aw. PND