Although the Philippines is making progress with its national inoculation drive, many are still not satisfied with the pace it’s going. And that’s something Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso agrees with.

According to Domagoso, the government’s distribution of vaccines is ‘super bagal’ and needs to be sped up to hasten vaccination drives, especially in urban areas.

In a press briefing last night (May 11), Domagoso said anti-coronavirus jabs stored in the national government’s facilities have yet to be delivered in heavily populated cities and communities, especially Manila.

“Noong kamakailan lamang, may dumating na 1.5 million ng Sinovac [vaccine] nanaman. [Pero] hanggang ngayon wala pa po tayong share doon. I think more than one week na sa kanila ‘yon, sa refrigerator nila. Kung saan man nakalagay ‘yon, I don’t know. Hindi pa po nade-deploy ‘yon at wala pa pong nakakamit ang Maynila,” he shared.

Domagoso urged his constituents to not be gullible when it comes to news of vaccines being delivered.

“Marami kaming natatanggap na text, puro text lang ho iyon. ‘Wag po kayong magpapaniwala kung may nagpe-press release diyan – na idedeliver sa ganito, idedeliver sa ganyan. Kami po nakakatanggap rin ng text sa partikular na ahensya na ‘yan, pero ‘di po totoo ‘yon. Hanggang ngayon wala pa tayong nakakamit,” Domagoso stressed.

Domagoso mentioned that the city only received 8,400 doses of the CoronaVac jab out of the one million delivered in April – 4, 200 of which he’s saving for the second dose.

Manila has not received a part of the vaccines in the latest shipment of Sinovac Biotech’s anti-coronavirus shot, the mayor noted.

“May dumating din na AstraZeneca, 2 million [doses]. Pero 4 or 5 days na sa kanila ‘yung AstraZeneca – nasa bodega pa rin po nila, nasa refrigerator. Hindi ko alam bakit ‘di pa nari-release,” he added.

Meanwhile, Manila only received 1,170 vials of the recently delivered Pfizer vaccine, which equates to 7,020 doses. The country welcomed 193,000 vials of the vaccine yesterday (May 11).

Domagoso pointed out that Manila is one of the most densely populated cities in the Philippines – in terms of population per square kilometer. This makes it more conducive for the transmission of the virus, which Domagoso said could be countered by the availability of vaccines.

“If you believe that vaccination is the solution to restart the economy, bumalik sa normal ang buhay ng tao – ang bakuna ‘di dapat pinatatagal sa kung saan-saang bodega,” he underscored.

You can watch the full video of Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso’s press briefing below.

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Image credit: Kyodo News via Getty Images