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Solon questions gov’t preference for Chinese vaccine

A party-list solon is asking for a full disclosure on Sinovac vaccine, which the national government prefers to fend off coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

ACT Teachers Rep France Castro wanted to determine the deals between other companies, who negotiated with them, who backed the pharmaceutical companies and what the full terms and conditions are of the deals including possible loans attached to these deals.

“Following reports of the latest updates on the Philippines’ procurement of COVID-19 vaccines, we dare the Duterte administration to fully disclose how the Sinovac vaccine was chosen over other available COVID-19 vaccines from other pharmaceutical companies,” Castro said.

“Mahalagang alam ng taumbayan kung paano ginagastos ng gobyerno ang kanilang mga buwis at kung dekalidad na mga bakuna ang ipapaturok ng gobyerno natin sa kaniyang mamamayan,” she added.

According to Castro, the people have the right to know how the Duterte administration came to the conclusion that the Sinovac vaccine would be the best for the Filipino people despite it being more expensive and yet to finish trials.

“Mamamayang Pilipino ba talaga ang pinakamakikinabang dito o baka naman lalo lang tayong mapahamak dahil sa presyo at kakulangan sa final testing ng vaccine na ito? Kailangan maglabas ang administrasyong Duterte ng full disclosure sa paano nila napili ang Sinovac, baka naman mayroon nanamang may ‘kickvacc’ dito?”she said.

Reports said the the government intends to buy Sinovac even though other COVID-19 vaccines have a higher efficacy rate such as Pfizer and Moderna which both claiming to have 95 perent efficacy rate.

To date, the Sinovac vaccine has yet to finish trials.

Castro stated that it is very alarming to hear reports that there are people in charge who missed the opportunity to secure vaccines from companies for the Filipino people and that we are relying on a vaccine that is more expensive and have yet to finish trials and approvals.

“The Duterte administration should also realize that it should invest more in our own research and development for vaccines and treatment. Invest more in our own scientists so that we would also be more capable of finding cures, or better yet, preventing diseases to spread in the country,” she stressed.