President Rodrigo Duterte to Use Police Power Against People Who Are Still Unvaxxed
President of the Philippines Rodrigo Roa Duterte warned the public to use police power against individuals who remain unvaxxed.
According to Duterte, the government can use its authority to force everyone to get vaccinated, particularly those who reject due to personal views or religion. The Chief Executive emphasized that goal is to ensure that as many Filipinos as possible are protected and get ‘herd immunity as quickly as feasible.
He said he could understand if the explanation was a shortage of vaccines, but that it was a different story if there were enough vaccines and they still refused to inject. Those who have not been vaccinated, according to President Duterte, become carriers of the virus.
“We are almost pleading down on our knees. Parang nakaluhod na kami, nakikiusap sa taong bayan, ‘yung mga taong ayaw o hindi pa nagpabakuna, at nandiyan naman ang available. If it’s not yet there in your place, hindi pa dumating ‘yung mga supply, well, perfectly understood,” he said in a taped public address.
He also stated that he does not mind if the refusal to be vaccinated is based on religious beliefs. The government does not interfere with religious beliefs, but if there is a pandemic, that is a different story.
“Pero ‘yung nandiyan na at ayaw ninyo, o talagang may pinag-isipan. You know, I do not want to advance this theory, but under the police power of the state, everybody can be compelled to be vaccinated. Not because we do not believe in your theory or belief, or your religion, but because you are a carrier and a danger to society. ‘Yan ang problema diyan. It’s between your belief maybe, your religion, eh there is a division of religion and state,” Duterte added.
Duterte has threatened to deploy a police force against anyone who refuses to get vaccinated before. He declared in June that people who refuse to get vaccinated will be imprisoned. He recently stated that barangay authorities should monitor vaccination rates in their communities and prevent unvaccinated persons from leaving their homes.
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