The Philippine president made the remarks as he was "exasperated" after hearing reports of people refusing to receive the vaccine.
Rodrigo Duterte, President of the Philippines, threatened on Monday 21 June to put people in jail if they refuse to take the covid vaccine. During the confinement he ordered police to shoot people who failed to comply with movement restrictions, and they were isolated in cages in the sun.
Duterte – jail or vaccine in Philippines ?
Duterte threatens Philippine citizens who do not want to receive the vaccine with jail. The president said in a speech:
“Don’t get me wrong, there is a crisis in this country, there is a national emergency. If you don’t want to get vaccinated, I will arrest you”.
The Philippine president made the remarks as he was “exasperated” by reports of people refusing to receive the vaccine in Manila.
The country is facing dangerous numbers of infected people while guarding against the risk of the Delta variant.
If this threat made by Duterte is implemented, it could be among the most severe measures for people to get vaccinated. So far, most are unsure about the vaccine.
The Philippines aims to vaccinate at least 58 million people this year, achieving herd immunity against Covid-19. 2.1 million people are already fully vaccinated, but a total of 8.4 million doses have been administered.
Restrictions remain in place in the Philippines
In the Philippines, the ban on the reopening of some economic sectors remains in place, and there will still be a virtual ban on education, as the country is currently experiencing a new peak in the number of infections.
Following Duterte’s statements, controversy and terror among citizens has increased, coinciding with the announcement by the US government that the Philippines has been included in the list of countries that will receive donations of vaccines. The first batch will be 80 million doses.
The White House earmarked the remaining 55 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine from the announcement of 80 million newly committed doses to be distributed to countries before the end of June. Depending on the World Health Organisation, 41 million of these doses will go to the Covax mechanism.