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1月5日のまにら新聞から

100,000 Chinese nationals allegedly vaccinated in Philippines against COVID-19 sans FDA permit - Ang See

[ 365 words|2021.1.5|英字 ]

At least 100,000 Chinese nationals, including a few Filipino-Chinese, have received Chinese vaccines against the coronavirus, civic leader Teresita Ang See claimed Monday.

In the "Tapatan" virtual forum, Ang See, founder of the Movement for the Restoration of Peace and Order, said as early as November, she got information about Chinese nationals working in Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGOs) having been vaccinated against COVID-19.

"Last November, many Chinese nationals were vaccinated. We brought it to the attention of authorities," she said.

By mid-December, the number of Chinese nationals who were vaccinated increased, "at the very least 100,000 of them, 200,000 doses," she said.

But she said out of those injected with anti-COVID-19 vaccine, one reportedly got infected again.

Ang See refused to say whether the vaccines were Sinopharm or Sinovac, but said, "Chinese vaccines."

She said she was not aware how the vaccines were smuggled into the country.

The Food and Drug Administration has yet to approve any COVID-19 vaccine in the country.

Recently, President Rodrigo Duterte himself admitted "a lot" of people had received Sinopharm vaccine. The Presidential Security Group leadership later on admitted that some of their members were vaccinated, stressing the need to protect Duterte from the virus. This drew criticisms due to the absence of FDA approval.

Ang See expressed support to those who have acquired the vaccine, saying, "because it protects us also."

Asked about the statement of Ang See regarding the vaccination of some 100,000 Chinese nationals in the country against COVID-19, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, in the "Laging Handa" press briefing, said it would also be investigated, the same way as to how the PSG was able to acquire the vaccine despite no FDA approval.

"That will be part of the investigation to be conducted by our regulatory agencies - the FDA, NBI (National Bureau of Investigation) and Bureau of Customs - to address all the aspects surrounding the alleged injection of unauthorized and unlicensed, unapproved COVID vaccines," he said.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, in a separate televised press briefing, said if it was true some 100,000 Chinese nationals have received the vaccine, it would be good.

He said it means "100,000 less carriers" of coronavirus. Celerina Monte/DMS