President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday ordered the investigation of and arrest of persons involved in the selling of Covid-19 vaccines and vaccination slots following the recent arrest of a nurse who sold Sinovac doses.

In a pre-recorded address aired Tuesday night, Duterte said he was made aware of the incident and stressed that vaccines are free of charge for Filipinos.

“This is very alarming. We condemn these acts, and we will not allow perpetrators to go
unpunished. I order every relevant authority to investigate this matter thoroughly and press charges accordingly,” he said.

Duterte said he was “extra sensitive” to matters involving public health and reminded Filipinos to not spend money on vaccines.

“You are not allowed to buy; the government will take care of that. Maski kayong mga ano, mahirapan kayo. So do not press your luck too far. You might regret it. Warning ko lang sa inyo ‘yan,” said the president.

No vaccines have been approved for commercial use in the country. Only emergency use licenses have been given by the Food and Drug Administration.

To date, about 2.9 Filipinos have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19.

The country has administered 12 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines as of July 6. John Ezekiel J. Hirro