The World Health Organization (WHO) on Friday said candidates in the 2022 elections should advocate vaccination to help the country achieve herd immunity against Covid-19.

In an interview over ANC, Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe, the WHO’s representative to the Philippines, said the importance of vaccination superseded any political interest.

“I wish that every candidate will advocate for people to go and get their vaccines as early as possible. Because this is coming together as a country, this is putting the national interest ahead of their own political interests,” Abeyasinghe said.

“If we can do that, now that the Philippines has enough vaccines in the country, this is the opportunity for us to come together whatever political ideology you have, I think this is important,” he added.

Abeyasinghe also called on politicians to enforce physical distancing when conducting political events and gatherings.

“I wish that every candidate becomes an example and wears their masks and tries to maintain physical distancing. I know that when campaigning, that’s not easy,” he said.

The Philippines has over 43 million fully vaccinated individuals as of Dec. 16.

It aims to inoculate up to 90 percent of its population to potentially erase the threat of Covid-19 by achieving herd immunity. John Ezekiel J. Hirro