Presidential aspirant Sen. Manny Pacquiao slammed the slow vaccine rollout in the Bangsamoro region as he urged National Task Force Against COVID-19 head and vaccination czar Carlito Galvez Jr. to be fair in distributing the supply of the life-saving jabs across the country.
Pacquiao said the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) has been left behind in the government’s anti-COVID vaccine rollout.
To date, BARMM has the lowest vaccination rate, he said.
While other regions have already breached the 20 percent vaccination mark for their target population, BARMM is still lumbering behind at only 10.06 percent.
While he maintained that vaccination should remain voluntary, he said the government should address the reluctance of some people to get their vaccines.
He said this can be done by conducting localized information dissemination campaign to inform them on the importance of vaccination to protect not only their families but also their communities.
“Now that there is a marked decrease in COVID infection in areas previously considered as hotspots, the time has come for the government to pay attention to areas with greater potential to be fully COVID-free,” he said.
“It is easier to keep areas like BARMM COVID-free especially if the people are vaccinated,” Pacquiao added.
“If we can get 89.08% vaccination completion in Manila, why can’t we get it in the province?” asked the senator.
Outside the National Capital Region, no area has completed at least 50 percent in community vaccination.