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Pasay City Mayor Emi-Calixto Rubiano said the city council will pass an ordinance penalizing the illegal sale of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) jabs and vaccination slots, according to a report by Philippine News Agency.

Rubiano said the move complies with the national government's call to penalize those behind this illegal activity.

Meanwhile, Rubiano assured that the city government does not tolerate special treatment for foreigners or rich individuals in its Covid-19 vaccination program.

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This came after a viral social media post claimed that certain Chinese nationals have reportedly received vaccine shots amid the strict policy on the vaccination of priority sectors.

"There is no VIP (very important person) treatment or any form of undue preference given to Chinese nationals in the Covid-19 vaccination program of the Pasay city government," Rubiano told reporters.

Rubiano, however, clarified that those inoculated Chinese nationals in the recent viral post were bonafide residents of Pasay City.

“These individuals, like all the other people who got vaccinated, passed through the normal process, and during their registration, they submitted their barangay certificates and medical certificates indicating that they were residents of the city and they belonged to either the A2 or A3 groups,” she said.

The government is currently inoculating priority sectors under categories A1 (healthcare workers), A2 (senior citizens), and A3 (persons with comorbidities).

She also assured that all bonafide residents would undergo a thorough screening process before getting vaccinated.

"Also, during the interview, they would not be approved for inoculation if they failed in this interview even if they had complied with the documentary requirements," she said.

Rubiano has ordered a probe on the incident.

On Tuesday, the Palace called on LGUs to pass an ordinance that will punish those who are involved in various illegal activities related to the vaccination program.

The sale of Covid-19 vaccines for commercial use in the country is prohibited as these are only covered by an emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration.

The government reiterated that Covid-19 vaccines should be accessible, safe, and free for all Filipinos.


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