Palace urges public to look at safety and efficacy of vaccines, not country of origin

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Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque in a press briefing explained his much-criticized remark branding Filipinos as having “colonial mentality” for preferring Western vaccine brands like Pfizer over other vaccines.

Roque faced backlash from the public for this remark, which he quickly defended.

Pasensya na po kayo, ano. Ako po’y kilala bilang isang spokesperson na diretso magsalita, wala po akong pakialam, noh, basta ako katotohanan lamang,” Roque said. 

At ang katotohanan po may ilan po sa atin, lalong-lalo na yung kritiko ng gobyerno, na ang pagtingin nila sa bakuna ay depende kung saan po nanggaling.”

Roque also stressed that the public should look at the data on efficacy and safety instead of focusing on the country of origin.

Ang dapat tignan natin kung ito ay ligtas at kung ito po’y epektibo. At wala po tayong tuturok kung hindi po natunayang ligtas o epektibo, kahit saan pa po sila gawa,” Roque explained.

The government has been repeatedly accused of favoring Chinese brand Sinovac despite its cost and low efficacy rate in clinical trials compared to other vaccines.