Palace: Duterte won’t apologize on claims EU holding vaccines hostage
MANILA, Philippines — There would be no apology from President Rodrigo Duterte after he accused the European Union of holding hostage Covid-19 vaccines, Malacañang said Thursday.
Duterte, in a pre-recorded speech, lamented how the EU sought to restrict exports of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccines to other countries. But EU reportedly said that the Philippines is exempted from export ban.
“Wala po kasi kinakailangan naman talaga ng paglilinaw kasi ang lumalabas, nagkakaroon ng vaccine nationalism at yun po yung issue na nilabas ng ating Presidente,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said when asked if the President would apologize for his remarks.
(There would be none because there has to be a clarification since it seemed that there is a vaccine nationalism and that’s the issue mentioned by the President.)
“Ngayong nagkaroon ng ganyang paglilinaw, we appreciate it pero kung hindi po nagsalita ang Presidente, hindi sila magbibigay ng linaw na ganyan,” he added.
(Now that there’s clarification, we appreciate it but if the President did not speak up, they will not give clarification as such.)
The Philippines will receive 5,500,800 to 9,290,400 doses of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccines from the World Health Organization-led COVAX facility in the first quarter of 2021, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. has said.
Previously, the national government along with local government units and the private sector also secured 17 million AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines.