Panic at vaccine centers expose shortage


Thousands trooped to the Araneta Center vaccination site in Cubao, Quezon City on Sunday, August 8, seeking to be inoculated against Covid-19. Many were hopeful walk-in individuals, who ended up disappointed as they were driven away by the police.

Reports tell of crowds flocking to the entrance of the site, short of duplicating the near-stampede incidents last August 5 in other vaccination centers in and around the National Capital Region (NCR). Hours before a lockdown was to be reimposed in NCR, thousands rushed to several vaccination sites in Antipolo, Las Piñas, and Manila for fear of being arrested, detained at home or refused a “quarantine pass.”

The mayhem at the Araneta Center was quickly pinned by the regime’s officials on supposed spreaders of fake news, just as it was the easy excuse for the August 5 rush.

But for revolutionary youth group Kabataang Makabayan spokesperson Maria Laya Guerrero, fake news and disinformation are what epitomize Rodrigo Duterte’s regime. She said on Twitter that Duterte is completely incapable of offering solutions for the problems of the masses, and instead pins the blame on the people.

Duterte in his weekly address last June 21 berated those who refuse to get vaccinated and threatened them with arrest. A month later, he ordered his policemen to escort the unvaccinated back to their homes.

As of writing, only 10% of the country’s 109 million population has been vaccinated against Covid-19. Because of this shortage, the military-led task force against Covid-19 has constantly moved the deadline for achieving herd immunity. It now says that the aim will be reached by 2023.

The 2-week NCR lockdown is estimated to pummel the livelihoods of at least 167,000 workers, in addition to the millions already unemployed in the region. Conservative figures set the losses in production output to be at P300 billion.

For Guerrero, calling for an end to the tyrannical regime is the only way out of this difficult situation made impossible by Duterte sowing confusion and unrest.

Panic at vaccine centers expose shortage