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22 Feb, 14 tweets, 5 min read
President #Duterte says no vaccine rollout, no MGCQ

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has refused to place the entire #Philippines under the least restrictive modified general community quarantine (#MGCQ) until after the government kicks off its vaccination drive, Malacañan said.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the President’s preference not to shift to MGCQ unless there is a vaccine rollout was raised during the ongoing Cabinet meeting.
“President Rodrigo Roa #Duterte gave his directive to the Cabinet that the #Philippines would not be placed under modified general community quarantine unless there is a rollout of vaccines,” Roque said in a statement.
While President #Duterte acknowledged the need to reopen the economy, Roque said the President refused to put people’s health and safety at risk.
“The Chief Executive recognizes the importance of reopening the economy and its impact on people's livelihoods. However, the President gives higher premium to public health and safety,” Roque added.
Roque said President #Duterte also emphasized his desire for vaccination to start the soonest possible time to ease the community quarantine.
In a separate message, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go said President #Duterte thinks that further easing the nationwide quarantine classification is “not to the best interest of the country.”
Citing the President, Go said President Duterte’s “conscience” would not allow a transition to #MGCQ because he is concerned that “something might go wrong.”

Go said President #Duterte expressed confidence that his economic managers will understand his decision.
Go noted that President #Duterte also reiterated his preference not to allow the dry run of face-to-face classes until the immunization program starts.
The national government is expected to kick off its vaccination drive this month with the arrival of initial doses of Covid-19 vaccines. Pres. Spokesperson Harry Roque said Pres. #Duterte will decide on the next quarantine classification based on current Covid-19 data analytics.
Roque said President #Duterte has thumbed down the proposal to hold pilot in-person classes next month, but is open to the conduct the dry run by August.
“I guess what he is anticipating is since we will begin vaccination this month, we will be way ahead of our vaccination in August to give us the confidence to resume at least limited face-to-face education,” Roque said.
The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) and the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) have recommended that the government push through with a nationwide MGCQ and with pilot in-person classes next month.
On Monday, the health department reported 2,288 new Covid-19 cases that increased the country’s tally to 563,456 cases.

(c) PNA/Presidential Photo

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More from @PHNews01

22 Feb
President Rodrigo Roa #Duterte has thumbed down the proposal to hold pilot face-to-face (F2F) classes in low-risk areas next month but is open to conduct them by August after the government kicks off its vaccination drive this month, Malacañan said on Monday.
In a Palace press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said President #Duterte called him on Sunday night to inform him about his decision to reject in-person classes until after vaccination program starts.
“Nagdesisyon na po ang Presidente,wala pa rin po tayong face-to-face classes sa bansa.Tumawag po kagabi ang Presidente sa akin at ang sabi niya ayaw po niya malagay sa panganib o alanganin ang buhay ng ating magaaral at mga guro habang wala pa pong nababakunahan sa bansa”he said.
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Senator Christopher “Bong” Go said whatever decision the President will come up with should be respected.

The VFA with the United States is a deal to allow the presence of military forces in the #Philippines for military exercises with local troops and humanitarian missions.
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Go said President #Duterte, as chief architect of foreign policy, has the prerogative to make decisions for the country.
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Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador #Panelo insisted that those criticizing President Rodrigo Roa #Duterte’s demand for the United States (US) to pay the #Philippines for hosting American troops should allow the chief executive to “strategize” since it was part of his job.
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Panelo reiterated that President #Duterte is the chief architect of foreign policy as mandated by the #Constitution
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