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Taguig Mayor Lino Cayetano

Taguig to spend P1 billion for Covid-19 vaccines

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Taguig City allocated P1 billion to acquire coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccines for its residents in line with its efforts to contain the pandemic, according to a report by Philippine News Agency.

In a statement Tuesday, Mayor Lino Cayetano said the funds are included in the city's P13.5 billion budget for 2021 which was approved by the Department of Budget Management (DBM) on Dec. 23, 2020.

Dubbed as the recovery budget, the annual appropriation program will cover the city's pandemic recovery plan which includes massive testing, treatment, and vaccination.

The city received the DBM's approval only on Monday.

Cayetano said every Taguigeño will benefit from the city's Covid-19 vaccination program.

He added the city has already implemented several successful Covid-19 programs such as the promotion of aggressive testing; the establishment of quarantine facilities; education and knowledge enrichment programs; opening accessible markets; distribution of food packs and other aids to different sectors; and recovery programs for the business sector.

This resulted in Taguig recording the lowest active cases and case fatality rates among major cities not only in the Philippines but also all over the globe.

"With the approved budget, the city government will also allocate for various public service recovery and sustainability programs," Cayetano said.

Under the citywide Covid-19 vaccination program, all Taguig residents can expect to be inoculated free of charge.

Cayetano said the city is now preparing for the logistical challenges of purchasing, distributing, and implementing vaccination once a Covid-19 vaccine is approved for use in the country.

He added that the local government has begun exploring talks with vaccine suppliers. The vaccination program covers the city's residents in all 28 barangays.

Vaccine demonstration station units will also be available in the city under the program.

"We are working closely with the national government. We want to assure all Taguigeños na mayroon tayong (that we have a) vaccination delivery plan. We will set aside money para makasigurado na meron tayong vaccination plan at pwedeng mabakunahan ang lahat ng Taguigeño nang libre (so we can have a vaccination plan and we would be able to inoculate all Taguigeños for free)," he added.

He also declared that since senior citizens are vulnerable to Covid-19 infection and are greatly affected by the pandemic, the city government will roll out additional aid for them.

Cayetano also thanked Taguig’s taxpayers for making possible the funding for its anti-Covid programs.

He also urged the public to continue observing all safety and health protocols even as the availability of a vaccine draws near.

"Mga kababayan kong Taguigeño (My fellow Taguigeños), as we end this challenging 2020, 'yung hamon ko naman po sa lahat ng (this is my challenge for all) Taguigeños: Let's keep working together. Tayo ay manatiling nagkakaisa (Let us stay united). Let's continue to pray together. Let's continue to work not just for our families, but for our communities," Cayetano said.

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