Gov’t urged to prioritize provinces with low income in COVID-19 vaccine plan

MANILA – The League of Provinces of the Philippines on Thursday urged national government to prioritize low-ranking local governments in its COVID-19 immunization plan.

Ranking local government units are also urged to assist areas with low internal revenue allotment (IRA) such as third to fifth-class towns, said Marinduque Gov. Presbitero Velasco Jr, national president of League of Provinces.

“Talagang maliliiit po ang kanilang revenues o income kaya malaki po ang problema…kailangan ang national government na po ang magbigay ng priority sa mga mabababang ranggo ng LGUs,” he told ABS-CBN’s Teleradyo.

“Sa local government code allowed po ‘yung LGU to LGU arrangements, so maganda po ang sinabi niyo na yung first class and second class provinces and municipalities ay tumulong naman po sa mga nangangailangan na municipalities and probinsiya.”

(The local government code allows LGU to LGU arrangements, so it’s good what you said about first and second class provinces and municipalities helping those in need.)

President Rodrigo Duterte earlier approved a deal that would allow local government units to procure vaccines against the novel coronavirus through tripartite agreements.

The Philippines is expected to begin its COVID-19 vaccination program in the second quarter as the first batch of its order from AstraZeneca is scheduled to arrive in May.

The country as of Wednesday reported 480,737 cases of COVID-19, with 22,690 active infections. It has yet to detect the new coronavirus variant, the health department said.

This story was first published on ABS-CBN

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