Govt can't grant request of Metro Manila mayors for 4M vaccine doses should ECQ be imposed – officials

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 29) — The national government on Thursday said the request of Metro Manila mayors for four million vaccine shots amid the possibility of a hard lockdown is not feasible.

The 17 mayors unanimously said they are in favor of imposing a two-week enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) amid the threat of the Delta variant if four million vaccine doses can be allocated to the region, which will all be administered to the general population sans prioritization.

But Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the government can only allocate half of the request, at most.

"Narinig po yan ni Secretary Galvez. I think what he can guarantee for now is around 2 million or so kasi kinakailangan nga po na magkaroon din ng equitable distribution ng mga bakuna," Roque said during a media briefing.

[Translation: Secretary Galvez has heard the request. I think for now he can guarantee 2 million or so because we need to have an equitable distribution.]

Health Undersecretary Carol Tanio, meanwhile, said other regions experiencing surges need to get vaccines, too, such as Iloilo and Cagayan de Oro.

All mayors of cities and municipality in the National Capital Region will appeal to the Inter-Agency Task Force to shift to the strictest quarantine, according to Metropolitan Manila Development Authority chairman Benhur Abalos.