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DOJ: No law penalizes people who refuse jab
In his public address Monday night, Duterte noted that the country is currently in a public health crisis and national emergency.

DOJ: No law penalizes people who refuse jab

Caecent No-ot Magsumbol (The Freeman) - June 23, 2021 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has threatened to put in jail those who refuse to be vaccinated for COVID-19, but Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said there is no law yet that penalizes people who refuse inoculation. 

In his public address Monday night, Duterte noted that the country is currently in a public health crisis and national emergency.

“Kung ayaw mo magpabakuna, ipaaresto kita. At ang bakuna ay galing—itusok ko sa puwet mo. (If you don’t want to be vaccinated, I will have you arrested. The vaccine is from—I will have you injected on your butt),” he said.

Guevarra explained that the president "merely used strong words" to drive home the need for the people to get vaccinated.

As a lawyer, Guevarra believes, Duterte knows that not getting vaccinated is a legal choice and that there is no law that compels vaccination against COVID-19, much less criminalizes it.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque also clarified that it needs enabling law from Congress to arrest anyone who refuse to be vaccinated.

Aside from threatening arrest, Duterte also urged those who do not want to be vaccinated to just leave the Philippines.

“Go to India if you want or somewhere, to America. But for as long as you are here and you are a human being, and can carry the virus, get vaccinated,” the president said, adding that those who refuse are potential carriers of the virus.

“Itong mga gago na ayaw magpabakuna, they are really are the carriers. They can travel from one place to another carrying the virus and contaminating other people,” said Duterte. – FPL (FREEMAN)

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