The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) was tasked to lead the probe on the “under the table” sale of government-purchased COVID-19 vaccines.
Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief, Police General Guillermo Lorenzo Eleazar assured, “Tutugisin natin para panagutin sa batas ang mga pasimuno at gumagawa ng ganitong modus. As per directive of our SILG Eduardo Año, I have ordered the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group to identify and arrest the person or persons behind these scams. Inatasan din natin ang CIDG na makipag-ugnayan sa ating mga LGUs.”
“Iligal po ang pagbebenta ng COVID vaccine na nagawaran lamang ng Emergency Use Authorization o EUA ng ating Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Nananatiling bawal ang pagbebenta ng mga bakuna kontra COVID dito sa atin, ayon na rin sa advisory ng FDA at ng National Task Force against COVID-19,” he said.
The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) ordered the PNP to conduct an immediate investigation following viral social media posts showing that vaccine slots in different LGUs were being sold by unscrupulous persons who set prices based on the brand of COVID-19 vaccine being sold.
PGen. Eleazar said the FDA has not approved the marketing or sale of any COVID-19 vaccine which makes selling or any kind of this activity illegal.
Citing initial reports, PGen. Eleazar said the vaccination slots are being offered in various areas for a price ranging from P10,000 to P15,000 depending on the vaccine brand.
“Ang mga bakuna ay donasyon at binili ng ating pamahalaan para ibigay ng libre sa ating mga kababayan. Ibayong hirap ang pinag-daanan natin para makakuha tayo ng bakuna laban sa COVID kaya hindi katanggap-tanggap na pagkakitaan ito,” he added.
The PNP Chief advised the public that they do not have to pay any single centavo for the vaccination, adding that all they have to do is to have themselves registered and wait for their turn to be vaccinated because there is a priority list that is being followed by the national government.
Vaccine czar Scretary Carlito Galvez earlier said that the vaccination of essential workers and indigent Filipinos is expected to start by next month.
PGen. Eleazar further urged the public to immediately report to authorities anyone selling COVID-19 vaccines or vaccination slots. Information or concerns may be relayed to the PNP through its E-Sumbong complaint monitoring and referral system.