LGUs may pay half of vaccine cost as downpayment

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MALACAÑANG is making life easier for the local government units wanting to buy COVID-19 vaccines from their local funds.

In a press briefing, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said that President Rodrigo Duterte is set to come out with a memorandum order that would allow LGUs to make a 50-percent advance payment to manufacturers for buying COVID-19 vaccines.

“Inaasahan po natin mapipirmahan ni Presidente itong memorandum order na ito para makabayad na ng advance payment ang mga lokal na pamahalaan sa pamimili ng bakuna,” said Roque, adding that mayors need not worry about the provisions of the Government Procurement law, at least until the pandemic is over.

Under the Government Procurement law, advance payment should not exceed 15 percent of the contract amount, pending delivery of services unless otherwise directed by the President.

Interestingly, bills of similar essence have been filed both in both legislative chambers. The proposed bills seek to exempt LGUs from complying with the procurement law provision so they can make advance payments for COVID-19 vaccine purchase.

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