Cebu City Council mulls realigning vax budget

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram - CDN Digital Multi-Media Reporter | May 20,2021 - 03:10 PM
Cebu city council mulls realigning vax budget

Vials of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccines of Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca are pictured at St. Mary’s Hospital, in Phoenix Park in Dublin, Ireland, February 14, 2021. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

CEBU CITY, Philippines – The Cebu City Council is planning to realign the P500 million worth of funds intended for the purchase of COVID-19 vaccines.

Vice Mayor Michael Rama on Thursday, May 20, said the city government was given reassurance from national government officials that the city will continue to be part of the priority areas for the distribution of free COVID-19 vaccines.

Rama, who chairs the committee on health, said that instead of using the funds to purchase the vaccines directly from the manufacturers, they are planning to spend it to hire vaccinators and other materials needed for the mass vaccination – which meant vaccinating the general public.

“Gitagaan man ta ug assurance gikan sa national government ug mao na nga (i-gasto) unta paghire sa atong vaccinators and supplies para sa atong mass vaccination,” he explained.

(We were given reassurance from the national government and that is why we’re planning to spend it instead to hire vaccinators and other supplies for the mass vaccination.)

It can be recalled that during the later part of 2020, officials from the city government agreed to use P500 million from the city’s coffers to buy vaccines directly from manufacturers.

Rama added that aside from hiring and training vaccinators, the money could be used to fund other pending projects and obligations of the city government.

In particular, the Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC), he said.

“If di magamit ang P500 million, ipuno nato na sa mga kinahanglan pa nato humanon like CCMC. Dapat mahuman ang CCMC,” said Rama.

(If we cannot use the P500 million, we can use them to spend on ongoing projects like CCMC. We have to finish CCMC.)

The new building of the CCMC, which has incurred multiple delays already, is only operating in a partial capacity as construction of the entire structure is still ongoing.

Cebu City has been tagged by the national government as one of the priority areas for the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. /rcg

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TAGS: CCMC, Cebu City Council, Cebu city council mulls realigning vax budget, Cebu City Medical Center, Cebu City Vice Mayor Michael Rama

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