Philippines is a land of the Brave and the Free!

Batanes to Tawi-Tawi

with Julmunir I. Jannaral

Yes this is the Philippines, the land of the Brave and the Free! 

That is brave enough to face the COVID-19 Pandemic unvaccinated. And Free for anyone to decide for himself to be vaccinated or not to be vaccinated.

This is what Senate President Vicente Sotto III said who opposed the restrictions made by authorities against the unvaccinated individuals. “The Senate President emphasized: “This is a free country.”

On Monday, August 2, he rejected a reported plan of a local government to deny unvaccinated individuals access to certain places.

Sotto said the Interagency Task Force (IATF) on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases pushed to restrict movement for people who have yet to get vaccinated against the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). 

This would be “utterly wrong,” Sotto said. He added that vaccinated individuals may still contract the coronavirus and infect others.

We should not force our people to be vaccinated if they refuse. Last time I heard this a free country! 

In NCR Plus that includes Cavite, Laguna, and Bulacan the most restrictive Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) started on Friday, August 6, 2021. 

President Rodrigo Duterte earlier said that he wanted to prohibit unvaccinated individuals from leaving their homes to control the spread of the disease, especially with the emergence of the Delta coronavirus variant.

Duterte also called for a law that would penalize unvaccinated individuals.

Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque, however, clarified last July 29, that the government will not yet impose restrictions against the unvaccinated as majority of the Philippines’ population have yet to get inoculated against the coronavirus.

Meanwhile, the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) said the “No Vaccine, No Entry” Policy is a form of human rights discrimination and should immediately be stopped.

This is like what happened recently to a member of the Royal Family in Sulu but now residing in Zamboanga City. She is Princess (Dayang-Dayang) Sirikit Jamasali who was barred entry into Yubengco Super Mart in Sutterville, Zamboanga City.

Princess Sirikit said she was about to go on shopping for grocery items when Security Guard on duty did not allow her to get inside the Super Mart when the guard learned that she is not yet vaccinated in the absence of Vaccine Pass to probe she was vaccinated already.

So the Princess asked the guard to show to her the guidelines as basis to bar her entry. However the guard as what they usually practice the “No ID, No Entry,” policy could not produce any proof to substantiate the barring of a customer inside the Super Mart. All the guards have said that it is the guideline that they have to implement with the policy of “No Vaccine, No Entry.”

Princess Sirikit said with the failure of the concerned Security Guard to justify the policy, she could have created a vehement protest. But she said she just maintained her cool and silence and avoid creating a commotion as she wants to maintain her Royal status as a respected Princess or Dayang-Dayang belonging to the known Royal Family of Sulu.

“Let us hold on to that Freedom,” Princess Sirikit advised all others unvaccinated individuals.

Post Script:  On the 10th of August 2021, it is the Amon Jadid or Muslim New Year that falls on 1 Muharram 1443. 

The Batanes To Tawi-Tawi including the Management & Staff of Philippine Muslim Today (PMT-19) would like to greet everyone Happy Amon Jadid or Happy Muslim New Year.

10-August-2021 Tuesday 1-Muharram-1443

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