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Mayor Isko Open to Using Dolomite Beach as Vaccination Site

January 20, 2022 - Thursday 3:01 PM by Kristine Casampol

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Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso said on Wednesday, Jan. 20, he is open to the possibility of conducting a vaccination drive and providing booster shots to as many people as possible to protect them from COVID-19 at the controversial dolomite beach along Roxas Boulevard.

However, before the Manila Bay Walk Dolomite Beach can be used as a vaccination site, the 47-year-old presidential candidate pointed out that construction in the area should already be finished, and the people's safety should be assured.

“Kung feasible, bakit hindi? That’s a perfect idea? Tapos na ba ‘yung construction nila, safe ba sa mga tao? ‘Yun naman ang concern natin palagi eh, ‘yung safety ng mga tao,” Moreno told reporters during the opening of the Manila Zoological and Botanical Garden as the latest vaccination site for minors and senior citizens. 

“Pansinin nyo, kapag pumipili tayo ng lugar, secluded halos lagi ‘yung mga lugar. Geographically feasible sa gagawing function doon sa particular na action plan, Pero okay ‘yun, bakunahan sa dolomite,” Moreno said.

Dolomite Beach, also known as the Manila Bay Walk Dolomite Beach, is a Manila artificial beach located along Roxas Boulevard. It's all part of the Department of the Environment and Natural Resources' Manila Bay Rehabilitation project's overall integrated coastal zone management, which aims to protect the coastal zone.

The dolomite beach was first open to the public last Sept. 19 and 20. The beach was reopened to the public on July 18, 2021, after being closed again for expansion. A new entrance arch with the site's name, "Manila Bay Walk Dolomite Beach," was placed in September 2021, and the beach was reopened on Oct. 17, 2021.

Moreno has opened three drive-thru booster shot facilities for 4-wheel vehicles (Quirino Grandstand), motorcycles and bicycles (Kartilya ng Katipunan), and for public utility vehicles and delivery vans drivers (Bagong Ospital ng Maynila). In addition, community health facilities, selected public schools, and shopping malls continue to provide vaccinations.

People should receive their booster shots as soon as possible, according to the leader of the Aksyon Demokratiko, who said Manila City's different vaccination facilities are open to everyone.

According to Moreno, while unvaccinated workers are not subject to the "no vaccination, no ride" policy, this should not be construed as an excuse not to get vaccinated at all.

“Pipilitin nating unawain ang mga tao, abutin ang tao hanggang kaya natin. But at the end of the day, you have to decide. Kasi, you have to be responsible to others. As a citizen, meron ka ring responsibilidad sa iyong pamayanan, sa iyong bansa. Hindi lang gobyerno ang may responsibilidad sa tao,” Moreno said on Wednesday. 

“Ang tao may responsibilidad sa kapwa niya, sa sarili niya, sa pamilya nya. We are under attack, people are dying, getting sick because of this dreadful disease called coronavirus.  So kailangan science ang approach, dahil ang tanging makakatulong sa atin, siyensya. Vaccination is the only solution,” he pointed out.

Moreno stated this is the sole reason he has put forth all of his efforts to launch an aggressive and innovative vaccination campaign in order to protect as many people as possible, in as many ways as possible, and in the shortest time possible, in order to avoid any deaths as a result of the country's Omicron outbreak.

In order to be protected from COVID-19, he said that everyone who is still unvaccinated, including workers, can avail these facilities.

“Maraming choices yung ating mga kababayan sa lungsod. They can choose kung saan sila kumbinyente. Kung sino pa ba yung mga hindi bakunado, and maybe, some of our workers, because they don’t live in Manila, they go in and out of Manila, so we wanted to protect them. We wanted to protect ourselves while protecting them. So, it works both ways,” Moreno explained. 

Moreno also pointed out that giving people more convenient access to vaccination facilities has resulted in more people getting vaccinated, with 23,676 people getting vaccinated on Jan. 17 with either their first dose, second dose, or booster doses. Prior to that, roughly 22,346 people were vaccinated on Jan. 15, while around 20,787 people were vaccinated on Jan. 14.

According to Moreno, over 15,000 people received their booster shots at the drive-thru facilities in Luneta and Kartilya ng Katipunan, with 60% of them being non-Manilaans. “So, gusto talaga ng tao. All they need is convenience and access,” he said.

According to Moreno, even persons in vehicles with his rivals' were welcomed and given shots at the facilities, reiterating his previous statements that everyone is welcome in the City of Manila.

“Welcome po kayo sa Maynila. What matters most ngayon, tulong-tulong muna tayo. At least I am happy to be of service to them. At least ngayon pa lang, nasubukan na nila ang serbisyo natin,” he said. 

“Yung sa amin naman, yung makikipag-kapwa tao. It’s a universal problem. So, gusto namin, maging bahagi ng tunay na solusyon. Basta ako, with all honesty, lagi tayong maghahanap ng tunay na solusyon. Then after that, mabilis yung aksyon,” said Moreno.

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