Robredo meets with US official, thanks Americans for COVID-19 aid

By LLANESCA T. PANTI, GMA News

Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday met with the US Embassy in Manila’s ad interim Chargé d’Affaires Heather Variava and thanked her for the American government’s assistance to the Philippines amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement, Robredo’s office said the assistance included COVID-19 vaccines, test kits, and ICU beds.

The OVP also said Variava reiterated the US government’s commitment to support the Philippines as one of its strongest allies.

In addition, the officials discussed the partnership projects between the Office of the Vice President’Angat Buhay program and the US Embassy and the United States Aid Agency (USAID).

The US has donated millions of doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines to the Philippines, sending them through the COVAX facility.

In addition, US is the biggest funder of the global vaccine-sharing scheme, which pools resources to aid nations in need at P100 billion.

Last week, President Rodrigo Duterte said he is mulling a visit to the US to personally thank Americans for their generosity in donating COVID-19 vaccine doses to the Philippines.

At least 24 million out of 77 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines delivered to the Philippines were either donated by other countries, including the US, under the COVAX facility or directly donated.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque, however, said on Monday that such donations are out of rich countries’ “guilty consciences” for supposedly hoarding the COVID-19 vaccine supply. — BM, GMA News

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