PH military gives jabs to captured, surrendered Reds
By Frances Mangosing / Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA — Dozens of captured communist guerrillas had been injected with vaccines for SARS Cov2, the virus that causes COVID-19, according to the military on Monday.
The military made the initiative after some guerrillas, belonging to New People’s Army and had been captured in recent clashes in Bukidnon, tested positive for the virus.
The 88th Infantry Battalion arranged for the vaccination of 11 former rebels and six of their dependents with Coronavac and AstraZeneca vaccines in Bukidnon, the Army said. Coronavac is manufactured by Chinese company Sinovac.
Another Army unit, the 55th Infantry Battalion in Misamis Oriental, also arranged for the vaccination of 15 former guerrillas said to be from different NPA units of the rebels’ North Central Mindanao Regional Committee. They received Moderna and Coronavac.
Some more former guerrillas were vaccinated in the provinces of Surigao del Sur and Agusan del Norte courtesy of the military.
A high-ranking communist guerrilla was among those vaccinated, said the 4th Infantry Division.
The 4th ID said it believed SARS Cov2 infection was widespread among guerrillas in Central Mindanao.
“We reiterate our willingness to share to the [NPA] members the vaccines intended for our soldiers,” said Maj. Gen. Romeo Brawner Jr., 4th ID commander. “We ensure them that we will give them proper medical attention and get them vaccinated once they return to the folds of the law,” he said.