Basta libre: Escalante mayor open to using vaccine from China’s Sinovac


Escalante City Mayor Melecio Yap Jr. of Negros Occidental said the local government can appropriate or realign funds anytime for the purchase of coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccines if needed.

But since President Rodrigo Duterte announced that the national government will give free vaccines, there is no need for the city to buy and save funds for key projects.

“Escalante is a third-class city. We are prepared though… that in effect we can allocate funds for the vaccine anytime,” Yap said during a recent interview at the high-tech Escalante City Command Center. (

The mayor lamented that supplies might expire if they allocate millions of pesos and stock vaccines without knowing for sure how many will submit for vaccination.

He said he doesn’t mind even if the vaccine is China-made as long as it is free.

“Why buy vaccine if it is free from the national government? What’s important is if we can save funds for that since there will be free supply from the national government. We can use the funds for other projects and services.”