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Leni Robredo Suspends COVID Programs as OVP Awaits Comelec Exemption

Including Vaccine Express and Swab Cab.
by Pia Regalado
Feb 7, 2022
Photo/s: Leni Robredo/Facebook

Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday said her office suspended its COVID response programs pending Comelec's decision to allow it to continue as she campaigns for the May 9 elections.

The presidential candidate said she promised the Comelec during the hearing for the request that she would distance herself from the programs to avoid it being politicized during campaign period starting Feb. 8. Under Comelec rules, candidates are prohibited to give, offer, or promise anything of value during an election period.

"Naghihintay kami... So ngayon, hininto muna namin pending 'yung exemption kung ibibigay," she told the media during her visit at Leon Mercado High School in Naga.

Should Comelec grant them the exemption, Robredo said: "Kung dati personal na nandoon ako sa activities na 'yun, hindi na ako puwedeng pumunta kasi kandidato na ako. Kung dati may isang itsura 'yung lahat na ginagamit namin na paraphernalia for those projects, iibahin namin para 'yung attribution wala ako."

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Among those projects it suspended was the Office of the Vice President's Medical Assistance Program; Bayanihan E-Konsulta, its free teleconsult service for outpatient cases; Vaccine Express, its drive-thru vaccination program; and Swab Cab, its mobile COVID testing service.

Robredo earlier said her office received requests for assistance to bring the projects to the provinces, adding that her office was willing to help as long as they were allowed to.


2022 Elections: What Physical Activities Are Prohibited During the Campaign?

How Presidential Candidates Will Kick Off Official Campaign on Feb. 8

FACT FILE: Presidential, VP Candidates in the May 9 Elections

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