President Rodrigo Duterte (MNS photo)

MANILA, Jan 8 (Mabuhay) —

President Rodrigo Duterte’s order to arrest individuals unvaccinated against COVID-19 who refuse to stay home amid the pandemic covers the entire country, Malacañang said Friday.

“Dahil nakikita po natin sa datos na iyong mga unvaccinated po, kapag nahawa po ng COVID ay napupunta sa malubhang kalagayan, nagiging severe at critical. So nationwide po iyan,” acting presidential spokesperson Karlo Nograles said during a Palace briefing, referring to Duterte’s order given Thursday night.

In his Talk to the People, Duterte invoked his authority as Chief Executive amid a national emergency to order the mobility restriction on the unvaccinated.

“In the absence of a law, the President is called upon to act and because it is a national emergency, it is my position that we can restrain,” Duterte said.

He added that barangay chairpersons could enforce all the laws of the land “within his community.”

“I am now giving orders to the barangay captains to look for those persons who are not vaccinated and just request them or order them if you may to stay put,” the President said.

The Philippines has fully vaccinated 51 million Filipinos against COVID-19 so far and has missed the 2021 yearend target of fully vaccinating 54 million individuals against COVID-19.

The Duterte administration is eyeing to fully vaccinate 77 million Filipinos by March this year and 90 million by June.

“The only way out of this pandemic is vaccination,” Nograles said.

“We have enough doses. Let us get vaccinated and the booster shot as soon as possible.” (MNS)

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