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Filipino-Chinese business chamber denies selling COVID-19 vaccines

By Bim Santos Published Mar 18, 2021 8:51 pm

An organization of Filipino-Chinese businessmen denies they are selling COVID-19 vaccines and disowned a poster stating such a claim that bears their logo as “not authorized.”

“We have already informed the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and Sec. Carlito Galvez of this unfortunate incident,” Henry Lim Bon Liong, president of the Federation of Filipino Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FFCCCII), told PhilSTAR L!fe.

Bon Liong said their organization had nothing to do with a poster that surfaced online with the FFCCCII logo peddling a P2,000 fee for Sinovac’s COVID-19 vaccine.

The poster stated that it contained “information about the registration for Sinovac vaccines, organized by the Filipino Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industries.”

Bon Liong said he is not aware who was behind the poster.

“I think they just wanted to do something to impress us,” said Bon Liong.

The FFCCCII says this poster is "not authorized"

Bon Liong, however, said that their organization has been arranging to procure 500,000 doses of Sinovac’s vaccine through a tripartite agreement with the national government. But instead of charging a fee, he said that what they are asking is for members to give “a donation” in turn.

“We are not selling the vaccines. We are just making this available to our members and organizations,” said Bon Liong.

He added that they are hoping to receive the jabs for their “economic frontliners” after the government finishes vaccinating medical frontliners.

“We are not violating any laws. We aren’t jumping the line. We are following government procedure,” said Bon Liong.

The government has not given any commercial authorization to any drug manufacturer to sell COVID-19 vaccines to the public. The government's ongoing vaccination is being carried out through an emergency use authorization given to certain COVID-19 vaccines, which can then only be distributed by the government.

“The public is cautioned against organizations or individuals claiming to sell or offer any COVID-19 vaccines,” the Department of Health warned in a statement issued today. “This also serves as a stern warning to parties who will participate in the unlawful sale, purchase, administration of COVID-19 vaccines.