Jan 20, 2021 @ 9:59

IBP says there’s legal basis for PH gov’t to disclose details of vaccine deals

The people’s right to know should be stronger than non-disclosure agreements signed with foreign drug makers on pricing of COVID-19 vaccines.

The Integrated Bar of the Philippines said Wednesday that Filipinos deserve to know the nitty-gritty of the government’s vaccine purchases, saying that it’s the only way to build trust and confidence on the doses which are key to returning to people’s old ways.

“Article II, Section 28 and Article III, Section 7 of the 1987 Constitution, taken together as “twin provisions,” adopt a policy of full public disclosure on all transactions involving public interest and acknowledge the people’s right to information,” the country’s biggest association of lawyers said in a statement.

Apart from the Constitution, IBP pointed out President Rodrigo Duterte’s executive order enforcing Freedom of Information, which requires utter transparency on state deals and transactions.

“There is compelling legal basis for transparency, even under the COVID-19 emergency,” the group added in the statement signed by IBP President, abogado Domingo Egon Cayosa. “It is good to let the people know more about the COVID-19 vaccines, the decisions to be made for them, and the public funds therefor. A well-informed citizenry will “heal as one”, BETTER and FASTER.”

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