CAGAYAN de Oro City Mayor Oscar Moreno said he agrees with the proposed “No vaccine, No enrolment” policy to ensure the safety and protection of the children.
He said it is better to be ready and prevent extensive losses if the situation worsens.
“That’s good, in that, ang imong commitment to serve is really being pushed, and also para sa safety sa mga bata, lisod man ayha ka na molihok kung naa na gyud ang problema (It’s for the safety of the children, better to do something before it’s too late),” he said.
He also said that vaccination is a form of protection as the health of the children is paramount.
However, City Councilor Teodulfo Lao Jr. thinks that setting vaccination as prerequisite to getting education is a violation of basic human right.
Lao said it is every child's right to get education and the state's duty to provide free and quality education to its people.
“So if you hinder the schooling (of these children), you violate the Constitution, and you violated the fundamental rights of everybody,” he said.
Lao said the government should instead look for other solutions, such as massive information on vaccines, and possibly providing incentives to parents who voluntarily take their kids for vaccination.
“For example, whoever availed of the vaccine should be given free notebooks, school bags, so that they will be enticed to get vaccinated instead of being barred (from enrolling),” he said.
Meanwhile, the Department of Education-Northern Mindanao (DepEd) regional director Arturo Bayocot, said they are still waiting for the final position of the DepEd central office.
He said they are ready to support this policy if its central office says so.
“We have to wait for the final decision of the head office kasi (because) that's a nationwide program implementation if it happens to be. Supported namo (us) if ever, kasi importante man na sa mga kabataan (because that is important for the children) but to be part of an enrolment requirement, that is not also, well that is my personal position,” he said.
“But we'll wait for the agency's position regarding the matter,” he added.