BALANGA CITY, Bataan: Bishop Ruperto Santos of the Diocese of Balanga on Monday likened the controversial Dengvaxia vaccine to the Death March during World War 2.
“Dengvaxia is like the infamous Death March because of the fear of sickness and death walks in the province,” he said after learning of the death of Alexzander Jaime of Puerto Rivas Itaas in his city.
Thousands of Filipino and American soldiers died after they surrendered to Japanese forces on April 9, 1942 and were forced to walk from the province to San Fernando, Pampanga all the way to the concentration camp in Capas, Tarlac.
Jaime,12, who got the doses of the vaccine last year died, on January 4. His parents believed Dengvaxia caused his death. Forensic experts of the Public Attorney’s Office conducted an autopsy on the body of the boy before he was buried. The findings show similarity to other children whose deaths were linked to Dengvaxia vaccine.
At least five deaths linked to the dengue vaccine were reported since October last year. The first one was that of Christine Mae de Guzman, 10, from Mariveles in Bataan. All victims complained of severe headache and fever and died a few days after.
“It is with great sorrow and tragic loss that there is again another life that perished, that of Alexzander Jaime, because of the disastrous Dengvaxia,” the prelate said.
He described the vaccine as dubious, triggering unending anxieties and worries among parents of vaccinated children.
He asked that truth must come out. “There could be deception and dishonesty, conspiracy and corruption with those in the higher ups motivated by greed, profit and political interests at the expense of our innocent children,” Santos said.
The bishop said the children should be the first and foremost protected. “They should not be experimented nor sacrificed but to be taken cared of and not to be used nor abused,” the representative of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines in Central Luzon said.
He also called for the Senate hearings to continue and produce unbiased and truthful results.