AMID the ongoing vaccination against the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in the country, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) warned all local government units (LGUs) against buying fake jabs following World Health Organization (WHO) alert.

WARNING Samples of the fake Covid-19 vaccines are shown in this undated photo from the World Health Organization. The DILG warned local government units against these fake vaccines which if taken could be even more detrimental to public health.

The DILG stressed that all provincial governors, mayors, and barangay officials must be cautious about their vaccine sources or chain of supply and ensure that all medical products particularly Covid-19 vaccines must be obtained from authorized and licensed suppliers.

“While there is no information yet on the presence of the fake vaccines in the country, LGUs should exercise increased diligence as these fake vaccines may be dangerous to the health of those who get inoculated,” said DILG Secretary Eduardo Año in a press statement released on Saturday.

Año. noted that amid the surge of the virus, there was a need to be protected against Covid-19 through the vaccines and not additional problems that could result from the effects of fake ones.

WHO recently issued a medical product alert on a Covid-19 vaccine with the product name, “BNT162b2” which claims to be manufactured by Pfizer and BioNTech. The product contains the lot number “783201” and its expiry date is "August 24".

WHO said the fake vaccine—which was first discovered in Mexico—“deliberately and fraudulently misrepresents its identity, composition or source”. WHO is still conducting laboratory analysis of the contents and will provide updates as soon as the results are available.

The DILG Secretary has directed the Philippine National Police (PNP) to provide the necessary assistance in investigating and confiscating the fake Covid-19 vaccines if there are any.

He also called on the public to immediately report any information on the presence or use of BNT162b2 in the Philippine market to the National Task Force Vaccine Cluster via [email protected] or call +639178237310.