Steven Raga, Filipino American New York City candidate speaks. Photo: Eric Lachica
WASHINGTON, DC: Filipino American leaders rallied Saturday morning in front of the White House to thank President Biden and the American People for delivering an initial donation of 2.5 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines through the COVAX facility to the Philippines.
The dozen leaders also appealed to Biden to release by Memorial Day an additional 5 million doses from the excess AstraZeneca stockpile in Baltimore and in Ohio. Biden recently pledged to donate 60 million doses not being used in America to help desperate nations. They also sang the US National Anthem and the Pilipino song, Bayan Ko.
The community leaders are planning another White House rally in June with other community organizations to thank the Biden Administration after the next tranche of millions of donated vaccines arrive. During the next weeks their supporters in several states will virtually meet with the staff of US Senators and Biden administration officials to advocate for the early delivery of donated AZ vaccines. According to the US Embassy Manila website, the Filipino People can expect another separate 42 million doses from the American funded COVAX facility. Delivery dates are still unknown.
Photo: Eric Lachica
The following leaders attended: Virginia Alinsao RN of the Philippine Nurses of America (PNA) International Affairs committee with Alvin Matium RN, Steven Raga, a Filipino American candidate for the NY City Council, Paul Inserto RN and Eric Lachica of the US Medicare Philippines, Bettina Obias of the US Filipinos for Good Governance (USFGG) with Tina Maynigo and Ronie Nieva, Mel Alonzo of the Alliance of Women for Advancement and Reform (AWARE PH), David Borden of the Stop the Drug War, and Dr. Bambi Lorica MD pediatrician with Dr. Victor Lorica. Several gave solidarity appeals. Several sight-seers joined the group for photos including students and Filipino tourists. The thirty-minute event was live streamed on FaceBook by the USFGG social media team with the hashtag: #VAXFORPH.
Supporters are urged to appeal to President Biden on his website: www.whitehouse.gov/contact/ and to their U.S. Senators on www.senate.gov/senators/senators-contact.htm to donate early the five million excess doses of AstraZeneca vaccines to the Filipino People who are facing the terrible pandemic. More than 100 Filipinos are dying per day due to COVID-19.