THE MANILA City government offered vaccine booster shots to delivery riders on Thursday as the Philippine capital and surrounding areas work to contain a fresh surge of coronavirus cases believed to be fueled by the more transmissible Omicron variant. 

“One of the challenges of a two-wheel worker is that they cannot go to malls to get vaccinated because it takes too long, it would take all day,” Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko” M. Domagoso said in Filipino.  “That is why we designed a drive-through vaccination especially for them.”

The mayor, who is running for president in the May elections, said the booster jab would help ensure their protection against the virus as they carry on with their work.

He noted that seven out of every 10 riders who were getting vaccinated at the site were not Manila City residents. 

Riders under various delivery firms — such as Grab, Angkas, Lalamove, Foodpanda and Mr. Speedy — lined up for the vaccine top-up.

Mr. Domagoso also announced that there will be a second round of vaccinations on Thursday evening for workers at the busy Divisoria Public Market, including employees, fish traders, market vendors, and drivers. 

He said that around 16,000 people were vaccinated in Manila on Wednesday night. — Jaspearl Emerald G. Tan