Sen. Richard Gordon (File photo by GRIG C. MONTEGRANDE / Philippine Daily Inquirer)
MANILA, Philippines — “Don’t just remove! Prosecute and prosecute fast!”
This was what Sen. Richard Gordon on Saturday said about the removal of the board members of the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (Philhealth) in connection with the “ghost dialysis” scandal.
“Based on the law, kapag napatunayan itong taong ito nagloko and kinulong siya, dapat mabilis ang aksyon. Hindi maniniwala agad yung mga tao na may mangyayari,” Gordon said in an interview over AM radio station DWIZ. “Di pwedeng tanggalin mo yan [tao] tapos kalimutan na natin.”
[Based on the law, if it’s proven that a person has done something wrong and he’s jailed, the action must be quick. Otherwise, people won’t believe that anything will happen. You can’t just remove him from office and then let’s just forget about the whole thing.]
He cited the Dengvaxia fiasco as an example, saying: “Kahit ako umaangal na rin eh… ang bagal pa.”
[I’m also complaining. It’s been taking too long.]
In that issue, former President Benigno Aquino III, former Health Secretary Janette Garin, and former Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad have been sued for graft.
This was due to the Aquino administration buying P3 billion worth of the dengue vaccine Dengvaxia in 2016 for a massive immunization campaign.
The Department of Health later halted the program on Dec. 1, 2017, after Sanofi Pasteur announced new finding that Dengvaxia worsened symptoms in vaccinated people who had no previous exposure to the dengue virus.
READ: Ex-President Aquino, 2 others face charges for Dengvaxia fiasco
“Meron nang kasong filed. Ang problema natin, ang courts commissioned mabagal,” Gordon said. “Dapat magkaroon ng priority sa mga malalaking kaso.”
[A case has been filed. The problem here is that the courts commissioned are slow. Big cases should have priority.]
(Editor: Alexander T. Magno)
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