'Disheartened' Duque says DOH ready for corruption probe Pacquiao called


Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on Tuesday said the Department of Health would be ready for any investigation on allegations of corruption.

Duque made the remark shortly after Senator Manny Pacquiao called President Rodrigo Duterte's dare and identified the DOH as the starting point of a probe into alleged graft under the administration.

In a statement, Duque said the DOH had "always been transparent and cooperative to auditing efforts within the government.

“While we are disheartened by these baseless accusations from our government officials, we submit ourselves to inquiries from legislators as this is a part of the checks and balances in our government," Duque said.

"I have always been a champion of good governance and the DOH has always been transparent with regard to our fund utilization,” he added.

Duterte on Monday night challenged Pacquiao to identify government agencies that were corrupt in reaction to the senator's supposed comments for graft being three times worse under the present administration.

Pacquiao earlier Tuesday accepted the challenge and pointed to the DOH



“Magsimula tayo sa DOH. Silipin at busisiin natin lahat ng mga binili mula sa rapid test kits, PPE , masks at iba pa. Handa ka ba Sec. Francisco Duque na ipakita ang kabuuan ng iyong ginagastos? Saan napunta ang pera na inutang natin para sa pandemya?” Pacquiao said.

Duque said the DOH was ready to show where the loans for vaccines went.

He added that the department has to "rationally use its funds" to continuously implement the Universal Health Care Law and ensure the unhampered delivery of health services while responding to the COVID-19 pandemic to "provide better health outcomes for Filipinos."

“Kung ang tanong ay kung handa kaming ipakita kung saan napunta ang pondo, handang handa po kami. We submit reports to concerned government agencies and even the Senate," Duque said.

"Ang utang po natin para sa bakuna ay naipaliwanag na noon ng Department of Finance sa Senate Committee of the Whole hearing -- ang inutang na pondo ay diretsong napupunta sa vaccine manufacturer mula sa funding agency. Hindi po dumadaan sa DOH o maski na sa gobyerno ang pera mula sa mga funding agencies,” he added.

Further, he said the DOH on April 30 signed a manifesto of pledge of cooperation and oath of honesty for Project KASANGGA with the Presidential Anti-Corruption Council.

Under Project KASANGGA, the DOH said government agencies commit to reduce corruption incidents through swift detection, prosecution, and resolution of graft and corruption cases within their department. —NB, GMA News