Palace Hits Senator Pacquiao’s Absence In Senate Inquiry On COVID-19 Pandemic Response

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Palace hit Senator Pacquiao’s absence in the Senate inquiry on COVID-19 pandemic response.

Malacañang on Wednesday hit back at Senator Manny Pacquiao, saying that the senator must have been “absent” in Senate inquiry on COVID-19 pandemic response.

Senate inquiry on pandemic response.
Photo source: Manila Bulletin

The word war between the Duterte administration and Senator Pacquiao continued after Malacañang hit back at the senator, saying that he must have been “absent” or “preoccupied” when Health Secretary Francisco Duque III explained how the Department of Health (DOH) used the COVID-19 funds.

In a press conference on Wednesday, Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said that Senator Pacquiao must have been “absent” when Duque presented to the Senate how the Department of Health handled the coronavirus pandemic and the funds allotted to the agency.

Sa akin po, absent po siguro si Senator Pacquiao nung nagpresenta yung mga Cabinet secretaries. Kung hindi siya absent, he may have been preoccupied with something else. Hindi ko nga lang alam kung nandoon nga po siya nung naghi-hearing ang Senado at kung meron siyang mga tanong na ibinato kay Secretary Duque noong mga pagkakataon na yun,” Roque said.

READ ALSO: DOH Ready For Corruption Probe Senator Pacquiao Called — Duque

However, Roque said the beef between President Duterte and Senator Pacquiao started and will end in politics.

Roque’s statement came after Senator Pacquiao said that the Department of Health needed to be investigated for its expenses such as its procurement of personal protective equipment (PPEs) in response to President Rodrigo Duterte’s challenge to him to prove his allegation of corruption against the current administration.

Meanwhile, Duque said that the Department of Health (DOH) would be ready for any probe on allegations of corruption. According to him, they submitted themselves to inquiries from legislators while they’re disheartened by baseless accusations from government officials.

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

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