The Philippine Red Cross Board of Governors stood by Chairman Gordon amidst President Duterte’s attacks.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Board of Governors stood by its chairman, Senator Richard Gordon, amidst President Rodrigo Duterte’s attacks.
In a statement released on Friday, 20 governors expressed “staunch and unequivocal support” to Senator Gordon, who they hailed as an unsalaried volunteer and has led the Philippine Red Cross into a “responsive and modernized institution”.
According to PRC governors, they solidly stood behind Chairman Gordon as he led the valiant efforts of the organization to serve millions of suffering Filipino people, especially during the pandemic.
They also noted the Philippine Red Cross’ initiatives during the pandemic, such as the establishment of molecular laboratories for the RT-PCR testing.
“It was not long before the PRC was doing the bulk of the country’s testing, at its height covering 45% of the requirement, picking up the slack for the government. Today, we are the largest testing provider in the country and have conducted over 4 million tests,” PRC governors said in a statement.
Likewise, the PRC board explained that the decision to temporarily suspend the RT-PCR testing when the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) had an outstanding balance of almost PHP 800 million was only an exercise of “fiscal responsibility”.
The Philippine Red Cross was currently serving 50 percent of the national blood requirement, owned 170 ambulances, and has provided 151,000 houses for disaster victims.
Citing Republic Act 10072, PRC governors also explained that the Philippine Red Cross was a “voluntary, independent, and autonomous” non-government organization (NGO). Hence, the funds they handled weren’t subject to Commission on Audit’s liquidation.
PRC governors added that the humanitarian organization didn’t receive appropriations from the national government and it only received donations from corporations, private individuals, and partner international Red Cross and Red Crescent societies.
Moreover, PRC governors noted that some government agencies had donated to the Philippine Red Cross but those were a “small part” of PRC funds and those were properly liquidated.