President Duterte Insists “No Corruption” In Government Procurement During Pandemic

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President Duterte insisted that there’s “no corruption” in government procurement during the pandemic.

President Rodrigo Duterte insisted that there’s “no corruption” in the national government’s procurement of supplies for the country’s fight against the pandemic.

President Duterte
Photo: PCOO

President Duterte said in his Talk to the People address aired Wednesday that he would like to disabuse the minds of the detractors of the national government.

Also, President Duterte reiterated his call to senators against investigating ongoing programs of government agencies, particularly the Department of Health (DOH) that’s at the center of Senate inquiries over its handling of pandemic response funds.

Do not run the department as if it is parang opisina lang ng Senado. Do not dictate. Si [Secretary Francisco] Duque yung nagpapatakbo nyan e, hayaan mo sya. Let him make the programs and spend the money. At the end of the day, kung palpak ang trabaho niya then that is the time for reckoning. But not before completing the programs of his department in pursuance to his work as Secretary,” President Duterte said.

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President Duterte’s statement came after the Department of Health had been flagged by the Commission on Audit (COA) over its transfer of at least PHP 42 billion to PS-DBM for the procurement of COVID-19 supplies.

The President earlier denied any corruption in the procurement of face masks and face shields by the Department of Health (DOH) via the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM) in early last year.

Meanwhile, the President appealed for understanding from health workers over the delay in the release of their benefits amid the COVID-19 pandemic since it s not the only issue that requires funding from the government.

Some groups of medical frontliners said that they still haven’t received the benefits promised under the Bayanihan 2 or Bayanihan to Recover as One Act despite the release of some PHP 14.3-billion for the special risk allowance (SRA) and hazard pay of health workers.

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