Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque 3rd branded as “baseless” the corruption allegations Senator Manny Pacquiao has hurled towards him and the agency.
Saying he was also “disheartened” by Pacquiao’s allegations, Duque said the DOH is ready to undergo another round of audit to prove its funds were spent properly.“We submit ourselves to inquiries from legislators as this is a part of the checks and balances in our government. I have always been a champion of good governance and the DOH has always been transparent with regard to our fund utilization,” Duque was quoted as saying.
In alleging corruption towards DOH and Duque, Pacquiao was responding to the dare of President Rodrigo Duterte that the senator name government agencies and officials who are corrupt.
The DOH was on top of the list of Pacquiao for top corrupt government offices in the Philippines, questioning where the money the government borrowed for its pandemic response were spent.
“Handa ka ba Sec. Francisco Duque na ipakita ang kabuuan ng iyong ginagastos? Saan napunta ang pera na inutang natin para sa pandemya? (Sec. Duque, are you ready to show your total expenses). Where did the money we borrowed for the pandemic went?,” he asked.
Duque responded by saying that he is ready to show where the money for the government’s pandemic response went, adding the DOH also submitted reports to the Senate and concerned government agencies on the issue.
“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 (What we borrowed to purchase vaccines has already been explained by the Department of Finance to the Senate Committee of the While hearing – that the funds we borrowed will be paid directly to the vaccine manufacturer by the funding agency),” he said.