Palace: Duterte’s trust in PhilHealth chief depends on evidence over corruption issue
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte’s trust and confidence in Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) president Ricardo Morales would depend on evidence against him over corruption allegations within the agency, Malacañang said Wednesday.
“According to Senator Bong Go, he [President] still does but he wants to see the evidence,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in an interview over CNN Philippines when asked if Duterte still trusts Morales.
“If there’s evidence that would affect his trust and confidence, of course it will change. And that’s why I’m hoping that these investigations will document the evidence that the President wants to see,” he added.
Both the House of Representatives and the Senate are looking into alleged irregularities inside PhilHealth.
Earlier, the President himself ordered investigation on supposed corruption after some of the state insurer’s officials reportedly had a rift due to the “overpriced” procurement of an information technology (IT) system.
Morales, however, defended the IT project saying it would help PhilHealth stop fraud and scams within the agency.
The PhilHealth president also denied being a “coddler” of a “syndicate” within the agency that allegedly pocketed P15 billion of funds the past year.
“Yesterday, what worried me is that he admitted that corruption was still rampant and I did not hear any steps he has taken to remove corruption in the agency. That to me is the most worrisome,” Roque said.
“Any president in PhilHealth should be able to say ‘I know what to do with corruption within the agency and I will do it,’” he noted.
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