Palace confident PhilHealth’s Morales will sign bank secrecy waiver
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang is confident that embattled Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) president Ricardo Morales will also agree to sign a bank secrecy waiver, following the lead of several of his colleagues in the state insurance firm which is now marred by allegations of massive corruption.
During an inquiry at the House of Representatives regarding the alleged irregularities at PhilHealth, several officials of the government-owned firm agreed to sign bank secrecy waivers to allow the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) to check their bank deposits and transactions.
Morales, however, left in the middle of the hearing after feeling unwell.
But Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the retired Army brigadier general will surely commit to sign the waiver.
“Siguro po kaya lang naman hindi nakapagbigay ng consent si Gen. Morales naiintidihan ko na masama ang kanyang pakiramdam at umalis na siya ng maaga. I’m sure Gen. Morales will also sign such a waiver,” Roque said in a Palace press briefing Thursday.
“But in any case, lahat naman po tayong taong gobyerno kapag meron tayong pina-file na SALN (statement of assets, liabilities and networth) meron tayong pinipirmahang sa ating SALN na pumapayag tayo na buksan ang ating mga bank accounts ng Ombudsman,” he added.
Morales, a retired Army brigadier general, is set to take a medical leave next week to undergo chemotherapy for lymphoma.
President Rodrigo Duterte recently ordered the creation of an inter-agency task force to probe PhilHealth officials over corruption claims which were uncovered during a Senate inquiry.
Among the allegations of corruption include the procurement of alleged overpriced IT equipment; a supposedly questionable release of funds under the corporation’s Interim Reimbursement Mechanism (IRM); and the alleged manipulation of the corporation’s financial status.
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