Morales, 13 other PhilHealth execs sign bank secrecy waivers
MANILA, Philippines — Fourteen officials of the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth), including its president and CEO Ricardo Morales, signed bank secrecy waivers allowing probers to check their bank deposits and transactions amid the alleged anomalies hounding the agency.
This was disclosed Monday by Anakalusugan Partylist Rep. Mike Defensor during the joint hybrid hearing by the House committee on public accounts and the committee on good government and public accountability.
Defensor is the chairperson of the House committee on public accounts.
Aside from Morales, Defensor said the following PhilHealth officials also signed the waivers:
- Executive Vice President (EVP) Arnel De Jesus
- Senior Vice President (SVP) Dennis Mas
- SVP Atty. Rodolfo Del Rosario Jr.
- SVP Jovita Aragona
- Acting SVP Nerissa Santiago
- SVP Renato Limsiaco Jr.
- SVP Israel Francis Pargas
- VP Oscar Abadu
- Atty. Jonathan Mangaoang
- VP Shirley Domingo
- Area VP Walter Bacareza
- Area VP Francisco Soria
- Senior Manager Bernadette Lico
“Binibigyan nila ng karapatan kung sinuman ang magi-imbestiga na tingnan ang kanilang bank accounts,” Defensor said.
On August 12, Deputy Speaker Luis Raymund Villafuerte challenged PhilHealth officials to sign the bank secrecy waivers and allow the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) to check their transactions amid fresh allegations of corrupt activities within the agency.
One by one, PhilHealth officials present during that hearing responded on the affirmative—including those attending the hearing through videoconferencing.
But Surigao del Norte 2nd District Representative Robert Ace Barbers pointed out that those present in the hearing were not the top officials of the agency.
Barbers said that higher-ranking officials such as Morales and the senior vice presidents (SVPs) of the agency should also be asked to sign the waiver.
Morales left in the middle of the hearing after “not feeling well.” Two other high-ranking PhilHealth officials also abruptly left the meeting due to other health reasons.
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