Acosta thanks Duterte for vetoing provision slashing PAO 2021 budget
MANILA, Philippines — Persida Rueda Acosta, the grieving chief of the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO), thanked President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday for vetoing a provision in the 2021 national budget that would have slashed the funds of the PAO Forensic Laboratory.
The veto came on the same that day that Acosta’s 14-year old nephew was laid to rest. Her nephew, who received shots of Dengvaxia, died on Dec. 26, 2020.
Acosta’s nephew is the 161st Dengvaxia recipient who had been autopsied by the PAO forensic team.
According to Dr. Alexis Sulit, PAO Forensic Laboratory senior medical expert, the immediate cause of death was cerebral hemorrhage and edema as well as pulmonary hemorrhage and edema.
Acosta said her office would continue extending assistance to her nephew’s family in seeking justice.
PAO has been extending legal assistance to all possible victims of Dengvaxia-related injuries, illnesses, and deaths since 2017 through the order of then Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II.
“Thank you very much, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte for your direct veto… The Greatest Glory be to God,” Acosta said, partly in Filipino.
There are already six batches of Dengvaxia-related complaints regarding the death of over 90 individuals, mostly children, who received the vaccine.
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