Ona goes on leave as Palace denies rumors he's been sacked | Inquirer News
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Ona goes on leave as Palace denies rumors he’s been sacked

/ 04:12 PM October 30, 2014
Health Secretary Enrique Ona. FILE PHOTO

Health Secretary Enrique Ona. FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—Health Secretary Enrique Ona has gone on leave amid rumors he would be replaced.

“Secretary Ike Ona is on leave for health and personal reasons,” Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda said in a mix of English and Filipino.

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Ona will be on leave from October 28 to November 27, Lacierda said.

The announcement came amid speculations Ona would be replaced as chief of the Department of Health.

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Lacierda denied this. “May mga nagtatanong kung nag-resign siya. Hindi, naka-leave lang siya (There are people who are asking if he has resigned. No, he’s just on leave),” he said.

Health Undersecretary Janette Garin has been appointed as officer-in-charge.

Lacierda could not provide any information on the health condition of Ona. However, he gave assurances President Benigno Aquino III remains satisfied with health chief’s performance.

“ You’ve seen the work of the Department of Health and its various programs. All these programs were instituted under the leadership of Secretary Ike Ona,” Lacierda said.

“We’ve increased the universal health coverage. We have increased PhilHealth. We have increased a number of vaccinations. So all these were done under the leadership of Secretary Ike Ona and, yes, the President,” he said.

“The bottom line is: Is the President satisfied with the performance of each Cabinet member? And there has been no reason for us to say otherwise.”

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TAGS: Cabinet, Department of Health, Enrique Ona, Government, Leave
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