Duterte on Pacquiao’s corruption allegations: ‘I think he’s punch-drunk’

Marje Pelayo   •   July 13, 2021   •   498

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday night lambasted Senator Manny Pacquiao  anew for alleging that billions of pesos have been lost to corruption in government agencies.

Pacquiao earlier alleged that the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) failed to properly distribute P10 billion worth of financial aid from the Social Amelioration Program (SAP).

“Mga kaibigan huwag kayong maniwala diyan,” Duterte said during his public address Monday night.

“Papayag ba naman ang [Commission on Audit]? Hindi lang iyan. Papayag ba kami? Papayag ba ang mga secretary ng mga departamento na ganun may mawala 10 billion? That is a statement coming from a guy who is punch-drunk, lasing,” he added.

Pacquiao claimed anomaly in the DSWD’s transaction with the digital wallet service provider Starpay Corporation.

The boxer-senator said he has evidence to prove that the program is missing P10 billion in SAP funds and that he will ask the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee to investigate.

Both DSWD and Starpay have denied the allegations.

Pacquiao’s accusations came after President Duterte challenged him to prove his claims that corruption under the Duterte government has worsened.

The Chief Executive said the senator’s corruption claims are just part of a strategy given the latter’s obvious plan to take the highest position in the upcoming 2022 elections. MNP (with reports from Nel Maribojoc)

PH to expand vaccination rollout for minors in 13 more hospitals

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 20, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Philippines will expand its vaccination rollout for minors, aged 12 to 17, to 13 more hospitals.

President Rodrigo Duterte during his Talk to the People on Tuesday (October 19) announced that 13 more hospitals will participate in the vaccination program for the said age group.

“We will expand the vaccination of this adolescent age group of 12 to 17 by adding 13 more hospitals in the NCR. Currently, we have an initial eight participating hospitals and we hope to expand this number [of hospitals] and we also welcome the arrival of additional vaccines in the coming days,” Duterte said.

National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer and vaccine czar Sec. Carlito Galvez Jr. said they are raising their daily vaccination target to 1.5 million.

“We will be opening the general population, then the pilot of children vaccination, and we are ramping up the vaccination of students, teachers, and tourism personnel, OFWs, and seafarers,” he said.

Galvez said they  can accelerate the vaccination of children to support the opening of the classes and economic recovery.

Around 1,500 minors with comorbidities were vaccinated during the pilot vaccination in eight hospitals, the Department of Health (DOH) reported. Among those inoculated, only four experienced minor side effects. AAC

 

Duterte takes blame for lack of vaccine supply in early 2021

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—President Rodrigo Duterte has taken the blame for the Philippines’ vaccine shortage in the early months of 2021.

During his weekly public address on Monday evening (October 11), Duterte lamented that it was difficult to get vaccines back then especially when the country has no vaccine manufacturing company. He said that the country had to fight with other nations just to get supplies.

Duterte added that he deserves the blame since he is the one seated in office.

Iyan ang nakabigay ng problema sa akin at kung mayroon man nagkasala diyan, aminin ko na lang. Kasi wala rin ako magawa, gusto ko bumili, wala naman ako mabilihan,” he said.

However, the chief executive said the vaccine supply in the country has improved which helped bring down the number of cases.

He reported that the weekly average of new COVID-19 cases has dropped to less than 10,000 while the current reproduction rate of the virus has gone down to .77 percent.

“If we continue to ramp up the vaccination of our people, along with our consistent practice of mask and there is gradual resumption of our economic activities, then we can hope for a better and truly merry Christmas,” he said. AAC

Duterte to prepare his ICC defense once he steps down

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 5, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday (October 4) said he will prepare his defense for the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) investigation after he steps down from office.

The Chief Executive made the statement during his regular public address on Monday night. He also appealed to the ICC and investigators not to lie and fabricate evidence.

Sa maraming dada ng dada ng kaso, hintayin ko kayo. I will prepare for my defense na iyong ICC na iyan. Huwag lang kayong magsinungaling(To those who keep bringing up the case, I will prepare my defense for the ICC. Just don’t lie.)” he said.

Hindi ko kayo tinatakot, huwag niyo ako dayain sa ebidensiya, (I am not intimidating you, just do not fabricate evidence against me),” the president added.

Duterte once again assured policemen and other local authorities of his protection as long as they obey the law.

Meanwhile, the president maintained his stand that the ICC has no jurisdiction over the Philippines.

May sarili kaming judicial system dito. Huwag kayong makialam. At saka sinabi ko (We have our own judicial system. Do not interfere. And I did say) you never acquired jurisdiction over my person,” Duterte said. AAC

 

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