Press Release
August 11, 2020

Opening Statement of Senator Risa Hontiveros on Philhealth Investigation

Mr. Chair, fellow Senators, sa tingin ko malinaw naman kung bakit nandito tayo lahat ngayon, sa gitna ng dineklarang MECQ sa Metro Manila. We are here to clean up Philhealth. We are here to get to the bottom of serious, disgusting allegations of corruption.

Personally, as sick and tired as I am of having to correct FAKE NEWS from four years ago linking me to Philhealth irregularities, I am EVEN MORE SICK AND TIRED of the fact that in the middle of the largest health crisis to ever hit the country, nobody is being held accountable for the largest amount of allegedly corrupted funds in Philhealth's history. Noong binabasa ko ang transcript ng hearing last week, pati ang transcript noong August 2019, parang volleyball lang ng mga paratang, ng mga alegasyon na ito Mindanao mafia, ito hindi.

Gusto ko din malaman, hanggang saan ang involvement ni Secretary Duque? Why is the Health Secretary unscathed in any of these, gayung since 2001, Secretary Duque always had some connection to Philhealth - from 2001-2005 as its President, 2005 to 2009 as Chairperson of its Board, 2010 to 2017 as member of the Board, and from 2017 to present as Chairperson of the Board.

  • It was during Duque's term as Philhealth President that "PLAN 5 MILLION" was conceived - the distribution of free PHILHEALTH cards to support the candidacy of GMA. 5 million kasi yan daw ang shortfall ni GMA kay Fernando Poe.

  • We also learned in the August 19 hearing that the Mafia members circumvent reassignment by benefiting from the delayed decisions of the CSC. Sino ang head ng CSC from 2010 to 2015? Si Sec Duque.

  •  Finally,, according to the 2019 Board Meeting Attendance of Philhealth, Secretary Duque was present in 15 out of 18 meetings for last year. He was also informed about the Philhealth Mafia by former President Ferrer. He cannot feign ignorance.

Tama na. Let us get to the bottom of this. If we want structural change, alugin natin. Expose the sacred cows. Expose the conflicts. MOST OF ALL, EXPOSE THE BACKERS.

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