Roque threatens to expose "new irregularities" in PhilHealth
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said on Wednesday he might ask President Rodrigo Duterte that he be allowed to quit from his post to pursue his anti-corruption advocacy at the state-run Philippine Health Insurance Corp.
In a radio interview, Roque threatened to expose in the coming days "new irregularities" in the agency.
"The truth is, I've been telling for a long time to PhilHealth leadership that they need to look into corruption among their ranks, inside PhilHealth. There's a lot of corruption there. In the coming days, I will again expose new issues," he said.
He wondered why PhilHealth president Ricardo Morales has not acted on the alleged corruption in the agency.
Morales, in a House hearing, earlier recommended a "general delay" of the universal healthcare program and postponement of the expansion of primary care benefit as PhilHealth could incur deficits in the next four years due to COVID-19 pandemic.
Roque was the main author of the Universal Health Care Law when he was still a party-list representative prior to his initial appointment as Duterte's spokesman.
He claimed that PhilHealth's fund was running out due to corruption.
"Don't worry, though I find it hard because I'm still the Presidential Spokesperson, but I won't leave the truth that we're the one who pushed for the Universal Health Care and yet it won't succeed because of corruption. I'm thinking, I will ask the President's permission. Maybe I will really pursue, to be full time in cleaning PhilHealth because I want that to be my legacy," he said.
Roque said he wants to be remembered for pushing the Universal Health Care Law and its successful implementation.
Roque said the reason why Morales was appointed at PhilHealth is to address the alleged massive corruption in PhilHealth.
But he accused Morales of playing "blind and deaf" on the alleged irregularities in the agency.
But Morales reportedly said that the National Bureau of Investigation is already investigating some alleged PhilHealth officials and employees. Celerina Monte/DMS