2 House panels clear PNoy over Dengvaxia, points at Duterte for continuing the program

MANILA, Philippines – Two committees of the House of Representatives have submitted their draft report over the Dengvaxia fiasco and have cleared former President Benigno Aquino III’s involvement.
2 House panels clear PNoy over Dengvaxia

2 House panels clear PNoy over Dengvaxia
Two committees on the House of Representatives cleared former Benigno Aquino III over the Dengvaxia mess | Photo Courtesy: Facebook/Noynoy Aquino

The committee on good government and public accountability and the committee on health, released their report Tuesday calling PNoy’s involvement as a “judgement call” to answer the rising cases of dengue at that time.

Reps. Johnny Pimentel of Surigao del Sur and Angelina Tan of Quezon, chairman of committee on good government and public accountability and the committee on health, respectively, wrote in a statement, “the vaccination of Dengvaxia in 2016 was a judgment call on the part of the previous administration in its effort to respond to what they call an alarming rise in dengue cases in the country.”

“Indeed, the morbidity and mortality data at the time showed that dengue has become a worrisome monster killing hundreds of Filipinos… The action of the administration at the time to implement a dengue vaccination program was unquestionable,” the report continued.

The two panels pointed at the Duterte administration for continuing the controversial mass vaccination. The statement said, “Duterte administration continued the program and even expanded it to include Region VII (Central Visayas).”

The two committees, however, reiterated that there were some “undue haste” in the procurement of Dengvaxia and had even disregarded laws rules and regulations. They called the filing of administrative and criminal cases against individuals and officials found guilty of abusing the law.

On the issue of deaths allegedly caused by Dengvaxia, the two committees admitted that they have yet to find enough conclusive evidence. Their statement reads, “there is no conclusive finding that Dengvaxia directly caused the death of inoculated patients.”

Graft charges against Aquino and former cabinet officials

Last July 2018, the National Bureau of Investigation has filed graft charges against Aquino, former Health Secretary Janette Garin and former Budget Secretary Florencio Abad.

The three former officials were charged for their alleged involvement in the billion-peso Dengvaxia vaccination program that has allegedly caused the deaths of many.

The NBI complaint noted that the procurement of the controversial vaccines were done in haste and had violated several rules on the issuance of the certificate of product registration (CPR) and other certificates. They also accused Aquino, Garin and Abad of misusing the funds.

— Sally, The Summit Express

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