By Mario Casayuran
Opposition Senator Francis N. Pangilinan said today (April 17) that letting beleaguered Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque III stay on ‘’is a horrible and unacceptable disservice to the nation.’’
Pangilinan issued the statement after President Duterte rejected the call of majority senators for Duque to resign or turn over his post to one who is competent in fighting the deadly coronavirus disease (COVID-19) hitting the country.
The majority bloc signed a resolution last April 16 calling for Duque to quit his post for inefficiency and failure of leadership, among others.
‘’Tutulan ang pananatili ni Duque bilang kalihim ng DOH! Buhay natin at kaligtasan ng mga mahal natin sa buhay ang nakataya,’’ he said. (Stop the continued stay of Duque at his post as DOH secretary. Our lives and those of our loved ones are at stake.)
‘’Iparating ang ating pagtutol na manatili si Duque bilang kalihim sa administrasyong Duterte!’’ he added. (Let our voices be heard that we are against the continued stay of Duque as a member of the Duterte Cabinet.)
Pangilinan recalled that ‘’in the first and only Senate Health Committee Hearing conducted on the COVID-19 Pandemic held last February 4, we (the senators) already described Duque’s handling of the pandemic as a failure in leadership. That is on record.’’
‘’Two and a half months later, with 15 senators belonging to the administration bloc asking for his resignation due to a ‘failure in leadership’, the decent thing to do is for him to tender his resignation,’’ he added.