President Duterte accepts Nayong Pilipino exec's resignation

Published May 13, 2021, 2:52 PM

by Roy Mabasa

President Duterte has accepted the resignation of an executive of the Nayong Pilipino Foundation (NPF) who earlier opposed the construction of a “mega” COVID-19 vaccination facility within its sprawling property in Paranaque City.

Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles (Nograles/Facebook)

In a briefing on Thursday, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles confirmed that the President has accepted the resignation of Nayong Pilipino Foundation Executive Director Lucille Karen Malilong-Isberto.

“It was a resignation that was submitted and the president accepted it. It was as simple as that,” Nograles said when asked to expound on Isberto’s fate.

The cabinet secretary further said he is unaware of the details on why the President accepted NPF’s official’s resignation.

“So it was just a resignation and it was accepted. But, as far as asking for an explanation or anything like that, not to my knowledge,” he said.

The design that the Nayong Pilipino Foundation proposed with their handwritten notes. (Photo from the Department of Tourism)

Isberto, along with certain environmental groups, vehemently opposed the construction of the COVID-19 facility, raising legal and environmental concerns, including the possible cutting of ipil-ipil trees in the process of the construction work.

In a statement last week, the NPF explained that an “abrupt” cutting of close to 500 trees and other site works on the NPF property will kill the existing ecosystem.

“Once lost, it could take decades to recover this ecosystem. A mega vaccination facility that will destroy this ecosystem would be a disaster and a disservice to the residents of Metro Manila who need more green and open spaces,” the NPF added.

Also last week, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. complained about the delay in the construction of the facility, saying that “time is of the essence” for the work to proceed.

It was learned that the NPF is already hosting in its sprawling property a quarantine facility operated by the Armed Forces of the Philippines.