Mago retracts statement that Pharmally 'swindled' gov't; says it was 'pressured response'

Published October 4, 2021, 1:15 PM

by Ben Rosario

Krizle Grace Mago, an incorporator and former regulatory officer of embattled Pharmally Pharmaceuticals Corporation, on Monday, Oct. 4 retracted her statement in admitting before the Senate that the firm had “swindled” government, stressing that it was a “pressured response” to a question raised by a senator.

Krizle Grace Mago before good govt

Testifying before the House Committee on Good Government, Mago also denied the allegations aired by a witness presented by Sen. Risa Hontiveros during the Sept. 24 hearing of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee.

Mago aired clarifications about her Senate testimony and her “going off the radar” during the good government panel hearing that was presided over by DIWA Partylist Rep. Michael Aglipay.

The Lower House resource person sought “protective custody” of the legislative chamber after she went missing a day after her controversial testimony against Pharmally, a firm being investigated for delivering over P8 billion in allegedly overpriced and substandard face shields and face masks to government.

“Regarding my previous testimony on the questions pertaining to swindling the government, I do admit that it was a pressured response.” she declared.

During the Senate hearing, Mago admitted that Pharmally had cheated government when it delivered face shields that were beyond the expiry date.

She explained that when she re-assessed her response to the questions raised in the Senate hearing, he realized that the face shields that were partially delivered to the Department of Health by Pharmally “have not been inspected and accepted” by the department.

Thus, the said delivery was not paid for by government.

According to her one of the contracts for the delivery of face shields procured by the Procurement Service-Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM) were not of medical grade.

“The face shields required by the DOH for this specific contract are non-medical grade face shields. This is also indicated in the technical specification,”
 she said.

In her opening statement, Mago admitted testing positive for COVID-19 when she testified in the Senate, saying that further compounding her situation are the accusations that she lied during the first hearing she attended on September 13.

“It was extremely traumatic for me to be accused of lying and threatened with contempt. And true to their threat, they already arrested one of our executives,” Mago said, referring to Pharmally Director Linconn Ong.

The Pharmally executive also complained on the “parang Grab lang” (just like Grab) reaction of a senator when the firm made its first delivery of face shields and face masks even before PS-DBM could formally make an order of the items.

She defended both Pharmally and PS-DBM for the deal, pointing out that that it “took place during an unprecedented time” when the country was facing a serious public health threat triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I am certain that majority of Filipino people related to this experience,” Mago stated.

She further chided the Senate for making public her telephone number and place of residence, saying that this violated her “right to privacy and resulted in unwanted harassment”