FILE PHOTO: Public Attorney’s Office Chief Percida Acosta (UNTV News)
MANILA, Philippines — The Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) is yet to open its door to the Department of Health (DOH) regarding the Dengvaxia controversy.
Although PAO has already expressed willingness to cooperate during a Senate hearing, it has yet to make good on its promises.
“No. Ayaw nila kahit na anong gawin namin. Ayaw nila,” said Health Secretary Francisco Duque.
(No. No matter what we do, they don’t want to.)
The DOH said PAO should be cooperating with them to hold liable those responsible for giving the controversial anti-dengue vaccine to almost one million children without sufficient study on its effects.
“Hindi iyong tayo ang naglalaban-laban sa gobyerno. Hindi tama iyon. Mali po iyang direksyon na tinatahak ng ibang grupo. Tandaan natin. We have to be one here in putting together a very solid a very good case against Sanofi,” said the health chief.
(We in the government should not fight each other. It’s not right. The path being followed by other groups is wrong. Let’s remember that we have to be one here in putting together a very solid a very good case against Sanofi.)
Duque said that the two agencies should cooperate in order to properly guide vaccinees in terms of their medical needs.
But PAO chief Atty. Percida Acosta said they cannot cooperate with the DOH due to conflict of interest.
Several officials of DOH are being linked to the Dengvaxia anomaly.
Acosta said the DOH task force does not even recognize the PAO expert panel and the result of their autopsy on the remains of children whose deaths were being linked to Dengvaxia.
She claims the health department also refused to provide PAO with the master list of vaccinees.
In response, the DOH said that the autopsy cannot prove that the deaths of some vaccinees were due to Dengvaxia.
It can be noted this had been the same statement of dengue expert Dr. Scott Halstead during a Senate hearing last March 13. — Aiko Miguel | UNTV News & Rescue