Limpin seeks Roque resignation, apology to all health workers for ‘emotional’ outburst

Robie de Guzman   •   September 10, 2021   •   445

MANILA, Philippines – The doctor who was berated by Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said he should resign from his post following his ‘emotional’ outburst against health experts who suggested the implementation of a two-week hard lockdown amid the increase in COVID-19 cases.

A leaked video of a recent Inter-Agency Task Force meeting showed Roque raising his voice and lashing out at Dr. Maricar Limpin, president of the Philippine College of Physicians, and Dr. Antonio Dans, convenor of the Healthcare Professionals Alliance against COVID-19.

Limpin was also seen in a video emotionally pleading to the government not to ease quarantine restrictions to contain the uptick in infections.

Limpin said she was surprised at Roque’s reaction when they were presenting during the meeting their suggestions and the dire situations in hospitals.

“Personally, and I hope that he does not or will not say that I’m being political when I say this because definitely, I have no politics… I can only speak my mind out. As far as I’m concerned, the president should actually remove him from office. Palitan na niya. Because he is not doing service to our president,” she said.

She also said Roque’s behavior does not befit an official who represents the president of the country.

“It is not an action that is expected from a government official. Secretary Roque has to realize that as a spokesperson of the President, then he is basically representing the President. Therefore, any actions he makes, it is reflective of the President,” she said.

Roque has apologized for his outburst, adding that he became emotional as he spoke on behalf of Filipinos who have been suffering from hunger and poverty due to hard lockdowns.

He also stressed that he was only emphasizing the need to find a balance between health and the country’s economy.

“But as I said, I may apologize and I have in fact apologized for the manner, but never for the message,” Roque said. “I stand by the message.”

But Limpin said that instead of just apologizing to her and Dr. Dans, Roque should apologize to all healthcare workers for his outburst.

“We were there as representatives of the healthcare workforce. And therefore if he has to apologize, he has to apologize to the whole of the healthcare workforce, hindi sa amin lang. Yung ginawa niya is against all of us in the healthcare sector,” Limpin said.

Batas, kailangan bago ipagbawal ang hiring sa hindi bakunado —Malacañang

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 21, 2021

Bagaman isinusulong ng Malacañang sa kahalagahan ng pagbabakuna ng ating mga kababayan kontra COVID-19, iginiit nito na kinakailangan pa rin ang isang batas bago ipagbawal ang hiring sa trabaho ng mga hindi pa nababakunahan.

Ayon kay Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque Jr. hindi maaaring basta na lamang ipagbawal ang hiring sa trabaho ng mga aplikante na hindi pa bakunado kontra COVID-19.

“Kinakailangan po siguro ng batas kung ipagbabawal ang pagha-hire ng mga non-vaccinated individuals,” aniya.

Isa sa mga suhestyon ng pribadong sektor para mapalawak pa ng pamahalaan ang COVID-19 vaccination rollout ay ang gawing requirement ang bakuna sa hiring sa trabaho.

Pero para sa labor group na Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (ALU-TUCP), discriminatory ang nasabing panukala at hindi makakabuti sa ekonomiya ng Pilipinas.

Giit ng ALU-TUCP spokesperson Alan Tanjusay, marami sa mga Pilipino ang hindi pa rin nababakunahan kaya’t hindi maari na bakunado lamang ang papayagan ng pamahalaan na makapag-apply sa trabaho.

“Babagsak ang ating ekonomiya, maraming mga manggagawa at kanilang pamilya maghihirap dahil kulang po ang supply ng bakuna at hindi pa sila nababakunahan,” aniya.

Sa halip na higpitan ang mga mangagawa na hindi pa bakunado, iginiit ng labor group na dapat solusyunan ng pamahalaan ang mas mabilis na access sa bakuna ng ating mga kababayan lalo na ang mga nasa malalayong lugar.

“Dapat ang pagtuunan natin ng pansin ay paano ba mababakunahan at papaano ba mapaparating ang mga bakuna doon sa mga probinsya at liblib na lugar kung saan maraming mangagawa ang naghihintay at nangangailangan ng bakuna,” ayon kay Tanjusay.

Samantala, sa panayam kanina kay Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre bello III sa isang news program, sinabi nito na may legal na basehan na umano, upang obligahin ng mga employer ang kanilang mga empleyado na magpabakuna sa ilalim ng Alert Level 3.

Gayunman hindi naidetalye ng kalihim kung ano ang binabanggit nitong legal basis sa pagpapabakuna.

Pero nang tanungin sa isang interview si DOLE Usec. Ana Dione, nilinaw nito na wala pang batas na nag-oobliga sa mga mangagawa na magpabakuna laban sa COVID-19.

“Ang requirement na bakunado ang isang empleyado medyo wala po tayong basehan diyan, wala pong basis in law, so ibig sabihin hindi po pupwedeng gawin ng mga kumpanya yan.

“As a basis, yung unvaccinated as basis of termination palagi po nating inuulit, sinabi at uulitin na yan po ay discrimination. If ang termination niya ang sole basis noon ay unvaccinated hindi po, bawal po iyan,” dagdag nito. (Ulat ni JP Nuñez)

Roque says ready to join senatorial race, praying Sara Duterte will heed calls to run for president

Robie de Guzman   •   October 7, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque on Thursday said he has prepared his certificate of candidacy (COC) for senator, but he will only file it if Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio pursues a presidential bid in the 2022 elections.

In a Palace briefing, Roque reiterated his earlier statement that he will only run for senator if Duterte-Carpio will seek the presidency.

He also said that he is praying that Mayor Sara will heed the public’s call for her to join the presidential race.

“Kinakailangan po mayroon tayong isang salita at minsan na po akong nagsabi na tatakbo lang ako kung tatakbo po si Mayor Sara Duterte,” he said.

“Handa po ang aking certificate of candidacy, bukas po ang last day; magbi-vigil po kami dito sa Malacañang kung sakaling maghahain po ng certificate of candidacy si Mayor Sara Duterte for president,” he added.

Mayor Sara on Wednesday stressed that she is not running for president as she appealed for understanding from her supporters who have been pushing for her to seek a national position in the upcoming polls.

Various political groups have expressed their support for the presidential daughter should she decide to join the presidential race.

Duterte-Carpio’s supporters have also conducted various activities to convince her to run for president and file her candidacy before the deadline on Friday, Oct. 8.

She has consistently topped pre-election surveys on presidential preferences who may replace her father, President Rodrigo Duterte when his term ends in June 2022.

Despite all this, she still filed her certificate of candidacy for reelection, saying she wants to finish her last consecutive term as Davao City mayor.

Sara Duterte-Carpio has repeatedly stated that she has no plans to gun for the country’s top post, citing their family’s agreement that only one of them should gun for a national position.

President Duterte previously said he will run as vice president but later withdrew his certificate of nomination and acceptance (CONA) and instead threw his support for the vice presidential bid of his former longtime aide, Senator Bong Go.

At the same time, he also announced his retirement from politics and mentioned that his daughter Sara will run with Go in 2022 polls.

Mayor Sara did not comment on the president’s statement.

The last day of the filing of COCs is on Friday, October 8.

Roque posibleng kasuhan ang nag-leak ng video ng IATF meeting

Robie de Guzman   •   September 13, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Posible umanong sampahan ng reklamo ni Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque ang nagpalabas ng video ng meeting kung saan nakikita siyang sumisigaw at nagagalit sa isang grupo ng mga doktor.

Ayon kay Roque, maaaring may pananagutan sa batas ang nasa likod ng leakage ng video dahil ang pagpupulong ay hinggil sa COVID-19 response ng pamahalaaan.

“Sa tingin ko po liable, at liable din po for revealing public secrets,” ani Roque.

Gayunman, ipinauubaya na ni Roque sa IATF ang isyu.

“Pero hahayaan ko na po iyan sa IATF, at iyan naman po ay napag-usapan kanina sa IATF,” ang wika ng opisyal.

Isang video ang kumalat sa social media kamakailan kung saan makikita si Roque na pinagagalitan ang isang grupo ng mga doktor na kinabibilangan ni Philippine College of Physicians president Dr. Maricar Limpin, na nagsusulong ng pagpapatupad ng hard lockdown sa gitna ng lumulobong kaso ng COVID-19 sa bansa.

Una nang sinabi ni Roque na naging emosyunal lang siya sa meeting ng Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) dahil nais niya lang igiit ang pangangailangan na balansehin ang ekonomiya at public health upang makapagtrabaho na rin ang ibang empleyado na nawalan ng hanapbuhay sa gitna ng pandemya.

Humingi na ng paumanhin si Roque sa pangyayari ngunit para kay Limpin, mas maiging magbitiw na lamang ito sa puwesto dahil hindi aniya karapat-dapat ang inasal nito bilang tagapagsalita ni Pangulong Duterte.

Ilang grupo na rin ang nanawagang palitan ang opisyal sa pwesto.

Nanindigan naman si Roque na nakasalalay kay Pangulong Duterte ang desisyon kung mananatili siya o hindi sa posisyon.

 

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