Dr. Tony Leachon claimed Thursday that presidential spokesperson Harry Roque and Health Secretary Francisco Duque III are the persons behind his removal from his post as the adviser for the National Task Force Against COVID-19.
“Ipinakiusap ni Secretary Roque at saka Secretary Duque iyon, na ako’y tanggalin. Eh ano naman ang kasalanan ko for telling the truth? Transparent naman ‘yun,” he told Dobol B sa News TV in an interview.
(Secretary Roque and Secretary Duque requested to remove me. What is my fault for telling the truth? It is transparent.)
“Napaka-importante’ yan. How many lives ang nawala dito, how many people ang nawalan ng trabaho at nagkaroon ng poverty?” he said, stressing the importance of accurate “real-time and granular data” in responding to coronavirus pandemic.
(That is so important. How many lives have been lost, how many people lost their jobs, and experienced poverty?)
“Bakit sila nag-issue ng apology noong Monday, nag-issue ang DOH ng apology for their errors in data reporting tapos tatanggalin ka ng Tuesday? Eh samantalang in-admit nilang may mali sila sa daily reporting?” he added.
(Why did they issue an apology on Monday? The DOH issued an apology for their errors in data reporting and then dismissed you on Tuesday? They admitted they did something wrong with daily reporting.)
Roque meanwhile denied that he and Duque were involved in Leachon’s removal from his post over his criticisms to the government’s COVID-19 response.
“He (Leachon) is giving me too much credit,” he said. “Pambansang laway lamang po ako. Wala akong kapangyarihang mag-compel sa kanila na mag-resign.”
(I am just a spokesperson. I don’t have the power to compel anyone to resign.)
Roque, however, said President Rodrigo Duterte himself noticed critical statements against the government’s actions on fighting COVID-19 made by Leachon.
“Hindi ako, hindi si Secretary Duque. Mismong si Presidente noted that you (Leachon) shouldn’t be doing what you’re doing,” he said.
(Not me, not Secretary Duque. The President himself noted that you (Leachon) shouldn’t be doing what you’re doing.)
Before resigning as the NTF adviser, Leachon previously revealed that the COVID-19 data the DOH is reporting is not real-time. He also refuted DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III’s claim that the Philippines now is experiencing the second wave of the outbreak. He said the country has not even flattened the curve yet.