If President Rodrigo Duterte is to be asked, the Senate’s detention of Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corp director Linconn Ong is more than martial law enforcement.
Ong was one of the resource persons who attended the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee hearing on the government’s purchase of allegedly overpriced medical supplies.
It will be recalled that the Senate detained Ong and even ordered Sen. Richard Gordon, the chairman of Blue Ribbon, to transfer him to Pasay City Jail for allegedly lying in the hearings.
“Is that how a civilized Congress works?” said Duterte.
“Akala ko ba ayaw ng mga tao, ng Pilipinas ng martial law? Eh tingnan mo ang ginagawa ng Senado ngayon, it is just more than the martial law,” he added.
For Duterte, the Senate is violating the right to liberty and due process of the Pharmally official.
It will be recalled that Duterte has also declared martial law, which he implemented throughout Mindanao after the Marawi siege in 2017. He also previously praised former President Ferdinand Marcos, who enforced martial law nationwide from 1972 to 1981.
Senate’s treatment Pharmally official like Martial Law – Duterte
Meanwhile, Duterte questioned the existence of the expiration date of the face shields.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III himself explained to Duterte that face shields also have a shelf life.
“May foam dito po sa bandang taas [ng face shield] na kapag sinuot po ‘yan.. ‘yong foam po iyon ang nagde-deteriorate sa mahabang panahon,” explained Duque.
But Duque insisted that the Department of Health (DOH) and even the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM) do not accept medical supplies if they are not checked by inspection teams.
Duque is said to be previewing the alleged change in the expiration date. If proven, the government will allegedly pay Pharmally.