Resigned PhilHealth officials to be held accountable, Palace says

MANILA. The investigation into PhilHealth anomalies continues at the House of Representatives on August 27, 2020. (Screenshot from House of Representatives video)

MALACAÑANG on Thursday, August 27, 2020, said executive officers of state-owned Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) who resigned amid the ongoing investigations will still be held accountable for alleged anomalies.

“No, the law is very clear, if there is criminal liability incurred when you are in office, public officers can be held liable for them whether or not they continue to be in office,” Roque said.

He said President Rodrigo Duterte has already accepted the resignation of Ricardo Morales as president and CEO of PhilHealth.

The President has yet to appoint a new president and CEO for the agency.

PhilHealth corporate secretary Jonathan Mangaoang announced Thursday that Arnel de Jesus, executive vice president, has been designated as officer-in-charge.

Mangaoang made the announcement during the investigation on the alleged corruption inside PhilHealth by the House committees on good government and public accountability and public accounts.

“The board, on August 26, approved the designation of EVP COO Arnel de Jesus as officer-in-charge President and Chief Executive Officer (PCEO), effective upon the acceptance of the resignation of General Morales, following the general rules of succession,” Mangaoang told the panel.

Anakalusugan Party-list Representative Mike Defensor, who chairs the House committee on public accounts, questioned De Jesus’ capability given that De Jesus earlier claimed to be in poor health condition.

“So papaano gagawin ’yang trabaho ninyo? I mean, I’m not blaming Mr. De Jesus. I’m not saying anything. Pero may sakit siya sa ngayon eh,” Defensor said.

“Ang apela natin is magkaroon ng leadership sa loob ng PhilHealth habang nasa pandemiya tayo at kailangang desisyunan ang mayoryang isyu sa loob ng PhilHealth,” he added.

In a panel hearing last August 12, De Jesus left amid interpellations saying he needed to replace the battery of his pacemaker.

Morales and Senior Vice President for legal sector Rodolfo del Rosario Jr. resigned this week.

Morales handed in his resignation after Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said the President had advised him to resign due to his poor health.

Morales is undergoing chemotherapy for lymphoma. (SunStar Philippines)


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