- A word war erupted between Morales and Roque
- Roque said it is unlawful to delay the implementation of UHC
- Morales dared Roque that he can replace him at Philhealth
MANILA, Philippines – Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) chief Ricardo Morales has dared Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque to provide evidence of corruption within the agency, if any, and file a case before the court.
The word war between the two officials erupted after Roque criticized Morales for alleged inaction in investigating corruption among Philhealth officials.
Morales earlier appealed to Malacañang to defer the implementation of the Universal Health Care (UHC) due to the agency’s depleting funds brought by the coronavirus pandemic. Roque, however, disagreed with Morales’ proposal; saying it is unlawful to delay the implementation of UHC and it would be better to find someone else to do the job.
Roque is one of the co-authors of the Universal Health Care Act when he was still a congressman. The bill was signed into law by President Rodrigo Duterte last February.
“Its fund is being depleted and we have long been saying that — hundreds of billions being lost to corruption.” said Roque. “I have yet to hear of any person fired by Morales or any investigation he had undertaken.”
But Morales said he has no problem if Roque finds someone better than him.
“Atty. Roque, be my guest. I will be very grateful if we can find somebody, baka siya. No problem with me. Anytime. But he’s not the President, he’s the spokesman, that’s a different thing,” the Philhealth official said.
Morales also admitted he has yet to speak with the President regarding Philhealth’s predicament especially as there are more pressing issues like the COVID-19 pandemic the country is facing now.
However, he hopes to come up with a solution before meeting with the chief executive in Malacañang as it’s still ‘too early to bother’ the President with the issue.