Senate Blue Ribbon on Dengvaxia mess: "He simply did not care. Manhid siya at walang malasakit..."

Photo file of Garin, former President Aquino, and Abad (cttto)

The draft report of the Senate Blue Ribbon charges former President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III guilty of "malfeasance, misfeasance and nonfeasance" in connection to the anti-dengue vaccine raps.

The said report was released on Wednesday, stating that Aquino’s previous meeting with the officials of Sanofi was a violation of Republic Act 6713 or the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.

Under Section 4b of RA 6713-  public officials and employees “"shall perform and discharge their duties with the highest degree of excellence, professionalism, intelligence, and skill... They shall endeavor to discourage wrong perceptions of their roles as dispensers or peddlers of undue patronage."

"By meeting with mere senior vice presidents of Sanofi-Pasteur, he was sending a strong message or perception that he was dispensing undue patronage," the draft report reads.

Meanwhile, the Blue Ribbon Committee said that Aquino endangered the lives of the Filipino children in grave peril by “simply not caring.”

"He simply did not care. Manhid siya at walang malasakit. Napakaraming magulang ang nag-aalala, balisa at hindi makatulog. Hindi nila matiyak kung ano ang sasapitin ng kanilang mga supling (There are so many parents who were worried, anxious and unable to sleep. They cannot guarantee what will happen to their offsprings)," the report read.

Aquino’s camp, on the other hand, said that the former president is willing to additional charges should there be any.

"Former President Aquino has always demonstrated his readiness to answer questions about his decisions as president. His consistent participation in legislative investigations and other venues shows this," said Abigail Valte, Aquino’s spokesperson.

Aside from Aquino, the former Budget secretary Florencio Abad, and former Health Secretary Janette Garin are also held liable for the Dengue-vaccine fiasco, the draft report reads.

Senator Richard Gordon, the chair of the Blue Ribbon, said that primary conspirators must be prosecuted.

"While we were preparing for the [May 2016] elections, the government purchased, in undue haste, with the approval of President Benigno S. Aquino III through Budget Secretary Florencio Abad and Health Secretary Janette Garin together with other certain officials of the Department of Health a new anti-dengue vaccine called Dengvaxia," Gordon said in a statement on Wednesday.

"The purchase ignored the objections of local and international experts from the academe and practitioners who feared that the subsequent infection after vaccination could bring about severe dengue," Gordon said.

 Source: Philstar

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