The tandem of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte and Senate Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano on Friday (March 18) stressed that rampant corruption in the country prevents the government from achieving its goal of providing universal health care services for Filipinos.
“Dahil sa kaguluhang dala ng talamak na korapsyon sa bansa, pati ang mga serbisyong pangkalusugan ng mahihirap nating kababayan ay naisasantabi na ng gobyerno. Hindi na ito makatarungan, kailangan na ng tunay na pagbabago,” Cayetano said.
The tandem was in Novaliches, Quezon City to conduct a “Ronda-Serye” listening tour with transport groups there. During the dialogue, members of the city’s Tricycle Operators and Drivers Associations (TODAs) cited the lack of proper health care benefits provided to them by the government.
“Marami po sa mga nakausap nating tricycle driver ay hanggang ngayon, hindi pa miyembro ng PhilHealth (Philippine Health Insurance Corporation), o kung miyembro man sila ay nahihirapan silang magbayad ng buwanang pensyon dahil ‘di kalakihan ang kita nila sa araw-araw,” Cayetano said. “Kaya tuwing naaaksidente o nagkakasakit sila, wala silang sapat na panggastos para sa pagpapagaling.”
To address this concern, Duterte and Cayetano pledged that if elected, they will implement an “orderly health care system” that accommodates all Filipinos, including 100 % PhilHealth coverage and the full implementation of its “zero billing” services to members. They also plan to increase the budget for PhilHealth to subsidize the premiums of transport workers in the country.
Cayetano lamented that the reason why poor Filipinos do not receive adequate health benefits from government is because rampant corruption keeps eating away funds that are meant for health services.
On Wednesday, the senator drew a parallel between the $81 million money-laundering operation involving the Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) and Vice President Jejomar Binay’s alleged ill-gotten wealth. Cayetano said that both schemes used the same bank and remmitance company, utilized dummies and accomplices who hid behind the same banking law.
In showing their commitment to curbing corruption, Duterte and Cayetano recently signed a manifesto waiving their rights to bank secrecy and allowing their bank accounts to be made open to the public. They also urged their presidential and vice-presidential rivals to do the same, but so far, no other candidate has signed the waiver. /DC-HQ