Acosta : PAO's budget cut meant to 'kill' Dengvaxia probe

Acosta : PAO's budget cut meant to 'kill' Dengvaxia probe

The Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) budget for 2019 has been cut.

In the proposed national budget PAO’s budget lost P19.5 million that was meant for forensic for forensic equipment. Some minority lawmakers made some insertions like provisions that bars the agency rom using its maintenance operating expenses for forensic personnel, meetings and utilities.

 PAO chief Persida Rueda-Acosta, claims all of these actions are meant to "kill" its investigation into the alleged deaths of children who were given dengue vaccine Dengvaxia. 

PAO chief Persida Rueda-Acosta
(photo credit to owner)

"Bakit may paninikil at bakit biglang may insertion? Pinapatay po iyong ating kapangyarihang mag-imbestiga... para matigil na rin siguro iyang imbestigasyon sa Dengvaxia," she told radio DZMM. 
(Why is there an extortion attempt and a sudden insertion? Our power to investigate is being killed, perhaps to stop the investigation on Dengvaxia.) 

"Nakikiusap po ako sa ating Pangulo, paki-veto po iyan sapagkat hindi naman po sa akin ang pondong iyan, sa mamamayang Pilipino po iyan," she added.

(I am asking the President to please veto that because those funds are not mine, they belong to the public anyway.) 
The agency was able to autopsy the remains of around 100 children who allegedly died after getting the vaccine.
The Department of Health and several health experts, however, insisted that there is no established link between dengue vaccine - Dengvaxia and the alleged deaths. 

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Report from ABS-CBN News

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