• Rampant corruption grips PCSO


    Delivering public health services is one of the glaring failures of Noynoy Aquino’s administration and, with just months left in its agonizing term, the President’s cronies are working double time to fleece public funds supposedly intended to help the sick.

    The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO), which is envisioned as an instrument in extending tremendous financial assistance to indigent Filipinos with medical needs, has served as another milking cow of administration cronies.

    One “Nicanor Flavier,” a non-employee but a PCSO fixture, is allegedly doing a “Janet Lim-Napoles” by masterminding and serving as a conduit between unscrupulous PCSO officials and local government unit (LGU) officials.

    According to my informants, Flavier deals with contractors and suppliers, as well as LGU chief executives, involving hundreds of millions of pesos in PCSO funds supposedly intended for the purchase of medicines for the LGUs’ constituents.

    This culprit reportedly hangs around the PCSO’s Releasing Department, where he has bonded with insiders who connive with him to manipulate purchases of medical supplies to be delivered to different cities and municipalities and to governors.

    He rakes in tens of millions of pesos in commission, representing 10 to 50 percent of the total costs of the purchases while mayors and governors pocket their 10 percent kickback, as well.

    Flavier usually instruct the LGU executive to “under-deliver” or “not to deliver” medicines at all to their unsuspecting constituents.

    It’s disheartening to even imagine what is actually left of public funds for the purchase of medical supplies, a significant portion of which is pilfered at the local level.

    And, failure to deal with Flavier and his cohort PCSO officials would mean “long delays” in the release of their checks.

    I wonder what PCSO Chairman Ayong Maliksi can say about this? Or will he do something about it at all? Let’s wait and see.

    ‘Maltreatment’ decried by NKTI patients
    Similarly unfortunate to hear are reports on how poor patients are “maltreated” at some public or semi-private hospitals.

    Day in and day out, droves of indigent people seek treatment at government-operated medical institutions, understandably being unable to afford high-quality services at private hospitals.

    Unfortunately, in the agonizing process of being accommodated at less cost, a number of poor patients are “routinely” subjected to verbal and physical abuses by arrogant and oppressive medical staff at these facilities.

    One recent example is the case of a young teacher who was diagnosed with lupus erythematosus, a debilitating illness that causes intolerable pain and mental distress.

    She had to bear with the ordeal of travelling once or twice weekly to outpatient department if the National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI) on East Avenue, Quezon City, and “get in line” before sunrise to secure a number tab and beat the “cut-off.”

    At government facilities like NKTI, Lung Center of the Philippines and Philippine General Hospital, patients who do not make the daily “quota” do not receive medical assistance no matter if they came from a far-flung province.

    Those who get a lucky number have to wait for hours at a hot, crowded waiting area not even conducive to lupus and kidney patients.

    The wheelchair-bound lupus patient and her widower dad made the quota last Friday morning but not without being subjected to unnecessary humiliation by a hot-tempered nurse, who apparently hated her job.

    For unexplained reason, this nurse and other medical staff, arrogantly yell and howl causing among confused patients, including the elderly, who are already suffering serious illness and depression.

    “Kung bakit laging mainit ang ulo nila, parang mangmang o kriminal ang kausap nila, kahit matatanda, napapaiyak na lang,” a kidney patient said.

    In fairness, head nurse Angie Rodriguez, told a member of my staff that she will act on the complaint, which she admitted was not a first.

    We’ve received similar complaints about patients being maltreated and “bullied” by some staff at the PGH, too.

    To treat ill-stricken people inhumanely is in itself “sick,” especially on the part of a health professional and a public servant.

    Health Secretary Janet Garin must look into this malpractice.

    We welcome your reaction, comments, complaints or exposé. Please email them to etulfo2011@yahoo.com or personally visit us at the TV5 Field Office at 2nd Floor, Quedsa Plaza, Quezon Ave. corner EDSA, Quezon City near the MRT Quezon Avenue station, between 9am-4pm Monday to Friday.


    Please follow our commenting guidelines.


    1. Mariano Patalinjug on

      Yonkers, New York
      31 August 2015

      The PCSO has never been known for being “as clean as a whistle.” It has always been a cesspool of corruption, and now, with President Aquino with his “Daang matwid” at the helm, you would think that the PCSO would be rid of those who have given it the bad reputation it has gained all these years.

      Recall that former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is charged with Plunder for having plundered the funds of the PCSO to the tune of millions of pesos. When the bishops of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines went to her and asked her for a gift of a “Pajero” SUV, routinely she ordered the PCSO to give the bishops the money to pay for a “Pajero.” You can imagine how much one costs–it’s several million pesos!

      Now comes these revelations by Manila Times columnist Erwin Tulfo, which rival the shenanigans of all those “lawmakers-lawbreakers” who got entangled in the smelly P10-billion “pork barrel” scam engineered by Janet Lim-Napoles.

      I suggest that the Department of Justice look into these revelations and–if found to be true, to conduct a thorough investigation and lodge the proper criminal charges against all of those who are involved.

      Time is running out because President Aquino’s term runs out next year–and DOJ Secretary Leila de Lima’s term happens to be coterminous with President Aquino’s.


    2. Maria Stevens on

      I know an elderly lady 87 yrs old who gets 500 FIVE HUNDRED pesos per month pension she even had to struggle with officialdom to get that…I find that absolutely disgusting when one considers the millions of pesos that the scumbag rulers of this poor third world country are ripping off…and they still have the audacity to attend church on Sunday…bloody Hippocrits.

    3. Calling the NPA to do a hit – not after getting from him all documentary evidence of pay offs, under delivery and ghost deliveries.

    4. Calling the NPA t do a hit – not after getting from him all documentary evidence of pay offs, under delivery and ghost deliveries.

    5. The rudeness is very typical of many government employees who act like the public is a bothersome lot. These government employees have forgotten they are public servants and treat the public condescendingly and show absolutely no respect especially for the small people. Mga mata pobre, sa madaling salita, exactly like their hacendero President.