MANILA, Philippines - Malacañang is challenging the camp of former President Arroyo to let her doctors—and not her spokespersons—speak about her medical condition and prove that her ailment is life-threatening.
Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said that the testimony of the doctors is “necessary” to determine the “propriety” of Arroyo’s petition to stay in the hospital while her case is being heard and her request to travel abroad to seek medical treatment.
Lacierda said the doctors should be called to testify in court.
“Bakit sila natatakot [na] ang doktor nila ang magsalita? Kung kayo ay nagsasabi na may sakit ang aming kliyente, ano ang dapat na pruweba na ilalabas? Hindi ang spokesperson. Hindi ang tagapagsalita. Ang dapat magpatunay ‘yung mismong doktor nila. So ang hamon ko sa kanila, ilabas nila ‘yung doktor. Ilabas ang doktor at siya ang magpatunay na talagang life-threatening ang medical condition ng kanilang pasyente,” Lacierda told reporters.
“We can only determine the true medical condition of the [former] president if we are only able to hear from the doctors themselves. The doctors themselves—not the spokespersons—should be telling the public, telling the Supreme Court, and the Regional Trial Court the true medical condition of the former president,” he added.
The Palace maintains that Mrs. Arroyo’s condition is “not life threatening,” based on the assessment of Health Secretary Enrique Ona who has visited Arroyo.