Senate Blue Ribbon Committee orders arrest of resource persons absent in Pharmally hearing

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 27 2022 06:17 PM | Updated as of Jan 27 2022 07:14 PM

MANILA — The Senate Blue Ribbon Committee on Thursday ordered the arrest of several resource persons who were absent in the 18th hearing over the allegedly anomalous deal between government and Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corp.

Among these resource persons is Rose Nono Lin, the chief financial officer and corporate treasurer of Pharmally Biologicals, who did not show up in the hearing due to "contracting COVID-19."

Sen. Richard Gordon ordered authorities to check the credentials of the doctor who issued Lin's medical certificate, expressing doubts on her new "excuse" not to show up to the hearing.

Other resource persons who were cited in contempt for their absence were Gerald Cruz, Jayson Uson, Sophia Custodio of Business Beyond Limits, and Dennis Manalastas of Philippine Full Win Group of Companies Inc.

Former Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management chief Lloyd Christopher Lao was also included in the citation anew.

The Senate earlier found out that Lao was in charge of handling some P42 billion in funds that the Department of Health (DOH) transferred to the PS-DBM without proper documentation.

The Blue Ribbon Committee has also issued subpoenas for some of former presidential economic adviser Michael Yang's business associates due to their alleged ties to Pharmally. 

Meanwhile, Custodio is the girlfriend of Pharmally corporate secretary and treasurer Mohit Dargani who supposedly created Business Beyond Limits that helped Pharmally sell face shields for nearly P38 million.

The pursuit against Lao and other personalities tagged in the Pharmally controversy was earlier suspended amid the surge of COVID-19 cases in the Philippines.

— With a report from Johnson Manabat, ABS-CBN News

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