MANILA--The Office of the Vice President on Saturday thanked President Rodrigo Duterte for supporting its COVID-19 relief efforts, amid a call to investigate its actions.
Manuelito Luna, who sought to have Vice-President Leni Robredo investigated because he said Robredo was competing with the national government's own relief program, was fired as commissioner of the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission on Friday.
"Nagpapasalamat kami sa pahayag ng Pangulo na hindi kasalanan ang tumulong sa kapwa-Pilipino ngayong panahon ng krisis," OVP spokesperson Barry Gutierrez said in a statement.
Gutierrez also called on Filipinos to donate gear and services for frontliners to bolster the campaign against COVID-19.
Additionally, the OVP on Facebook announced it opened a fifth dormitory -- at UP Village, Quezon City -- for health frontliners working in nearby hospitals, on a first-come, first-served basis.
Duterte on Friday night said Robredo was not at fault for initiating relief efforts against COVID-19.
Luna on Thursday claimed Robredo’s fund drive and relief operations were "calculated to undermine" the president’s relief efforts.
PACC chairman Greco Belgica later on issued a separate statement, saying Luna's call was his opinion and did not reflect the agency's.
In a statement, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said Duterte’s decision to fire Luna was meant to show the president wasn't going easy on "errant" government officials.
"This demonstrates the President’a intolerance to abusive, arrogant and incompetent government officials, apart from the corrupt ones, as well as consistent with his decisive action against errant public servants,” Panelo said in a statement.
Panelo then reiterated Duterte’s call to cooperate in the government’s efforts to curb the virus “regardless of political beliefs.”
"Only the Bayanihan spirit of every Filipino lending hand to each other can make this nation survive and prevail over this scourge of a disease," he added.