Now Reading: QUARANTINE BREACH | Ombudsman eyes probe on COVID-positive senator’s alleged protocol violation
QUARANTINE BREACH | Ombudsman eyes probe on COVID-positive senator’s alleged protocol violation
March 26, 2020 , 05:41 PM

MARCH 26, 2020 – The government’s anti-corruption agency on Thursday said its officials are set to discuss a possible investigation into a senator’s alleged violation of quarantine protocols for the coronavirus disease.

Former Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III is currently under fire for bringing his wife to the Makati Medical Center (MMC) on Tuesday, while waiting for the results of his COVID-19 test that later turned out positive.

“[I] will discuss today [the matter] with other officials,” Ombudsman Samuel Martires said in a text message to reporters.

Under Republic Act. 6770, the Ombudsman has the power to conduct a motu propio investigation, which requires no formal complaints to be filed against the public official facing scrutiny.

The Department of Justice (DOJ), meanwhile, said it will only launch an investigation if a formal complaint has already been filed before it.

“I have said before, during abnormal times like these, when people are prone to commit mistakes or violations of the law, the DOJ will temper the rigor of the law with human compassion,” Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said. “But this is not to say that the DOJ will not act upon the filing of a proper complaint by any interested party.”

Pimentel initially insisted that he did not know he was infected with the highly-contagious virus when he accompanied his wife to the MMC for possible delivery of their first child.

But he later apologized for his actions after the MMC called him out for putting its health workers at risk. Two hospital staff were placed under quarantine.

READ ALSO:  RECKLESS ACTION | Hospital hits COVID-positive senator for ‘breaching protocols’

Before the MMC incident, the senator was confirmed to also have shopped for groceries at a branch of the S&R supermarket in Bonifacio Global City, four days before his test sample was taken on March 20.

“S&R employees who were in contact with the senator were already placed in quarantine. S&R BGC also took extra disinfetion steps,” the company said.

Aside from Pimentel, ACT-CIS partylist Eric Yap is also facing a probe for a potential security breach after attending a meeting at the presidential palace on March 21.

Yap, the head of the lower house panel on appropriations, had his samples taken on March 15 which later turned out positive.

READ ALSO: SECURITY BREACH | President’s guards begin inquiry after infected lawmaker visited Malacanang

The Duterte administration has restricted public movement by placing the mainland of Luzon under an enhanced quarantine to prevent the rapid spread of the virus.

According to the DOJ, violators may face jail time and penalties under the the Mandatory Reporting of Notifiable Diseases and Health Events of Public Health Concern Act, which punishes people who refuse to cooperate with authorities.

Military and police personnel have also been directed to man checkpoints and ensure that protocols are being followed. (Karen Macalalad/JMF)

More From News5
Ex-FHM model sa drug buy-bust
Nasabat sa dating modelo ang ilang pakete ng shabu, ecstacy at pipe para sa liquid shabu na ibinibenta raw sa online store.
Published On: March 2, 2020
2020 Tokyo Olympics, tuloy sa kabila ng banta ng COVID-19
Tiniyak ng local organizers na handa silang protektahan kontra COVID-19 ang libu-libong atleta na lalahok sa Olympics. For more videos, visit us at www.news5.com.ph.
Published On: March 2, 2020
Sen. Drilon, naghain ng concurrent resolution sa ABS-CBN franchise extension
Mas mabilis ang proseso sa concurrent resolution dahil pag-apruba lamang ng Kamara at Senado ang kailangan para mapalawig hanggang June 30, 2020 ang prangkisa ng ABS-CBN. | via Greg Gregorio. For more videos, visit us at www.news5.com.ph.
Published On: March 2, 2020
Apology ng ABS-CBN, tinanggap na ni Duterte
Tinanggap na ni Pres. Duterte ang paumanhin ng ABS-CBN sa hindi nito pag-ere ng kanyang political advertisements noong 2016 elections. Natanong din siya tungkol sa quo warranto petition ng Office of the Solicitor General na pinapawalang bisa ang prangkisa ng broadcast network. | via Maricel Halili For more videos, visit us at www.news5.com.ph.
Published On: March 2, 2020
Jovie Espenido, 'cleared' na sa droga sa region 6
Nilinaw ng PNP na hindi pa final ang desisyon dahil sa isasailalim pa sa national level validation ang pagkakadawit ni P/Lt. Col. Jovie Espenido sa drug watchlist. For more videos, visit us at www.news5.com.ph.
Published On: March 2, 2020
Pag-iingat ng simbahan vs. COVID-19 ngayong Semana Santa
Maraming simbahan ngayong Ash Wednesday ang ibinudbod sa bunbunan imbes na ipinahid sa noo ang abo bilang pag-iingat laban sa coronavirus disease. | via Jen Calimon. For more videos, visit us at www.news5.com.ph.
Published On: March 2, 2020
Kinompronta ni Calida ang isang ABS CBN reporter
"Ikaw, lagi mo akong binabanatan ha." Kinompronta ni Solicitor General Jose Calida ang isang reporter ng ABS-CBN nang manghingi ito ng kopya ng petition for quo warranto para sa pagpapawalang-bisa ng prangkisa ng network.
Published On: February 17, 2020
Nilinaw ni Sec. Panelo ang naging confusion sa pagkansela sa VFA
Ipinaliwanag ni Sec. Salvador Panelo na nagkalituhan daw sa tenses na ginamit kaya magkaiba ang naging pahayag nila ni Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana tungkol sa pagpapasa ng termination notice ng Visiting Forces Agreement sa Amerika. Sinabi rin ni Panelo na mas mahalagang malaman na hindi magbabago ang isip ng Pangulo sa isyu.
Published On: February 17, 2020
Babaeng astronaut na bumalik sa mundo, gumawa ng record
328 na araw nananatili sa space ang American astronaut na si Christina Koch. For more videos, visit us at www.news5.com.ph.
Published On: February 17, 2020
Inflation forecast para sa 2020, itinaas ng BSP
Posibleng pumalo sa 3% ang inflation o kabuuang pagtaas ng presyo ng mga bilihin at serbisyo ngayong taon, batay sa pagtataya ng Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. For more videos, visit us at www.news5.com.ph.
Published On: February 17, 2020
Top Stories
AMID COVID19 SHUTDOWN | Van Gogh painting stolen from Dutch museum
AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Thieves stole a painting by Vincent van Gogh overnight from the Singer Laren Museum in the Netherlands, its director sa
Published On: March 30, 2020
TESTING FACILITIES | More hospitals will soon test for the deadly coronavirus
(March 30, 2020) – The health department on Monday reported about 50 hospitals in the country have asked to be accredited as testing centers
Published On: March 30, 2020
FOREIGN HELP | China sending doctors to help the Philippines battle coronavirus
(March 30, 2020) – The Philippines has sought the help of China, where the pandemic started, in dealing with the highly contagious virus caus
Published On: March 30, 2020
SECOND IN ASEAN | Philippines has second highest coronavirus in the region
By Manny Mogato (March 30, 2020) – The Philippines has overtaken Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand with the highest number of coronavirus cas
Published On: March 30, 2020
SOCIAL DISTANCING | Measure to prevent spread of disease may cause class division in the Philippines (Analysis)
By Chenny Ramos (March 30, 2020) – When the coronavirus pandemic reached the Philippines this month, President Rodrigo Duterte placed the ent
Published On: March 30, 2020