Dick to Digong: spare the Red Cross, hit me instead
CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – Senator Richard Gordon on Sunday (September 19) refuted President Rodrigo Duterte’s accusation against Phil. Red Cross (PRC) when he called on the chief executive to criticize him, but spared the humanitarian organization verbal attacks.
Gordon, President and CEO of the PRC, made the appeal on the first anniversary of the establishment of the group’s molecular laboratory in that city.
The senator also defended the People’s Republic of China following Duterte’s tirade against the Red Cross in one of his “talk to the people” televised speeches recently.
But Gordon said Duterte should instead take his anger out on him and not the entire organization and its 2 million volunteers across the country.
“Just insult me, I’ll just hide behind [Sen. Juan Miguel Zubiri]. When you insult me, our volunteers are hurt by your words. They find your words against the Red Cross disheartening, instead of helping the volunteers and admitting to them that because of your anger you have damaged the reputation of the whole Red Cross, ”Gordon told those in attendance. at the rally online Sunday morning.
“Mr. President, do not trample on the work of our people, most of whom are volunteers,” he added.
Lawmaker said allegations against the PRC were false following Duterte’s order to have the humanitarian institution’s finances reviewed by the Audit Commission (COA) after Gordon and other senators opened an investigation into the alleged freak deal involving a fledgling company that was supposedly awarded by the government with billions of pesos in transactions.
Duterte accused Gordon of making the PRC a “cash cow”.
The mandate of the ACO is to audit government offices and agencies. The PRC is a non-governmental organization, although it has been a recipient of government funds intended for humanitarian efforts.
In his speech, Gordon listed the achievements of the PRC in terms of projects, disaster response, donations to other countries and blood donation.
“Sir. Mr. President, the Red Cross is not a lazy chapter. We are one of the pillars of our society. We raise good citizenship. Our young people learn first aid from an early age. They learn helping the community, and our senior volunteers, they’re awesome, ”he said.
Gordon also pointed out that the PRC has likely built more homes for disaster survivors than the government citing 151,525 homes across the archipelago since 2005.
In just eight months, Gordon said, the PRC served 11,753 patients from Jan. 1 to Sept. 17 of this year, with 281,978 blood group units.
He said the PRC supplies 52% of the country’s blood needs and plans to expand it.
“We are going to increase it to 80%. This is my dream because we will be adding more blood drives and blood centers around the country, probably 10 or 12 more before the end of the year, ”Gordon added.
The lawmaker said the PRC administered 1.2 million measles and polio vaccines to Filipino children from 2019 to 2021, led by 76 chapters reaching 2,688 communities by mobilizing 5,438 volunteers organized into 1,356 vaccination teams in all the countries.
Gordon also attacked online trolls who claimed he and other PRC officials stole money from the organization.
Gordon listed the donations in the amount of US $ 2,737,433. The PRC has spread to various countries affected by earthquakes, tsunami, armed conflicts, bushfires, Ebola virus outbreak and weather disturbances, including developed countries such as the United States, Japan and China, from 2005 to 2021.
The group also made a donation to Australia in the amount of AU $ 100,000.
Gordon, however, made it clear that “I have no intention of fighting the President. I have my job, I am busy with the Red Cross, I am very busy with the Senate.