MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte has fired Office of Civil Defense (OCD) deputy administrator, Assistant Secretary Kristoffer James “Toby” Purisima, Malacañang announced on Friday.
In a television interview. Roque said Duterte decided to boot Purisima out of office due to a “lack of trust and confidence”.
“Tinanggal po sa pwesto si Assistant Secretary Kristoffer ‘Toby’ Purisima ng OCD (Assistant Secretary Kristoffer ‘Toby’ Purisima of OCD has been removed from the post) for lack of trust and confidence,” Roque said.
Roque’s announcement came amid the country’s fight against coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
OCD, through Administrative Order 27 inked by Duterte on March 31, was tasked as the main coordinating body for donated medical supplies and equipment.
Roque said Purisima’s office is also involved in the government’s continuing efforts to combat Covid-19.
“Meron din pong papel yung opisina niya (Purisima) dito po sa Covid-19 [crisis] dahil kabahagi po sila sa government response sa Covid-19 (His office also has a role in the Covid-19 crisis because it is also involved in the government response to Covid-19 pandemic),” he said.
Roque said Purisima’s office is “at the forefront of providing assistance.”
He, however, did not mention as to whether Purisima’s removal from office has something to do with the latter’s performance.
Purisima served as the spokesperson of the Joint Task Force Bangon Marawi before being appointed as an OCD official.
Roque said Duterte has yet to appoint Purisima’s replacement.
Roque, in a separate press statement sent to Palace reporters, said Purisima’s dismissal takes effect “immediately”. Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos /PNA – northboundasia.com