Sincere apology is not enough

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    BY now, with many Filipinos inside their homes and have nothing to do but follow the news on television and do social media, millions of our countrymen know already the folly that Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III did at the Makati Medical Center.

    The senator has expressed his sincere apology to the Makati Medical Center for breaching its safety protocols on the novel coronavirus disease or COVID-19 when he chose to accompany his wife to the hospital for a scheduled delivery.

    Pimentel said he never meant to harm anyone and insisted he only knew the result of his COVID-19 test while he was already inside the premises of the MMC’s delivery room complex.

    The hospital earlier released a statement denouncing the senator for breaching their safety protocols when he went to the hospital despite already experiencing symptoms and is still awaiting the results of the COVID-19 test which he said he took on March 20.

    Pimentel accompanied his wife, Kathryna, to MMC around 6 to 7 p.m. on March 24. According to the senator, the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) called him at 9 p.m. of the same day, to inform him he is positive for COVID-19. Koko Pimentel was already inside the hospital when he got the information. He immediately informed the OB-gyne doctor of his wife about the result and then left the hospital premises.

    This Pimentel caper has opened the floodgates of criticisms against the senator on social media, ranging from the sympathetic to the raging mad, including calls for his resignation.

    The announcement from the Department of Justice that they will process any complaint against Pimentel on this matter had little effect to assuage the anger of the public and the hospital authorities.

    This is exacerbated by the word from another Pimentel — Rep. Johnny Pimentel of PDP-Laban (not related to the senator) — who said their party will not sanction or investigate their party president. What does party chairman President Rodrigo Duterte say about this?

    Remember that this is the political party that flew him to Malacañang in 2016.

    It seems the Pimentel caper will not end here, as a sincere apology is not enough.