Government doctors recommend hospital arrest for Enrile

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Thursday, September 4, 2014

GOVERNMENT medical doctors recommended on Thursday that Senator Juan Ponce Enrile remain at a hospital while the cases of plunder and graft against him are being tried before the anti-graft court Sandiganbayan.

In a hearing for Enrile's motion for hospital arrest at the Sandiganbayan third division, Dr. John Añonuevo, a cardiologist from the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) said the lawmaker is vulnerable to stroke and heart attack due to his "irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure, and hardening of the arteries due to high calcium deposits."

Another PGH doctor, Pulmonologist Leonora Fernandez, said Enrile should remain in the hospital since he had asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), which may lead to pneumonia.

She noted that narrowing of small airways in Enrile's lungs has been observed.

Meanwhile, Opthalmologist Maria Florentina Fajardo-Gomez said that the 91-year-old senator has "age-related macular degeneration," which may lead to central blindness.

"Not total blindness but the patient can only see in the periphery," she said.

All the three medical doctors have recommended to the third division that Enrile be confined in a tertiary hospital.

The anti-graft court earlier ordered the PGH to conduct tests on the former Senate President to determine whether the lawmaker's motion for hospital arrest had merit.

Enrile allegedly amassed P172.8-million of commissions and kickbacks from 2004 to 2010 by channeling his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) allocations to non-government organizations (NGOs) of businesswoman Janet Lim Napoles, the alleged mastermind in the PDAF scam.

Meanwhile, Enrile and his former chief-of-staff Jessica Lucila "Gigi" Reyes are set to be arraigned on 15 counts of graft charges on Friday. (Sunnex)

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