Duterte fires Office of Civil Defense deputy administrator

President Rodrigo Duterte has fired Office of Civil Defense Assistant Secretary Kristoffer James Purisima, Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque announced on Friday, May 22.

"Assistant Secretary Kristoffer 'Toby' Purisima of OCD was removed for lack of trust and confidence," he said in Filipino during an interview with GMA News. 

Roque did not elaborate on the exact reason for Purisima's exit. According to Purisima's LinkedIn account, his time with OCD ended a month ago, in April, when the country was still on coronavirus lockdown. The page says he is now with a law firm.

Purisima had been the OCD deputy administrator.

He can no longer be found in the directory of officials in the OCD's website. The post of civil defense deputy administrator is now occupied by Assistant Secretary Casiano Monilla, according to the website.

The OCD is an agency in charge of keeping an inventory of all donations for coronavirus response to the national government and Department of Health and redistributing them to agencies in need.

It also does contact-tracing of persons who had exposure to confirmed coronavirus cases.

Purisima was also involved in efforts to rehabilitate Marawi City after a 5-month siege of terrorists, serving as the Task Force Bangon Marawi spokesman.

During the administration of Benigno Aquino III, Purisima was lawyer to former police chief Alan Purisima in the height of the Mamasapano controversy. – Rappler.com

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at pia.ranada@rappler.com.