New Health Sec. Enrique Ona supports "scientific" sex ed, opposes abortion

Sworn into office on June 30, newly-appointed Department of Health Sec. Enrique Ona held an inaugural press conference on July 1, ABS-CBN reporter Jeff Canoy tweeted.

Ona, the former executive director of the National Kidney and Transplant Institute, said, "I support sex education as long as it's taught scientifically and biologically, and not for pleasure."

The kidney transplant pioneer also supports "the issue of reproductive health (RH)." He said, "The biggest sin is to bring a child into this world that you can't afford to raise." He is against abortion.

"There's no question that smoking is dangerous but there is such a thing as moderation," Ona said, according to Canoy who described Ona's statement as "surprising."

As instructed by Aquino, Ona said the DOH would focus on universal health insurance and the expansion of the PhilHealth package. They would also strive to expand the Botika ng Barangay, which provides cheaper over-the-counter and selected prescription drugs.

The new secretary arrived on time at his press conference, prompting Canoy to tweet, "Galing.'Di na ata uso ang Pinoy time talaga."

It came as a surprise when Pres. Noynoy Aquino appointed Ona as the new Health secretary instead of reappointing Ona's predecessor, pro-RH bill Esperanza Cabral who "was thought to be a shoo-in," reports Inquirer.net. According to the news website, observers said Cabral's non-reappointment was seen as a "nod to the influential Roman Catholic Church."

Cabral said, "We cannot second-guess [Aquino]... He is entitled to his own Cabinet," reports Business Mirror. She will return to private practice.

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