Year: 2020

πŸ“° The Heroes of 2020 [Manila Standard]

From Rudy Romero’s column in the Manila Standard: Another Hero of the Year 2020 is Senator Panfilo Lacson. After his work on the proposed General Appropriations Act for 2021, he truly deserves to be called Mr. Budget. Over the years, the former police general from Cavite has made it his mission to be conversant with the nefarious operations – overpricing, lump-summing, insertions and concealment – associated with the structuring of the national budget, especially its public-works portion.

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On the Designation of the CPP-NPA as a Terrorist Group and Its Reported Call to Resume Peace Talks

It is called resource denial operations and rightly so, in order to tighten the noose on the financial and logistical needs of the CPP-NPA.

That being said, the non-traditional left-hand/right-hand approach must still be applied by welcoming back to the fold their members, making sure that they will be treated justly and ensuring their personal safety – the same way the earlier surrenderees who appeared before our Senate red-tagging hearings a few weeks ago are being treated.

Having the momentum with the series of successful operations against the CPP-NPA who are now officially a “designated terrorist group” by virtue of the authority vested by the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 upon the Anti-Terrorism Council, I doubt if the security sector will recommend the resumption of centralized peace talks to the President, more so after they validated the information that after all, peace talks are just part and parcel of their long-drawn strategy to consolidate their forces and stop the momentum gained by the security forces.

While we should not give up on peace, we should learn from the experiences of the past. It is better to have localized peace efforts, with guidance and support from the national government.

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On the President’s ‘No Vaccines, No VFA’ Pronouncement

“No vaccines, no VFA!” Treating the Americans like a bunch of yokels might have sealed our fate to settle for China’s Sinovac in lieu of the US-made Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.

Such a pronouncement from the President is at the very least, unfortunate. I think there could be a more diplomatic or at least a better way of asking a longtime ally to help us avail of the vaccines for our people without sounding like we are blackmailing our way into it.

What is more unfortunate is that we had a good chance to procure vaccines early from the US, but someone from our side dropped the ball, and has yet to be held accountable up to this day.

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#PINGterview: Balitaan at Kumustahan

In an interview on Politiko, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
* Possible veto of questionable items in 2021 budget
* Efforts to procure COVID vaccines
* Calls for reimposition of death penalty
* Hope for the New Year

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Makabuluhang Pasko sa Panahon ng Pandemya

Nawa’y maging makabuluhan ang ating #Pasko2020 para sa bawat pamilyang Pilipino, lalo sa panahon ng pandemya.

#PINGterview: The Mangahas Interviews

In an interview with Malou Mangahas, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
* Tarlac shooting incident
* Need for proactive stance vs terrorism
* Pork barrel system
* Fight vs corruption

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On the Policeman who Shot Dead a Mother and Son in Tarlac

If what’s on video tells the whole story, I enjoin the Philippine National Police leadership to show no mercy. They should spare no effort to make sure that he rots in jail. He’s the last policeman that they need in the force.

As a policy recommendation, policemen should turn in their issued firearms to their unit’s armorer or supply officer when on off-duty status. That said, they should not be issued Permits to Carry Firearms Outside Residence (PTCFOR) while still in the active service.

The PNP should always uphold its motto “To Serve and Protect.” That includes taking appropriate steps to protect our people from scalawags in their ranks, whether they are on duty or not.

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Lacson’s Christmas Wish: Early Procurement of COVID Vaccines, No More Incompetence

The early procurement of COVID vaccines amid renewed government efforts to procure them from the United States is Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson’s wish for this Christmas.

Lacson also said there should be no room for incompetence and ineptitude, especially on the part of Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, after the events earlier this week.

“My Christmas wish is simple. I hope we Filipinos survive this pandemic, and we get the needed vaccines soonest,” Lacson said in an interview on DWIZ radio.

But he added the Cabinet, including vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr., should help Duque not by defending him in media but by getting his job done.

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#PINGterview: ‘Lost Opportunity’ sa COVID Vaccine

In an interview on DZXL, Sen. Lacson detailed how DOH Sec. Francisco Duque III cost the government an opportunity to acquire 10 million doses of COVID vaccines from Pfizer by January 2021.

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Sponsorship Speech for Ambassadors Leslie Baja and Raymond Balatbat; and FSO II Leandro Manantan at the Commission on Appointments

Mr. Chairman, distinguished members of the Commission on Appointments, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nomination of two (2) Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary and one (1) Foreign Service Officer Class II of the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Your Committee, after deliberating on their qualifications and fitness during the public hearing, determined that they are fit and qualified to be in the posts where they are nominated and appointed and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary their appointments for the consent and approval of this body.

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