To land a knockout against corruption, make sure all your exposes are backed by solid evidence.
Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson said this was his and Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III’s advice to Sen. Emmanuel Pacquiao in exposing instances of corruption in the government.
“Our advice to him was to make sure the evidence he has is substantial, because if just one item in his expose turns out to be lacking or baseless, that is what the public will remember,” Lacson said in an interview on DZRH radio Friday, a day after he and Sotto met with Pacquiao at the Office of the Senate President.
Pacquiao had accepted the challenge from President Rodrigo Duterte to cite specific instances of corruption, after the boxing champ turned senator had criticized corruption in the Duterte administration.
But Lacson also said he hopes the word war between Pacquiao and President Duterte will not become personal.
“It is sad to see two allies and friends have this word war in public. I hope they can stick to the issues and not make their word war become personal,” he said.
On the other hand, Lacson said Pacquiao should not be underestimated either, as he has shown signs he is doing his research.
Lacson also recalled his own experience when he first became a senator in 2001, with his critics questioning what a “policeman” can do in legislation – referring to his service in law enforcement. Lacson headed the Philippine National Police from 1999 to 2001.
Yet Lacson said he did his homework as a legislator and put together a solid legislative record, while earning a reputation as a watchdog of the national budget, not to mention his unflinching and uncompromising abhorrence of corrupt practices in government.
Lacson also authored or sponsored many meaningful pieces of legislation in his 17 years as senator, including the Anti-Red Tape Act, Anti-Money Laundering Act, National ID System, and the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020, to name a few.
“Hindi natin pwede matawaran kakayahan ng tao kung di nasubukan (One cannot write someone off without putting him or her to the test),” Lacson said.