A homecoming awaits the tandem of Sen. Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson and Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III as they head for Cebu on Friday for their Online Kumustahan this weekend.
Lacson, who is running for President under Partido Reporma, recalled how he became an “Adopted Son of Cebu” for his no-nonsense leadership when he served as commander of the then Philippine Constabulary’s Cebu Metropolitan District Command (MetroDisCom) from 1989 to 1992.
Sotto, who is running for Vice President under the Nationalist People’s Coalition, traces his roots to Cebu.
“Importante ang Cebu sa akin. Adopted son ako ng Cebu dahil na-assign ako riyan as MetroDisCom Commander for 28 months, at nag-request sila kay then President Cory Aquino na i-retain ako (Cebu is very important to me because the people of Cebu made me an adopted son due to my performance as the Philippine Constabulary’s Metropolitan District Commander there. When my tour of duty was about to end there, they requested the late former President Corazon Aquino to retain me),” Lacson said at the LACSON-SOTTO weekly media forum.
Lacson’s regular two-year term of office as a field commander in Cebu would have ended in August 1991, but with the request to the late Mrs. Aquino to extend his term, he stayed at Cebu MetroDisCom until February 1992, when he was transferred to Laguna.
For his part, Sotto said they want to present their platform of government to residents of Cebu, which he pointed out is a vote-rich province and has a trickle-down effect on other provinces in Central Visayas.
“It’s not only important, it is critical. It has a trickle down effect on the entire Region 7. My family on my father’s side comes from Cebu,” he said.
Lacson said the “adopted son” tag was in recognition not only of his performance but also of the integrity he showed when he headed the Cebu MetroDisCom.
During his stint there, Lacson recalled he and his men rescued a young kidnap victim, the scion of the Gaisano clan. Lacson and his men rescued the boy safely and neutralized the kidnappers, but declined the victim’s grateful relatives’ offer of a reward.
“Consistent ako riyan. We did our duty, you don’t have to think of giving reward money to my men. Yan ang tumatak sa kanila (I have been consistent there. We did our duty. They did not have to think of giving reward money to my men. The people of Cebu remembered that),” Lacson recalled.
“Kaya importante on a personal level na mabisita ang Cebu, to remind them adopted son nyo ako baka pwede tangkilikin nyo ako (So it is important to me on a personal level that I visit Cebu , so I can ‘remind’ the people that I am an adopted son of the province),” he added.