FORT DEL PILAR, Baguio City – The values of Courage, Integrity and Loyalty will be the guide of Sen. Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson in addressing the challenges facing the country, should he be elected President in 2022.
Lacson said these virtues, which he learned as a member of the PMA Matatag Class of 1971, are much-needed in facing the “unprecedented” and humongous problems.
“These virtues are much-warranted in today’s unprecedented challenges: the long-term impact of the pandemic, the ballooning national debt, the biggest dip of our economy, the maritime disputes in the West Philippine Sea, as well as the undeniable climate crisis,” he said during his speech at the 50th anniversary of the PMA Class 1971 here.
It was at the PMA that Lacson learned not just the three virtues of Courage, Integrity and Loyalty – but he also developed his brand of leadership by example and his personal motto, “What is right must be kept right, what is wrong must be set right.”
He noted that the members of the Matatag Class of 1971 are at the forefront of many key points of our nation’s history.
“Living up to our class moniker, our class fought and bled in many battles – we stood at the forefront of armed rebellions and peaceful revolutions that set the course of our nation’s history. Even in our second careers as elected or appointed public officials, as well as in private enterprises, within us is our ironclad commitment to the virtues taught to us by our beloved Alma Mater,” he said.
Now, he said the PMA figures to play a major role in the Philippines’ “digital renaissance” in the next three years.
He cited the first National Cyber Defense Academy and the largest intelligent network through Project Lightning in Baguio City as major examples.
“This breakthrough technology is our way to revolutionize our connectivity landscape which already addresses the speed, cost, and efficiency requirements to literally connect everything,” he said, adding he was impressed with Baguio’s Smart City Command Center which he toured Friday.
He said the command center is the realization of Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong’s vision of operationalizing digital governance to unlock even more socio-economic opportunities in the city.
“Imagine if this can be replicated all over the country. Initially 146 cities, wow, you can just imagine. It’s all digital. This is a dream come true. Sana sooner than later ma-implement ni Mayor Benjie (I hope Mayor Magalong can implement this sooner than later),” Lacson said after seeing the command center in action on Friday.
Also, Lacson said he and his “mistahs” must pace themselves with the thriving digital economy “that is bound to change not only our defense system, but literally every single aspect of our nation’s well-being.”
“Indeed, what we are bound to do, as leaders in various sectors of our country, is to stay the course and keep in pace with pivotal transformations in our society – akin to that of the meaningful governance reforms of Baguio City Mayor and fellow cavalier, Benjie Magalong,” he said.
“Only if we institute the much-needed reforms of our society in line with the demands of our time can we live up to the legacy of being ‘Matatag’: strong, unbowed and unyielding,” he added.
Lacson is running for President under Partido Reporma.