Kinuwestyon ni Senador Panfilo Lacson nitong Martes ang umano’y “global coalition” sa Philippine National Police na maaaring magamit sa pamumulitika.
Ayon sa senador, kahina-hinala ang pakay ng “Global Coalition of Lingkod Bayan Advocacy Support Groups and Force Multipliers,” na inilunsad noong ika-25 ng Hunyo nitong taon.
“The last time I heard, the PNP is a territorial force. It is supposed to address internal threats. Why a ‘global coalition’? Bakit kailangan ng force multiplier na global, e internal threat tayo? Mukhang OFWs ang target nito,” tanong ni Lacson sa PNP sa kanyang interpelasyon sa badyet ng Department of Interior and Local Government.
Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson questioned on Tuesday a supposed “global coalition” in the Philippine National Police (PNP) that may potentially be used for partisan politics.
Lacson questioned the purpose of the “Global Coalition of Lingkod Bayan Advocacy Support Groups and Force Multipliers,” which was launched on June 25 this year.
“The last time I heard, the PNP is a territorial force. It is supposed to address internal threats. Why a ‘global coalition’? Bakit kailangan ng force multiplier na global, e internal threat tayo? Mukhang OFWs ang target nito,” he asked the PNP during his interpellation of the Department of Interior and Local Government’s budget for 2022.
In his interpellation of the National Irrigation Administration’s budget for 2021, Sen. Lacson questioned appropriations for projects with a track record of delays and negative slippage. He also scored the Department of Budget and Management’s tagging of funds for important agricultural projects as “For Later Release.”
Sen. Lacson sponsored the budget of the Department of National Defensefor 2021, amounting to P215.705 billion. This includes P1.3B for the Government Arsenal, P139.7M for the National Defense College of the Philippines, P1.25B for the Office of Civil Defense, P842.4M for the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office, and P2.177B for the Veterans Memorial Medical Center; and P209B for the AFP.
Sen. Lacson sponsored the proposed 2021 budget of the Department of Information and Communications Technology amounting to P14,139,746,000, and reiterated his call to augment funding for the National Broadband Program. “I have repeatedly appealed to our colleagues to support the NBP (because) this is the new normal. Lahat umaasa sa Internet connection including DepEd, SUCs, and practically all government agencies. If we complete the funding requirements by augmenting the necessary amount, we will have a very efficient internet service available to all government agencies, including LGUs.”
In his interpellation of the DPWH’s proposed budget for 2021, Sen. Lacson questioned several issues including whopping appropriations for several districts, double appropriations, overlapping projects, modifications involving poor planning, and right-of-way costs embedded in several infrastructure projects on top of the P11.45-billion appropriations for ROWs. He also reiterated his call to set aside at least for 2021 non-priority projects such as multi-purpose buildings (MPBs), in favor of helping LGUs hit by recent typhoons.
In his interpellation of the DOH’s budget for 2021, Sen. Lacson stressed the need to find sources of funds to properly implement the Universal Health Care program. “We passed RA 11223 in February 2019, and it is our obligation as lawmakers to see to it that the law is implemented properly.“
In his interpellation of the DILG’s proposed P244.309B budget for 2021, Sen. Lacson sought to restore the Quick Response Funds for the PNP and BFP, whose personnel have been frontliners even at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Sen. Lacson also proposed possible amendments to the PNP Law to raise entry-level salaries particularly for its lawyers, doctors and chemists.
In his interpellation of the 2020 budget of the Department of Interior and Local Government (including the Philippine National Police), Sen. Lacson sought more resources for the PNP and greater capacity and for local government units. He promised to do his part to help.
‘Tulong Dunong,’ the defunct scholarship program of individual legislators, is still alive and kicking – and the proof is on Facebook. Sen. Lacson bared this during his interpellation of the 2020 budget of the Commission on Higher Education.
Sen. Lacson sponsored the 2020 budget of the Commission on Human Rights amounting to P863.138 million. This included P830 million for the Human Rights proper and P32.8 million for the Human Rights Violations Victims’ Memorial Commission.
Lacson noted the CHR needs at least 152 lawyers nationwide as it has only three lawyers per region. He also corrected impressions the CHR was silent on the abuse of the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA).
Meanwhile, Lacson sponsored as well the 2020 budgets of the Mindanao Development Authority, Presidential Legislative Liaison Office, Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process, and Southern Philippines Development Authority.
As he sponsored the proposed PhP7.72-billion budget of the Department of Information and Communications Technology, Sen. Lacson pushed for additional funding for the agency in 2020, saying its initial budget was smaller than the pork barrel of a legislator.
Sen. Lacson sponsored the proposed PhP553.661-million budget of the Dangerous Drugs Board. The proposed 2020 budget of the DDB is lower than the 2019 budget due to, among other factors, the non-recurring funding for the nationwide survey on the extent of drug abuse in the Philippines.
Lacson also sponsored the PhP2.480-billion budget of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, higher than the current year’s budget.
In his interpellation of the 2020 budget of the Department of Public Works and Highways, Sen. Lacson pointed out several questionable items, as he reiterated the national budget is “not a guessing game” and has to be studied painstakingly.
During deliberations for the 2020 budget of the Department of Agriculture, Sen. Lacson urged the agency to pursue criminal charges against those behind the reported distribution of defective farm equipment to farmers.
“It’s really disgusting to see farmers suffering some more on account of not just mismanagement… Obviously may nakinabang dito… I would urge the good DA Sec William Dar not to stop at mere audit, but charges should be filed. Sino ba sa office in charge of procurement ng farm machinery?”
“To prevent a repetition of that anomaly, we should show these people the secretary means business, by going after them. Not just stop at auditing them but charges should be filed against those responsible. Kasi this is plain and simple criminal act. Ako I don’t want to believe di sinasadya yan. Kung 1-2 pwedeng hindi sinasadya pero kung commonplace at sira ang equipment mukhang may kumita nang malaki.”
In an interview after the interpellation, Sen. Lacson also said such actions should be a warning to those implementing the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund, so they will ensure proper procurement and distribution of equipment.
“Warning din yan sa pag-implement ng RCEF (Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund) na tingnan nilang mabuti ang procurement at ang idi-distribute na equipment kung tama ba.”
Sen. Lacson sponsored the proposed PhP191,340,253,000 budget of the Department of National Defense for 2020. The amount is about 4% of the 2020 budget. The key security strategy for 2018 indicated a minimum of 2% of the budget for the DND.
“I just hope we won’t have any more reenacted budget. As we all know by now, it is the economy that is suffering. Having said that, I have some issues and concerns that need to be clarified. If the sponsor is willing to accommodate just a few points I’d like to raise.” – Sen. Lacson’s opening statement at his interpellation (general principles) on the proposed 2020 budget.
In his interpellation on the Senate bill seeking to increase the excise tax on tobacco products, Sen. Lacson stressed the need to plug leakages in tax collection to raise enough revenues. “We keep raising taxes. We keep passing new revenue measures. But we don’t look at some other potential sources of revenues which is I think ito ang mas malaki. Nami-miss natin.”
“Kailangan pa ba ng franchise ang Solar Para Sa Bayan Corp.? Ayon sa batas, hindi. Kaya bakit?”
“If we grant them the franchise, they will have exclusive right to operate in those areas. Therefore, they will deny other qualified third parties so they will go through competitive process. If that’s the case why do we need a franchise for SPSB?”
“If they have to go through a competitive process, we might as well disregard the franchise. May competitive process, anyway. Why would we still grant a franchise? There’s no need.”
“My other issue is, are we not establishing a precedent in passing this bill? Iniiba natin ang nature ng franchise. (W)e’re actually amending EPIRA. Sabi kanina ng sponsor iba ang definition ng unviable sa unserved and underserved. If that’s the case we’re amending the EPIRA law.”
During the interpellation of the 2019 national budget at the Senate, Sen. Lacson sought the restoration of P4.8 billion in the budget of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority for 2019.
In his interpellation of the 2019 budget’s general principles, Sen. Lacson raised the issue of pork in the P3.7-trillion budget for 2019:
* Tulong Dunong
* P60 million per House member
* P1.54 billion for one House member; P1.69 billion for another
The Senate adopted the findings and recommendations of the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs on the hazing death of Horacio “Atio” Castillo III. It also approved on second reading Senate Bill 1662, which provides heavier penalties against hazing and attempts at cover-up.
During the deliberations on the 2018 national budget on Oct. 6, Sen. Lacson said the Senate hopes to pass its version of the National ID bill in the first quarter of 2018. #PingBills #PaninindiganNiPing