Category: Statements

On the Appointment of Retired Military Officers by President Duterte

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Let the appointing authority exercise his prerogative under the Constitution and existing laws to appoint whoever he feels can effectively support his policies and programs. After all, if his appointees would fall short and fail to deliver, the ultimate responsibility lies in the President who will be accountable to the people.

Having said that, the check and balance, at least in regard to the appointment of Cabinet members who are subject to confirmation by the Commission on Appointments, is available under the Constitution.

Without sounding biased since I also came from the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the police, what if those appointees would also question the wisdom of appointing too many lawyers in government? What is important is the competence and integrity of those appointees, and not their professional background.

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On the PCSO’s Problem with Corruption

When the regular jueteng collections of at least PhP200 million a day or PhP73 billion a year in Metro Manila, Cordillera Administrative Region and Regions 1 to 5 alone translate to a mere PhP4 billion income for the PCSO from Small Town Lottery (STL) operations, a big chunk of which is not even in cash remittances but recorded as collectibles, we do not need an Albert Einstein to figure out how much goes to the individual pockets of STL franchise holders, corrupt politicians, policemen and PCSO officials.

No matter how many congressional hearings are conducted, the palms of these people continue to be greased by gambling money.

The fact is, illegal jueteng merely masquerades as legitimate STL operations, 7 days a week, without fail, whose “kubrador” are armed with PCSO IDs to avoid arrest by the police who may be co-opted anyways.

Should Lotto Have Been Excluded from the President’s ‘Suspension’ Order?

It’s like this: if the intention is to stop gambling altogether, then all forms of gambling, including the PAGCOR-regulated games like casinos and online should have been included.

Since it doesn’t appear that way, then lotto outlets should have been spared since there are no reports of revenue cheating as far as lotto operations are concerned because they are computerized and automated and therefore closely monitored – unlike STL where PCSO, for millions of reasons, has consistently resisted to make it more transparent and foolproof.

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Related:
Hearing on the controversies involving PCSO (Jan. 24, 2018)
Interview after hearing on PCSO-related issues (Feb. 12, 2018)

Interview on DZMM: Death Penalty Bill, National ID Law, Corruption at BOC | July 25, 2019

In an interview on DZMM, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– death penalty bill covering lawmen who ‘plant’ evidence
– implementation of the National ID law
– corruption at the Bureau of Customs

Related:
FAQ about the National ID System
Senate Bill 27: An Act Reinstituting the Death Penalty in the Philippines
Quotes from the interview… 

Continue reading “Interview on DZMM: Death Penalty Bill, National ID Law, Corruption at BOC | July 25, 2019”

Interview on DZBB: On the Metrobank Robbery | July 17, 2019

In an interview on DZBB, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– updating laws to deal with crimes like the Metrobank robbery
– PH invoking national dignity in UN-HRC resolution on killings

Quotes from the interview…
Continue reading “Interview on DZBB: On the Metrobank Robbery | July 17, 2019”

Interview on DZBB: National Dignity in UN-HRC Resolution and WPS Issues | July 14, 2019

In an interview on DZBB, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– national dignity factor in UN-HRC resolution on killings
– ‘double standard’ in UN, WPS issues?
– reported claim that VP Robredo’s stand on UN-HRC resolution is a ground for impeachment

Quotes from the interview…
Continue reading “Interview on DZBB: National Dignity in UN-HRC Resolution and WPS Issues | July 14, 2019”

On the Action of the UN Human Rights Council

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Image credit: United Nations

We have a functioning criminal justice system that deals adequately with erring law enforcers.

We regularly provide our Commission on Human Rights the budget they need to perform their mandate.

Obviously, we can manage without the intervention of the UN Human Rights Council.

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#PingSays: ‘Shared’ House Speakership; Death Penalty Bill; Sen. Bato | July 9, 2019

In an interview, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
possible effects of a ‘shared’ House Speakership
– possible ‘pork’ in the budget, amending the 1987 Constitution
– Senate’s continued independence even with ‘the President’s men’
– passage of death penalty bill
– Sen dela Rosa’s ‘S*** happens’ statement

Quotes from the interview…
Continue reading “#PingSays: ‘Shared’ House Speakership; Death Penalty Bill; Sen. Bato | July 9, 2019”

On the Reported Verbal Agreement Allowing CN Fishermen in PH EEZ

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Image courtesy: Straits Times

A verbal agreement between President Duterte and President Xi is what it is – a verbal agreement. Is that verbal agreement already part of our national policy? Is it being carried out? It is my humble view that it is not. Why? There is no showing that the Department of Foreign Affairs as well as the Department of National Defense are implementing that so-called verbal agreement.

In fact, on occasion, the two frontline agencies have expressed different views. Having said that, we will be better off to just leave it at that.

Maybe our problem is, we have a spokesman who talks more than he should. He telegraphs every move and every plan that the executive has on issues that need a little diligence and study.

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WPS: Opinions, Decisions on the Mutual Defense Treaty

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On the Mutual Defense Treaty, while my opinion is different from the President’s, it doesn’t matter much which one is right or wrong; it is who is making the decision which in this case, obviously, he is the one.

As for me, I always express my opinion on what I think is right, not when it is popular. In some people’s minds, highly partisan as they are, that is lack of conviction.

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On the President’s Stance on the West Philippine Sea Issue

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Image: Google Maps

It is a good development that the President has subsequently corrected himself by saying that he cannot prevent incursions of foreign fishing vessels within the Exclusive Economic Zone because even if he wants to, we don’t have the capability nor the capacity to do it, not to mention that the arbitral ruling is unenforceable in the first place; and that the Philippines merely exercises sovereign right, not sovereignty over the areas within the EEZ. I agree with the President in this regard. Having said that, to allow is not the same as not being able to prevent.

Further, calling on the United States – with whom we have a Mutual Defense Treaty – and other western allies to help check China in the WPS is proper given the prevailing circumstances, contrary to some narrow-minded critics that such move is a sure formula for war.

On the other hand, maintaining the balance of power in the WPS will prevent rather that ignite war. Why? No two superpowers would go to war in this day and age of nuclear technology for the simple reason of its ‘zero-sum’ outcome.

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