Tag: Comelec

On the Call to Exempt Teachers’ Election Honoraria from Taxes

It goes without saying that I support such an appeal from our public school teachers. It is the least that the government can give them as incentive for the extra and thankless – yet patriotic – duty.

There is no time to lose for the agencies concerned to act on the matter. Our teachers who are going on election duty deserve no less.

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On the Comelec’s Allowing the Resumption of Fuel Subsidy Distribution

Way to go and kudos to the Commission on Elections for acting expeditiously on such a no-brainer issue involving the fuel subsidy grant under the Special Provision under the Department of Transportation’s 2022 budget.

This is a great deal for public utility vehicle (PUV) drivers and operators, as well as farmers and fisherfolk who are dealing with the continued rise in prices of oil.

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Closing Statement of Sen. Ping Lacson at the Comelec Presidential Debate

With the rigors and influence of money politics in this campaign, and the opportunism and treachery that go with it, I keep asking this question: Is the Filipino still worth fighting for?

Each time, I always get the same answer: Yes, the Filipino is worth fighting for.

Mahal ko ang aking bayan. Handa kong ipagtanggol laban sa mga dayuhang mananakop at sa mga may kapangyarihan na nagsasamantala sa mga kapos-palad nating mga kababayan.

Palagi naming naririnig – sayang daw ang boto sa mas kwalipikado dahil baka hindi lang manalo. Ang totoong sayang na boto ay para sa hindi karapat-dapat manalo at sa mga magnanakaw na dapat walang karapatang maluklok sa pwesto.

Maawa na po tayo sa ating mga kababayang Pilipino.

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At the Second Comelec Presidential Debate

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Sen. Ping Lacson took part in the Comelec Presidential Debate on April 3, 2022.

Ping, Handang Ialay Muli ang Buhay para sa Sambayanang Pilipino

Sa kabila ng kanyang pag-alay ng buhay sa serbisyo publiko sa loob ng mahigit limang dekada, sinabi ni Senador Ping Lacson na handa siyang ialay muli sa bayan ang kanyang buhay at karanasan – bilang susunod na lider ng bansa.

Sinabi ni Lacson nitong Sabado ng gabi na ang kanyang kwalipikasyon, katapangan at karanasan ay sapat para mapamunuan nang maayos ang sambayanang Pilipino.

“Mula sa pagiging sundalo at alagad ng batas na lumaban sa terorismo, rebeldeng komunista at pusakal na kriminal; bilang Chief PNP na nagpatino at naglinis ng hanay ng kapulisan; bilang Senador na kailanman hindi nabahiran ng korapsyon, nais ko pong ipagpatuloy na magsilbi sa ating bayan,” ani Lacson sa kanyang closing statement sa kauna-unahang presidential debate ng Comelec.

Related: Lacson Prepared to Put Life on the Line Anew for Filipinos
Continue reading “Ping, Handang Ialay Muli ang Buhay para sa Sambayanang Pilipino”

Lacson Prepared to Put Life on the Line Anew for Filipinos

After risking his life for Filipinos in his 50-plus years in public service, Sen. Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson is prepared to once again put his life on the line for the Filipino people – this time, as the leader the nation badly needs.

Lacson said Saturday evening that he is offering his competence, qualification and experience – the traits a leader needs – to fight for the Filipino people.

“Mula sa pagiging sundalo at alagad ng batas na lumaban sa terorismo, rebeldeng komunista at pusakal na kriminal; bilang Chief PNP na nagpatino at naglinis ng hanay ng kapulisan; bilang Senador na kailanman hindi nabahiran ng korapsyon, nais ko pong ipagpatuloy na magsilbi sa ating bayan (From a soldier and law enforcer who has fought terrorists, communist rebels and criminals; as a Philippine National Police chief who cleansed the police force of rogues; and as a Senator who never allowed corruption to taint him, I wish to continue giving my brand of service to our nation),” he said in his closing statement at the Commission on Elections’ First Presidential Debate.

Related: Ping, Handang Ialay Muli ang Buhay para sa Sambayanang Pilipino
Continue reading “Lacson Prepared to Put Life on the Line Anew for Filipinos”

Virology Institute, Pagtulong sa MSMEs Magiging Prayoridad ni Ping

Ang pagpapatayo ng Philippine Virology Science and Technology Institute ang isa sa mga gagawin ng administrasyon ni Senador Ping Lacson sakaling siya ang mahalal bilang Pangulo sa Mayo.

Sinabi ni Lacson na ito ang magiging sentro ng research and development na magiging depensa ng ating bansa laban sa Covid at sa mga posibleng mutations nito.

“Ipu-pursue ko ito dahil ito ang magliligtas sa atin. Hindi na tayo mag-import. Lalakasan natin ang research and development sa pamamagitan ng Virology Science and Technology Institute of the Philippines,” ani Lacson na kasalukuyang tumatakbo sa pagka-Pangulo sa ilalim ng Partido Reporma, sa naganap na kauna-unahang presidential debate ng Comelec.

Related: Lacson Presidency to Pursue Virology Institute vs Covid Mutations, Prioritize MSMEs in Recovery
Continue reading “Virology Institute, Pagtulong sa MSMEs Magiging Prayoridad ni Ping”

Lacson Presidency to Pursue Virology Institute vs Covid Mutations, Prioritize MSMEs in Recovery

A Philippine Virology Science and Technology Institute that will be the country’s first line of defense against Covid and any of its future mutations will be pursued under a Lacson presidency.

Sen. Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson stressed this Saturday evening as he said the institute will be the hub of research and development efforts to address the threat of Covid and other novel viruses.

“Ipu-pursue ko ito dahil ito ang magliligtas sa atin. Hindi na tayo mag-import. Lalakasan natin ang research and development sa pamamagitan ng Virology Science and Technology Institute of the Philippines (I will pursue this because this will save us. We will no longer import knowhow. We will strengthen research and development through this institute),” Lacson, who is running for President under Partido Reporma, said at the Commission on Elections’ First Presidential Debate.

Related: Virology Institute, Pagtulong sa MSMEs Magiging Prayoridad ni Ping
Continue reading “Lacson Presidency to Pursue Virology Institute vs Covid Mutations, Prioritize MSMEs in Recovery”

Ping, Sinuportahan ang Pagpapalawig ng WFH, 4-day Workweek

Nagpahayag ng suporta si Senador Ping Lacson sa panawagan ng Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector na palawigin ang kanilang work-from-home (WFH) setup sa kabila ng patuloy na pagtaas ng presyo ng langis at pamasahe.

Para kay Lacson, bagama’t kailangang buksan muli ang ekonomiya, dapat ding bigyan pansin ng gobyerno ang pagtaas na presyo ng bilihin na pasan ng ordinaryong manggagawa.

“Ang hiling ng BPO sector na palawigin ang WFH from April to September, sinususugan ko po yan dahil maraming nagsara na mga opisina nila at gusto nilang magpatuloy ang WFH. At meron tayong Telecommuting Act,” ani Lacson sa kauna-unahang presidential debate na inorganisa ng Comelec nitong Sabado ng gabi.

Related: Lacson Backs Workers’ Calls for Flexibility to Extend WFH, Workweek Setup
Continue reading “Ping, Sinuportahan ang Pagpapalawig ng WFH, 4-day Workweek”

Lacson Backs Workers’ Calls for Flexibility to Extend WFH, Workweek Setup

Citing high fuel and transportation costs especially amid the Russia-Ukraine conflict, Sen. Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson took up the cudgels for the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector in its call to extend the work-from-home (WFH) setup for employees in call centers.

Lacson, who is running for President under Partido Reporma, said that while the government needs to reopen the economy, it must take into account the plight of ordinary workers coping with higher costs of living due to high fuel prices.

“Ang hiling ng BPO sector na palawigin ang WFH from April to September, sinususugan ko po yan dahil maraming nagsara na mga opisina nila at gusto nilang magpatuloy ang WFH. At meron tayong Telecommuting Act (I support the BPO sector’s call to extend WFH setup from April to September, because their offices had closed during the pandemic and they want to continue the WFH setup. Besides, we already have the Telecommuting Act),” he said at the Commission on Elections’ First Presidential Debate Saturday evening.

Related: Ping, Sinuportahan ang Pagpapalawig ng WFH, 4-day Workweek
Continue reading “Lacson Backs Workers’ Calls for Flexibility to Extend WFH, Workweek Setup”

Sen. Ping Lacson’s Closing Statement at the Comelec’s First Presidential Debate 2022

Mula sa pagiging sundalo at alagad ng batas na lumaban sa terorismo, rebeldeng komunista at pusakal na kriminal; bilang Chief PNP na nagpatino at naglinis ng hanay ng kapulisan; bilang Senador na kailanman hindi nabahiran ng korapsyon, nais ko pong ipagpatuloy na magsilbi sa ating bayan.

Among all the Presidential aspirants — narito man o laging absent — walang sinuman kundi ako ang sadya at aktwal na nagsugal ng sariling buhay sa pagligtas sa panganib ng sinuman.

It takes a leader who is competent, qualified and experienced, to turn the promises of Unity, Bilis Aksyon, Angat Buhay into reality. Kailangan natin ng Pangulo na handang ipaglaban kayong lahat para ipanalo ang sambayanang Pilipino.

Mabuhay ang Pilipinas.

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At the First Comelec Presidential Debate

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Sen. Ping Lacson took part in the Comelec Presidential Debate on March 19, 2022.

On the President’s Power to Replace 3 Retiring Comelec Commissioners

Unfortunately, our Constitution gives the President the sole power to appoint the commissioners of the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

That said, the appointees are subject to the confirmation of Congress through the Commission on Appointments, where the voice of the people may be represented as “oppositors,” aimed at possible rejection of the appointees of nominees.

In this sense, the CA is the only check and balance available to the people.

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Lacson Welcomes NPC Probe into Alleged Comelec ‘Hack’

Senator and Partido Reporma Chairman and standard-bearer Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson welcomes the National Privacy Commission’s investigation into the alleged “hacking” and data breach at the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

Lacson also instructed his in-house cyber-security team to cooperate with the NPC investigation and share what leads it may have gathered.

“Mainam na sabihin nating may ibang body na nag-imbestiga… Mahalaga talagang tingnan natin ito, get to the bottom of this issue para talagang maliwanagan (It is good that the NPC is investigating this. It is critical that we get to the bottom of this issue so all of us will be enlightened),” Lacson said in an interview on DZME radio Wednesday afternoon.

Continue reading “Lacson Welcomes NPC Probe into Alleged Comelec ‘Hack’”

Lacson: Ensuring Integrity of May Polls is Top Priority Amid Reported Comelec ‘Hacking’

While the Commission on Elections and the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) are still investigating the veracity of claims that the Comelec’s servers were hacked, all stakeholders must make sure that the integrity of the May 9 polls will not be compromised.

Senator and Partido Reporma Chairman and standard-bearer Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson emphasized this as he said the elections are the strongest and clearest manifestation of democracy in the Philippines where the people’s will is supreme.

“Ang eleksyon ang pinakamalapit at pinakamalakas na representation ng demokrasya sa Pilipinas, kasi isang araw lang yan na hari ang tao (Elections are the strongest representation of democracy in the Philippines, because for one day, the people are clearly the rulers),” Lacson said in an interview on DZAR radio Tuesday afternoon.

Continue reading “Lacson: Ensuring Integrity of May Polls is Top Priority Amid Reported Comelec ‘Hacking’”

On the Reported Hacking of the Comelec’s Servers

While only the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) can officially confirm or deny if such hacking indeed occurred, our in-house Comelec-accredited cyber-security team is currently conducting its own investigation given their limited accessibility, after I asked them to exert whatever effort to get initial information.

Finding out who was/were responsible is already material information just to establish the motive and who will benefit from the alleged hacking. Meantime, we have to await the response of the author/s who said they will show proof to substantiate their hacking allegations.

That said, the Comelec should clarify the veracity of the hacking incident and be forthright with its findings. More importantly, it should be open to letting experts and related stakeholders help strengthen the security system – including our cybersecurity experts and those of other aspirants. Only through transparency and accountability can we guarantee the integrity of the upcoming elections.

Our elections on May 9 could not have come at a more critical time. This is not just about the individual candidates, but about upholding our democracy which, if the hacking turns out to be true, is gravely being threatened.

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On Reported Poll-Rigging Scams

It is true that there are con artists claiming they can manipulate the election system for a fee. Past automated elections have created this impression.

Sad to say, the so-called “Meet-me Room” that was put in place during the past two or three national elections – which some sectors fear could be a venue where poll results could be tinkered with – cast doubt on the integrity of the automated elections.

While it goes without saying that candidates should not fall for this scam, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) should face the challenge through utmost transparency.

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On the Comelec’s Plans for a Hybrid Debate

At least hybrid, hindi lang virtual. Our experiences in our Senate hearings and even sessions tell us that there are many limitations, not to mention technical problems, pag purely virtual or online ang debate.

For one, iba pa rin ang physically engaged ang mga kandidato, lalo na sa isang debate na inaabangan ng mga Pilipino para makilatis nila nang husto kung sino ba ang iboboto nila upang mamuno sa bansa – kasama na ang demeanor o kilos ng bawat presidential candidate.

Notwithstanding, ensuring safety measures must be our primary concern on political debates and similar gatherings under the New Normal.

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On the Comelec’s Regulation of Political Ads in Social Media

The regulation of political ads in social media on those who officially become candidates upon filing of the Certificate of Candidacy is fair to everybody, especially those who have less campaign funds to use for campaign ads.

Definitely, it is a welcome development since it won’t put the administration candidates at an advantage, as they are always presumed to have more than enough resources at their disposal.

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On Suggestions to ‘Postpone’ or ‘Extend’ the 2022 Elections: Follow the Constitution

Just so it is clear, canceling or postponing the election to pave the way for the extension of the terms of office of the President, Vice-President, 12 senators, district representatives as well as elected local government officials beyond June 30, 2022 is a clear violation of the Constitution.

Thus, any discussion or debate on this issue is an exercise in futility, if not a waste of time and energy.

Also, since the Constitution also provides that “elections for the members of Congress and local positions (except barangay officials) occur every second Monday of every third year after May 1992, and presidential and vice presidential elections occur every second Monday of May every sixth year after May 1992”, and that “elected officials, except those at the barangay level, start (and end) their terms of office on 30 June of the election year”, the proposal of the Commission on Elections to extend the May 2022 elections a day or two before or after the dates specified under the Constitution may face a constitutional challenge before the Supreme Court.

This is not to mention valid issues and concerns involving the security of the “secrecy and sanctity of the ballot” as also provided under the 1987 Constitution, as trending may occur if the ballots are not properly safeguarded.

At the end of the day, it is the Constitution that should guide all of us in this regard.

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‘Emergency or No Emergency’: Stressing the Fiscal Autonomy of Constitutional Bodies

At the hearing on the 2021 budgets of the Commission on Audit and Office of the Ombudsman, Sen. Lacson stressed the DBM has no authority under the Constitution to issue a discontinuance against a constitutional body such as the COA – after noting that the DBM issued a budget circular providing for the discontinuance of Programs, Activities and Projects (PAPs) of COA amounting to a total of P173M under the 2020 budget as they were categorized as congressional initiative and as “For Later Release.”

“My point is, Mr. Chairman, under the Constitution – particularly Sec. 5, Art 9-A, it provides for the automatic and regular release of the annual appropriations of constitutional commissions. And COA very clearly is one of three constitutional commissions, Comelec and CSC being the others. Of course even the judiciary,” Sen. Lacson said as he also cited jurisprudence (Bengzon vs Drilon, GR 103524), where fiscal autonomy allows the constitutional bodies and the judiciary full flexibility to allocate and utilize their resources with the wisdom and dispatch that their needs require. “So pag sinabi nating fiscal autonomy, walang pakialam ang DBM.”

COA Chairman Michael Aguinaldo said that while they are okay with the DBM’s decision “considering the difficulties the govt was having with funding in view of the pandemic,” he would agree that “it’s a violation of fiscal autonomy under the Constitution.”

I’d like to manifest this very clearly, let this not serve as a precedent for future issuances by DBM; huwag lang gawing precedent setting ito. If I may add, emergency or no emergency, hindi pwedeng precedent ito,” Sen. Lacson said.

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Confirmation Hearings for Officials of the DFA, DAR, Comelec, and DOJ

On May 29 and 30, 2018, Sen. Lacson took part in the Commission on Appointments’ confirmation hearings for nominees to the Foreign Service, DAR, Comelec, and DOJ. They included:

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Sulpicio Confiado, ambassador to Egypt; and Akmad Sakkam, ambassador to Jordan

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John Castriciones, DAR Secretary

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Socorro Balinghasay-Inting, Comelec Commissioner

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Menardo Guevarra, DOJ Secretary

Confirmation Hearing for Comelec Chairman Sheriff Abas

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#PingSays: Will the House’s efforts to force Charter change put the Comelec in trouble? | Jan. 23, 2018

In an interview, Sen. Lacson answers questions on the House of Representatives’ efforts to go at Charter change alone.

Quotes from the interview…  Continue reading “#PingSays: Will the House’s efforts to force Charter change put the Comelec in trouble? | Jan. 23, 2018”

Garci Recommended Macarambon to Comelec Post

Citing at least two independent sources, Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson maintained Friday that the appointment of Moslemen Macarambon to the Commission on Elections (Comelec) is tainted with the “golden hand” of former poll commissioner Virgilio Garcillano.  Continue reading “Garci Recommended Macarambon to Comelec Post”

Ping Scoffs at GMA Plan to Appoint Opposition at Comelec

Saying it is too late for President Arroyo to placate the opposition, Senator Panfilo Lacson yesterday scoffed at her reported plan to appoint opposition personalities as commissioners of the Commission on Elections.  Continue reading “Ping Scoffs at GMA Plan to Appoint Opposition at Comelec”