Tag: President Rodrigo Duterte

#PINGterview: Daily Wage Earners, Priority sa Tulong; Kukupit ng Tulong, Walang Karapatang Mabuhay!

In an interview on DZBB/GMA News TV, Sen. Lacson stressed the need for lawmakers to prioritize help for daily wage earners amid the COVID19-triggered lockdowns, while preventing corruption in the implementation of aid for those affected.

NOTES and QUOTES:
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#PINGterview: Extra Compensation for COVID-19 Front-Liners; Aid for Affected Areas

In an interview on DWIZ, Sen. Lacson answered questions on congressional actions to address the COVID-19 threat:
– Extra compensation, health insurance for front-liners
– Heavier penalties vs politicking during calamities
– Addressing economic impact of COVID-19 threat

QUOTES and NOTES:
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#PINGterview: Improved ‘New’ VFA; ‘Money Laundering’ by Chinese Visitors

In an interview on DWIZ, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– ‘New’ PH-US VFA under negotiation
– Spike in cash brought by Chinese into PH

QUOTES and NOTES:
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Hatchet Job: Ping, ‘Ibinida’ sa Road Project sa Tarlac

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Image Courtesy: City Planning and Devt Office, Tarlac City Facebook page

Nagkaroon ng “hatchet job” laban kay Senador Panfilo Lacson matapos niyang isiwalat ang pagkakaharang ng Malacañang sa tinatayang P80 bilyong realignment sa 2020 national budget.

Nakarating sa senador ang paglutang ng pekeng impormasyon na ini-sponsor niya ang isang proyektong kalsada sa Tarlac City sa kabila ng patakaran nito na huwag magpatupad ng proyekto gamit ang pork barrel.

“First, I don’t realign appropriations for road projects, much less local roads since it smacks of a pork barrel allocation. Also, the realignments I propose in the national budget are institutional – meaning, they have undergone planning and vetting, and are based on requests from the implementing agencies concerned,” mariing paliwanag ni Lacson.

Ang nabanggit na pahayag ay ginawa ni Lacson bilang pagpapasinungaling sa lumabas na impormasyon na siya ang nag-sponsor sa P25-milyong road concreting project sa Barangay San Rafael, Tarlac City.

Related: Hatchet Job? Lacson Scores ‘Disinformation’ on Tarlac Road Project
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Hatchet Job? Lacson Scores ‘Disinformation’ on Tarlac Road Project

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Image Courtesy: City Planning and Devt Office, Tarlac City Facebook page

Is it a smear job meant to discredit Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson and his anti-pork advocacy?

Lacson was tagged as the “sponsor” of a local item in the P4.1-trillion budget for 2020: a P25-million road concreting project in Barangay San Rafael in Tarlac City.

“First, I don’t realign appropriations for road projects, much less local roads since it smacks of a pork barrel allocation. Also, the realignments I propose in the national budget are institutional – meaning, they have undergone planning and vetting, and are based on requests from the implementing agencies concerned,” Lacson said.

He noted the disinformation appeared to come after Malacañang and the Department of Budget and Management withheld at least P80 billion in congressional realignments made by some lawmakers, at the expense of the administration’s “Build, Build, Build” flagship program.

Related: Hatchet Job: Ping, ‘Ibinida’ sa Road Project sa Tarlac
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On the Withholding of At Least P80B in Congressional Realignments

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Unmitigated gall. This best describes some lawmakers who realigned at least P80 billion from the administration’s “Build, Build, Build” flagship program to their districts’ “pet projects” under the 2020 national budget.

Thus, I support the decision of President Rodrigo Duterte and the Department of Budget and Management to withhold the release of these congressional realignments.

This is one reason why I continue to support the leadership of President Duterte in spite of some disagreements with him over some policy issues: He has time and again displayed the strong political will, even against many self-proclaimed allies in Congress whose loyalty clearly lies where the money lies.

Such “allies” have the propensity to praise him to high heavens and never criticize him, but with self-aggrandizement and greed as their only motivation and nothing else. The President should always be wary of these so-called allies.

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#PINGterview: After VFA, What’s Next?

In a phone patch interview on DZBB and GMA News TV, Sen. Lacson cites the possibilities after the Visiting Forces Agreement, including possible intervening events that could ‘undo’ its abrogation. 

QUOTES and NOTES:
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#PINGterview: Lifting of Taiwan Travel Ban, Lt Col Espenido Issue, VFA Abrogation

In an interview on DWIZ, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– lifting of travel ban on Taiwan
– issues involving P/Lt. Col. Jovie Espenido
– possible actions after VFA abrogation
– franchise of ABS-CBN

QUOTES and NOTES:
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On Jovie Espenido: What Happened?

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Image courtesy: Jovie Espenido Facebook page

I have always believed that the real test of character of public officials like P/Lt. Col. Jovie Espenido is power or money. Give them the opportunity to lay their hands on either one or both, and they will reveal who they really are.

I remember then PO1 Espenido during our PAOCTF days as someone who consistently performed his duty with integrity and dedication. At least that was how I knew him in the many instances that he faced those challenges. But that time, he was just a non-commissioned officer at the bottom of the salary grade of police personnel. Rising from the ranks, he held several positions of higher authority until his relief recently.

This morning, I sent him a text message with a simple question: “What happened?” He has not replied, unlike before when he would even text me with early morning Bible quotes.

It is a pity because no less than President Duterte took notice of his performance by publicly acknowledging his contribution to the government’s war on illegal drugs, easily making him the poster boy of the campaign.

Espenido’s case, if true, could be one big reason why the war against illegal drugs is failing.

Being his former superior, I hope he can acquit himself and convincingly disprove this very serious allegation against him. Otherwise, he is just one of the many others I personally knew to have succumbed to the pressure.

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On the Philippines’ Travel Ban to Taiwan

Image courtesy: The Filipino Times

Just like the termination of the Visiting Forces Agreement, the Philippine government’s travel ban to Taiwan is a policy decision implemented by the executive department which may not necessarily be correct, health-wise and politically.

Politically, it seems that the China lobby has become a very powerful force under this administration. Only time will tell if this major shift in the country’s foreign policy will benefit our people in the medium and long term – even as in the immediate term, the travel ban may already have potentially dire consequences for our Filipino workers there.

We elected a President who does not appear to give much importance to counsels and consultations with sectors that could very well help him arrive at well-informed decisions. While I do not question his sincerity in trying to solve the problems besetting our country since the time the millennials of the world were not even born, I still hope he can leave his own legacy worth remembering.

Having said that, I continue to support his leadership but I will not stop calling him out on major decisions which I don’t think serve the best interest of our country and people.

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