Ping-Tito for 2022 presidential elections?

Published June 3, 2021, 2:02 PM

by Mario Casayuran

Two friends – Senate President Vicente ‘’Tito’’ C. Sotto III and Senator Panfilo ‘’Ping’’ M. Lacson – are reported thinking of seeking higher electoral posts in the forthcoming 2022 national and local elections.

And reports are surfacing that Lacson might run for the presidency with Sotto as his running mate.

In a text message, Sotto said Lacson is weighing his options and is planning to seek the advice of friends and partymates when Congress goes on recess.

The Senate is scheduled to go on a sine die adjournment tonight.

Both the Senate and the House of Representatives reopen their doors on the fourth Monday of July (July 19) for the last State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Duterte.

The Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC) was reported awaiting Sotto’s decision regarding his political career. Sotto is the NPC chairman.

In a text message, Lacson said there is a need for him to think long and hard because decisions of a President affect the lives and hopes of hundreds of millions of Filipinos

In his Twitter account, Lacson said ‘’sailing into the sea is the easiest decision to make. Not knowing how rough the water is the dangerous part.’’

‘’Measuring one’s skills in steering the boat is a big responsibility especially when many people’s lives depend on it. It is best to think long and hard. Applies to everyone actually,’’ he added.

Lacson said a candidate is best advised to take into consideration the testimony of Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua during Chua’s appearance yesterday before the tourism and economic development committee of the powerful Commission on Appointments (CA).

The CA later confirmed Chua’s appointment as Socioeconomic Planning Secretary and also as Director-General of the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA).

In his reply to a query by Lacson, Chua said that the country ‘’has an outstanding debt of P10.77 trillion as of March 2021; 3.44 million Filipinos out of jobs; shortfall in revenue collections at P2.84 trillion already including non-tax revenues like dividends, fees, among others, compared to the original target of P3.25 trillion (DBCC 2019 for the 2020 GAA).’’

Lacson said there are also the uncertainty of the pandemic situation in the country and the whole world, not to mention a whole lot of other problems that would confront the next administration like the West Philippine Sea (WPS), illegal drugs, corruption, even the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) ‘’and God knows what else.’’