Senator Panfilo “Ping” Lacson on Thursday, Sept. 9 said he has no qualms about President Duterte’s prerogative to appoint Antonio Parlade Jr. as National Security Council Deputy Director-General.
After all, Parlade can still be held accountable for his actions under the country’s existing laws.
“Let’s put it this way – The President has the authority to appoint him to that position. Lt. Gen Parlade (ret) is not disqualified to hold the position,” Lacson said.
“Just like any other government official, his actions are bound by the laws of the land,” the senator said.
Parlade resigned as National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict spokesperson last July. He also retired from the military service the same month.
The military official was heavily criticized for linking organizations, lawmakers, celebrities and journalists to communist rebels.
Lacson said those who do not approve of Parlade’s appointment to the NSC are well within their rights to voice out their opinion.
“Those opposing his appointment have the right to express their opinion as long as their comments will not violate existing laws,” he stressed.
Lacson was among the senators who supported a Senate resolution seeking to censure Parlade during his stint as NTF-ELCAC spokesperson when he called senators “stupid” for planning to defund the NTF-ELCAC’s multi-billion budget for the agency’s relentless red-tagging activities.