Lacson’s ‘relevant experience’ to avert 'messy' COVID-19 response, other problems, says spokesman

Partido Reporma chairman and standard-bearer Panfilo “Ping” Lacson has the relevant experience in governance to solve the country’s problems and avert a messy situation like the country is going through at present with the COVID-19 crisis, his spokesman said Wednesday night.

In an interview with Christian Esguerra on ABS-CBN News Channel’s “After the Fact” program, Partido Reporma spokesman Francisco Ashley Acedillo said the Philippines was doing “very badly” with the coronavirus pandemic owing largely to President Duterte’s sole background in local politics.

On the other hand, Lacson’s experience is relevant not just with his 18 years in the Senate but with his “very recent” experience in the executive branch as a presidential adviser on disaster recovery and rehabilitation under the Aquino III administration, and his over 30 years as a police officer and eventual chief of the Philippine National Police, the spokesman said.

“Taking off from the point of the seeming lack of experience on the national stage of the elder Duterte, it has played a very big role in the mess we are in, so experience is not enough, we have to talk about relevant experience,” Acedillo said when asked why Filipinos should vote for Lacson and his running mate Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III in the May 2022 elections.

“In the Philippines’ case, we did very badly when the President’s sole background was local politics, and we see this play out anytime and anywhere. We potentially have two mayors running for the highest office, so I can see the same situation playing out,” he added.

Lacson’s rigor in drafting the national budget and passing relevant legislation as a senator would come into play when he must deal with a “recalcitrant” Congress if elected President, as he knows the lawmaking process in and out, Acedillo said.

The Partido Reporma chairman’s experience would also surface when the national budget “will have to be an effective instrument of governance” as Lacson could grasp how it plays out in the Senate and the House of Representatives, the spokesman and former party-list congressman added.

“When he led the PNP, the police force enjoyed its highest approval rating, so if he can manage and turn around a problematic organization like the PNP, imagine what he can do as President,” Acedillo told Esguerra in the program.

In fixing problems that are rooted in the government, “only Lacson is able to deliver on that promise,” he added in the ANC show.

The Partido Reporma standard bearer is also tolerant of opposing views “if only to sharpen his policies” which “speaks highly of him” as a leader, Acedillo said.

As for fears that a Lacson presidency would lead to a “militarized” Cabinet, Acedillo said being a former police or Armed Forces officer “will not be a premium” for selection to a post in his administration.

“This is perhaps the most surprising thing of a Lacson presidency, you will not see a proliferation of former officers, as you can expect him and Tito Sotto to look for these three premier qualities of their campaign, which are integrity, competence, and moral courage. He will expect the same from his appointees,” the spokesman said.