BAGUIO CITY – Former senator and rehabilitation czar Panfilo ‘Ping’ Lacson wants the government to convert the Caraballio and Corregidor islands into a fully equipped detention facility exclusively for detained government officials involved in massive corruption.
Lacson, who is also a presidential aspirant in the May 2016 national elections, said the first order for the day by the country’s next Chief Executive is for the establishment of an independent anti-corruption bureau vested with law enforcement powers similar to the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) in Hong Kong and the anti-corruption bureau of Singapore.
“We must go hard against government officials involved in corruption because they are depriving the people with better development projects and improved delivery of services for the welfare of the public,” Lacson stressed.
He underscored the importance of consistency in the implementation of anti-corruption efforts in order to rid the bureaucracy of deeply-rooted corrupt officials who had been wreaking havoc in their illegal activities over the past several years that resulted to the dis-service to the people.
Aside from a well-rounded anti-corruption campaign and the establishment of an exclusive detention facility for corrupt officials, he cited future leaders of the country must also avoid patronage politics because the involvement of family members, relatives and friends to the decision-among process will definitely affect the delivery of quality service to the people.
According to him, the blatant mistakes of President Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III in handling the controversial Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) and the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) should be blamed to his family members, friends and relatives and whoever gave him the wrong advise relative to the said issues should be treated as a member of the opposition.
“If I was in President Aquino’s place, I will treat those who gave me the wrong advise as opposition members because they are not giving me the proper direction to follow but they are instead leading me to controversies,” Lacson said.
Lacson admitted corruption is a deeply-rooted problem of the bureaucracy which will be difficult to eradicate with wrong decisions of leaders but it could also be solved with a well-rounded, sincere and unrelenting campaign to remove the roots of corruption.
The former lawmaker said what was started by the Aquino administration in terms of anti-corruption efforts must be sustained by the next leader of the country in order to achieve the goal of having a transparent and accountable governance.
He said he does not mind if the exclusive detention facilities to be established will be filled up with corrupt officials because there are other idle islands in the archipelago suitable to house the additional detention facilities of officials linked to corruption activities.
Lacson claimed government officials who are convicted with corruption charges will be subsequently transferred to the Bureau of Corrections where they will serve their respective sentences.
He asserted it is high time for people to put in office leaders who value the importance of public service instead of those corrupt leaders.