Lacson says country's problem is ''bad government''
The country's problem is its "bad government", presidential aspirant Senator Panfilo Lacson said on Tuesday.
"Whenever I am asked during interviews about the Philippines’ problem, I always say that this country’s problem is government, bad government. The solution stares us right in the face of the problem itself. If we hope to solve the problems of most of the 110 million Filipinos, then the solution must be found in the government itself. It is called good government," Lacson said in his message aired during the 10th Arangkada Philippines forum.
"This goes without saying that we need leaders who will walk the talk or will stick to leadership by example. We need leaders who can and will break away from the politics of entertainment, double-speak, and lip service," he said.
"Our vast experience tells us that meaningful reforms could not happen overnight. We cannot reform society if people in government refuse to reform themselves," he added.
Amid the threat of the new COVID-19 variant, Lacson emphasized the need "for a recovery roadmap that employs a Future-Proof strategy-- an approach that will insulate our people from the vulnerabilities and will help us outsmart the threats brought about by the evolving conditions of the new normal."
"Among the infinite lessons that the pandemic has taught us is the fact that there could never be a trade-off between our people’s health and the health of our economy. Our approach henceforth to this health crisis must be proactive and not reactive, driven not by “pandemic politics” but by scientific data and empirical facts," he said.
"Practically speaking, strengthening our health systems, protecting our medical professionals and frontliners, and promoting primary and community care will help us in veering away from the implementation of lockdowns that cripple our economy so badly," he added.
Lacson said at the top of his economic agenda is outpouring of support for the business sector to attract capital.
"It is high time that we do away from overregulation beyond our competition policy, which does more harm than good to our partners in nation building. We must ensure that economic reforms such as the Retail Trade Act are properly implemented to help us become more globally competitive. We also commit to Property Valuation and Assessment Reform, Ease of Paying our Taxes, and promotion of digital payments, among others which must lay the groundwork to reboot our economy," he said.
"I am likewise pushing for recovery start-ups to revive the sector that was hardly hit by the health crisis, our MSMEs, comprising 99.5 percent of our enterprises and 63.2 percent of our labor force — through the following: comprehensive and targeted fiscal stimulus packages, eviction and foreclosure moratoriums, “lower-interest-bigger loans” programs from state-run financial institutions, and employee-retention incentives to encourage enterprises to literally go back to business," he said.
Lacson said a " vigorous “Made in the Philippines” campaign is also among his proposals "to encourage buying and consuming more of our locally-made products and even services."
"We will get people back to work to pump up the economy through Cash-for-Work programs by engaging both the public and private sectors in providing our labor force with cash assistance for jobs that they may be able to do in their communities. We are also exploring the application of industry and employer-led skills training schemes, following the best practices of other nations, in securing a highly skilled workforce to boost our national competitiveness and to encourage both public and private investment," he said.
"An apprenticeship program where able-bodied and qualified college graduates and undergraduates, even junior and senior high school students, can undergo paid internships in government offices, as well as in private corporations and businesses, is also a viable option to develop their skills and maximize their productivity," he added.
Under his leadership, Lacson said "the Filipino people can expect the completion and implementation of our National Broadband Program, our blueprint in building info-structure for a digital nation, in order to improve the overall internet speed and its affordability all over our country."
"The digital reform that I envision for our country will connect, unify and automate all our government processes in order to improve the efficiency of our business transactions, raise our revenue collections, and ultimately minimize, if not totally eradicate corruption in all levels of our bureaucracy," he said.
"I will fast track the roll-out and full implementation of the National ID System under the Philsys Act or RA 11055 which I authored and sponsored after persistently pushing for its passage into law as far back as 1999 when I was still Chief of the PNP and yet to become a Senator of the republic," said Lacson.
"You can also take my word for it every time I say that I will guarantee a historic increase in our funding for research and development to boost innovation and productivity, promote an export-driven economy, and increase our competitiveness in the global market," he added.
Lacson said his priorities also include the promotion of the creative industries sector as this has truly been an engine of powerful economic potential.
"That said, I have already expressed my full support and intent to be co-author of the pending Philippine Creative Industries Development Act in the Senate, which to date, has already been consolidated under Committee Report No. 363," he said. Robina Asido/DMS