Lacson appointment adds insult to injury

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Aquino’s appointment of Gen. Panfilo Lacson as the “rehabilitation czar” in typhoon-affected areas is the same as appointing Gen. Jovito Palparan to a plum position in government. Nothing in Lacson’s bloody record indicate his competence to handle the rehabilitation communities affected by Typhoon Yolanda. In fact, he is most known as a notorious torturer during the Martial Law period and his involvement in high-profile cases of rights abuses such as the disappearance of PR consultant Salvador “Bubby” Dacer in November 2000.

Lacson is said to be among those responsible for the disappearance of Redemptorist priest Fr. Rudy Romano in Cebu in 1985 and the torture of activists Marco Palo, Joseph Olayer, Manuel Mario Guzman, Rolando Salutin and Rodolfo Benosa in 1983, when he was part of the Metrocom Intelligence and Security Group (MISG). He was also charged with multiple murder cases in the death of 11 suspected members of the Kuratong Baleleng in 1995.

The appointment of another favoured ally of BS Aquino who is most known for human rights violations is adding insult to injury. This shows the real intention of BS Aquino—to silence any emerging discontent of hungry and neglected victims of Super Typhoon Yolanda.

We need a government that understands the plight of the poor people, look at things from their perspective, and support the people’s efforts to rebuild their communities. Even before the typhoon wrought havoc in Samar and Leyte, these communities were already poverty-stricken, thus, making people vulnerable to the impact of natural and man-made calamities. There was neither economic security nor basic services for the people. Efforts to rehabilitate and reconstruct the areas hit by the typhoon require a full grasp of the situation in these communities, especially of the poor peasants, fisherfolks, and workers.


The government should have prioritized the implementation of genuine land reform, quality health services, education and housing, infrastructure development to spare or shield the people from the impact of natural calamities. That would also ensure a speedy recovery after a calamity hits the communities.

Appointing human rights violator Lacson to oversee rehabilitation efforts for typhoon-affected areas is a dangerous signal that only reeks of political patronage and looming rights violations, rather than genuine intent for the reconstruction and rehabilitation for the typhoon victims.

Cristina Palabay
Secretary-General, Karapatan
2F Erythrina Building, #1 Maaralin corner Matatag Streets, Central District, Quezon City
Contact numbers:
+63917-3162831, 02-4354146
karapatan@karapatan.org

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4 Comments

  1. Bonifacio Bangayan Claudio on

    Be that as it may, Lacson did not use his PDAF because he came to realize that it spawns corrupt practices that divert lump sum public money into the pockets of corrupt legislators, the conniving public officials, & their cohorts. He’s been appointed… With some degree of managerial skills, he may be able to thwart off corrupt practices to deliver ALL OF THE GOODS to benefit the Yolanda stricken survivors & the infra-structure rehab of their respective sinistered places of habitations. Let time have the final say… Let us (to) see… hehehe…

  2. kayong mga makakaliwa lahat naman ng ginagawa ng gobyerno ke maganda o pangit ay binabtikos nyo…lalong lalong ayaw na ayaw nyo na maganda ang ginagawa ng gobyerno kasi ang gusto nyo ay patuloy na naghihirap ang mga tao para patuloy ang pang uuto nyo sa kanila…wala kayong pinagkaiba sa mga pari natin dito sa pilipinas…ayaw nyong guminhawa ang mga pamumuhay ng mahihirap nating mamayan dahil pag nangyari yun wala na kayong mauuto…ang mga sobrang naghihirap lang kasi ang kaya nyong utuin dahil bigyan nyo lang sila ng 3 lata ng sardinas 1 salop ng bigas & P300 na cash e susunod sunod na sa inyo parang asong ulol kahit hindi nila naiintindhan ang mga pinagsasabi nyo…kayo ang mga anay ng ating bansa kaya hanggang ngayun patuloy na dumadami ang naghihirap dahil ayaw nyo sila guminhawa…mga halang ang kaluluwa nyo!!!kunwari pa kayo concern sa taong bayan e pansariling interest nyo lang naman ang iniisip nyo..

  3. senator lacson is one of only a handful of men left in the political spectrum that will definitely pursue this task with fervor and get the job done. No ifs nor buts. He is a good leader, he is a feared leader and I think that is what will make him successful aside from his no-nonsense manner of managing people. He is only one of two senators who never obtained so-called PDAF why entrust a gargantuan task to any other person. Mayor Duterte could also fill in the same shoes. What we need now is a disciplinarian, one who will not be afraid to step on the feet of the big corrupt contractors or middlemen. He of all people know who these are, wouldn’t he? There are a lot of well intentioned young up and coming Filipinos who want our gov’t to come clean. But without muscle and know-how how do you think these well-intentioned kababayans will fare against the well moneyed, well armed politicos, businessmen and contractors. Give Sen. Lacson a chance. He is just as patriotic if not more of a patriot than most of the senators and congressmen.

  4. MAY INAASAHAN PA BA ANG TAONG BAYAN BAGO SA MGA APPOINTEE NI BS3rd?
    HALOS LAHAT AY PURO RECYCLED POLITICANS OR AMONG THE KKK.