Former senator Panfilo Lacson wants to hit the ground running when he assumes his new post as head of an anti-corruption agency.
On Sunday, Lacson said he hopes to get the green light to launch entrapment operations against corrupt officials.
Lacson said the government needs a dedicated agency that will complement the Office of the Ombudsman, which files complaints against state officials or employees.
Lacson said that while the Ombudsman can investigate and prosecute illegal, unjust, improper or inefficient acts of a public officer or employee, office or agency, it would be better if there is an agency that will go after unscrupulous government officials and personnel.
“And that is what I want, to fill in a dedicated unit of government focused on anti-corruption campaign,” he said in a radio interview.
Malacañang is fine-tuning the executive order that would create the anti-corruption body Lacson will head.
He admitted he has no idea of the agency’s scope of the authority but he prefers it has “operational capability.”
“It could only be a paper agency, or purely coordinative agency with no operational capability which I hope will not be,” he said.
Lacson, a former chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), said if he has his way, the agency will use entrapment operations to speed up the prosecution of errant officials.
He said one of the reasons why the government’s anti-corruption campaign seems to be lagging is because erring officials will stop at nothing to delay the prosecution of their cases.
“But if we can come up with a punitive approach in dealing with corrupt officials, I believe we can send a strong message to everybody,” Lacson said.