President Benigno Aquino 3rd on Thursday said it is likely the planned anti-corruption agency that former senator Panfilo Lacson will lead will probe the pork barrel scandal.
“It’s possible,” President Aquino said when ask if he will appoint Lacson as a special independent investigator to look into the alleged misuse of congressional pork barrel funds.
He said, however, an anti-graft commission composed of the Office of the Ombudsman, the Department of Justice (DOJ) the Commission on Audit (COA) and the Civil Service Commission was already conducting an inquiry.
Lacson has submitted a draft executive order to Malacañang to ensure that the new anti-corruption agency he proposed has operational capabilities and a law enforcement arm.
Aquino said he was still waiting for Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr.’s recommendation on Lacson’s proposed executive order detailing his job description.
He said Malacanang has been preoccupied with several urgent concerns such as the ship collision in Cebu, the recent floodings, and the pork barrel scam.
The President revealed plans to tap Lacson and former senator Francis Pangilinan for government positions after their terms expire.
Lacson will supposedly lead the anti-corruption body, while Pangilinan is being eyed as the President’s adviser on food security.
CATHERINE S. VALENTE