With the country continuing to face huge problems as the New Year approaches, now is the time for politics of service, not of interest.
Sen. Panfilo "Ping" M. Lacson stressed this on Thursday even as he thanked the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) for helping deliver relief assistance to areas hit by Typhoon Odette.
On his Twitter account, Lacson noted the AFP and PCG helped deliver the relief assistance that he sent without fanfare.
"I thank the AFP and the PCG for providing logistical support to deliver our relief assistance to the different areas badly hit by typhoon Odette. It happened, even if I was not there for photo ops. Critics will say, it’s still politics. Yes, politics of service, not interest," Lacson said.
Lacson earlier warned against "calamity politics" where some personalities use disasters as a platform for publicity, describing it as the lowest form of campaigning.
Also, he emphasized anew the importance of integrity in public service, where public servants do the right thing even when no one is looking. "This is the politics of service we badly need now," Lacson said.
During his stint in law enforcement, Lacson maintained a "No-Take" policy from gambling lords as well as suppliers and contractors transacting business with the Philippine National Police who quietly offered him hush money.
He also consistently declined reward money from grateful relatives of kidnap victims he rescued without making a big deal out of it, always maintaining that he was only performing his law enforcement duty.
As Senator, he continued his "No-Take" policy by rejecting not just his pork barrel allocations but also lobby money from some sectors in exchange for "favorable" legislation, even as he has quietly helped other victims of past calamities as well as individuals needing help to be able to pursue their respective fields of endeavor.
Lacson is running for President under Partido Reporma.