Poll bets urged to attend debates, present best plans for PH

Partido Reporma presidential candidate, Senator Panfilo Lacson (File photo)

MANILA – Candidates running for the country's top elective positions must join debates and other fora so Filipinos can see their abilities, platforms, and track record, Partido Reporma standard-bearer Senator Panfilo "Ping" Lacson said on Thursday.

Doon makikita saan ba ‘yung latag ng plataporma, ano ba ‘yung experience, lalabas at lalabas doon. So, napaka-importante na lumahok kaming lahat – vice presidential, senatorial, presidential candidates – para ipakita kung ano talaga ‘yung plano para sa bayan (That’s where we can see their platforms, their experience, these will emerge [in debates]. So, it’s extremely important that everyone join – vice presidential, senatorial and presidential candidates – so we can show what our plans are for the country)," Lacson said in a news release.

He said he and his running mate Senate President Vicente "Tito" Sotto III are more than ready to participate in any debate for the electorate to be guided in making an informed decision in the May 9 national elections.

"Matagal na kaming nag-prepare. Pero, of course, magre-review kami. Mauuna ‘yung vice presidential debate, I suppose. I am confident na ‘yung aking partner (is) equally prepared (We have long prepared for this, but of course, we will still review [for the debates]. The vice presidential debate will go first, I suppose. I am confident that my partner [Sotto] is equally prepared)," Lacson said.

Sotto, meanwhile, noted that his and Lacson’s combined 83 years of public service would underscore how ready and qualified they are among all the presidential tandems for the coming polls.

“I’ve been prepared for 30 years. Senator Lacson has been prepared for 50 years. We will express and talk about what we plan to do, our programs and plans, and our views and perspectives on any issue they will ask us,” the Senate President said.

Lacson said to prepare for the coming debate to be hosted by CNN Philippines this weekend, they have consulted various experts, not only in terms of existing laws.

The Partido Reporma bets are also buoyed by the positive comments they have received from netizens after they watched previous fora.

According to them, there were even instances where supporters of other candidates have switched sides because of the platforms they have laid out, and the manner they answered several tough questions.

Sotto will face six other bets -- former representative Walden Bello, Manny Lopez, Rizalito David, Senator Francis Pangilinan, Carlos Serapio, and Dr. Willie Ong – in the vice presidential debate to be hosted by CNN Philippines on Saturday.

Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte and former Manila mayor Lito Atienza will not attend the event.

Meanwhile, Lacson, labor leader Leody de Guzman, former presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella, Dr. Jose Montemayor Jr., former national security adviser Norberto Gonzales, Senator Emmanuel Pacquiao, Faisal Mangondato, Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso, and Vice President Leni Robredo will attend the network's presidential debate on Sunday.

Former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is the only presidential candidate to skip the debate, citing a conflict of schedule. (PR)

Source: Business Diary Philippines

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