Lacson skips even last P200-M pork in Senate term



Senator Panfilo Lacson. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — As he prepares to leave the Senate, Sen. Panfilo Lacson decides once again to return to the national treasury—and for the last time—his pork barrel fund in the amount of P200 million.

In a letter to Sen. Franklin Drilon, Lacson asked that his share of the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), or pork barrel, for 2012 be made available to President Aquino for his anti-corruption campaign and “good governance advocacies.”

Lacson wrote Drilon, the latter being the chair of the Senate finance committee.

The President and Budget Secretary Florencio Abad received copies of the letter.

Allied with the President, Lacson is completing his second consecutive term of office on June 30. He is reportedly being groomed to head an anti-crime body yet to be created by Aquino. (Under the Constitution, a senator temporarily retires from his Senate seat after two consecutive six-year terms. He may run for another Senate seat after a complete term shall have passed.)

Senators receive a PDAF of P200 million per year, while members of the House of Representatives receive P70 million.

The funds are allocated by Congress in the annual national budget submitted by the President. The PDAF is intended to finance projects of a senator or representative for the benefit of their constituents, but it has become a source of corruption resulting in substandard or ghost projects.

Lacson, who was first elected to the Senate in 2001, has refused to accept his pork barrel from the start.

The previous Arroyo administration found a way to channel Lacson’s PDAF to its priority programs, prompting the senator to ask the Senate to explicitly allocate his PDAF to debt service payments.

Lacson refused to accept his PDAF even after President Aquino brought it up with him in 2011.

“Didn’t he refuse in the past to take his PDAF? I told him the PDAF was being managed and spent well and asked him whether he was interested in the entitlement,” Aquino had said.

But Lacson didn’t budge, sticking to his “standards” not to accept the PDAF, the President said.

During his entire stint in the Senate, Lacson has called for the abolition of the pork barrel, noting that it “had corrupted legislators.”

“(The pork barrel) is always the source of criticism. It is always the source of corruption (in Congress),” Lacson has said.

As a neophyte senator, Lacson admitted to receiving bribe offers from people interested in his pork barrel, but he turned them down.

“I told myself, so be it. I am sure I will earn the ire of my colleagues but never mind…I believe lawmakers should not build roads, you know. We should make laws,” he had said.

Apart from the PDAF, a lawmaker gets a share of the huge infrastructure budget of the corruption-tinged Department of Public Works and Highways.

Instead of abolishing the pork barrel, however, former Senate Minority Leader Aquilino Pimentel Jr. wanted the funds pooled and used to finance big-ticket projects like a national railway system.

Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:

Inquirer Viber

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • iping2sison

    Abolish PDAF and use the funds for the improvement of our infrastructures or big-ticket projects as suggested by Senator Pimentel, Jr.

  • Guest

    sino pa kayang mambabatas ang magsasauli ng Pork Barrel nila? Lalo na diyan sa Congreso? TANGGALIN ANG PORK BARREL malamang wala nang tatakbong TONGRESMAN!

  • zafirol

    Unbelievable !!! We need more of people like him. Lacson for  President!!

  • kipbuts

    To avail pork barrel is the main reason why some legislators ran for the office, legislating laws are but incidental. Realign PDAF funds to fund more vital projects of the government e.g. modernization of the AFP, Mindanao railway system, education, health, social welfare, agriculture, etc.

  • lilybugan

    Di niya tinangap kasi masyado nang madami yung kinita niya sa kidnapping nung panahon ni erap

    • rgf_md

       Malaki – laki pa siguro ang natitira sa US$ 20M na galing sa Kuratong Baleleng.

    • QTRBR

      Kawawa ka naman frend…ikaw lang ang sumalungat sa lahat ng mga bloggers. Ako kawatan din na kagaya mo pero mas saludo ako kay Sen. Lacson kesa sa iyo.

  • jose

    Congratulations Senator Lacson, Lawmaker has no bussiness receiving huge sum of money from the government’s peoples money instead it should be channel to government projects that are sorely in need of financingl like the modernization of the the Philippine Defense capability. Projects that would promote job creations, like livelihood projects , factories in the provinces. healthcare improvement and education.

  • Dadi

    kaya nga idol ko si Senator Ping Lacson noon pa.

  • mapicchu

    See? obviously the senators dont need to receive their pdfs…sobra lang cilang sakim..Lacson has proven that there is enough compensation in being a senator…theres no need to get more funds, kunya kunya may mga project…mabuhay ka sen lacson!

  • barangayboso

    “I believe lawmakers should not build roads, you know. We should make laws”
    Makes sense..

  • fiveoclock

    Mabuhay ka Sen Lacson….sana ginamit mo yung mga Pork mo kahit man lang isang project na malinis na hindi ka namin malilimutan kahit ilan daan taon.

  • Bonggebongge

    Saludo po ako sa inyo…sana dumami pa ang mga katulad nyo sa mundo ng politika sa Pinas…

  • Bonggebongge

    5 star ka Ping Lacson

  • Daniel

    Should this “pork barrel” be soon abolished, the desire to run as “party list” representative in congress, will definitely wane.

  • AnastacioMamaril

    So much negative was thrown on you. But by not availing the PDAF the very source of corruption you earn my respect. Sana tularan ka ng maraming politiko sana..sana..sana..sana.

  • boybakal

    What a Benevolent Gesture.
    Lacson did not give in to Temptation of Corruption by way of Pork Barrel.
    Lacson gave the people a Long Lasting Legacy of Public Honesty.
    And to end his day as Senator, Pampilo is Pork Barrel Free,
    Good Job and Good Luck.

  • observer1356

    Kahit di napakinabangan ang boto ko sa inyo noong kasali kayo sa pinagpipili-ang pangulo ng Pilipinas, saludo pa rin po ako sa inyo dahil kahit sa ibang paraan, naipakita nyo ang katapatan sa mga Pilipino.

    Sana tularan ng iba pang mga pulitiko ang mga mabubuting nagawa ninyo.

    Mabuhay po kayo, Sen. Ping.

  • labcu

    the best!

  • Lapu Lapu

    I salute you senator for not touching the PORK. 

    You made a difference from other TRAPO. And today you stand TALL among them.

    I have to tell you a truth:

    If we abolish the PORK Barrel, only a very few will run for election. Or we may not have elections at all.

    STOP THE PORK NOW. It is the root of the evil corruption in this country.

    • boybakal

      That’s the trick of Sen.Lacson.
      He does not like the Pork but he likes the Beef.
      Pork is pork chop, Beef is steak. So whenever he returns the Pork, Lacson always ask
      Where’s the Beef?
      Or in our lingo, Lacson ayaw Mamoy,gusto Maka.

      • Ding


        Why no comment on “the previous Arroyo administration found a way to channel Lacson’s PDAF xxx” ?

  • rsanr

    Pagkatapos nang termino ni PNoy ang kailangan nang bayan ay katulad ni Sen. Ping Lacson na maging presidente nang Pilipinas, sana tumakbo siya uli at iboboto nang buong pamilya namin muli.

    Sen. Ping Lacson should be the next president after PNoy para tuloy ang pagunlad at katahimikan nang ating bayan. 

  • nti_boohaya

    It’s all good and dandy but have you done anything further than providing preaching to the choir?  If you are so insistent on abolishing the pork barrel, and pardon me for being so naive, then why not introduce a bill to abolish it completely knowing that not touching your pork barrel and doing a lot of lip service did not do crap?  With that said, I applaud you for at least having the guts to tell your colleagues na bingi bingihan that they don’t need to campaign or worse, pocket the funds under the guise to build roads, repair marketplaces, distribute fertilizers at kung ano ano pang band aid “projects.”

    • santosboi

      maybe he knew nobody in the senate or congress would listen if he make a law abolishing the pork barrel.

    • Jezzrel

      Karamihan sa mga nakaupo sa senate maliban sa power eh kasama ang pera sa habol ng mga iyan eh….

    • ping lacson

      I actually drafted a bill to abolish the pork barrel system way back in 2002 only to find out that there is a leading case/jurisprudence declaring its constitutionality and legality. Hence,I did not file it anymore. Nevertheless, the Supreme Court has not declared that foregoing the same is a crime. Either way, there no legal issue involved, only moral.

      • LuwigVonMises

        are you truly ping lacson himself?  well if you are .. i want to say to you sir that you earned my respect.

  • puruntong

    Ikaw ang kailangan ni Pnoy sa admin. nya, and WE NEED YOU NOW!!
    for 2016  its Mar Roxas or You , Sen Lacson..

    • JuanTamadachi

      I personally feel that Lacson has a slight edge over Roxas. If Lacson makes it in 2016, it will mean more bad news for dorovo.

  • $20722540

    ano binigay mo kay pnoynoy yong p200M pork barrel considering the fact that the office of the president already have billions of pesos of intelligence funds – he can used at his disposal.  you should have give it to the department of health and provided funds to the 12 medical centres nationwide, other meaningful programs or to the national treasury – excludes the doleouts cct.  paalis na lang sumipsip pa…omg!  

  • mark1205

    Could not agree more. I would have to admit, after having a background in architecture, our cities are worse because we let law makers and not architects and urban planners design our communities. They build whatever they please without the advise from the true field experts. In the first place we vote them to craft laws. Imagine all that money if we were to have better roads, drainage, landscaping, freedom from spaghetti wires. All our cities would have become like BGC right now.

  • Jess

    How I wish other members of Congress would emulate this gesture of Senator Lacson Although, I do not agree with everything he does, this is one facet of his person that I admire

  • Jezzrel

    Sana lahat ng mga senators ay ganito tulad kay Sen Panfilo Lacson, alam ko isa rin si Sen. Arroyo… nawa dumami ang mga katulad niyo sa senado…..pero sad to say that its their last term in the senate…….

  • palaigit

    sigh….ever since i have been a staunch and avid supporter of Lacson, from the time he overturned the pnp, i truly believed that he could have been the next lee kwan yew, he would have steered us to being like singapore in one way or another. his stern and rigid but honorable stance with his views has always been unquestionable. though not as perfect, but i cant think of anyone else who could do the same. noy2 is doing good, but lacson has the balls and could have been great.

  • Albert Einstien

    takbo k VP sir….! tapos HAWAKAN mo ang NATIONAL DEFENSE..bantayan mo yung procurement sa DND sa 2016…kelangan ng AFP ang modernizaton.. : > )

  • sl1

     I salute you Mr. Senator for your stand on pork barrel I taught at first that you are just “pakitang tao ka lang” but I can now say that you are truly good senator of our republic and deserve to be given a special task by the president after your senate term expired. Anti corruption portfolio must be given to you so that these corrupt officials in our gov’t must be lessen if not totally eliminated by putting them in jail! Mabuhay ka senator.

  • mxsclxmxn

    Boycott election of senators and congressmen…corruption emanates from them through their pork barrel! Si Lacson lang ang may K to say to this source of corruption!

  • Your_King

    This looks like a generous gesture giving up some P200M but if you look closely, he will be in the national treasury where literally all the money is at. P200M may go towards the fight against corruption but don’t be surprised if more money slips out of the national treasury due to corruption. Aquino may be a big talker about his fight against corruption but he has a bunch of corrupt people that is part of his Administration. 

    • Ding

      Aquino continues to fight against corruption, is a more appropriate comment, as he is not part of any corruption.  You…we…all of us who want a BETTER PHILIPPINES, can contribute even the humblest of what we can to beat this unbeatable foe — corruption.  

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


editors' picks



latest videos