Press Release
October 29, 2006


With Malacañang s attack dogs now trying to discredit him, Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban has become the latest victim of the Arroyo governments four-step policy of wheeling and dealing, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said Sunday.

Lacson said the attacks on Panganiban since he thumbed down the Palace-sponsored peoples initiative shows Mrs. Arroyo has not deviated from her pattern of bribing, promising, threatening, and demonizing.

Malacañang s attack dogs are at it again, this time assassinating the character of Chief Justice Panganiban for voting against the palace-sponsored peoples initiative. Mrs. Arroyo has not deviated from her pattern of bribe, promise, threaten and after all three fail demonize, he said.

But he commended Panganiban for showing he has the guts and character to fulfill his mandate and do the right thing, even if it means defying the wishes of the one who appointed him.

Lacson recalled that during the early stages of the Supreme Courts handling of the case, Panganiban had been wooed by Malacañang s political allies. But days before the high court handed down its decision, he admitted feeling pressure from some groups.

He added that if Panganiban is indeed planning to run for senator in May 2007, he will be most welcome in the opposition slate. Panganiban is due to retire as Chief Justice in December this year.

We need independent-minded people in the Senate who have both guts and character to go against even their biggest benefactor when doing what is right for the country, Lacson said.

Lacson added that the louder Malacañang and its allies try to discredit Panganiban, the more their slip is showing, that they had a big stake in the effort to ram the so-called peoples initiative down the Filipino peoples collective throat.

Come December, this regime may have lost another good official who has shown his courage to do what is right. But if and when he decides to run for senator under the opposition banner, Malacañang s loss will be the peoples gain, he said.

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