Press Release
July 27, 2021

Lacson: Hidilyn Diaz Deserves to be Commissioned as AFP Officer for Olympic Feat

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For bringing honor and inspiration to her country and people, Philippine Olympic gold medalist Hidilyn Diaz deserves to be commissioned as an officer of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

On this note, Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson suggested Tuesday to the Philippine Air Force (PAF) leadership that Diaz, a sergeant, be given such a commission, subject to existing laws and AFP regulations.

"As chairman of the Senate Committee on National Defense and Security, I would strongly recommend to the AFP leadership that she be given a rank as a commissioned officer of the PAF. It's the least the service can give her," Lacson said in an interview on CNN Philippines.

"Such a commission - either as a reserve or regular officer - is not just in recognition of her extraordinary feat, but also in recognition of her great potential to provide a good example to her fellow soldiers both as an athlete and as a leader," he added.

He noted Diaz is very deserving, after she gave the Philippines its first Olympic Gold Medal in weightlifting Monday evening. "This is an even more extraordinary accomplishment, a first in our history," he added.

Also, Lacson said Diaz's feat gave 110 million Filipinos a major reason to celebrate amid the humongous problems they now face. "She makes us Filipinos very, very proud," he said.

He also said Diaz's saluting the Philippine flag and singing the National Anthem, "was the most touching moment that will be relived in our memories for a long, long time."

Meanwhile, Lacson said it is up to Malacañang to offer a public apology to Diaz - and to sports enthusiast and writer Gretchen Ho for wrongfully including them in a matrix authored by alias "Bikoy" in 2019.

"Apologies cannot be demanded nor urged. Even if the apologies are volunteered, they are worthless if not offered with sincerity. That said, it is only Malacañang who can on their own decide to offer that public apology to Hidilyn Diaz as well as to sports enthusiast and writer Gretchen Ho for wrongfully including them in a matrix authored by 'Bikoy,'" he said.

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