MANILA — In a committee report, the Senate maintains its stand on the constitutional infirmity the appointment of Lt. Gen Antonio Parlade Jr to a civilian task force entails as he concurrently serves under the Southern Luzon Command.
This after National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon refuses to dismiss Parlade from his post despite Senate recommendation and call for dismissal, which was countered by a cold shoulder by the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-Eclac).
Senator Panfilo Lacson calls it a “display of arrogance” Esperon’s refusal.
“There’s no point arguing with people who don’t listen to reason and much less yung wala nang adherence sa rule of law,” says Lacson.
“The Senate has spoken as a collegial body, collective position namin and legal position namin is that Parlade’s designation as spokesperson of a civilian entity, which is the NTF-Elcac, is in violation of the Constitution,” he adds.
“The fact of the matter is, he has not been eased out,” Lacson added. “It comes off to us as a bit arrogant and…it will cost them.”
The price to be paid by the task force, says Lacson, might be taken from its multi-billion peso budget which the senator previously said he will no longer defend with the same enthusiasm for 2022 following its refusal to adhere to the Senate’s recommendation.
“Normally, the task force requests an augmentation [in their budget]…but if they don’t want to listen to us [over] a simple provision of the Constitution, we might not listen to them.” (LO/The MiNT)