LACSON IS OPPOSITION BET IN 2004

Manila, Jan. 28, 2003 (Malaya) - Sen. Panfilo Lacson looms as the presidential candidate of the opposition in 2004.

This was bared yesterday by LDP Rep. Ronaldo Zamora (San Juan) who said Lacson is the best opposition bet following the refusal of actor Fernando Poe Jr. to throw his hat in the political ring.

Even President Joseph Estrada indicated over the weekend that not even a million signatures would convince Poe to run for president.

"Lacson has a very good track record especially in peace and order. Halos nawala ang mga kidnapping, bank robbery at major crimes. Kung walang peace and order, hindi uunlad ang ekonomiya," Zamora said.

He predicted the Lakas-led People Power Coalition is headed for a break-up because of differences on who should be its presidential bet.

He said the PPC would eventually collapse if Vice President Teofisto Guingona, who is Lakas president, insists on being drafted over Aksyon Demo-kratiko's Raul Roco.

He said Guingona had made known his plan of running for president but most of his party mates feel that Roco is the stronger candidate.

Rep. Gilbert Remulla (Cavite) said the emergence of Lacson as the opposition candidate was further bolstered by the announcement of LDP president Sen. Edgardo Angara that he will not seek the presidency in 2004.

Remulla said he will personally ask his colleagues in the LDP to support Lacson.

"Lacson is a reliable candidate and is the right choice," he said.


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