LACSON CHOSEN BY LABOR ALLIANCE

Quezon City, Feb. 13, 2003 -- A nationwide alliance of labor groups yesterday declared support for the presidential bid of Sen. Panfilo Lacson in 2004.

The alliance, calling itself the Labor for Lacson movement, told a forum at the Sulo Hotel in Quezon City that Lacson would become a good president because as PNP chief and senator, he has always worked for the welfare of the powerless.

The alliance also said Lacson knows the plight of the ordinary worker, he being the son of a driver.

Among the members the alliance are the Lakas ng Manggagawa Labor Center, National Labor Union, PAL Employes Association, Pam-bansang Diwa ng Manggagawang Pilipino and the Automotive Industry Workers Alliance.

Antonio Policarpio, LMLC chairman, said the "strong Republic" envisioned by President Arroyo would become a reality if Lacson wins in 2004.

"Walang ibang magbibigay ng kapayapaan sa bansa kundi si Senador Lacson. Siya lang naman ang (may) kayang pumigil sa carnapping, kidnapping, drug addiction at lalo na sa mga pulis na sangkot mismo sa krimen. Kung walang peace and order, walang papasok na investor sa Pilipinas, lalo na sa Mindanao," he said.

Asked who could be the possible running mate of Lacson, Policarpio said the alliance is letting the senator choose for himself.

Jerry Tan, chairman of the Banks, Insurance and Finance Unions, said eliminating the practice of "kotong" by policemen was achieved during Lacson's term as PNP chief.

Tan said Lacson also had the masses in mind when he opposed the collection of the purchased power adjustment (PPA).

Arnel Lejada, executive director of the Labor Rights Advocacy and Welfare Center, said Lacson would serve the people better if he accepts the challenge to run for president. (By LJUBOMIR GATDULA, Malaya)


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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