MANILA, JUNE 8, 2007
(STAR) By Christina Mendez - Opposition Sen. Panfilo Lacson has recruited three fellow Philippine Military Academy (PMA) graduates to join the so-called Cavaliers’ Club at the Senate, which is apparently patterned after the Wednesday Club group of senators.

Lacson, a member of PMA Class of 1971, said his classmate, returning Sen. Gregorio Honasan, Sen. Rodolfo Biazon (PMA Class of 1961) and Magdalo leader and winning senatorial bet Navy Lt. Senior Grade Antonio Trillanes IV (PMA Class 1995) have all agreed to be part of the social club.

“I think this is the first time that there are four (PMA-ers) in the Senate. We are planning to form the Cavaliers Club. After all, we speak the same language. So it is easy for us to gel, the four of us,” Lacson said in an interview yesterday.

In the history of the Senate, the other PMA graduates who became senators were Ruperto Kangleon (PMA Class of 1916) and Eulogio Balao, who was a defense secretary before becoming a lawmaker.

Lacson visited Trillanes the other day at the rebel officer’s detention cell at Fort Bonifacio in Makati, where they discussed the possibility of all four PMAers creating the group. Lacson also met Honasan during a breakfast with other members of PMA Class 1971 last Tuesday at the Edsa Shangri-La Hotel in Mandaluyong City.

Asked to react to the emerging group, maverick Sen. Joker Arroyo, a member of the Wednesday Club in the Senate, seemed to be unaffected by the creation of a new political group.

“A Senate with a military mind, so that’s good,” Arroyo said in a sarcastic manner.

Aside from Arroyo, the other members of the Wednesday club are Senate President Manuel Villar, Senator Francis Pangilinan and Sen. Ralph Recto, who lost in the last elections.

Villar ran as a guest candidate of the Genuine Opposition while Pangilinan ran as an independent. Recto and Arroyo ran under the administration’s Team Unity.

Lacson, who ran under the GO, expressed confidence yesterday that the 14th Congress will be an opposition-dominated Senate.

“We will be dominating the Senate. There is a need for the Senate to be more independent now. There should be nobody amongst us who will be dictated upon by Malacañang,” Lacson said.

Under the opposition-dominated Senate, Lacson said the Senate will conduct investigations on government anomalies.

“If there are many anomalies, there will be more investigations. If there is no anomaly then there will be no investigation. We will not investigate just for the sake of investigating,” Lacson said.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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