CLARK FREEPORT – Mayor Andres Lacson of Concepcion, in Tarlac, on Friday challenged the Department of Interior and Local Government, specifically the National Police Commission, to show persuasive proof that he is into illegal drugs trade, as he vowed to step down once this is proven.
The names of Lacson and Camiling, Tarlac mayor Erlon Agustin were included in an alleged list of so-called narco-politicians released to the media by the Napolcom. Others in the list were Angeles City Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan and Subic, Zambales mayor Jefferson Khonghun.
“Show proof!, I’m willing to step down if they find an iota of evidence against me or any member of my family,” Lacson declared during a hastily called press conference held at the Bale-Balita, the hub of working Kapampangan journalists.
Lacson said he voluntarily sent back his police security escort to his mother unit shortly after he learned about the story in the media.
“I have only one police security aide, so I told him to go back to his mother unit,” Lacson told reporters as he called on DILG to conduct a thorough review of Concepcion’s local government efforts against illegal drugs.
Both Mayors Lacson and Pamintuan denied through media interviews their alleged involvement in the illegal drugs business.
“Records will show we have hundreds of arrested illegal drugs users and pushers,” said Lacson, adding that he will ask the League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP) to pass a manifesto of support for the beleaguered mayors.
His constituents in Concepcion, Lacson said, were stunned. “They will be holding a prayer rally starting Friday afternoon to show their support for me and my family. Even my political detractors will join the rally because they cannot believe the veracity of the Napolcom’s narco-politician list.”
“Sa aking palagay nagiging target kami (I think we are being targeted),” he said, apparently referring to his closeness to former president Noynoy Aqunio. “Kailangan patas ang laban (The fight has to be fair). There must be due process.”
When asked about his feelings toward the present administration, Mayor Lacson said he is sad. “Malungkot ako dahil hindi muna sila nagtanong-tanong, nag-imbestiga kung anong pagkatao mayroon ako (I am sad because they did not ask first or investigate me as a person).”
The local council including the association of barangay captains have expressed their support through a resolution in favor of Lacson.