Sen. Panfilo Lacson has a message to personalities who are expressing their intent to run for president in the 2022 elections: prepare solutions, not just their candidacy.
Lacson, who is rumored to run for president next year, said the real work comes not during the campaign but after it, as the country's next leader is set to face "overwhelming" problems including a ballooning national debt, unemployment, and corruption.
"It’s not about prestige or being part of history as being the President of the country. The more important thing is to ask yourself if you can solve the country's problems. Ang importante: Kaya ba, at may solusyon ba?" Lacson said in a DWIZ interview on Saturday.
"There is also a need to seek the advice and ideas of economic experts and other experienced persons to find solutions - short-, middle- and long-term - to confront and address the problems aggravated by the pandemic," he added.
According to the senator, the country's debt has swelled to P10.99 trillion as of April 2021.
Apart from growing debt, the next leader will also be facing major problems including the territorial row in the West Philippine Sea, issues on providing pension for the military and uniformed personnel and on pouring resources for research and development in the fight against COVID-19, he added.
"They should ask themselves: 'Can I, in my personal and professional capacity, develop solutions to these problems?' If yes, let's share them through public service. If not, it may be better to keep quiet," Lacson said.
Several politicians including Sen. Richard Gordon, former Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV, and former Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano have come out in public saying they are considering running for president next year. Vice President Leni Robredo also said that she is still open to running for president.
The filing of certificates of candidacy for the May 2022 elections is set for October this year.