An Open Letter to senator Bong Go

Dear senator Bong Go,

When I read how you verbally attacked Rep. Edcel Lagman due to the latter’s “audacity” to question PCSO’s legal basis for funding the Malasakit Centers and allegedly using that initiative as a political front and partisan tool, I was seriously appalled.

Somebody ought to tell you that what you said in retaliation was wrong. On so many levels.

Firstly, Cong. Lagman’s inquiry and observation were made during the congressional deliberations on the proposed budget of PCSO for 2020. He, then, had every right to question PCSO about its projects and expenditure, and to make appropriate comments and suggestions.

In short, walang mali sa ginawa ni Rep. Lagman.

Secondly, instead of using your first privilege speech to define your legislative agenda, you squandered it by launching into a vindictive tirade against Rep. Lagman.

Sana, nagpa-presscon ka na lang para hindi mo sinayang ang oras ng mga kasama mo sa Senado.

Thirdly, you refused to be interpellated by your fellow senators. (During interpellation, senators can ask a colleague questions about the issue raised in the privilege speech.

‘Yan na nga ba ang sinasabi ko e. Wala ka kasing practice on debating during the campaign kaya takot ka to be engaged in one by your colleagues. Simulan na ang practice, ha? Now na.

Fourthly, you used ad hominem argument to refute Rep. Lagman’s claims. You said, and I quote, “Klaruhin ko lang po, hindi po tinatanggap ng PCSO ang mga request to fund aesthetic enhancements or any cosmetic purpose. Gusto man naming kayong tulungan, hindi po ‘yan parte ng medical concern na ginagawa ng assistance ng PCSO. Wala rin pong legal basis ang pagtulong sa pag-repair ng inyong mukha.”

Mabuti na lang at hindi ka sinagot ni Rep. Lagman ng, “Akala mo naman, kagwapuhan ka!” He wouldn’t stoop to your level that way po kasi.

Fifthly, there is such a thing (a longstanding tradition, actually) as inter-parliamentary courtesy that the members of the two chambers of Congress observe.

Huwag si Senate Pres. Sotto ang tanungin mo about it. Wala kang matinong sagot na makukuha sa kanya. Pramis.

Lastly, since you were hellbent on exacting revenge on Rep. Lagman, anyway, you should have simply defended the Malasakit Centers and explained the significant role you played in its implementation. (If you came up with a convincing enough explanation, you might just silence the good Congressman for good, right?)

These following issues are the ones you should have addressed:

  1. What is the legal basis of the PCSO for funding the Malasakit Centers?
  2. The financial assistance to indigent patients is already covered by the Universal Health Care Act, making your pet project a redundant initiative.
  3. Who authorized the release of the P8.68 billion-fund to put up the Malasakit Centers? Did you not personally benefit from that public fund?
  4. Why were those Malasakit Centers put up right before the start of the campaign for the 2019 midterm elections? Were those used for your premature campaigning?
  5. Why did you still serve as its “poster child” when you were already resigned then as the Special Assistant to the president?
  6. If it were true that you did not use the Malasakit Centers project for your senatorial campaign, kindly explain these pictures.


That’s all for now, senator Go. Goodluck to you!

Nagmamalasakit lang po,

Ang Taumbayan

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