Maceda: The older, the better for the Senate

by Ira Pedrasa,

Posted at Apr 22 2013 12:55 AM | Updated as of Apr 22 2013 08:55 AM

MANILA - United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) candidate Ernesto Maceda may not be as young as some candidates for the senatorial posts, but he believes the wisdom that comes from being a veteran politician is what the Senate needs.

Maceda, who earned the moniker “Mr. Exposé” during his long service in the Senate, cited the cases of 89-year-old Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, 87-year-old Cebu Rep. Pablo Garcia, and several senior United States senators who all have proven that age means “maturity, more intelligence, more perspective, better qualifications…”

He said he intends to pursue being “Mr. Exposé" in case he is elected once again.

Maceda also promised to focus on the youth, which he said is an important sector, if he gets another stint in the Senate.

He said at least P80 billion of the budget should be allocated to education. “In state colleges and universities, including the University of the Philippines, wala na dapat tuition-tuition.”

For private colleges, he said donations for scholarships should be given “double tax deductions” to sway more donors into supporting more scholars.

A pioneer of the study-now-pay-later scheme, Maceda said this should also be given focus. He dismissed complaints from the Commission on Higher Education and the Commission on Audit that the system is failing because students do not pay their loans.

“It’s a matter of implementation,” he said.

On the issue of divorce, Maceda does not agree because “the children will be the ones affected in the end.”

On the issue of lowering the age of juvenile offenders, he said: “The 15-year-olds can go scot free these days. The age should be lowered to 12.”

On the issue of religious groups endorsing candidates, he said he’s not bothered. “We have intelligent voters,” he said.