Pimentel, a member of the constitutional committee (Con-com), made the remarks on Friday when asked if Uson would continue to have a role in the federalism information campaign of the government.
“Maybe she should stick to entertainment. She should not join in issues which she does not seem to understand. Our countrymen will only get confused by such statements from an assistant secretary in government, paid for by the people,” he said.
Pimentel added: “I don’t think it’s good, so maybe she should stick to dancing.”
The former Senate President made the unsolicited advice to the controversial assistant secretary in the wake of Uson’s controversial video last month with blogger Andrew Olivar, in which Olivar mocked federalism by performing a lewd dance.
The viral video drew the ire of netizens and even lawmakers, who said federalism should be explained to the public in a more serious, dignified manner.
Uson was previously tapped to help in the government’s federalism information campaign to help the public understand the proposed shift to federalism.
Waste of gov’t funds
Speaking at a federalism briefing in Malacañang, Pimentel said doing so was “wasting time and government funds.”
“For me, the bad effect of that is wasting time and government funds to ventilate an issue as supposedly coming from a responsible government official,” he said.
Good and bad effects
For his part, Con-com member Rodolfo Robles noted that Uson’s involvement had both good and bad effects.
The effect, he said, is that federalism is being talked about because of Uson’s efforts, albeit in a manner not as in-depth as federalism advocates had hoped.
Sought for comment, Uson said she respected the opinion of Pimentel but appealed to him not to belittle her past as an entertainer.
“I am proud that I used to be an entertainer. I hope he won’t belittle my dancing. I hope he watched the video first before commenting, because I wasn’t the one who danced there,” she said.
She did not comment on Pimentel’s claim that she did not understand the complexities of federalism.
Meanwhile, the former Senate President also criticized Interior Undersecretary Epimaco Densing III for pushing for a revolutionary government under President Rodrigo Duterte.
“The proposal of Densing to create a revolutionary government is not good. My goodness,” he said in the same press briefing.
Earlier this month, Densing was reported to have pushed for a revolutionary government, although he later clarified that it was his own opinion and not his agency.
Pimentel pointed out that such proposals were what he feared most during the regime of deposed dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
“You want a revolutionary government where people’s rights will not be respected? For heaven’s sake, I suggest that these government officials should be more careful with their statements,” he added.
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