Senator Panfilo Lacson on Saturday called on President Rodrigo Duterte to discard "old habits" and start becoming a statesman beginning 2017.
"He could very well be the best president we’ve ever had if he learns to discard some old habits of a mayor and develop some good traits of a national leader," Lacson said in a statement on New Year's Eve, referring to Duterte's manner of speaking.
"For a start, he can 'Google' how to become a real statesman," the senator advised.
Duterte had admitted that his “mouth is not for a statesman... Whoever told you I was applying for a statesman?”
Lacson clarified that his advice is for the benefit of the President and the country.
"The bottom line for me is, I want him to succeed because like him and most Filipinos, I also love my country," he said.
"There may not be a better gift that my and the president’s generation can bequeath to the next generation than a proud Filipino nation worthy of respect from all the other countries in the world," he added.
The senator cited Singapore as an example of good governance for Duterte to follow.
"Singapore sans dictatorial rule should serve as a good role model for him to follow," he said.
Lacson also urged Duterte to become "multi-dimensional" starting on the very first day of 2017.
"I believe it’s time for the President to become multi-dimensional, not later, but starting New Year’s Day," he said.
"Anyway, the anti-drug war is being addressed with more than enough vigor by our law enforcement agencies, particularly the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, the Philippine National Police, and the National Bureau of Investigation. He can still be the driving force behind the scene," the senator noted.
Lacson said that Duterte should also focus on the crackdown on corruption in the bureaucracy.
"Corruption in government is one area where he can really make a difference, owing to his political will and resoluteness in getting things done," he said.
"Once corruption is eradicated, many great things can happen to our country as a matter of course," he added.