PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday scored Senator Leila de Lima for her continuing silence on her “sex escapades,” which he said placed the country in much peril following her alleged role in the so-called “Muntinlupa Connection” being run out of the New Bilibid Prison.
In his visit to the wake of a slain policeman in Taytay, Rizal, Duterte insisted that De Lima, a former secretary of Justice has neither denied nor confirmed her alleged affair with her former “driver-lover,” Ronnie Palisoc Dayan, which would make her complicit in the crime of adultery, and would establish her links to the illegal drug trade inside the national penitentiary.
“What is really very sad for this country, here is a woman who’s posturing herself as a crusader for good governance, but because she cannot control her immorality ... her sex escapades led her to commit several serious violations of law,” Duterte said.
“[De Lima’s] sex escapades, she never denied it. She’s just saying that it’s ‘all lies,’ but she never said anything about Dayan. She never admitted it. She never made a denial—now that everything’s in her face,” Duterte said, making another revelation that after having an illicit affair with Dayan, De Lima has found another lover named “Warren,” a new close-in security that she requested from former Metro Manila Development Authoirty chairman Francis Tolentino.
He said “Warren” was not involved in the drug trade, however.
Although De Lima has repeatedly denied her alleged involvement in the drug trade, she has repeatedly refused to answer questions about her boyfriends, saying the accusations are demeaning.
On Tuesday, Duterte said that was in possession of a matrix that shows the alleged role of former Justice secretary as the highest ranking public official involved in the illegal drug trade inside Muntinlupa, through her “driver-lover.”
It was during De Lima’s time that the illegal trade inside the national penitentiary was believed to have flourished, with Dayan accused of being her “bagman” inside.
De Lima on Wednesday said she does not need to attend the House investigation of the NBP and the proliferation of illegal drugs in the national penitentiary to prove her innocence.
“I don’t have to go there to prove my innocence. I know that I’m innocent. All of these...are clearly harassment. They’re clearly harassing me,” said De Lima.
She said her accusers were not only grossly violating her rights, they were harassing her.
De Lima also said she wouldn’t mind being arrested for contempt, as Rep. Harry Roque threatened to do.
“Firstly, I haven’t received anything from the House. Secondly, Congressman Harry, who is a lawyer, knows it’s interparliamentary courtesy,” she said.
She also dismissed Senator Alan Peter Cayetano’s suggestion that she inhibit herself from the Senate hearings on extra-judicial killings because of her bias against the President.
“Why should I?” she said.
“I’d rather not the people judge me on whether or not I am being objective in the conduct of the inquiry. I’m not going to base that on the opinion of someone who’s evidently been the defender and apologist of the President in the Senate,” she added.
De Lima also pointed out that the Senate is not a court of law.
“This is a fact-finding inquiry. So what bias is he talking about? I’m just trying to determine facts through witnesses, and you know, I want to help in terms of coming up with measures to address this phenomenon of summary executions.”
Earlier, Roque said De Lima was conflicted and had “no moral authority” to conduct a probe on drug-related extra-judicial killings.
“As Department of Justice secretary for six years, she shares in the government’s breach of its obligation to protect and promote right to life since she only had a 1 percent conviction rate of extra-judicial killing cases,” Roque said.
“She should also answer charges that she raised election funds from drug money,” Roque added.
Roque said De Lima may be accused of conflict of interest because she chairs the Senate committee on human rights that hears the extra-judicial killings cases that are drug-related when she herself was being linked to a drug lord incarcerated at the NBP. With Christine F. Herrera, Macon Ramos-Araneta, and Rio N. Araja
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