De Lima exposed as narco politician?
SHOOTING STRAIGHT - Bobit S. Avila (The Freeman) - September 22, 2016 - 12:00am

Aren't we getting too old for our britches? Yesterday was the 44th anniversary of Martial Law and never have I ever missed a beat writing about those days when Martial Law was declared (I wasn't a journalist yet, and I was in the United States when Martial Law was declared), but if you didn't read my column in this corner yesterday, it is due to three things. First I did make a column early in the morning but I usually don't email my column as we always wait for some kind of breaking news.

Second, I stayed home the whole afternoon watching the live-TV drama of how then Department of Justice Secretary Leila De Lima morphed from public servant and into the country's top narco politician. Third, by the time my editor reminded me to send my column, it was already 5:00 p.m.. But like I said, I did make a column for September 21, 2016 so I pasted the draft that I send to The Freeman in my Facebook page.

Yes, I submit that age is catching up on us and hopefully, I will be having my kidney transplant soon. It is for this reason why I have to deliberately cut down by half all my activities as I'm at a stage where I'm "not yet" on dialysis. In short, I will be having what is known as a "pre-emptive" transplant. If you've heard that super star actress Angelina Jolie had a pre-emptive mastectomy, it was due to the fact that her grandmother died of breast cancer and then her mother died of breast cancer so she decided that even before she has cancer, she had her breast removed. That's it!

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Watching the whole morning and afternoon at the events happening during the Congressional hearing on the illicit drug trade going on at the National Bilibid Penitentiary, last Tuesday sounded surreal, but since most of those speaking were convicted felons, we shouldn't take their word for it hook, line, and sinker. But there were patches of truth that we should look into very carefully. First of all, that during her stint as Secretary of Justice, they did conduct a raid that revealed so many things like cellphones, videoke machines, bars, weapons, guns and knives, and even a swimming pool inside the NBP. Convict Herbert Colangco said he held concerts inside the NBP. He was clearly speaking the truth.

Secondly, where in heavens was Colangco able to get the official phone number of Secretary De Lima? I don't even have her number and I'm a journalist who should have the capability to call the Justice Secretary when I need some clarifications. Certain quarters even questioned why Congress allowed her phone number to be read in public which was supposed to be an invasion of De Lima's privacy rights. But then I personally believe that the phone number in particular was a number assigned to a government official and for the same of transparency, there was no invasion of privacy. Plus no less than current Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aquirre III himself openly admitted that that particular number belonged and was paid for by DOJ.

Thirdly, when De Lima was accused of immorality for having an affair with her driver Ronnie Dayan, this denial queen came up saying that there were "patches of truth." She didn't outright deny that she did have an illicit relationship with her married driver, but she also did not openly admit it in public. So unless and until the Congressional Committee on Justice hails Ronnie Dayan into this hearing, we can only speculate that testimonies of the two convicted felons are true, unless Ronnie Dayan denies it.

The most damning testimony from Herbert Colangco was when he said that he was giving then Justice Secretary De Lima P3 million per month for her senatorial campaign. We have always wondered how in heavens was she able to conduct a senatorial campaign based on her salary as Justice Secretary? In short, unless we see any contrary evidence for all intents and purposes, De Lima is the first public official to be publicly exposed as a narco politician and this in my book is a high treasonable crime for a public official to use her high position in the government to gain money for her political campaign in the Senate.

I'm sure that our readers have their own personal conclusions on what is happening in Congress in the last two days during their congressional hearing. So rather than make my own conclusion at this point, so let's take it from Senator Panfilo "Ping" Lacson who said that there seems to be enough evidence for the DOJ to file a criminal case against de Lima for possible violation of Republic Act no.9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

While I do not disagree with Senator Ping Lacson, in fairness to Aquirre, he is preparing for a lock tight case against De Lima a case that should stick in a court of law. What we expect to happen after this Congressional hearing is for the Office of the Ombudsman to file the cases against De Lima because those testimonies against her are very damning!

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