MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Senator Leila de Lima slammed the House committee report linking her to the proliferation of illegal drugs in the New Bilibid Prison (NBP).
In its report, the House committee on justice said all witnesses – mostly convicts who were then granted immunity – pinned the blame on De Lima, former justice secretary under the previous administration. (READ: House report on Bilibid drugs: ‘Sufficient evidence point to De Lima’)
“Almost all witnesses testified on her involvement in the proliferation of drug syndicates and illegal drug trading inside NBP. Sufficient evidence point to her involvement and possible accountability in these illegal activities,” said the report of the committee chaired by Oriental Mindoro 2nd District Representative Reynaldo Umali.
De Lima denounced the supposed evidence against her, saying the report is a “sham conclusion” to a congressional inquiry she earlier also called a “sham probe.”
“What evidence are they talking about? The so-called testimonies of the so-called witnesses? These are lying witnesses, perjured witnesses, especially yung mga convicts na yan (those convicts),” De Lima told reporters on Wednesday, October 19.
"It's a sham conclusion," she added.
Instead of recommending charges against De Lima, the House panel urged the Department of Justice to conduct an “in-depth” investigation into her alleged role while she was head of the DOJ. (READ: House minority wants panel to recommend filing charges vs De Lima)
This, De Lima, said only goes to show that the 4 hearings did not yield “sufficient evidence,” only “sufficient lies.” The senator has repeatedly denied accusations of her links to drugs.
“Now they are saying there is sufficient evidence but they are not recommending prosecution. So that’s ironic, that’s self contradictory," she said.
The senator said the House committee report is only urging the DOJ, headed by her successor Justice Vitaliano Aguirre II, to “invent” more stories against her. De Lima has repeatedly hit Aguirre for fabricating evidence against her.
“So that means sufficient evidence, sufficient yung lies? And when they say that 'ok we are not recommending the prosecution, we are asking the DOJ na lang of undertaking further investigation,' that means they are practically telling the DOJ to invent pa more, invent pa more lies,” the senator said.