De Lima camp to FB: Probe temporary shutdown of pages of opposition members | Inquirer News

De Lima camp to FB: Probe temporary shutdown of pages of opposition members

/ 02:56 PM May 13, 2021

Sen. Leila de Lima. Image from her Twitter account

MANILA, Philippines — The office of Senator Leila de Lima urged Facebook to investigate the temporary shutdown of her page Thursday, adding that the official pages of other opposition members have also become temporarily inaccessible.

“It has come to our attention that our official page, Leila de Lima Official, has been inaccessible on desktop and laptop from 12 P.M.-1:30 P.M. today. Official pages of other members of the opposition were also reportedly shut down. We have coordinated with Facebook Philippines on this matter,” her office said in a statement.


“We urge Facebook to monitor and investigate this incident, and to make the necessary actions to ensure that this will not happen,” it added.

‘Organized attack’?

De Lima’s office was alarmed over the incident and expressed hope that what had happened was not an “organized attack.”


“Amid these challenging times, when social media serve as a very significant vehicle to disseminate truthful and useful information to the public, we have witnessed how the Duterte regime and those with sinister motives and selfish interests weaponize paid trolls to curtail truthful reporting, free speech, and critical thinking, and instead propagate disinformation, misinformation, negativism and hate speech,” it said.

De Lima, one of the staunchest critics of the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, has been in detention at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center in Camp Crame since 2017 over drug-related charges. She has repeatedly claimed that the charges were “trumped-up.”

“Siniraan, ipinakulong at ginigipit na nga, pati ba naman Facebook page ni Senator Leila, gusto rin nilang patahimikin. Mga duwag lang talaga—kasama ang mga bayaran—ang gumagawa nito; ‘yung mga hindi marunong lumaban nang patas, ‘yung ayaw ng makabuluhang diskurso, ‘yung ayaw na malaman ng publiko kung ano ang totoo,” her office’s statement further read.

(Senator Leila has been maligned, jailed, and harassed, now there are even efforts to silence the Facebook page. Only those who are cowards—including those being paid—can be the ones behind this; those who can’t fight fairly, those who do not want meaningful discussions, those who do not want the public to know the truth.)

“Kung marami silang pera pambayad sa trolls laban sa amin, gamitin na lang sana nilang pangtulong sa nangangailangan,” she added.

(If they have money to pay trolls against us, they should just use it to help those in need.)

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