3 Senate bets under Robredo-Pangilinan ticket call for De Lima release
BACOLOD CITY—Three senatorial candidates have called for the immediate release of Sen. Leila de Lima from detention after two key witnesses retracted their testimony that she was involved in drug trafficking at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP).
The calls were issued by senatorial candidates Alex Lacson, Chel Diokno and Risa Hontiveros who were in Negros Occidental with presidential aspirant Leni Robredo on Tuesday (May 3).
De Lima has been detained at the Camp Crame Custodial Center since February 2017 and is facing multiple drug cases.
“De Lima should be freed immediately, and candidates of dynasties with a history of political vendetta should no longer be voted into office,” Lacson said.
De Lima led the investigation into the reports about extrajudicial killings in Davao City when President Rodrigo Duterte was still city mayor.
“Along with the release of Senator De Lima, let us on May 9 reject dynasty candidates who have a record of using power as a tool of political repression against their critics. Let’s get rid of them and not allow them to regain power,” Lacson said.
“In the coming elections, let us choose candidates who will not abuse power just to get back at their political enemies, ” he added.
Hontiveros said De Lima should be freed at the soonest possible time to correct the injustice committed against her.
“I really believe she should not have been arrested and jailed,“ Hontiveros said, pointing to the key witnesses who have come forward to deny their accusations against the former justice secretary.
Diokno said all those behind the frame-up of De Lima should be investigated and made to answer for what they did.
“More teeth should also be put into the law against tampering with witnesses’ testimonies,” Diokno, a human rights lawyer, said.