Arroyo spokeswoman warns De Lima of possible disbarment | Inquirer News
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Arroyo spokeswoman warns De Lima of possible disbarment

/ 02:33 PM November 11, 2011

MANILA, Philippines—The Arroyo camp  warned Justice Secretary Leila de Lima she could be disbarred or charged criminally for peddling unverified text rumors  that tend to cast doubt on the motive of Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to seek permission to travel abroad.

Arroyo spokesperson Elena Bautista-Horn said that De Lima should have done the “honorable” thing and substantiated the text rumor that the former president was seeking political asylum in the  Dominican Republic before airing her suspicions in the media.

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“Her (De Lima’s) statement is calculated to influence the Supreme Court on our petition to nullify the watch list order against Arroyo because she knows fully well that they will lose the case. We challenge her to come out with proof or else she should make a retraction,” Bautista-Horn said  in a phone interview.

Bautista-Horn said that Arroyo’s lawyers were studying whether to file criminal charges against De Lima for continuing to violate the right of Arroyo and maligning her in public.

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Arroyo lawyer Raul Lambino said that De Lima could be expelled from office or disbarred if she is found guilty of violating the Civil Code for repeatedly stepping on the basic rights of Arroyo.

Lambino said that De Lima should have known better than to broadcast unverified text rumors that have no logical basis.

“How can she apply for asylum when she is still here? Why are they raising this asylum issue now? Are they admitting that  they are persecuting Representative Arroyo?” asked Lambino in a phone interview.

In a statement, Lambino described the rumor as “concocted by the government and now circulated in public in order to get more headlines and continue embarrassing, harassing, oppressing and vilifying the Arroyos.”

Lambino said that this showed that the Aquino administration has run out of “legal arguments to justify their highly illegal and unconstitutional acts.”

“After P-Noy (President Benigno Aquino) made a retarded offer for government to foot the bill for foreign doctors who will examine [Arroyo] in the country, now De Lima and the Palace henchmen have gone mad and wild in arguing their case in public. This latest statement of De Lima is an admission and indubitable proof that  the P-Noy government had politically harassed, insulted and maligned the Arroyos, and will keep them suffering with degrading and inhumane treatment under his administration,” said Lambino.

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TAGS: Foreign affairs, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Judiciary, News, political asylum, Politics, right to travel
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