Sen. de Lima doubts fairness of House probe into Bilibid drug trade

MANILA — Senator Leila de Lima on Monday expressed doubt about the fairness of the upcoming congressional probe on her culpability in the reported illegal drug operations inside the New Bilibid Prison, noting that President Rodrigo Duterte has already judged her as guilty.

“I’m judged guilty already by the President. And then you think that (the) House (of Representatives) Speaker will be anything near fair to me?” she told reporters in an ambush interview.

De Lima last week said she will not attend the Congress probe as she would rather focus on her job as legislator.

“I’m already judged guilty, I’m finished in so far as the President is concerned, that’s why he wants me to resign. Then I’m going to face the Congress?” she added.

She reiterated that she would rather stay silent about the matter for now because she was already tired of repeatedly denying it.

“I won’t say anything about that matrix anymore. I am tired of denying it. That’s all I will do because that’s what I know is true. I have nothing to do with it, that’s the truth,” the former justice secretary said.

The neophyte senator admitted that although resigning has crossed her mind, after much reflection, she decided that resignation at this point will be “an admission of guilt and a sign of weakness”.

“And I’m neither weak nor guilty,” de Lima said.

President Duterte earlier asked de Lima to resign, a few days after he released a matrix that linked her to illegal drug operations inside the penitentiary. Azer Parrocha/PNA/