Dispatch from Crame No. 169: Sen. Leila M. de Lima’s Statement on Duterte’s accusation on her and Sen. Antonio Trillanes’ alleged involvement in DAP fund scandal.


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Duterte now wants me charged for God knows what criminal offense that is remotely connected with the DAP. All the while he does not mind pulling strings in the judiciary first, to have the PDAF Scam con-artist Janet Lim Napoles acquitted from an appealed conviction for serious illegal detention upon the behest of his Solicitor General and, second, to have accused PDAF plunderer Jinggoy Estrada released on bail after the Sandiganbayan already ruled a long time ago that the evidence against Estrada is strong.

Duterte has no conception of the justice system other than a tool for getting what he wants. From the very beginning he has already admitted to planting and manufacturing evidence when he was still a public prosecutor. So far, he has gotten away with all of this, which, ironically, somehow proves his point on how weak the justice system is in the Philippines for it to be prone to perversion by an officer of the court who is without scruples and who has no qualms about the consequences of his manipulations.

Of course, strengthening the justice system was my focus when I was Secretary of Justice. But no amount of past efforts at modernizing the justice system can withstand a blitzkrieg demolition of this system by the highest government officials themselves, particularly the President and his Secretary of Justice. When the very core objective of an administration is the erosion and eventual eradication of the rule of law, justice is a lost cause. No justice system can survive that to be even a ghost of its old self. That is the situation in this country today.

So what can one who is at the receiving end of all of these do, in the face of the calculated and methodical use of the law to destroy the opposition and silence dissent? Nothing much I suppose, except to take courage from St. Thomas More’s words that so long as the laws have not yet been completely flattened from one end of this country to the other, the Devil can still be defeated, because it is only the law that is preventing the Devil from destroying this country.

Duterte knows this. He is, after all, the Devil’s harbinger of chaos. But before he can usher in his master, he must first flatten the laws of this country. This is why ripping the rule of law to shreds was his first agenda and he thus proceeded to order the extermination of thousands without any accountability whatsoever. To a certain extent he has already succeeded. The Philippines is already the worst country in the world in the Global Impunity Index, according to a recent study.

To a man like Duterte, who boasts about intentionally releasing fake evidence in a national televised interview, what are two more fake and fabricated accusations against me and Senator Trillanes.

His country is already the worst in impunity. He might as well live up to this reputation and defend his title as the leader of the most lawless country in the world.

But not to worry, the Philippines is still in the State of Lawlessness he has declared September of last year. That is why he made the declaration. It was his intention from the very start to keep the country in a lawless state, and to flatten the laws of the land, as the Devil in the story of St. Thomas More wants.

Because when the Devil comes, nothing will stand between him and this nation. He is already here, of course, waiting for the last law to be cut down.

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