The Daily Manila Shimbun


Alvarez welcomes Senate panel decision to hear House charges vs. De Lima  

January 24, 2017

House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez on Tuesday welcomed the decision of the Senate Ethics Committee finding the complaint of the House of Representatives against Sen. Leila De Lima sufficient in form and substance.
“The decision of the Senate Ethics Committee finding our complaint against Sen. Leila De Lima sufficient in form and substance is a welcome development,” said Alvarez in a statement.
Alvarez said the finding of the Senate committee shows the House leadership has sufficient basis to accuse De Lima of contempt of the House of Representatives in violation of existing laws and for committing an unparliamentary act.
“She has to give valid and convincing answers to our allegation or face sanction from her own peers for violation of the law and unparliamentary acts,” said Alvarez.
The House slapped De Lima with the ethics complaint for advising her former driver Ronnie Dayan, through his daughter Hannah Mae, to hide from the investigation of the House committee on justice into the spread of illegal drugs in the New Bilibid Prison when De Lima was  justice secretary.
The complaint said “as an incumbent Senator, former Secretary of Justice and a lawyer, advising and inducing Mr. Dayan to hide and not to attend and/or appear in the House inquiry for which she was duly summoned, is tantamount to restraining or inducing disobedience to a summon issued by Congress, of which she is a sitting member, in violation of Article 150 of the Revised Penal Code.”
The House said De Lima also “interfered in a congressional inquiry conducted by the House committee on justice.”
According to the Senate Ethics Committee, they will give De Lima 15 days to submit her answers to the charges against her.
“We trust in the objectivity and sound judgment of the members of the Ethics Committee and we are confident that we would be vindicated in pursuing the charges against Sen. De Lima,” said Alvarez.
Alvarez, House Majority Floor Leader Rodolfo Farinas and House Justice Committee chairman Reynaldo Umali are the complainants against De Lima in the charges filed before the Senate Ethics Committee. DMS