‘I Will Be Here’ — Sen. de Lima 

Senator De Lima during a hearing in Muntinlupa Regional Trial Court

by Wilfredo G. Villanueva

Duterte times started precisely at the time Sen. Leila de Lima was incarcerated in Camp Crame detention quarters for charges that wouldn’t stick. Her cases have been delayed; judges are unwilling to handle her cases, and witnesses are like Metro Manila traffic, dense and unmoving.

We didn’t protest her arrest. We thought lightly of it, no, maybe not lightly, shocked to inaction, I suppose, deer in the headlights. It’s becoming increasingly clear that she was targeted by the administration for engaging the former mayor in his own turf, questioning his extrajudicial killings, or EJK. Each day that passes bears down on all of us: that we didn’t come to her succor at point of arrest, that we’re not doing enough to ask justice for her, that we may have moved on. Ugh. Shame on us (2x). She has reached her 900th day in detention.

The screw turns. As of this writing, her mother lies in hospital bed in Iriga, Camarines Sur and the prognosis is bad. Senator de Lima is asking for a furlough to rush to her mother’s bedside.

Does this concern us?

Consider some points:

In my first interview with her two years ago, this is what I wrote:

“I was with Senator Leila de Lima Friday June 16, late afternoon, a few days after the milestone of 100 days spent in detention for drug charges. She looked fresh, not a hint of worry, fear, nor resentment. “Do you have resentment?” I asked. “No.” “Do you feel that the people have abandoned you?” “No.” “Where do you draw your strength?” “I have become closer to God.”

In another interview early part of last year, this is what I wrote:

“I asked her why can’t she just escape or seek political asylum. Do you know what she said? When she was in Washington, D.C. December of 2016, she learned about the impending criminal charges and arrest, and had a door opened for her for that recourse. She didn’t take it, wouldn’t have none of it. Why, I pressed. ‘Because this is my country, it’s the only one I’ve got. With the truth on my side, I fear no one,’ she said, her voice rising a bit like the sharp edge of a sword. How many times in our lifetime will we ever hear that kind of conviction from a fellow country man or woman, a true patriot? Not from Sal Panelo who speaks as whimsically as he dresses, not from Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez who defends his bigamy, not from Mocha Uson who is busy proving her intelligence. While everyone else is protecting his or her turf, Senator de Lima has nothing to do except perfect her inner self and will, passing over trivialities, going straight to the point, true.”

In an interview several days ago, I asked her to say something to the Filipino people. This is what she said:

“I will be here.”

Those are her words to all of us whom she indefatigably serves even when denied liberty. Yes, she serves even while she is excluded from the rest of humanity.

Senator De Lima with supporters during the 2016 elections

It’s true. She gets daily briefing documents daily; she’s not a stranger to things happening around us. She holds office.

“The country is changing in front of our very eyes,” she said.

“It’s China. It’s the one issue that President Duterte has no answer to, convoluted or otherwise.”

So, President Duterte is going about his business of something that resembles statecraft, while his chief nemesis, the lady who calls him out even in custody is receiving God’s grace morning, noon and night.

I wrote an open letter to the President and I asked him some questions, which may be asked of ordinary citizens like you and me:

“She gets her ZZZs, seven hours. Do you?

She’s not depressed. Are you?

She’s outraged that she doesn’t see the level of patriotism or outrage over the incursions of China into our natural resources. Are you?

She thinks we are a virtually a province of China. Do you?

She thinks that non-violence is key to solving our problems. Do you?

She wants to be judged well by history. Do you?

She is free in jail. You are not in jail, but are you free?”

I went on:

“She counts the days of detention, making sure every single day counts as unimportant things are shed for things that matter. She is ready to face her destiny, to be on God’s side in this life and the next. She has found true peace in the narrow confines of isolation.”

Senator De Lima during Senate Plenary Sessions

I wish all of us has her peace. She came to the reception room from her quarters with the setting sun behind her, giving her a glow, like a candle in the dark. A thought: Mount Sinai, a prophet setting priorities, direct from a conversation with God. That was days before she learned that her mother was unwell. She has no choice now but to look heavenward, hemmed in by unforgiving walls and barbed wire. She’s the eldest of her siblings, thoughts must race in her mind.

She is the Philippines, caged but still full of love.

*******

Some of Sen. de Lima’s Bills Signed Into Law

As Principal Author:

  1. R.A. No. 11291 (Magna Carta of the Poor) on April 12, 2019

  2. R.A. No. 11310 (Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps)) on April 17, 2019

Some Bills Signed Into Law, Co-Authored:

  1. R.A. No. 10931 (Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act)

  2. R. A. No. 10969 (Free Irrigation Service Act)

  3. R.A. No. 11054 (Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao)

  4. R.A. No. 11203 (Liberalizing Importation, Exportation and Trading of Rice, Lifting for the Purpose Quantitative Import Restriction on Rice)

  5. R.A. No. 11223 (Universal Health Care Act)

  6. R.A. No. 11350 (National Senior Citizen Commission Act)

Some Bills Filed or Refiled for the 18th Congress:

  1. SBN 179, An Act to promote and protect the rights of human rights defenders;

  2. SBN 180, An Act instituting prison reform and restorative justice;

  3. SBN 181, An Act instituting a unified corrections and jail management system;

  4. SBN 182, An Act instituting a criminal investigation system, repealing Republic Act 5180;

  5. SBN 183, An Act to strengthen the Commission on Human Rights.

Senate Committee Chairmanship

Sen. de Lima previously chaired the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights and Committee on Electoral Reforms and People’s Participation during the 17th Congress. She was ousted as chairperson of the Justice and Human Rights Committee and later, the chairpersonship for the Committee on Electoral Reforms and People’s Participation was given to then Senate President, Senator Koko Pimentel.

She is currently the Chairperson of the Senate Committee on Social Justice, Welfare and Rural Development. With only 13 months as the Chairperson of the Social Justice, Welfare and Rural Development Committee in the 17th Congress, she was able to shepherd four bills into law. The Committee produced ten Committee Reports. Of the ten reports, four were approved for 2nd, 3rd Reading and thereafter were signed into law, namely, the Magna Carta of the Poor, 4Ps, Community-Based Monitoring, and National Senior Citizen Commission. The other six bills, namely, the Rural Employment Assistance Program, Social Welfare Development Agencies, Emergency Volunteer Protection Act, Public Solicitations, National Rotary Day and Magna Carta for Child Development Workers, were able to reach the 2nd reading.

Authored several opinion pieces published by media outlets, some of which are:

Some Commentaries Posted in Traditional and Social Media:

  • “No Fight Left Inside Duterte: A Commentary on Duterte’s Midterm SONA” (24 July 2019)
  • “Again and Firmly, I Say No to Any Lowering of MACR (Minimum Age of Criminal Responsibility)” (31 May 2019)
  • “A Commentary: A Pet Victory for VP” (3 October, 2018)
  • “A Commentary: Defiant in the Face of Lies: Only Truth Will Set Our Nation on the True Path of Progress” (29 September 2018)
  • “A Beacon in Dark Times: the UDHR (Universal Declaration of Human Rights) Turns 70 But Why Do We Still Need It?” (27 August 2018)

 

Comments
92 Responses to “‘I Will Be Here’ — Sen. de Lima ”
  1. Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

    Thanks, Joe America, for this. Sen. Leila is a voice of restraint. When we should be ranting and panicking, she is reason and composure in person. It behooves all of us in Duterte times to keep her in our thoughts and prayers. For all intents and purposes, she is a hermit, like a contemplative nun. Prayers, a life given to her Creator, complete surrender to her kahihinatnan (destiny) places her above us, in the clouds, closer and closer to God Most High.

    • Thanks for the appeal for humanity. Senator De Lima symbolizes the way politics and propaganda have been allowed to undermine basic Filipino values of fairness, kindness, and truth under the current Administration.

  2. Micha says:

    So there is such a law called Universal Heath Care Act in the Philippines?

    How “universal” is the coverage? How come poor folks still avoid hospitals like a plague even if they’re terribly sick?

    • karlgarcia says:

      For it to have funds people need to get drunk and lungless. Or we embrace MMT.

      • karl,

        This begs the question, of the listed laws by De Lima, which are funded and which are not ??? So all in the above list are just “laws”, no funds ??? What’s the point of listing them then ???

        So these two also are only mere “suggestions” too ??? How is having a cool sounding law an accomplishment then ???

        1. R.A. No. 10931 (Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act)

        2. R. A. No. 10969 (Free Irrigation Service Act)

        • karlgarcia says:

          The power of the purse is in the hands of congress, they spend five months minimum negotiating the budget prepared by the budget department.

          • So there is really no point listing these bills if none of them are actually in effect, karl.

            Which begs another question, besides speeches and essays, what exactly are her real accomplishments???

            is she like VP Robredo who has a base, ie. if you imprison VP Robredo i’m sure Ireneo’s beloved Bicol region will be up in arms.

            I still fail to see how D5 is so deserving of all this kow-towing , what has she done exactly, that’s grassroots, that is ‘of the people’, that ‘s worthy of being called a legacy.

            Bam’s “Negosyo Centers” based on what I’m seeing in Google is a huge success, and it’s got his name all over it— that’ s an accomplishment. I’m Googling De Lima, and it’s like crickets. nothing, nada, zilch…

            making the “I Will be Here” title of the blog, kinda ironic, and from the looks of it a bit more longer too since Filipinos aren’t really clamoring to save her out of jail. she has no base is my point.

            • a big part of writing these laws is also ensuring that you sell it to the people and make sure it gets funding.

            • karlgarcia says:

              She was not given the goddam chance to even posture or porma.
              I know you hate her guts just because she fell for her driver.
              Financing.
              That is my lament, that is why when I first heard of MMT, I thought if done right, that would be The solution.
              Well in the PHL you can’t make it work. To Micha’s delight it is already working for others that have less foreign denominated loans.

              • ‘I know you hate her guts just because she fell for her driver.’

                karl,

                you make it sound like as if they were Romeo & Juliet, lol!

                I don’t hate her, I’m just wondering why she seems important here in the bigger picture of Philippine politics. now Mayor Isko he’s important; De Lima is a perfect example of zero political juice, you can’t play in the political arena if you’re unable to gauge whether you’re running Full or Empty.

                Trillanes is someone with political acumen, he knows when to play defense and offense , I doubt you’ll ever catch him sleeping with his maid— or if he is he’ll surely have the political savvy, common sense, not to sleep with one implicated in drugs, manufactured or real.

                So to clarify…

                No i don’t hate her, and no i don’t believe she fell for her driver, karl. She’s just not as important (politically) as she is being made out.

              • karlgarcia says:

                To us, she is important!

              • kasambahay says:

                to me, de lima is important as well. and I will echo her, I will be here!

              • If she’s so important to you all, why aren’t you camped out outside her prison demanding justice, see what I mean???

                How important is important, is the question. IF she had been VP Robredo, the whole of Bicol would be there to demand release, how many of you are demanding release ala HONG KONG demanding no extraditions.

                the most committed wins here, not just words. Action, action, action is the best expression of one’s importance. I stand by my ‘not important’ observation, sorry. 😦 it needs to be demonstrated via actions.

                As comparison this dude is important, people are actually demanding that the Navy and the gov’t explain what happened in 2004 off the coast of California.

                (p.s. — the gov’t released a very blurred Flir video, this happened during the day, and there are high def video footage of these things flying around, that’s not released but recorded in the same device )

              • It is true, I suppose, that one can judge the importance of something by the mass of humanity turning out to protest (Marcos) or celebrate (first moon landing). The cultural qualities in the Philippines that go against that notion are people’s obedience and self-containment (the conservative downtrodden quality) plus the suppressing effect of social media (SEEMS like engagement to pound out a FB opinion) plus successful Duterte propaganda that has isolated yellows as the reason for problems (diminishing willingness to be attached to them by joining rallies). But the Senator is highly important to those few who grasp what democracy and its inherent sense of fair play is all about. So it is a quality vs quantity matter and the critical mass does not exist to rise to your sense of what I might term as ‘national importance’.

              • This is certainly not an ‘unimportant’ woman.

              • Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

                Am perplexed by what heard from a fellow yellow: “Keep on fighting,” she said, “but keep Leila there. We don’t like her.” Oh, what self-righteousness, pharisaical! Go, pick up the stone then.

              • That yellow has likely bit on some piece of propaganda, Vice Ganda or someone who Sen De Lima offended as Justice secretary (INC. etc). Her job was one that took her against the grain of self-dealing, so a lot of people would be angry at her. They are the ignorant and the angry.

              • But the Senator is highly important to those few who grasp what democracy and its inherent sense of fair play is all about.”

                This we can agree, Joe.

              • chemrock says:

                “If she’s so important to you all, why aren’t you camped out outside her prison demanding justice, see what I mean???
                How important is important, is the question.”

                Lance,

                I meant to respond to you earlier but was busy. Back now, I noted Joe has said what was on my mind. I’m glad you agreed with Joe. It is not a matter of de Lima the person, but the whole matter of injustice of abused power to silence a brave truth seeker. For if it were the importance of a person that matters, than poor Juan has no place in Philippines whatsoever.

                You know the Libra in me, I really hate injustice. Although it has nothing to me as a pair of foreign eyes, de Lima’s predicament, as well as many others that have been and are being, hounded by this administration, in grotesque ways, pisses me off. What I see is a nation has foresaken a true heroine. I’m not for violent protests, but Filipinos ought to do more. I do agree with you, action matters.

                What can one do, really? Well I don’t know. I love Philippines, but as a non-Filipino, of course I can’t participate. But I sure as hell know that if I were a Filipino, I will damn well not sit in my nipa hut and complain. Well I actually wrote to Amal Clooney and congratulated her for getting a plunderer our of jail and asked for her views on de Lima. It’s just an act to get this knot off my chest. I’m still waiting for her reply. I thought she ought to receive a million similar requests from Filipinos who have their hearts and minds on the right side of the law and divine morals.

              • karlgarcia says:

                I envy Hong Kong and at the same time I am proud of them. Our people power is a thing of the past, we do not follow through, how can we be commited?

              • kasambahay says:

                there are many ways po to show support to sen de lima and not just by sitting vigil outside her prison asking she be set free. attract kapolisan’s attention and one could end nanlaban! or be included in duterte’s narco list, lol!

                have mass and novena said for sen de lima, and include her in our daily prayers. support her family in camarines sur and if they need shoulder to lean on, be that shoulder. and support sen de lima’s many advocacies as well. and if you can visit se de lima in prison, do so.

                de lima already has lawyers working for her release.

              • “I do agree with you, action matters.”

                How easily she was gotten is telling. She was shooting with blanks, instead of firing actual rounds— i see this too with Trillanes (either blanks or he’s no aiming), but he’s just good at bobbing and weaving.

                Mayor Isko seems a nose to grinder typa guy, he is on the rise. I think that yellow Wil is talking about re “keep Leila there” has a point, unless she can actually get stuff done, what good is she gonna be???

                Focus on people like Mayor Isko actually getting stuff done, instead of just talking and writing. Too many talking and writing typa folks in Philippine politics, sure EJKs is action but look at what Mayor Isko is doing that’s action too.

              • karlgarcia says:

                Ah shaddap

              • Ahahahaha! Made my day. Chief Tanod on the job.

              • chemrock says:

                Lance,
                In a venn diagran Isko Moreno’s circle does not touch Duterte circle. So he operates in his sphere far from the madding crowd. He can prosper and I do cheer his initiatives so far. He brings much freshness into City governance.

                De Lima’s venn diagram crosses all the circles of evil power houses. Different story. Sure, cheer on Moreno, but should we abandon de Lima? We destroy the bridge after it’s crossed?

              • Abandoning De Lima is personal decision, but realistically from the looks of it, people have moved on, already have, chemp, unless there is a clamor to get her out so far there is as Joe put it no critical mass, zero , zilch, nada, nunca…

                Critical mass for De Lima may come, as per Wil’s observation — but we have to separate wishful thinking here from reality.

                For Mayor Isko that’s a great point about separate spheres of influence. So here’s more analogy:

                1. De Lima’s sphere has been eaten already by DU30’s sphere. Can never be a political player. as Ireneo has pointed out again and again, Filipinos don’t like losers.

                2. Mayor Isko ‘s sphere may or may not be eaten. is a rising political player. Filipinos now are all looking at Manila, and this young guy that seems to be full of energy.

              • No, I did not say there is no critical mass to get her out. I said she has few supporters compared to the total oblivious population. Indeed, there is a building noise to free her as it is clear there is no crime and no evidence. Even VP Robredo has recently spoken to the point. Kindly don’t add me to your wasted efforts to distort.

              • Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

                Just keep on reading, Lance. We’ll keep on doing what’s right.

              • “So it is a quality vs quantity matter and the critical mass does not exist to rise to your sense of what I might term as ‘national importance’.”

                re critical mass…

                This statement was what I had in mind, Joe— no distortions meant.

              • Right. The critical mass is not zero, nada, zilch. It is not enough to set her free.

              • The nada, zilch, nunca, etc. was to “critical mass”, not “mass”— I don’t doubt that De Lima has few supporters, not saying she has zero supporters.

      • Micha says:

        After a cursory google search I’ve found out that the bill was signed into law by Rodrigo in February of this year, obviously meant to earn pogi points for the midterm elections. It was authored in the Senate by JV Ejercito who, because the bill now appears to be such a toothless animal anyway, failed to gain political leverage as he was eventually booted out of the senate race.

        As typical of many Filipino ways, this legislation is all porma, wala namang ibubuga. It waives fees for consultation and laboratory tests but not the actual medical treatment and procedures. To call it universal healthcare is a joke.

        Technically, if it’s already a law there should be automatic funding allocation. Congress’ failure to do that is motivated more by political – not fiscal – considerations.

        • kasambahay says:

          sa universal health care po, doctors are reaping billions. dead dialysis patients are charged for dialysis they could not possibly avail. not surprising din po na mga kamag-anak mismo ni health sec duque ang nasa philhealth. also, medicines costing millions that were stockpiled sa warehouse na out-of-date, not distributed to the public. apparently, there is not enough health workers to distribute medicines and to check on sick people sa baryos and villages. and if there were health workers, they were being killed, shot as those volunteer doctors sa mindanaw.

          I think, philhealth got funded by pcso, same pcso accused by the president to be utterly corrupt and was closed, but lately then reopened. happy na naman ang mga lotto bettors, their dream of winning millions alive uli.

          • Micha says:

            Philhealth funded by PCSO? What a joke!

            PCSO’s scheme is effectively a tax on poor people. That there is corruption in that organization is a given because their whole operation is a scam reaping profits by preying on poor people’s illusions.

            Philhealth is supposedly a government run health care system. As such, adequate funding necessary to provide adequate and real universal health care could only come from congressional appropriation.

          • karlgarcia says:

            Ever heard of the SSS scam between Accenture HR/Payroll and SSS/pag-ibig?
            Hush money makes media silent

        • karlgarcia says:

          Agree on most points.Notice that the proposed bills always have the ‘and to provide funding thereof’ clause.

          • Micha says:

            Exactly. So where are the funds?

            Apparently the clowns in both congress and the senate have been totally marinated in old fiscal orthodoxy of double entry accounting where they are always looking for revenue source to spend for programs and projects completely unaware of the fact that they have ex nihilo funding powers right on the very legislative ground they stand.

            • karlgarcia says:

              korek ka dyan.

            • karlgarcia says:

              https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2019/08/16/1943886/expanded-health-care-funds-short-p30-b

              The DOF really wants a higher sin tax, I agree they should not rely on higher taxes.
              When Lotto closed albeit temporarily, the DOF panicked or appeared to have panicked.
              So yeah, they must get their acts together on funding and financing.

              • kasambahay says:

                ah finance, fav topic ko po yan, money being the root of all potatoes, lol! dof is still not going heavy on pcso and its buddy, the stl, the small town lotteries. apparently, duterte’s close relatives ay franchisees ng stl, the military and kapolisan may mga franchise din po. nothing wrong with that, of course, sabi ng presidente.

                kaso, pcso chief garma with all her power and authority cannot force stl to remit. I am thinking, na kung ordinary franchisees lang ay kayang kaya niyang paluhurin. not so with duterte’s close relatives, and not so with the military. they outranked her and close friends sila ni duterte. but she did ask the president to intervene and for her effort, her own office was closed tuloy!

                aside from not remitting kuno, stl also had bad practices. lottery winners have complained they have not received winnings, nag-close kasi ang stl and owners could not be contacted. the new owner refused to honor the obligations of the previous owner. and the cycle goes on.

                may balak daw na ipa-lifestyle check ang mga nasa pcso, fat lot would that do.

              • Micha says:

                Ah yes, Joey Salceda – the wunderkind in Gloria Arroyo’s cabinet turns out to a certified dullard when it comes to national government finances.

                With people like that in congress and in Rodrigo’s cabinet as well as his monetary advisers, the country will remain stuck in neoliberal quicksand.

  3. NHerrera says:

    De Lima = EJKs = China

    To me, the great distortions in reasoning versus motives and actions by the Administration on those three items are equivalent.

    Thanks again Will for the piece on De Lima.

    • True, and under the De Lima it is possible to file the other persecutions and harassments that take truly incredible evidence and justice rationalizations:

      – The Sereno impeachments, quo warranto ouster as precedent by politically indebted justices
      – The Trillanes cases, based on records lost by government
      – The Ressa cases, fake tax or foreign ownership cases aimed at silencing a media outlet and intimidating all journalists
      – The Bikoy sedition cases, where anyone who was anywhere with the wrong person was plotting overthrow, according to a liar

      • NHerrera says:

        Yes indeed: injustice to all except to the non-critics and [like a slave] to the foreign “Master” and the latter’s abusive citizens, guests of this country — and the more the rationally argued criticisms and the greater the influential status of these critics, the greater the injustice.

  4. kasambahay says:

    I must be abomination! I protested vs the arrest of the good senator de lima and even before then. I did not keep quiet at the injustice done to her, I kicked up stink and have stink kicked back at me, I fought off menacing trolls and lost me avatars a number of times! as well international media protested too, nationwide news added their own, truly there were protests, even the internet runs hot with protests. as for deer moment, we have to gather our gearshifts.

    wilredo g villanueva, please know that the good senator de lima did not go to prison alone, many were with her in spirit, suffered her pain and felt her anguish, and shared her hope of a better future. prison is physical barrier, but prayers know no barrier, and many prayed to god for sen de lima’s deliverance, for her to be kept safe and courageous. and whadda you know! god responded and sen de lima is as courageous and as well as can be expected. alleluia, alleluia.

  5. Andres 2018. says:

    1. De Lima is a political prisoner.

    2. De Lima was not accomplish enough as a personality that her imprisonment will not warrant an uproar against the government.

    3. De Lima’s name is generally praise abroad by many institution, not in her own country.

    4. De Lima will leave the prison after the 2022 election.

    • kasambahay says:

      the good senator de lima is accomplish enough that the govt felt threatened by her presence. the speed in the way it was done with the executive, the senate and congress all ganging up on her, the judiciary pulling its full weight vs her, the tainted witnesses recruited from equally tainted background only proved to the contrary that she is not accomplished.

      she is decorated senator, and not forgetting ako she has claimed arroyo’s scalp! blocked arroyo’s escape to the world, de lima did! the one time sec of justice is not only much loved by law abiding citizens, she is also much feared by crooks. de lima is a true lawyer, not fake lawyer like imee. and that alone is accomplishment indeed, gone through the hard rigors of law studies.

      de lima is accomplished enough that it took a world boxing champion to declare her senate seat vacant. to all and sundry, de lima is accomplished, praised and much admired in her own country. wilfredo g villanueva’s article above just proved it. and many are calling for her release, praying as well for her well being.

      for certain, duterte’s hordes of minions are not impressed with de lima. unlike others, she has not decamped and has not sold out to the bad side, staying as resolute siya as the statue of lady justice. again, I say, all hail the accomplished senator de lima.

    • Sup says:

      There is more ”drama” about somebody wanting to use a ”wrong” toilet than a sitting senator put in jail accused by trumped up inmates.

      • Yes. Truly astounding absence of patriotic understanding of justice.

        • kasambahay says:

          that is typical po of those lurking on the dark side: their lack of patriotism and understanding of justice severely tainted by one-sided friendship they have with china; think themselves friends of, but china think not. trespassing chinese military ships, trespassing truncated to passing.

          pogo workers not threat to our national security, sabi pa. sabi ko uli, how can we be sure those pogo workers were indeed workers and not chinese military personnel in disguise!

          pogo compound to house pogo workers, its location and proximity to our military headquarter would make eavesdropping a temptation too good to miss! I would not be surprised if pogo compound’s cctvs pivot to nearby military headquarter, noting who goes in and who goes out, and recording state secret conversations.

          • Yes, the friendship is one way but the greedy are blind to such minor matters. And indeed, China excels at spying and thieving of information. One trusts at great risk. Like a chicken entering a den of foxes.

            • kasambahay says:

              methink, spying and thieving of info are just precursor, it will vortex. and once the terrain has been ascertained, there will come a time in the not so distant future when heavy duty suvs will ram the gate of our military headquarter. chinese army pretending to be pogo workers will commandeer the headquarter for the people’s rep of china. our military will not put up resistance, but they’ll be running like headless chickens, lol!

              • kasambahay says:

                and once our military headquarter will fall, the rest of the phil will fall, nawalan ng defender ang bayan.

    • karlgarcia says:

      Hey Andres! The administration spokespeople used your traditional fishing ground argument the last time. Are you Panelo? (joke if false)

    • chemrock says:

      Andres — as usual, your comments always smartly disguised, seemingly worthy of thoughts of a critical mind. But properly parsed, the holes become apparent.

      1. “De Lima is a political prisoner.”

      WRONG. There is no settled definition of what a political prisoner is. It is one of those terms that one uses with the flip of the hand without a careful thought of what it means.

      PACE (Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe) tried to define it such:
      “A person is a political prisoner if he or she meets any one of the following criteria:
      a. The detention violates basic guarantees in the European Convention on Human Rights, particularly freedom of thought, conscience, and religion; freedom of expression and information; and freedom of assembly and association.
      b. The detention is imposed for purely political reasons.
      c. The length or conditions of detention are out of proportion to the offense.
      d. He or she is detained in a discriminatory manner as compared to other persons.
      e. The detention is the result of judicial proceedings that are clearly unfair and connected with the political motives of authorities.”

      Under these criterias, de Lima certainly qualifies to be branded a political prisoner. But I protest.

      A ‘political prisoner’ suggests a person is detained for activities that work against the politics of the opponent, that is, grounded in ideological differences. De Lima’s actiions against Duterte was pure and simple, against the latter’s criminal operations, from the killing fields of Davao to the whole of Philippines. One ought to see clearly through the mist and differentiate evil crimes from politics.

      She is not a political prisoner. She is a victim of a huge victim control dynamic play that is going on now in the Philippines with an admin filled with gaslighters.

      YIf one claims the President or his family is involved in drugs — one becomes the drug trafficker.
      If one claims the president and his family is corrupt — one ends up with millions of dollars in fake foreign bank accounts.
      If one claims the President is assuming dictatorial powers — one becomes destabilisers.

      2.” De Lima was not accomplish enough as a personality that her imprisonment will not warrant an uproar against the government.”

      I confine myself to “not accomplish enough”. Someone who pursues the strong and powerful to bring justice to poor unknown Juans, who came within a whisker of being gunned down in an ambush in that cave in Davao, (she went where no other DOJs ever dared, unless he is a friend of the President). How dare you belittle such selfless sacrifices. By definition, you do mean plundering $10 billion is a great accomplishment that can get millions of Filipinos onto Edsa?

      3. “De Lima’s name is generally praise abroad by many institution, not in her own country.”

      I see nothing but praises of her here. Of course it’s not a national movement. Perhaps Filipinos are not worth dying or going to jail for. Perhaps de Lima should have accepted the olive leaf that Duterte offered at the start of his presidency. Let’s all be pally pally, screw the Juans.

      Oh and why is she praised abroad? Are foreigners smarter than Filipinos to see through the truth of the whole situation?

      4. “De Lima will leave the prison after the 2022 election.”

      Hope your prophecy is spot on. Perchance you don’t have any respect for the daughter waiting on the wings? Will the daughter free de Lima and set in motion the trials and tribulations of the father when 20,000 EJK victims rise in search of justice? Compensation is the word, my friend. 20,000 families will rise up when they see compensation.

  6. canadadry says:

    I envy Senator De Lima. She is the freest inspiring Filipino there is.

    To live one’s life without apology, to share one’s vision without hesitation, to share one’s passion for the country without adjusting one’s tone , to have your family and close friends behind you, and to let your God take care of you no matter what, indeed is making one’s life give salutation to the dawn; where in one’s life every yesterday becomes a dream of happiness and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Rare is the person who can be as hopeful as the dawn.

    Salamat Senator..

  7. Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

    “Rare is the person who can be as hopeful as the dawn.” I echo…

  8. Sup says:

    More drama……..
    NBI arrests De Lima’s ‘nephew,’ co-accused in drug case

    MANILA, Philippines–The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Friday morning arrested an alleged nephew of Senator Leila De Lima in connection with a drug case the detained senator is now facing.

    Jose Adrian Dera or Jad was arrested in Angeles City, Pampanga at 5:30 Friday morning, his lawyer Atty. Raymond Palad said.

    Palad said Dera will be brought to the NBI headquarters in Manila.

    Dera is one of De Lima’s co-accused in the illegal drug case now being heard at the Muntinlupa City Regional Trial Court.

    Read more: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1154422/nbi-arrests-de-limas-nephew-co-accused-in-drug-case#ixzz5wjBlLSN3
    Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

    • kasambahay says:

      alleged nephew lang po si dera. senator de lima sabi nuon pa na she did not know who this ‘nephew’ of hers is. my bet? the nephew is fake, added to pad up her case.

      • Sup says:

        MANILA, Philippines – Jose Adrian Dera or “Jad” said he is not a nephew or aide of former Justice Secretary Leila De Lima but a police anti-drug asset.

        National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) agents who arrested Dera on Friday said they did not include him on the list that they recommended be prosecuted for facilitating illegal drug trade inside the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) because he has no involvement in such activity.

        Dera’s lawyer Atty. Raymond Palad said his client was tapped as a deep penetration agent or an “alpha” by the NCRPO Regional Anti-Illegal Drugs (NCRPO-RAID) on Feb. 26, 2016 because of his connection with Bilibid inmate Hans Tan. Tan is one of the inmates who testified against De Lima during the House inquiry.

        Palad said his client denied receiving millions of money from Co and other inmates for the senatorial bid of De Lima.

        Read more: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1154527/dera-denies-links-to-de-lima-claims-hes-a-police-asset#ixzz5wo8RzbfO

  9. madlanglupa says:

    As an aside: the blue car with the red flag cursing Mainland China belongs to former cop and mayor Abner Afuang, known to be making the rounds mainly in Alabang.

  10. Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

    Whoa, Lance Corporal. The jury is still out. The Leila de Lima story is still being written. She was caught at precisely the time when fake news had just installed an undeserving presidency. Now that his star is waning (watch out for my interview with Prof. Sonny Trillanes), we’ll see with all clarity if Sen. de Lima has zero political value as you claim or will she be the David who slays Goliath with a well-placed, nondescript rock projectile. Not so fast, Lance.

    • Let’s hope you’re right, Wil. Right now the only rising star I can see is Mayor Isko. You look at who Sara Duterte is paying attention to, and it’s neither those senators, but Mayor Isko.

      Maybe she can woo him, maybe not.

  11. Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

    Doing things spiritual, kasambahay, for Sen. Leila. But as I said, unproportional to what she’s doing for us. She’s ready and willing to die for us.

  12. Doing things spiritual is exactly IMHO the problem here, Wil.

    too much “Not of this world”, when it should be “Give unto Cesar” already. at least there should be balance. Too much inaction, and you’re complicit.

  13. This thread https://joeam.com/2019/08/14/i-will-be-here-sen-de-lima/#comment-302293 especially the first three comments from the link onward say a lot.

    Senator De Lima has a very pure notion of justice which is not yet that developed among Filipinos. The majority, in my opinion, have a similar notion of fairness as kids playing some kind of game. They see the rules only when they favor them and ignore them when they are not in their favor. Usually kids learn at some point that rules are something we all stick to because they make life more predictable and easy for all of us. But a lot of unwritten rules in the Philippines are in fact only for those within concentric circles of closeness, the further you are the less they seem to apply.

    1. From the family to friends to batchmates and fratmates, those one does not know but are somehow similar to oneself – same school, same hometown, same religion, finally to those who have almost nothing in common with oneself. Few seem to care about Marawi, or Lumad schools.

    LCPL_X mentioned that ex-Sen. Trillanes and VP Robredo have more political pull. They do because they have groups they represent. Trillanes the Catholic, conservative part of the middle class – Will’s kinda folks. VP Robredo the poor who want to work their way up by honest hard work, the kind of people helped by her projects. Lots of places she helped vouch for her, this is not the kind of utang na loob that comes from mendicancy, it comes from being given a real opportunity.

    2. Then you have the personalism. Will mentioned that even a fellow yellow does not like De Lima and therefore wants to keep her in jail. How can personal dislike go so far that you want someone who has personally done you no wrong to stay in jail? That is not just personalism that is spitefulness. What makes people so spiteful? Joe practically gave the answer when he said that De Lima went against those who are self-dealing. Self-dealing seems a prime value for many Filipinos.

    Active righteousness of the kind De Lima practiced might make self-dealers feel a but guilty, which turns around into anger against her “who is she to think she is better than us”?. The fact that she “sinned” – not against anyone but against Church “morality”, gives her haters a sense of rightness.

    • P.S. Chel Diokno also practices active righteousness, but he has the support of many leftists as he got them out of jail as a human rights lawyer. Also utang na loob at play there.

      Fairness and justice in the Judeo-Christian sense is yet hardly rooted in Philippine society.

      This I think is also one reason why ex-CJ Sereno decided to play a very low-key approach after she was removed quo warranto, though she also represents a certain righteousness, except that it is the born-again and not the Catholic version.

    • “They see the rules only when they favor them and ignore them when they are not in their favor. Usually kids learn at some point that rules are something we all stick to because they make life more predictable and easy for all of us. “

      Thanks, Ireneo. Great perspective as always!

      Like that former customs officer I talked to, Filipinos bring in the craziest things to custom, then lie saying I don’t know whose that is, when their luggage is opened by custom officers.

      Another guy I know works security in Las Vegas and same observation, towels, sheets, small items in hotel rooms go missing.

      If youre gonna steal, cheat, lie, do it bigly, if you’re gonna get caught get caught for something big… not small potatoes, LOL! now I’m being facetious but I totally agree with what you’re saying, Ireneo.

    • Statistically speaking that means Filipinos’ ability to do cost-benefit , risk-rewards analysis is very off, on a national scale. But that small individual sampling re LAX and Las Vegas is very telling.

      • I was thinking more of crying Cardemas.

        He knew he was blatantly breaking the rules and now he cries when they apply.

        https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10157769090686977&id=116724526976

        • The opposite being Bong Revilla celebrating his release by dancing budots, acting as if his having been in jail had been a grave injustice in the first place.

          So it is not just the small fry, the attitude is what I meant.

          “Fair is what is good for me/mine”

          • The De Lima syndrome in the US:

            “We hate Trump like they hated President Obama. However, we hate Trump because he is a racist, misogynist, rapist, pedophile, pathological liar, malignant narcissist, lifetime criminal, goddamn traitor, and #CROOKEDPRESIDENT.

            They hated Obama because they are racist.”

        • kasambahay says:

          ah, the crying cardema, shedding tears while the president is missing in action, all explanations left to the honorary chinese mandarin panelo! cardema gotta do more than just crying ala bato. big men cry, little men squabble, guanzon not crying.

          the president is missing in action for days now, the terrorists in mindanaw have not got him, lol!

          • kasambahay says:

            when guanzon came for cardeman, no one was left to speak for him! the one cardema had hoped would speak for him has gone to bed, struck yata by the low end of bipolar and will be catatonic for days, barely moving and staring at the ceiling. hoping ako that the much stared at ceiling is not chinese made gaya ng chinese made ceiling ng skyway na natumbak just recently. build build build, falling falling and the ceiling has fallen.

            the stress of going to china must have felled him. has bitten much more than he can chew, he did. but no worries, he has a platoon of doctors caring for him.

            • Chinese spare parts plus Dr. Fu Manchu’s youth serum =

              Da Bisdak Frankenstein aka Bionic Buang.

            • kasambahay says:

              what can a platoon of doctors do? vs his bipolar, not much. they would just have to ensure, he is comfortable, medicated and moved position to avoid pressure sore, turn this way and that way and given punas now and then. feeding him might be problematic, he may not be able to swallow, but he can be fed via gastric tube. his poor brain has gone awol and the body as well. the most his doctors can do is wait it out, wait for him to come back. and he will come out of it like nothing has happened, except maybe his mental acuity is lessened.

              going to china so soon after his low? not advisable yan. he needs to recover and may not be in a state to bargain and haggle with xi. except perhaps if xi has the same condition as him, and it’s party time for them both, lol!

              sorry for being a dork!

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