De Lima gets cold reception on move to work as senator | Malaya Business Insight

Lopez, J. (2017, May 3). De Lima gets cold reception on move to work as senator . Malaya Business Insight. Retrieved July 4 2017 from

De Lima gets cold reception on move to work as senator
May 03, 2017

ALLOWING detained Sen. Leila de Lima to attend sessions or allowing her to vote on “critical measures” would set a bad precedent, according to Senators Grace Poe and Alan Peter Cayetano.

The two cited the cases of Sen. Antonio Trillanes and former Senators Ramon Revilla Jr. and Jinggoy Estrada who were detained while sitting as senators but were not allowed to attend sessions.

In the case of Trillanes, Cayetano said he was allowed to hold hearings inside his detention cell but was not allowed to go out by the court to attend sessions.

“What I see is that precedent-wise… Senator Bong and Senator Jinggoy were not allowed to attend the sessions… they were not even allowed to vote even inside their detention cell.

“You were detained for a reason. What they should do is to hasten the resolution of a case to find out if you are guilty or not,” Po said.

Minority leader Franklin Drilon had earlier said the minority bloc would make a pitch for the court to allow De Lima to participate in the deliberation of “critical” measures, particularly bills resurrecting death penalty, postponing the barangay elections and lowering the age of criminal liability.

But Cayetano said the court should be consistent in applying the law, noting that Trillanes, who was detained on mutiny charges, was allowed to function as a senator but not to attend the session.

Cayetano also pointed out that Estrada and Revilla, who were detained on plunder charges, were also not allowed to attend session or vote on several bills.

“We have to have consistent rules,” Cayetano said. “It’s the court and not the executive or legislative who make up the rules to be applicable to all.”

Estrada, meanwhile, told De Lima the Senate could function without her.

In a message posted on his Facebook page, Estrada said: “Do you think the court would allow you to attend sessions? What do you think of yourself? That many people love you? That you have many supporters? You are wrong.

“The Senate can function even without you!! In fact, they don’t even need your vote! You should know that!! You’re supposed to be a topnotch lawyer, right?” he said.

He reminded De Lima that she caused his detention, along with Revilla and former Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile. He said the Senate functioned even in their absence.

“They can easily muster a quorum with or without us. Just an unsolicited advice to you Madam Leila, I don’t think you should push through with your plan of filing a motion before the court for you to attend the Senate sessions. That will prove to be an exercise in futility,” Estrada added.

National| Malaya Business Insight

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