De Lima on Duterte’s Claim She Kidnapped GMA: Ridiculous
By Rosette Adel (philstar.com) | Updated June 3, 2015 – 6:17pm
MANILA, Philippines — Justice Secretary Leila De Lima on Tuesday dismissed as “ridiculous” the accusation of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte that she kidnapped former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in 2011.
In a televised interview of Duterte on Gikan sa Masa, Para sa Masa in Davao on Sunday, he alleged that De Lima arrested Arroyo and her husband, Mike, at the airport by forcibly denying them their right to travel without any warrant.
“At that time, there was no case yet filed in court. Actually, what they did was they kidnapped or forced the Arroyos to go with them,” Duterte said.
De Lima. however, laughed off the accusation, saying she will no longer respond to Duterte’s latest statements.
“Yung mga summary executions na ‘yan, karapatan kong sabihin ‘yan at kondenahin ‘yung mga ganyan. Bakit ho siya? Nagiging foul na e, imagine kung saan-saan na siya nakakarating maski ‘yang sa issue kay GMA, alam niyo naman po kung ano ang ginawa natin doon,” De Lima said in a televised ambush interview.
“O tapos, kidnapping? Hay nako, ridiculous na talaga ‘yan, ewan ko, ewan ko kung ano’ng ibig niyang palabasin,” De Lima added.
The two officials have recently been engaged in a word war, with De Lima accusing Duterte of his involvement in the Davao Death Squad, which enforced disappearances and killings in his hometown.
Duterte denied the reports and instead hit back at De Lima, whom he called as a political opportunist eyeing a higher post through the 2016 national polls.
In the same televised interview, De Lima also denied Duterte’s claims that she is not taking action to rid the New Bilibid Prison of illegal drugs and to address the issue on privileged inmates.
“Inaksyunan nga namin kaya nga kami nag-raid, but we had to plan that operation very carefully. It took months for that operation to materialize so no one can accuse me of inaction. Let alone, condoning these illegal activities. That’s too unfair, alamin muna ang facts bago nag-aakusa nang mga ganyan.” De Lima said.
Despite refusal to respond to allegations, De Lima said Duterte’s criticisms would not stop her from accomplishing her job and expressing her opinion as she also has freedom of expression.
“Kahit araw-arawin niya akong insultuhin, lait-laitin at i-criticize ng mga kung anu-ano, hindi rin ako titigil sa paggawa at sa pagsasalita ng gusto ko ring sabihin. Siya lang ba ang may freedom of expression? Lahat naman tayo may freedom of expression, saka meron ho akong trabaho na dapat gampanan,” De Lima said.