Solicitor General Jose Calida expressed yesterday his willingness to help in the prosecution of Senator Leila de Lima over her alleged involvement in the illegal drugs trade in the New Bilibid Prison (NBP).
“The office of the SolGen offers its legal services to the complainants who sued Ms. de Lima,” Calida said yesterday during a press conference with the Coalition Against Illegal Drugs (COIL).
De Lima faces criminal complaints filed separately by the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC); the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI); former NBI Deputy Directors Deputy Directors Reynaldo Esmeralda and Ruel Lasala; and NBP inmate and self-confessed drug trader Jaybee Sebastian.
Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II has already ordered the cases consolidated and formed a panel to conduct the preliminary investigation.
Calida explained that the office of the Solicitor General is “the principal state counsel of the Republic and represents Philippines in any litigation proceeding, investigation.”
“The office of the SolGen is the Republic’s defender. However, under the law, the SolGen can also act and represent the people,” said Calida who considers De Lima as public enemy number one.
Calida also hit back at the senator for her criticisms against the anti-drug war of President Duterte.
“Senator De lima unleashed nasty and destabilizing tirades against President Duterte’s war on drugs,” he observed.
“We can’t accept these tirades of Senator De Lima,” stressed Calida. (JEFFREY G. DAMICOG)