It may be imaginary but what is happening to Sen. Leila de Lima these days seems to appear that she has this noose around her neck that is gradually tightening up.
De Lima probably thought that when she was chair of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) and went after former Mayor Rodrigo Duterte in Davao that she would succeed in hanging the latter for his alleged human rights violation or abuses that was highly publicized.
Alas, she failed but what she succeeded instead was putting Duterte in bad light by making the latter appear that he was behind the notorious and feared Davao Death Squad (DDS).
Needless to say that nothing came out of the investigation and no charges were filed against Duterte and Davao City continued to be the peaceful and livable place it is today, which is envied by other cities in the country.
But what de Lima did to Duterte – the indignity, shame and derision inflicted- has always left a bad taste in Duterte’s mouth and tore the very fabric of pride and decency inside his being.
There was nothing that Duterte could do in avenging the wrong that de Lima has done during those times especially that de Lima has become the high and mighty that she acted to be as DOJ Secretary.
It is very obvious however, in today’s events, that even as Secretary of Justice, de Lima continued to harbor displeasure and enmity against Duterte. The most glaring proof to this is secretly keeping the self-declared killer Edgar Matobato under the witness protection program (WPP), either for safe-keeping or to be used later as ‘lethal weapon’ against Duterte, if the time arises.
As we all know, de Lima, a popular DOJ secretary of the Aquino administration, especially when she spearheaded the raids in the luxurious kubols (living quarters) of drug lords inside the New Bilibid Prison (NBP), and a known stalwart member of the Liberal Party, ultimately became a senator during the presidential elections in 2016.
Yes, she was the 12th and last among those voted upon, but still a senator nevertheless. But never in de Lima’s wildest dream however would she have thought that Duterte will one day be president.
In fact she probably thought that the Filipino people will shun from voting to the presidency a man whom de Lima herself has disgraced by calling him vicious and deplorable, all but short of calling Duterte a killer.
How gravely wrong de Lima was and the rest is history.
Now de Lima is feeling the noose – the same imaginary noose that she once placed around the neck of Duterte – which, unknowingly, Duterte transferred to her neck.
The shocking difference now is that de Lima’s noose is starting to tighten all because of her greed and scandalous folly that has been exposed in Duterte’s relentless war on illegal drugs.
That she has used Matobato to testify against Duterte in an investigation that was suppose to shed light on extrajudicial killings (EJK) only proved her intense hatred against Duterte. This move and her malicious intentions, however, cost her the chairmanship of the justice committee which was tasked to investigate the EJK.
Matobato’s unreliability as witness in making it appear that Duterte was behind the DDS only help tighten slowly the noose around de Lima’s neck.
That the House of Representatives is conducting its own probe on de Lima’s involvement in drug-related activities inside the NBP also adds up to the further tightening of the noose around de Lima’s neck when it was revealed by the drug lords and other witnesses how she was accumulating money coming from them.
What could really hang de Lima for sure is when the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) can provide Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre bank documents that could possibly link de Lima to the drug money from the NBP drug trade.