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Sabit kayo! Gordon whitewashed Senate probe on EJKs; Cayetano abetted brutal war on drugs – Sabio

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Their role in the Senate inquiry into the alleged extrajudicial killings brought by President Duterte’s war on drugs, has earned Senators Richard Gordon and Alan Peter Cayetano criminal charges before the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Lawyer Jude Sabio, legal counsel of self-confessed hitman Edgar Matobato, claimed that Gordon’s public pronouncements and accusations as chair of the committee on justice – the panel that investigated the issue on EJKs last year – led to the whitewash and abrupt termination of the proceedings.

Gordon, he said, is also liable under Article 25 (d) 197 of the Rome Statute for holding that there are EJKs committed by the Philippine National Police (PNP) operating under Duterte’s campaign against drugs but that these are not state-sponsored.

Cayetano, on the other hand, is liable for aiding and abetting the killings brought by the war on drugs through his speeches and public pronouncements, Sabio said in his 77-page communication submitted to the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC.

“Despite the increasing number of deaths due to the war on drugs, Cayetano has been denying the existence of EJKs and encouraging Pres. Duterte’s ‘war on drugs.’ According to him, because of the deaths of suspected criminals and drug users and pushers, the Fiilpino citizens feel safer now.

“Publicly defending and endorsing the deaths of suspected criminals and drug offenders in various speeches, he noted that EJKs should be connected to ideology: ‘If the killing is not connected to an ideology, the victim is not a labor leader, not a priest or not nor an activist, it’s not EJK. It means if a pusher is killed or if pushers killed each other, it’s not an EJK’,” Sabio said.

Sabio also noted that Cayetano, being a staunch ally and ‘point man in the Senate’ of Duterte, also plotted the removal of Sen. Leila de Lima as chair of the Senate committee on justice and human rights and replaced with another ally, Gordon, who subsequently whitewashed and abruptly terminated the investigation.

Sabio also said that Cayetano, who was the defeated vice presidential running mate of Duterte during the 2016 national elections, succeeded in railroading the investigation by declaring vacant the entire membership of the said committee.