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1 buwan pinagplanuhan: Majority bloc wants to eject Leila de Lima. Find out who it wants as justice chair


Members of the Senate majority bloc met Sunday night (Sept. 18) to discuss how to remove Senator Leila de Lima as chair of the Senate committee on justice and human rights, Politiko has learned.

During the meeting, the following names were floated as possible replacements of De Lima as committee chair: Senators Richard Gordon, Francis Escudero and Alan Peter Cayetano.

Conspicuously absent at the meeting, however, was the group of Liberal Party lawmakers led by Senate President Pro Tempore Franklin Drilon.

Aside from Drilon, other LP members in the Senate are Senators De Lima, Joel Villanueva, Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan, Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV and Ralph Recto.

Politiko’s source said the majority has been plotting to oust De Lima as committee chair for around a month.

De Lima has been leading the Senate committee’s investigation in drug-related killings over the past few weeks. On Sept. 15, she pulled off a surprise by presenting as witness self-confessed hitman Edgar Matobato, who claimed to have killed several people on President Rodrigo Duterte’s orders.

Other committee members have complained they were not informed of Matobato’s appearance before the hearing.

On Monday (Sept. 19), Cayetano delivered a privilege speech in which he appealed to his colleagues to let another senator chair the Senate justice committee because of De Lima’s supposed bias.