Crossroads in the De Lima Case

‘With no drugs traded, and no drug lords to trade them, it is highly doubtful how one can reasonably conclude that De Lima conspired to trade illegal drugs’ February will be a month to watch in the criminal cases against Senator Leila de Lima. Not only will it be the fourth-year anniversary of De Lima’s …

Heart of a Servant Leader

“The book is about the transformative and dynamic leadership of the holder of the second-highest elective position in the land.” When the history of the Philippines is finally written, long after we have awakened from the nightmare when a pandemic crippled the economy, shut down factories and offices, closed schools and sports venues, and changed …

Universal Support for Justice Leonen

The impeachment complaint filed against Supreme Court Associate Justice Marvic Leonen is devoid of merit and should not be given due course. It is a direct attack on the independence and integrity of the Supreme Court of the Philippines and the whole Judiciary. While I have been critical of the impeachment cases against former Chief …

No to Red-Tagging, Yes to Peace Process

In her complaint for malfeasance and misconduct against government officials who have red-tagged her, Sarah Elago points out how red-tagging or red-baiting, has long been part of the government’s strategy against critics. Indeed, as Nymia Pimentel Simbulan stated in a paper published in 2011, historically, red-baiting in the Philippines has taken many forms including – …

Criminalizing red-tagging

Last Tuesday, I was a resource person of the Senate Committee on National Defense and Security, Peace, Unification and Reconciliation. Senator Panfilo Lacson presided over a hearing on Senate Resolution No. 559, which directed the Senate Committee to exercise its oversight authority over the defense sector on the issue of red-tagging/ red-baiting of certain celebrities, …

Imperfect Justice in Ampatuan Massacre

Yesterday was the 11th anniversary of the Ampatuan massacre. With the guilty verdicts imposed on many of the accused —most of the masterminds and many of the perpetuators—last December 2019, this year’s milestone is not as depressing as in previous years. At the same time, we must remember that what we achieved with the guilty …

Duterte Rants Against VP Robredo

President Rodrigo Duterte regularly spews profanities in public, but his latest tirades against Vice President Leni Robredo is in a class of its own. Although the President has castigated the vice president on previous occasions, the level of malice and vitriol he hurled against Robredo has reached a new high this time. In a televised …

Lawfare Against De Lima and Media

From the beginning, and for years now, I have argued that there is no basis for the charges against Senator Leila De Lima. Developments in her trial this week confirmed that. Any serious observer in that process will concede that the government has nothing against the detained opposition leader. As the Free Leila De Lima …

Inside the August Halls, Lord Rises

Co-Authored with Jayvy Gamboa. “Today, history is made, once again, in these august halls.” This was how newly elected Speaker Lord Allan Velasco described his controversial rise to power on October 12, after weeks of power struggle with Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano on their supposed term-sharing agreement brokered by no less than President Rodrigo Duterte at the …

In Defense of Facebook

‘The shutdown of these inauthentic advocacy pages is one of Facebook’s most prudent decisions thus far. I give it my full support.’ In a move that was perhaps surprising to many, Facebook, in the last week, took down hundreds of coordinated fake accounts that were interfering in the politics of the Philippines and the US. According to …