February 23, 2012 · Posted in: General
JUSTICE SECRETARY Leila de Lima invoked executive privilege in declining to respond to a question by Senator-Judge Allan Peter Cayetano as to whether there was a whistleblower who gave her information as to how the Supreme Court decided to lift the travel ban on the former first family.
Cayetano asked de Lima if her opinion that Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona maneuvered to have the high tribunal issue a temporary restraining order was based only on the dissenting opinion written by Associate Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.
Cayetano asked if it was possible that additional information had reached her office as to how the Supreme Court voted.
“Dun lang po ba sa dissenting opinion nabuo ang opinyon ninyo na may maniobra dito?” Cayetano said. “O may ibang nakaabot sa inyo about what happened and how they deliberated?”
De Lima asked for a minute to reflect before she answered the question. When she was ready, she said: “I will momentarily decline to answer that question on the ground that it may be covered by executive privilege.”
Cayetano pressed further, asking if it was possible that someone had leaked information to de Lima and the prosecutors.
“May possibilidad po ba na nabuo ang paniniwala pati ng prosecution na hindi lang dahil sa pagbabasa nito (dissenting opinion), pero dahil may nagsumbong sa inyo?” Cayetano said.
De Lima however stuck to her guns and asked that she be excused from answering on grounds of executive privilege.