Gabriela rebukes De Lima: ‘Frailties of a woman’ not an alibi for crimes

Image from Gabriela's Twitter account
  • Women’s party-list group weighed in on senator’s admission of past affair with driver
  • It blasted her for trying to use her gender amid accusations
  • Group said De Lima shouldn’t use her gender as a shield from criminal accountability

MANILA, Philippines – Women’s party-list group Gabriela scored Sen. Leila de Lima after she admitted her past affair with former driver Ronnie Dayan amid perceptions she is trying to play the gender card and paint herself as a victim.

On its Twitter account, the group told De Lima that her gender cannot be used as an alibi to shield herself from criminal accountability.

So-called ‘frailties of women’, even men or any gender for that matter, can never be cited as a defense for crimes, be it adultery, a***e of authority by a public official or drug trafficking. It should not be used — especially by one who holds a position of power like Senator Leila de Lima — as an excuse from criminal accountability to paint herself as a victim,” the group said.

The response came as De Lima — who is legally annulled — admitted being in a relationship with the married Dayan for a few years before she became senator.

The senator, however, denied that the relationship affected her work or led to criminal activities.

“My track record as a public official, first as Commission on Human Rights chair and next as secretary of justice, speaks for itself. My record and my reputation have been untarnished until now because of all these unjust, unfair and false allegations and fabricated lies against my alleged involvement in the drug trade. I have made my peace with my past and my family. I don’t know if my primary attacker can say the same,” she said.

De Lima is facing four disbarment cases before the Supreme Court, and an imminent criminal case for her alleged involvement in the illegal drug trade.