MANILA - Sen. Francis Escudero admitted he is saddened by the ongoing word war between Senate Minority Leader Juan Ponce Enrile and Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago but said each senator is accountable for the words they say.
In an interview, Escudero said both senators have been hurt in the word war.
"Well, nakakalungkot syempre yon na dumadating sa level na yon sa kabila ng mga problemang kinakaharap natin. Syempre hindi natin maiiwasan, tao pa rin, may nasasaktan, may nananakit, at kailangang ilabas yon. Nakakalungkot lang na kung bakit kailangang humantong at dumating sa puntong yon para sa magkabilang panig," he told reporters.
Asked if the Senate leadership should step in and end the fight, he said: "I leave it to the Senate leadership, both the Senate president, the pro tempore and the majority leader, pero karapatan kasi ng kada miyembro na magsalita sa kung anong bagay."
"Pagpinigilan mo kasing magsalita para sa isang bagay baka sa susunod sa ibang bagay naman. Susunod ibang bagay naman at wala nang magsasalita. At the end of the day, each one is accountable, each one is responsible for whatever he will say or not say, do or not do in the plenary and as a member of the chamber."
Enrile on Wednesday resorted to name-calling to strike back at Santiago, calling the lady senator a bitter and obsessive hater full of inanities.
"This former judge does not seem to understand the meaning of due process...Due process means you hear first the evidence before you condemn. A parrot can memorize legal principles, but cannot apply them," he said in a privilege speech.
He ridiculed Santiago's pick-up lines and said the lady senator nearly flunked the Bar exam.
He also reminded the public that Santiago used to see a psychiatrist.
Santiago, meanwhile, said she will answer Enrile's statements next week.