Is CHR chief related to Joma Sison?

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 30 2009 04:35 PM | Updated as of Jul 31 2009 11:46 AM

MANILA - A party-list congressmen on Thursday asked Commission on Human Rights chief Leila de Lima to inhibit herself from Filipino-American activist Melissa Roxas's abduction and torture case since she is allegedly a relative of Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) leader Jose Maria Sison.

Alliance for Nationalism and Democracy (ANAD) Rep. Pastor Alcover said at a press conference he has information de Lima is related to Sison's wife, Juliet de Lima-Sison.

Alcover said Sison's wife and the CHR chief hail from the same village in Iriga City in Camarines Sur, and that de Lima's father is an uncle of the CPP leader's spouse.

The congressman said de Lima should clarify her alleged relation to Sison, which could make her biased in the CHR's handling of Roxas's abduction and torture case.

Alcover is allied with Bantay Rep. Jovito Palparan, who also questioned de Lima's purported relation to the CPP leader's wife.

Palparan, a former military general labelled by militants as "Berdugo" for allegedly abducting and murdering several leftist activists, accused the CHR of being biased against the military.

He said the CHR should include in its investigation the possible involvement of the New People's Army (NPA) in the abduction and torture of the Filipino-American activist.

The two party-list representatives had earlier released a video showing Roxas in the company of suspected NPA members.
(Read: Did Melissa train in NPA camp? )

Roxas had denied that she is the woman in the video. (Read: Melissa denies she's NPA trainee in video )

Palparan and Alcover, meanwhile, challenged Roxas to undergo a lie-detector test.

Radio dzMM reported that according to Quezon Rep. Lorenzo Tañada III, Palparan's suggestion was unnecessary because the House of Representatives' investigation is focused mainly on the anti-torture bill.

Tañada is the chairman of the House committee on human rights, which conducted a hearing on the alleged abduction and torture of the Filipino American activist. -- With reports from Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News and Jun Lingcoran, radio dzMM