OSG 'caught with hand in cookie jar', says Hontiveros

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 24 2019 07:27 PM | Updated as of Jul 24 2019 07:41 PM

MANILA - The Office of the Solicitor General's supposed involvement in the filing of a sedition complaint against Vice President Leni Robredo and several opposition figures was a classic case of being caught with a hand in the cookie jar, according to Senator Risa Hontiveros.

"Assistant ba sila o main author? That's what you call classic case na nahuli kang yung kamay mo nasa cookie jar. Mahirap sabihin na walang koneksiyon ang Office of the President sa Office of the SolGen samantalang ang SolGen ang primary na abugado ng gubyerno at sinong pinakamataas sa gubyerno?" Hontiveros said in an interview on ANC's Headstart.

ABS-CBN News earlier found that 2 employees of the OSG had a hand in drafting the affidavit of Peter Joemel Advincula alias Bikoy, which was the basis for the sedition and inciting to sedition complaints filed by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG).

But lawyer Lorenzo Gadon said the acts of the OSG in giving advice should not be interpreted as oppression of the opposition.

Gadon said OSG officials were not present when Advincula's statements were being taken. He however said that it was normal for any government office to seek the OSG's advice for correction of any legal matter in line with their work.

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"There is nothing wrong nor sinister with that since the OSG is the lawyer of the government," he said.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra, meantime, said police's evidence must support its allegations, "regardless of who drafted the complaint-affidavit."

"That's why I want the special panel of state prosecutors to commence the preliminary investigation immediately," he said.

Hontiveros described the charges as a clear case of harassment to silence the opposition.

"No matter what the denials of OSG or what the president himself makes, kami sa opposition, we are prepared to make proper legal defense," she said.