MANILA - The drug allegations against Liberal Party (LP) stalwarts Senator Franklin Drilon and former Interior Secretary Mar Roxas was the administration "going all-out to demonize" their party and "divert attention" from pressing issues, LP said Thursday.
Ricky Serenio, a supposed bagman of a drug cartel, claimed in an affidavit that Drilon and Roxas were protectors of slain "drug lord" Melvin Odicta Sr.
Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre said Monday that a preliminary investigation could be conducted since Serenio's affidavit may serve as a complaint.
"After efforts to link the party to destabilization, it is now being accused of being involved in the illegal drug trade solely because of a baseless testimony of a so-called bagman of a drug syndicate," LP said in a statement.
"It appears this administration has the habit of manufacturing 'witnesses' who have questionable record and reputation, just like what it did to Senator Leila de Lima, who is now languishing in jail due to testimonies of convicted criminals serving jail sentences."
The once ruling party then noted that P1,000 was allegedly taken from the alleged P50-million bribe pocketed by Aguirre's fraternity brothers at the Bureau of Immigration (BI) so that their case would not be classified as plunder.
LP was apparently referring to sacked BI deputy commissioners Michael Robles and Al Argosino, who allegedly pocketed P50 million from tycoon Jack Lam in exchange for the release of 1,000 "undocumented" Chinese workers arrested at his Pampanga casino.
"There seem to be incidents of 'dagdag-bawas' of evidence at the Department of Justice. Adding evidence for those considered as foes, and subtraction for friends," LP alleged.
LP also accused the government of diverting public attention away from pressing issues like rising prices, extrajudicial killings, corruption, and drug smuggling at the Bureau of Customs.
The party told the administration that instead of "swallowing the words of the so-called bagman and wasting time," it should focus on finding the culprits behind the entry of P6.4-billion worth of shabu that slipped past port inspections in May.