MANILA - Opposition Senator Leila de Lima on Monday denied that she financed Abu Sayyaf bandits -- an allegation, which she said, marks a "new low" in the administration's supposed smear campaign against her.
"This latest accusation that I am a protector and financier of terrorists is not only totally insane but also outrageously ridiculous! It only exposes at how this administration could bend so low at digging in the imagined dirt that it fails to see the public laughing at them," De Lima said in a statement.
"Like many of you, I too am exhausted and disgusted at this administration’s obsession for manufactured lies and malicious conjectures to smear my integrity and damage my name. Sadly, some hapless pawns are more than willing to play in this vicious game of political persecution and character assassination," she added.
Charges were filed Friday against De Lima, former Sulu governor Abdusakur Tan and three others for their supposed involvement in the release from jail of three suspected Abu Sayyaf fighters.
De Lima said the complaint only shows that "the administration's demolition job against its political opponents is sinking to a new low to hide its own incompetence and recklessness to address more pressing national concerns."
The senator is also facing drug trafficking charges and a disbarment case over her alleged involvement in the narcotics trade inside the New Bilibid Prison.