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MANILA – (UPDATED W/ VIDEO) Senator Richard Gordon on Wednesday withdrew his threat to file an ethics complaint against Senators Antonio Trillanes IV and Leila De Lima for un-parliamentary acts during the extrajudicial killings probe last Monday.
Gordon said there was no need to file an ethics complaint against the two senators.
He also said he would no longer deliver a privilege speech that could be the basis of an ethics investigation.
“Senator de Lima has been under severe stress. I have never wanted to add to her stress… like I told you, every time I see her, I kiss her. I always encourage her and in fact I even asked her I will not accept (the chairmanship of the committee) unless you’re a member of this committee. My good faith is manifested,” Gordon said, adding that he still considers De Lima his friend.
“Hindi naman siya kalaban e. Yung debate iba, iba yung kaaway. Huwag lang mamemersonal,” he said.
When asked again if he would push through with the complaint, Gordon said: “Kakausapin ko na lang sila because serious ‘yun… but you know you really have to watch out. As senator, she must remember that she must be of mild temperament.”
This happened after Trillanes made a brief visit at the office of Sen. Richard Gordon Wednesday afternoon, a day after the two, along with de Lima engaged in a very bitter exchange of arguments.
In less than 10 minutes of the closed-door meeting, Trillanes emerged from Gordon’s office looking very much relieved, but mum on what transpired between them.
“Mas marami kasing nare-resolve na mga bagay directly and quietly so I promise not to issue statements about the matter,” he said.
But it was Gordon who gave a glimpse on their meeting.
“Senator Trillanes is gentleman enough to come to the office and he said that it just so happened that he was very passionate about the cause and that he was going to stop the word war already. And I said ‘no problem, we’re gonna be here for long time. Magsama tayo ng matino para masaya tayo dito,’” Gordon said.
“So tapos na yun. We’ll move forward,” he said.
On Tuesday, Gordon said the committee could file an ethics complaint against Trillanes and De Lima for “un-parliamentary” acts, conduct and remarks.
De Lima expressed gratitude with the gesture of Gordon.
“I am with him in pursuing the truth in the investigations of the committee on justice and human rights,” De Lima said.
“While I respect his feelings on the matter, I do hope he would consider his stand on the alleged concealment of material information,” she added.
But only hours before the meeting, Trillanes said the termination of the Senate justice committee investigation on extra-judicial killings in Davao City supposedly involving Davao death squad (DDS) “smacks of cover-up.”
Trillanes said Gordon, panel chair, was actually determined to stop the public hearings on DDS because of his loyalty to President Duterte.
It was Trillanes who filed a separate resolution focusing an investigation into killings in Davao City during Duterte’s more than two decades of incumbency as the city mayor.
“I think he (Gordon) is determined apparently to shut this (investigation on DDS) down probably out of allegiance to President Dutere. But its smacks of a cover up,” Trillanes said.
Gordon on Tuesday said the public hearings on DDS has already been terminated following heated debates Monday night that was punctuated by De Lima’s walkout from the plenary.
Gordon said confessed hit man Edgar Matobato is a damaged good and would no longer called to the hearings.
It was Matobato who claimed that he and other DDS members, mostly policemen who were under the Davao City police’s heinous crime division, killed at least 1,000 persons allegedly on orders of then Mayor Duterte.
The policemen denied Matobato’s allegations.
“With the way that Sen. Gordon is running the hearings, you would see that he’s determined to shut this down as soon as possible before we can get something bigger or clearer and the people will see a clearer picture of what really happened in the DDS regime under Mayor Duterte,” Trillanes said.
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