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Posted at: Mar 21, 2017, 12:48 AM; last updated: Mar 21, 2017, 12:48 AM (IST)

Philippine VP in trouble over drug war

Marcos loyalist files impeachment complaint against Leni Robredo
Philippine VP in trouble over drug war
Philippine Vice-President Maria Leonor ‘Leni’ Robredo takes an oath to the nation at the Quezon City hall on Monday. AP/PTI

Manila, March 20

A lawyer for late dictator Ferdinand Marcos today filed an impeachment complaint against Philippine Vice-President Leni Robredo for her strong criticism of the administration’s bloody war on drugs.

The complaint for violation of the constitution and betrayal of public trust was sent by Oliver Lozano to the office of House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, a staunch ally of President Rodrigo Duterte. Alvarez had for several days been studying whether to file a complaint himself.

“She is the termite of the government,” Lozano said in a letter seeking endorsement for his six-page complaint.

Robredo, who is not a member of Duterte’s party and was elected in a separate contest, may have landed herself in trouble after issuing a strong rebuke of the popular President’s war on drugs in a video sent to the United Nations.

Alvarez said that was “irresponsible”. “This is the first time a high government official has sent a video clip maligning our country,” he said in a radio interview on Monday.

Robredo’s lawyer, Barry Gutierrez, was confident she had done no wrong. “Truth-telling can never be an impeachable offence,” he told reporters.

The complaint comes amid bitter squabbling between Duterte and his loyalists and the opposition Liberal Party and its allies, loosely along political lines going back to the time of late President Ferdinand Marcos, who was ousted by a “People Power” uprising in 1986.

It was filed four days after lower House representative Gary Alejano filed an impeachment complaint against Duterte, accusing him of offences ranging from conflict of interest and assets concealment to drugs-related extrajudicial killings. — Reuters

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