Pangilinan backs De Lima’s request for furlough to visit sick mother

Give daughter chance to be by mom’s sickbed: Kiko

MANILA – Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan has expressed strong support for Senator Leila de Lima’s very urgent motion for furlough to allow her to visit her mother in a hospital in Camarines Sur.

“We urge the court to show compassion and grant this on the basis of humanitarian considerations,” Pangilinan said. “Sana ay tingnan ito ng hukom mula sa pananaw ng isang anak na matagal nang hindi nakikita ang kanyang maysakit na ina.”

“Malubha ang karamdaman ng ina ni Senator Leila de Lima. Hinihimok natin ang korte na bigyan ng pagkakataon si Senator de Lima na samahan ang kanyang ina habang nakikipaglaban para sa kanyang buhay sa ospital.”

De Lima requested the Muntinlupa Regional Trial Court (RTC) to grant her a furlough “as soon as possible so that could see her mother, possibly for the last time.”

De Lima’s mother Norma was brought to the Villanueva Tanchuling General Hospital on August 4. Doctors have “deemed her condition as critical and is said to be expected to quickly deteriorate.”

Pangilinan pointed out instances when the courts have granted furloughs so that detainees may visit their relatives. In 2007, former President Joseph “Erap” Estrada, who was then detained for plunder, was allowed to visit his mother, Mary Ejercito. Murder defendant and former Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) governor Zaldy Ampatuan was even allowed to attend his daughter’s wedding in August 2018.

Senator De Lima is detained in Camp Crame on three counts of conspiracy to commit illegal drug trade, which many including international human rights groups such as Amnesty International and FORUM-ASIA have called “politically motivated.”

De Lima is a known critic of the mass murders connected to President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.