- Marcelino categorically denied that he is being pressured by the government to testify against Senator De Lima
- De Lima earlier said that she got a copy of Marcelino’s text message that said someone is pressuring him to speak against her
- Marcelino admitted though that someone approached and asked him if he has something negative to say against the lady senator
Marine Colonel Ferdinand Marcelino, former head of Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency’s Special Enforcement Service Unit, denied he was being pressured by the government to testify against Senator Leila De Lima, as per an article by Inquirer published on September 22, 2016.
Col. Marcelino, along with a Chinese national, was detained in January over a drug case but was released in June after the Department of Justice (DOJ) dismissed the case for lack of evidence, but upon review of the case, the DOJ reversed the June resolution that cleared him and the Chinese national and ordered the filing of drug charges against them.
Earlier, Senator De Lima said during a press conference that she got a copy of Marcelino’s text message to a friend saying there are groups trying to pressure him to say negative things about her.
Marcelino denied De Lima’s statement.
“Categorical ko pong dini-deny na pini-pressure ako o may nananakot o nagko-coerce sa akin on the side of the government upang magsalita laban sa kanya [Senator De Lima],” Marcelino, who was accompanied by his lawyer Public Attorneys’ Office Chief Persida Rueda-Acosta, said at a press conference.
[I categorically deny that I am being pressured or someone is threatening or coercing me on the side of the government to speak against her]
He admitted though that a retired government official, whom he did not identify, approached him and asked him if there is something negative he can say about De Lima.
Here’s a video of Marcelino’s press conference as shared by CNN Philippines: