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VACC mulls disbarment case vs. Robredo

Anti-crime advocates are now mulling the filing of a disbarment case against Vice President Leni Robredo after she refused to apologize for her remarks on the government's anti-drug war addressed to the international community.

Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) founding chairman Dante Jimenez said Wednesday the group is studying the matter of taking Robredo to the Supreme Court "with urgency."

Robredo has been a lawyer since 1997.

"It's very disappointing. Vice President Robredo has been affected by an illness among some leaders called pride. She should not have allowed the Office of the Vice President to be used by this illness," Jimenez said in a text message.

Robredo has yet to react to VACC's latest statement.

The VACC on Monday lashed out at Robredo for her recorded speech that exposed “irregularities” in the administration’s anti-drug war.

The video was played at a side session organized in line with the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs annual meeting last week.

In the video, Robredo claimed that indigents rounded up in anti-drug operations were "beaten and physically abused" for asking for a search warrant, a right that authorities said they did not have for being transient residents.

She spoke of a "palit-ulo" scheme wherein the wife, husband, or relative of a person on a drug list "will be taken if the person himself could not be found."

Robredo also said around 7,000 people have died through summary executions because of the drug war.

Robredo's statements did not sit well with allies of President Rodrigo Duterte, particularly House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez who is mulling the filing of an impeachment complaint against the Vice President.

Alvarez accused Robredo of betrayal of public trust for putting the country's image in bad light, saying this may cause negative impact on tourism and the economy in general.

Two losing senatorial aspirants and Marcos supporters Oliver Lozano and Melchor Chavez have endorsed to Alvarez an impeachment complaint against Robredo, also based on the video statement.

Robredo had explained that the video was based on accounts relayed to their office by representatives of urban poor communities affected by the drug war, or to herself when she makes her weekly visits to communities.

Her spokesperson, Georgina Hernandez, had also said they did not see any reason for the vice president to apologize over the statement because Robredo only lent her "voice" to poor families affected by the administration's controversial drug war. —ALG, GMA News