After the United States formalized its entry ban on certain Philippine officials, pro-Duterte bloggers said the US has the right to determine who it allows into its territory.
US President Donald Trump recently signed the United States’ 2020 federal budget, which includes a provision that bans the entry of Philippine officials linked to the detention of Senator Leila de Lima.
De Lima earlier said the initial list of personalities who were involved in her detention includes President Rodrigo Duterte, presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo, Overseas Workers Welfare Administration deputy Mocha Uson, bloggers Sass Rogando Sasot and RJ Nieto, former House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, former Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II, Solicitor General Jose Calida, Public Attorney’s Office chief Persida Acosta, Sandra Cam, Dante Jimenez, and Representatives Rey Umali and Rudy Fariñas.
Sasot of "For the Motherland" said she is unbothered by the ban.
“The United States, by virtue of territorial sovereignty, has the sole monopoly to decide who would be allowed to enter US territory. Again, the hell I care who they ban from their territory? I have better things to do than worry about that,” she said.
Sasot noted that former President Benigno Aquino III similarly blacklisted Hong Kong journalists who heckled him over the 2010 Manila bus hostage crisis.
“What I'm more interested in is what would be the effect of this US move in the case of Leila de Lima… As De Lima's case is already in the courts, is the US trying to violate the independence of our judiciary?” she added.
Meanwhile, Nieto of "Thinking Pinoy" said the US ban is simply an exercise of sovereignty.
“I respect their decision to ban certain government officials from entering the United States, in the same way that the United States should respect our right to handle our own internal affairs unimpeded by Foreign Governments,” he told GMA News Online.
Uson, also a pro-Duterte blogger, earlier said US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will be hard-pressed to find evidence that will prove she persecuted De Lima. — MDM, GMA News