MANILA, Oct 7 (Mabuhay) — Only a judicial court can order an arrest of any individual, Senator Panfilo Lacson emphasized on Thursday.

Lacson was reacting to the remarks of President Rodrigo Duterte who said he will send senators to jail if they would cite Cabinet members in contempt for skipping the Senate’s investigation into the alleged overpriced pandemic supplies.

“Alam naman natin na hindi gagawin at hindi pwedeng gawin ng Pangulo na ipa-aresto at ipakulong ang kahit sinong tao, senador man o hindi,” he said in a text message shared to reporters.

“Only a court of law can issue a warrant of arrest against anybody and in accordance with the rule of law, or under Rule 113 Section 5 of the Rules of Court or what is known as “citizen’s arrest” under clearly defined circumstances,” he added.

Meanwhile, Senator Francis Pangilinan reiterated that Duterte should not defend his friends who are being linked to the controversy and refrain from distracting the public from the issue.

“’Yung masama ang asta at mas masahol pa sa hayop ang mga kilos at ‘yung kinurakot ‘yung bilyong pisong pondo para sa COVID ng mga naka Lamborghini at Porsche na mga kaibigan ng Pangulo habang milyon ang nagkakasakit at nagugutom at libu-libo ang namamatay. Huwag pagtakpan at huwag nililihis ang usapin,” Pangilinan said, reacting to Duterte’s latest threat against the senators.

In his latest public address, Duterte advised his Cabinet members not to allow any senator to “berate” them.

“If they cite you for contempt, I will jail the senators,” Duterte said.

The President also stood firm on his order for Executive department officials to ignore Senate blue ribbon committee inquiry into the Department of Health’s use of COVID-19 funds. (MNS)

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