Former Environment Secretary Gina Lopez slammed Senator Panfilo Lacson for saying in media interviews that one reason he voted against her confirmation is because of her alleged history of drug use and personality disorder during the mid-1970s.
Citing a 1975 Supreme Court case labeled GR-L-38850, Lacson said in an interview over the radio station DZBB that he deemed Lopez not qualified for the post because of it. “Yan ba naman dedetalye ko pa ba kung bakit sa aking pananaw ‘di qualified ang appointee? Papahiyain mo pa na-reject na?” (“Do I still have to detail that embarassing fact given that she’s already been rejected?”) Lacson said.
In raising Lopez’ past, Lacson said he is simply defending himself from allegations that members of the Commission on Appointments like him that turned down Lopez got paid by big mining companies.
“I rejected her ‘di dahil sa lobby money kundi may mga issue na ewan ko kung alam ng kasamahan ko ito pero I happen to know about it kasi nag-research ako,” (“I rejected her not because I received lobby money.. It’s because of this issue that I don’t know if my colleagues know but I happened to know because I researched.”) he explained.
For her part, Lopez slammed Lacson for sharing unvalidated information. “Clearly, this is an attempt to justify his rejection of my appointment,” she wrote on her Facebook page. She recounted that when she was 18, she decided to enter Ananda Marga Pracaraka Samgha, a socio-spiritual organization that originated from India. Her parents opposed this move and instead entrusted her to the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) Foundation.
“Ananda Marga then filed a case against my mother because they were not comfortable about me being in a drug center. I was very well cared for under Fr. Bob and I truly believe everyone (including Ananda Marga) did what they did out of concern for me. It is stooping to very low levels for Lacson to bring up something which had happened more than 40 years ago just to throw mud on my character,” Lopez wrote.
I am attaching photos of an email sent by Fr. Bob that may serve as proof that the accusations of Senator Lacson are false and lack further research.
I advise Senator Lacson to just focus on his senatorial duties rather than continuing to besmear my character. Or in the very least to pay the high ground. I talk about him only to prove that his accusations of me being unfit, and not following due process, and worse, being dangerous have no foundation at all.