Senator Leila de Lima on Thursday said inmate Jaybee Sebastian, who had been accused as the one who pooled money inside the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) for her 2016 senatorial bid, was actually a government asset.
“Yes, that’s true,” De Lima said when asked by the media if Sebastian was indeed a government asset as claimed by Magdalo party-list Rep. Gary Alejano.
“The reason why I’m saying he’s an asset is to dispel yung mga maling haka-haka, insinuations that the reason why hindi muna siya sinama sa Bilibid 19 is because favored, protektado and lalo na yung insinuations na yan siya kumolekta ng pera [para] sa akin,” De Lima said at a press conference.
De Lima then dared the House committee investigating the alleged illegal drug operations inside the NBP to invite Sebastian to the probe.
“Let him address that. If he wants to testify, let him address that,” she said.
Funds for De Lima?
During the second day of the House inquiry on illegal drug operations inside the NBP, witness and inmate Jaime Patcho said Sebastian called him to his "kubol" or bungalow in January 2015 to ask him to engage in the illegal drug trade to help raise money for De Lima.
Patcho said Sebastian initially asked him to sell 10 kilos of drugs, but he refused and said he could only sell up to five kilos. He said he was able to sell five kilos for P4.350 million.
Patcho said Sebastian ordered him to deposit the proceeds to a certain account number with Banco de Oro (BDO).
Patcho also claimed seeing De Lima in two instances visiting Sebastian in his kubol.
Another witness, Noel Martinez, said fellow inmate Sebastian, whom he described as the Sigue-Sigue Commando commander and chair of the Presidyo Side at the NBP maximum security compound, asked for his help in February 2013 to gather funds for De Lima's senatorial bid.
Martinez said that during "the last months of 2013," Sebastian told him De Lima would once again be visiting him at the NBP. "At totoo nga na dumarating ito sa kaniyang opisina," said Martinez.
But De Lima denied visiting Sebastian, calling the allegation, “completely false” and “very malicious.”
De Lima said she will answer all the accusations thrown against her in the House inquiry in time.
“Hangga’t marinig ko muna mga pwedeng sabihin ng mga witnesses na yan, I don’t want to be saying things on specific allegations muna being mouthed by these witnesses,” she said. [source]