Pope Francis does not know De Lima's true character, says Roque

harry roque

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque INQUIRER PHOTO/JOAN BONDOC

Pope Francis does not know detained Sen. Leila de Lima’s true character, a Palace official said Wednesday.

“That Pope does not know true nature of [De Lima’s] character,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a text message to the media.

“He thinks that De Lima is not a prisoner of conscience,” he added.

Without mentioning the senator, President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday scoffed at De Lima for bragging about the “beautiful rosary” given by the Pope. He even “joked” about giving a copy of De Lima’s alleged sex video to the Pontiff.

“Nagpahambog na bigyan ng rosary ni Pope. Sus si Pope naman uy. Kaya sabi ko, hanapan mo nga ako ng video nung ano, ipakita ko kay Pope,” Duterte said in a speech at the Volunteers against Crime and Corruption Anti-Corruption Summit at the Philippine International Convention Center.

(She bragged about the rosary given by the Pope. Ah, the Pope. That’s why I said, give me a copy of the video, I’ll show it to the Pope.)

“‘Yan ang… Para magtingin pa si Pope baka pag-alis pa pagka-Pope ‘yan. P**** i** sobra na ito. Hindi na tayo maka… I am just human.

(That’s the… when the Pope sees it, he might step down the Papacy. Son of a ***** this is too much. We can no longer… I am just human.)

Duterte later said it was a joke, but quipped that he can criticize the Pope “ten times over.”

“That’s a joke, aabot ng ano ‘yan (it can get to them). I am joking Pope. But that’s ano — whenever you do a thing it’s just open to… You know if you criticize me, I can criticize you ten times over,” he added.

De Lima on Sunday said she had received a “beautiful rosary” and a letter from the Pope, three months after writing to the Pontiff for prayer for herself and the thousands of victims of extrajudicial killings. /je

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