Minority senators claim email breaches;say they seem to be “part of pattern” to implicate opposition in “imaginary destab attempts”


(Eagle News) — Senators in the minority bloc on Thursday claimed the e-mail addresses of several of their staff and others had been hacked.

In a statement, the minority bloc alleged the hacking of the e-mail addresses of the staff of Senators  Bam Aquino and Francis Pangilinan, and the  email addresses used by Pangilinan’s office and the Liberal Party to send media releases, “seemed to form part of a pattern to pin the political opposition for imaginary destabilization attempts.”

Screenshots of one of the accounts allegedly hacked showed a draft email with the subject “Leaked Media Plan to Destroy PRRD.”

Email content

The email said:

“Dear Senator Drilon and Senator Pangilinan,

Attached is a alleged leaked LP media plan to destroy PRRD, from a media sources, ‘the plan’ was described jointly by VP Leni, former Pres Aquino, and other senior LP members including senator Drilon, senator Aquino and senator Pangilinan.

For your consideration and proper action.

Thanks.”

“The nature of the breach in all instances is the same: Unauthorized users sent emails using the staff and party addresses,” the minority bloc claimed.

They  alleged the hacking incidents were a “cause for concern,” noting that the Citizen National Guard—which has accused the “Dilawan” of plotting to oust President Rodrigo Duterte—was reported as saying that dissent equals destabilization.

The minority said Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre was behind the creation of the group.

No destabilization plot

“Let us be clear. There is no destabilization plot. Dissent is not destabilization. Dissent is indispensable in a democracy,” they noted.

They added “constitutional democracy protects the small voice, including the minority and the individual citizen, vis-a-vis the many and especially the all-powerful state.”

“Democracy ensures that the small voice is heard and not harassed to silence,” they said.

Apart from Aquino and Pangilinan, Senators Franklin Drilon, Antonio Trillanes IV, Risa Hontiveros and Leila de Lima form part of the minority bloc.