Philippine Congress committee finds cause to impeach Chief Justice Sereno

  • Page Views 1624
  • With a 38-2 vote, the House of Representatives’ committee on justice on March 8 ruled to impeach Philippine Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.

     

    “Throughout the probable cause hearings, this committee has gathered sufficient evidence to provide us the ammunition to prosecute this case towards victory,” said committee chairman Representative Reynaldo Umali.

     

    The panel tasked vice chairpersons Representatives Vicente Veloso, Doy Leachon, Henry Oaminal, Arnulfo Fuentebella, and Strike Revilla to form the small working body that will craft the committee report and articles of impeachment. This shall be submitted on March 14 to the plenary for deliberation and approval.

     

    Among the 38 who voted in favor of finding probable cause to remove Sereno from office are Majority Floor Leader Rodolfo Fariñas, Deputy Speaker Gwendolyn Garcia, Representatives  Rodel Batocabe, Romeo Acop, Anthony Bravo, Aurelio Gonzales, Jr., Alfredo Garbin, Jr., Juan Pablo Bondoc, Vincent Crisologo, and Ramon Rocamora.

     

    Meanwhile, those who cast negative votes were Representatives Jose Christopher Belmonte and Kaka Bag-ao.

     

    According to committee chairman Umali, the representatives may explain their votes at the plenary level.

     

    Before taking the vote, some endorsers of the impeachment complaint filed by Atty. Larry Gadon urged their fellow Members to vote in favor of finding probable cause.

     

    Gonzales stressed the hearings have revealed numerous issues not only with Sereno’s actions and decisions as Chief Justice but her appointment to the position as well,  which prompted Solicitor General Jose Calida to file a quo warranto case against Sereno.

     

    “Were it not for the impeachment proceedings before us, we would not be able to discover all these misdeeds and violation of law. […] I urge you now to vote in favor of the truth. Let us perform our constitutional mandate of ensuring that the Chief Magistrate must be made accountable and unfit to lead the third branch of government,” Gonzales said.

     

    For his part, Bravo noted the findings of the committee put into question the credibility of the Supreme Court and the ability of Chief Justice to fairly dispense justice.

     

    “First, can the people still trust the Chief Justice after everything that has been revealed in the public hearings? Second, can the Supreme Court still serve as a collegial body that is the last bastion of truth, justice, and democracy knowing that it is divided beyond repair not just legally but — also ironically — politically? Third, can its rulings still be accepted by our people as competent, credible, and consistent given that dirty linens have been washed in public for all to see, hear, and read? The answer to all those questions is a resounding no,” he said.

     

    The committee ruling in favor of probable cause is borne of the 18 impeachment hearings held by the committee beginning late 2017.

     

    Moreover, the panel approved the de-classification of testimonies and documents shared in the three-hour executive session which dwelled on the psychiatric evaluation of Sereno as part of her application to be Chief Justice.

     

    Bondoc, who raised the motion, said the executive session has no bearing on national security and therefore need not be classified.

     

    Bondoc also explained that the public is already privy to salient information discussed in the session due to the contents of a Manila Times article dated November 27, 2017.

    Share

    New Posts Recently publish post More

    • 17 September 2020
      5 hours ago No comment

      B.C. election looms, while chance of federal election lessens

      B.C.’s next provincial election is scheduled to happen on October 16, 2021. But it could take place earlier if the B.C. NDP government of Premier John Horgan decides to call an election earlier. Or if the Horgan government loses the confidence of the legislative assembly. By many indications, Horgan ...

    • 17 September 2020
      6 hours ago No comment

      Dr. Theresa Tam’s update on COVID-19 

      Ottawa, ON – Public Health Agency of Canada In lieu of an in-person update to the media, Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, issued the following statement: “There have been 138,803 cases of COVID-19 in Canada, including 9,188 deaths. 88% of people have now recovered. Labs across ...

    • 17 September 2020
      6 hours ago No comment

      Prime Minister announces next steps for Safe Restart Agreement

      As we move into the fall and the world continues to deal with the impacts of COVID-19, the Government of Canada remains focused on keeping Canadians safe and healthy, while continuing to ensure they have the supports needed during this global health and economic crisis. The Prime Minister, Justin ...

    • 17 September 2020
      6 hours ago No comment

      Amal Clooney urges PH to protect press freedom, honor international commitments

      International human rights lawyer Amal Alamuddin-Clooney on Tuesday urged the Philippine government to protect the free press and honor its international commitments on human rights. Speaking before Philippine business leaders in an online forum, Clooney said, “if you want to have a functioning democracy, protect the press. To protect ...

    • 17 September 2020
      6 hours ago No comment

      Kapamilya stars dominate TV5’s new entertainment lineup

      Kapamilya actor Piolo Pascual and Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray will be hosting the “Sunday Noontime Variety Show” on TV5. Directed by Johnny Manahan, the show is one of the new shows from Brightlight Productions after it secured blocktime slots with the Manny V. Pangilinan-led network. With the new shows, ...

    %d bloggers like this: