Defective. Trash. These are the words that the prosecution cannot seem to understand. They are the words Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile uttered in anger after the prosecution desperately pleaded for the testimony of Philippine Air Lines (PAL) vice president for sales Enrique Javier to be accepted as part of Article III in the impeachment case against Supreme Court Chief, Justice Renato Corona.
Senator Enrile explained very clearly that allegations of bribery were not even part of the (as what Prosecutor Rudulfo Farinas admittedly said) badly written articles of impeachment. Most people got what the presiding officer was trying to explain. But the prosecution just could not accept the fact that they simply cannot provide evidence for something that wasnâ€™t alleged to begin with.
|SUPPORT INDEPENDENT SOCIAL COMMENTARY!
Subscribe to our Substack community GRP Insider to receive by email our in-depth free weekly newsletter. Opt into a paid subscription and you'll get premium insider briefs and insights from us.
Subscribe to our Substack newsletter, GRP Insider!
The prosecution has been warned so many times about their ineptitude that has been the cause of the delay in the proceedings. They have gotten away with their inconsistencies in the past several weeks of the trial. But unfortunately for them, it seems like Senator Enrile has finally run out of patience. His impatience was particularly obvious when Neil Tupas, Jr tried to use emotional blackmail just to convince the presiding officer to agree with him:
Enrile raised his voice when Tupas said in his manifestation that the ruling of the impeachment court to disallow Javier’s testimony is based on mere “technicality.”
“This is not a technicality. The grounds of impeachment are clearly stated in the Constitution. Who are we to review the decisions of the Supreme Court? We won’t allow it…do you want me to lecture you more?” Enrile said.
“If you want to include receipt of gifts, receipt of valuable things then amend your Articles of impeachment…you’re alleging a crime…you are in effect saying that he (Corona) is bribed to do that decision,” Enrile added.
He said the framing of the allegations in Article 3 is “defective.” He said that he considers as “trash” the bases of allegations stated by the prosecution in third article.
The problem with the prosecution is that they want to have their cake and eat it too. Theyâ€™ve already managed to trick the members of the impeachment court into granting them a subpoena for Chief Justice Coronaâ€™s bank accounts based on illegally-obtained documents. They even almost caused a constitutional crisis when they kept persuading the Senator-Judges to defy the foreign currency secrecy law and the Supreme Courtâ€™s temporary restraining order (TRO) on the opening of Corona’s alleged dollar accounts to the court.
Despite this, the Senator-Judges have been very â€œliberalâ€ and helpful to their cause to the point of some of these Senator Judges already doing the prosecution’s job for them. This even prompted the lead defense counsel former justice Serafin Cuevas to say, â€œsome of the questions posed by senator-judges center on ‘practically everything’ and would sometimes lead to the production of documents for the courtâ€. Cuevas said that this could be grounds for them to ask for a mistrial. However, the prosecution continued to demand more from the Senators. They seem to want the Senator Judges to be accomplices to their penchant for breaking the law or disregarding what is written in the 1986 constitution. Itâ€™s a good thing presiding officer, Senator Enrile, at 88 years old, was not born yesterday.
What was their point in laying out for scrutiny the records of travels undertaken by the Chief Justice using his Platinum Card anyway? Correct me if Iâ€™m wrong but my understanding is that platinum cards are not really free. People accumulate frequent flyer points when they use their credit cards whose issuing bank is partnered with Philippine Airlines (PAL). Anyone can avail of this package, not just the Coronas. It is really bizarre that the prosecution is making a big deal of this. Why blame Chief Justice Corona for flying with the flag carrier? Should he and his wife have used Cebu Pacific instead? The allegation of conflict of interest is just so ridiculous. They are definitely scraping the bottom of the barrel.
As usual, in their attempts to prove that Chief Justice Corona was a flip-flopper, they failed to take into consideration that he does not dictate upon the entire membership of the Supreme Court. He only carries 1 vote out of 15 in the Court, and is â€œgenerally regarded, vis-a-vis the other Justices, as the primus inter pares rather than as the administrative superior of the other members of the Courtâ€.
Seriously, why is that so hard for the prosecution to understand? Their logic fails them completely. One commenter on Get Real Post named Felipe even said that they are acting like quacks:
Clueless as usualâ€”Common sense please!â€”Weâ€™re way past the age of the Inquisition and the Salem witch trial. You cannot establish â€œTRUTHâ€ using unreliable PROCEDURE. This is why science, especially of forensics, as well as other investigative processes involved (and rightly so) the rigorous application of [the scientific] method or procedure. It is PROCEDURE that differentiates authentic medical science, for example, from the medical quackery of â€œalbularyosâ€, â€œmanghuhulasâ€ or witch doctorsâ€”genuine astronomers from astrologers. So far, the prosecution is the one acting like quacks.
In their desperation Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy CasiÃ±o, one of the 188 congressmen who signed the impeachment case, is now spreading more baseless allegations that former President Gloria M Arroyo (GMA) is behind the growing support for the Chief Justice:
“From all indications, Gloriaâ€™s machinery is going all out for Corona, starting with his defense panel, his PR handlers, his coordinators for mass mobilizations and even the new House minorityâ€™s efforts to investigate the prosecution for getting hold of Coronaâ€™s bank statements,” Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy CasiÃ±o claimed.
“In the same light, Gutierrez and Corona have the same PR operators which are also linked to the former president. Many sources have also confirmed to us that GMA was the one who funded the last rally supporting Corona, which supposedly gathered around 7,000 warm bodies, at P300 per person this would amount to P2.1 million in just one offing. Of course, the new House minority now is unquestionably loyal to Mrs. Arroyo,” he claimed.
Itâ€™s incredible how these people, these so-called lawmakers, can come up with something so farfetched. Let me just stress that itâ€™s one thing for Rep CasiÃ±o to express his tall tale but itâ€™s another for a major news network like ABS-CBN to give it enough weight to publish it. How in the world do they think GMA can organize such a monumental task considering she is in custody and is not even allowed any communication device? Seriously, they put too much credit on someone who is not even in power anymore. Normally, people tend to help someone who can do something for them in return but I doubt that GMA can help anyone because she canâ€™t even get out of her own predicament.
Reports are also going around that members of Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) will be mounting a rally on the 28th of February to show their support not necessarily for Chief Justice Corona, but for the rule of law. This has not pleased President Noynoy Aquino (PNoy), indeed. With the way some people think, they might pin the growing disappointed for PNoy on GMA. Their logic should be trashed for being defective.
In life, things are not always what they seem.