Tuesday, May 29

Swabeng Decision: GUILTY!

After more than 5 months (44 working days) of public trial, deliberation and exchange of arguments from both the prosecution and the defense team, the 23 Senator-Judges have already cast their vote. The basis for conviction or acquittal will be based from 3 articles discussed. These would be Article II: Non-disclosure of properties in Corona’s SALN, Article III: Lack of probity, integrity, and independence in the FASAP vs. PAL case and Article VII: Irregularities in the issuance of a temporary restraining order for Mrs. Arroyo during her attempt to leave the country last November 2011.  

As for the rest of the articles of impeachment (namely Article I: Partiality of Corona to Mrs. Arroyo in Supreme Court decisions, Article IV: Irregularities in the issuance of the status quo ante order on the impeachment proceedings of former Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez, Article V: Gerrymandering in the creation of 16 new cities and the declaration of Dinagat Island as a province), Article VI: Improper investigation of Associate Justice Mariano del Castillo’s plagiarism case and Article VIII: Failure and refusal to account for the Judiciary Development Fund and Special Allowance for the Judiciary), the prosecution decided not to go tackle with this as the impeachment would go longer (probably would last for a year or more). 

The verdict was here in this picture (credits to rappler.com)

From what I've watched and heard, the fact that CJ Corona did not fully disclosed his SALN was more than enough why he should be impeached. Though I have no knowledge with the technicalities of the law, I guess I quite understand of what's happening and what will be the outcome. 

Well here are some sound bites that most people would probably remember for years to come (taken here).

“The overarching policy issue in this episode is whether the conviction or acquittal of Corona would be good for our country. To resolve this, I intend to use political acceptability as the sole criterion to evaluate the projected outcomes of either decision.”
- Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, on insisting that the trial’s verdict should benefit the country

“What is distressing is no longer the endless impeachment trial to remove the Chief Justice that the President is supporting, but the uninterrupted exchanges of scathing and harsh words uttered with complete abandon outside the Senate proceedings by no less than the head of the executive branch and the head of judicial branch of government.”
- Senator Joker Arroyo, on Corona and P-Noy’s verbal banters in the midst of the impeachment case

"We don't see how the Senate impeachment court would acquit the Chief Justice. We don't see any reason why he should be acquitted."
- Senator Edgardo Angara, on deciding against Corona's acquittal

“I think they dug their own graves. I did not see the point in presenting the sheriff, who to my mind was lying and was covering up things. These to me are indications that he was lying.”
- Senator Franklin Drilon, on Corona lawyers presenting a court sheriff to deliver a testimony

“The defense and prosecution will show off their trial skills. And the senators will want to impress their national constituencies that they deserve to be reelected in 2013. This is going to be an action-filled traffic stopper. Everyone will stop traffic and go back home. Even the barrio people will go to the poblacion to watch it on TV. This will be a moneymaker for TV, and I dread the many commercials. It will be like an international boxing championship.”
- Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago, on Corona’s decision to testify before the Senate impeachment court

"Senate impeachment court would control, prevent and not allow any statements issued by any party to the media that would affect the merits of the case. The Senate court would not also allow any sort of walkout, crying and dancing.”
- Senator Chiz Escudero, on the impeachment court issuing a gag order in January

“That’s totally untrue. It’s very unfortunate that he said that and I’d like to say it’s untrue. How do I feel? It’s unfortunate but for me that is a side issue. I’d rather focus on the merits off the case and continue with the impeachment trial.”
- Senator Teofisto Guingona III, on Corona’s claim that the senator wanted him to retire early so SC Associate Justice Antonio Carpio could take over

“Why there were some properties omitted or forgotten from the SALN. He just has to explain it. Because bank accounts whether peso or dollar is a property.”
- Senator Koko Pimentel III, on Corona’s failure to present a complete statement of assets, liabilities, and net worth

“Just my analysis, he is the best person to explain the entries and the leaving out of certain items in his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth. Maybe he can also send his accountant.”
- Senator Sergio Osmena III, on why Corona himself should testify before the Senate

“My sense is that in the event of an unfavorable ruling, he will bring the matter to the Supreme Court despite the clear constitutional provision that says the Senate has the sole power to try and decide the case. He will insist on the Supreme Court having the power to overturn a decision of the impeachment court.”
- Senator Kiko Pangilinan, on what Corona might do when the Senate rules against him

”I am glad on this last day for March that the court was now prying into the personal and other properties which has a relation to cash, cash in bank, and liabilities.”
- Senator Ralph Recto, expressing his delight that the court is finally prying into the heart of the problem

“If we continue with this pace, the trial could last for a year. I do not wish to trample on the rights of the prosecution to present evidence and on the defense panel to establish the best defense. But maybe both panels can look back at their lists of witnesses and evidence? Do we really need to hear all of them?”
- Senator Bong Revilla, on the slow rate of presentation of witnesses in the trial

“Once the complaint gets the necessary number of signatures, there is nothing you can do.  In our time, even if we cried or rolled on the floor in agony, the complaint had no choice but be transmitted to the Senate.”
- Senator Jinggoy Estrada, on comparing Corona and his father’s impeachment trials

“I’m expecting the prosecution to continue with its presentation of evidence because it was not confident that it had done enough to pin down Corona in at least one of the eight articles of impeachment. If they have the numbers, they would rest their case.”
- Senator Manny Villar, on pushing through with Corona’s impeachment

“The chief justice is the only one who can respond to the issues and questions lingering in the minds not only of the senator-judges, but the general public. More than the senator-judges, he owes the Filipinos an explanation. We are only extensions of the will of the people.’’
- Senator Gringo Honasan, on why Corona should indeed have testified

“That’s why I wondered why the Chief Justice, in insisting that he only owned five of the 45 properties, assured whoever can find those properties that they can have them. It turns out that many of those in the list really do not belong to him at all.”
- Senator Loren Legarda, on the prosecution’s erratic claim that Corona owned 45 real estate properties

“The only decision that we can make is either to impeach or not impeach. The option of only to admonish the Chief Justice or to somehow put on his record that he has committed some wrong-doing but not to impeach him, I think that has been dismissed.”
- Senator Bongbong Marcos, dismissing claims that the Senate can reprimand or admonition Corona upon guilty ruling

“Well, it doesn’t sit well with me because we extended so much courtesy. And now of course for humanitarian reason, you have to consider the medical condition of a person right? I mean that’s a given. I think at the end of the day, we will go into caucus and the body will decide if that’s reasonable, because we have to definitely await the certification. There has to be a certification because we already know very well, unfortunately minsan na-abuse din naman ang medical excuses just like in High School.”
- Senator Pia Cayetano, on the Senate sending its own doctor to check on Corona’s condition after the "walkout" issue

“For this big bulk of undecided, the finishing presentation would be crucial and to include the Chief Justice, I think, is a very good move on the part of the defense.”
- Senator Tito Sotto, on revealing that 13-15 senator-judges remain undecided until Corona himself testifies

“Perhaps after the impeachment court renders a decision, all government officials should sign a waiver to show that it’s not true the government was only going after the enemies of the president.”
- Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, on encouraging government officials to sign a waiver opening up their bank accounts

“The court’s decision is not subject to appeal. Its possible error in judgment is irreversible by any entity, not even the Supreme Court. Only the Filipino people can sanction the senator-judges who represent them.”
- Senator Panfilo Lacson, on insisting that Corona can’t bring his impeachment trial before the Supreme Court on the grounds of mistrial

“Tingin ko naman ay hindi mahalaga na ipilit na isalin sa Tagalog lahat dahil alam naman natin na hindi lahat ng salita sa Ingles, lalo na yung mga tungkol sa batas ay mayroon sa Tagalog. Ang mahalaga ay kahit papaano ay makasali ang mga katulad nating salat sa Ingles na makita ang katotohanan sa paglilitis sa Chief Justice.”
- Senator Lito Lapid, on the possibility of the impeachment trial being done in Tagalog

"There are four kinds of culpa – nata or magna, culpa levy, culpa levisima and culpa aquiliana. I think this is material in the consideration of this provision of the Constitution, what is the difference between culpa and dolus? Fault or deserving of blame."
- Senator Juan Ponce Enrile, on teaching Supreme Court lead councel Serafin Cuevas the definition of Culpa, which led to a feisty exchange of banter

Well this space won't be enough to put here all I found while browsing about this event. 

You may check them out here, here, here and here .

Now that the verdict has been placed, the best thing to do next is move on and move forward.


  1. I am glad its over now. I just felt sad at the enormous amount of money spent just for this deal. I wish the money was rather spent to help out more of our underprivileged people.

  2. I don't agree with the decision of the majority of the senators. But I'm quite excited on the effects of this decision. Let's see what decision of the impeachment case would bring in the next few months.

  3. Let's see what the decision of the impeachment case would bring in the the next few months. Hope our elected officials would learn from this lesson that FCDs should be disclosed, too. They should start being transparent as early as now.

    On a lighter note, I think Panfilo Lacson looks feminine on his caricature. Lol! And Jinggoy looks like Erap, we should cut Jinggoy some slack, he has lost weight already! Hehehe!

  4. I'm not really impressed. Every now and then we get "drama" like this, but nothing really changes. Just look at Erap.

  5. I love what Lito Lapid said when he was about to convict CJ...masang masa ang dating.


  6. True, let's all move on after this tiring impeachment. Fill out the SAL-Ns correctly and be responsible in our every actions. - KarenT

  7. Hope that what happened to Corona would set as precedent and teach other public officials a lesson or two. I'm glad too that it's over.

  8. Wow! Effort to ha to make it complete. I don't know. I feel that it was more a witchhunt. May mali siya oo pero daming loopholes.

  9. Just respecting their decision but on my point, that's not enough and unfair because one politician is not enough to get that kind of impeachment. Most of them deserve the same.


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