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Ninez Cacho-Olivares

CJ fears being judged by SC peers

Monday, 12 March 2018 00:00 Published in Commentary

From Chief Justice Lourdes Sereno to her allies and propagandists, to the usual noisy political opposition groups, there appears to be an all-out drive to get the Supreme Court justices to dismiss the quo warranto case, making it appear as being unconstitutional since the SC would be usurping the power of the members of Congress to impeach the chief justice by taking on the quo warranto case.
It must be asked then: Why are Sereno and her allies in the House and Senate, as well as her propaganda team so scared of the quo warranto case that is being taken up by the High Court?
The usual answer from Sereno to these questions is that she wants her side heard in a Senate impeachment court since this is what the Constitution requires for the removal of an impeachable official.
Her allies in Congress, mostly of the yellow kind, give the same reason, saying that the Constitution must be upheld, which however, is hardly credible, coming from them, given the fact that the yellows as well as the militant activists and even the members of the clergy and religious, have the undeniable history of trampling on the Constitution and yes, even a complete disrespect for the Senate impeachment court verdict—when these hypocritical oppositionists do not favor the verdict, as what happened during the impeachment trial of then sitting president Joseph Estrada, whom the Senate court acquitted.
What hypocrites all of them are, given the incontrovertible fact that in 2001, they ousted an acquitted democratically elected president.
In a series of tweets, Calida slammed Sereno for saying that while she was fighting for judicial independence, she also urged her fellow Supreme Court (SC) justices not to entertain the quo warranto petition he had filed against her.
A good question was posed by Solicitor General Jose Calida. Why he asked is the CJ so scared of the Supreme Court ruling on the quo warranto case filed against her, while she claims that her fight is for judicial independence. She even went to the extent of demanding that the justices recuse themselves from the case.
In the same breath however, Sereno also says that politicians should not meddle in the judiciary yet she insists that politicians in the Senate court should judge her instead.
Sereno’s legal allies warned against the SC in taking on the quo warranto suit filed by the Solgen, saying that this move would serve as a dangerous precedent. They of course add that there is no law that says the SC can order the dismissal of an SC justice.
That is of course untrue, given the fact that the High Court can and has been disciplining wayward court justices, some of whom were dismissed while others were sanctioned. So why should Sereno be an exception, since the issue against her is her being unqualified for the high seat in the SC, as the Judicial Bar and Council (JBC)’s short list included her, despite her not having met the strict requirements that void her appointment.
There have been, in the past, dismissals ordered by the High Court against government employees who have been found to be unqualified for their post. So why not the Chief Justice?
In the case of those losing their elective seat in the House of Representatives who file protests, it is their peers, along with an appointed SC justice that judge their cases.
When losing senatorial bets file their protests, it is the Senate through the protestants’ peers, acting as an electoral tribunal, that decides on such protests. In quo warranto cases against a sitting senators, it is also the Senate Electoral Tribunal that decides these cases.
So why should the Supreme Court be barred from deciding a quo warranto case against its chief justice, especially if it is proved that she is not qualified and therefore unfit to even be a member of the High Court and worse, the High Court’s chief justice?
In a jury system, the accused is judged by his peers and his fate is sealed by the jury of his peers. Why then is Sereno so afraid of the SC justices, her peers?
Elementary. Sereno knows that she has not met the qualification requirements demanded of an applicant for the top seat in the High Court.
Anyone who argues that Sereno has met the requirements demanded by the Constitution, such as being a Filipino citizen, 40 years of age, having 10 years residency, can read and write, etc. is no different from being an idiot.

CJ, a victim of political persecution?

Sunday, 11 March 2018 00:00 Published in Commentary

Embattled Chief Justice Lourdes Sereno seems to be using her indefinite leave of absence from the High Court to defend herself in public forums.
But what is strange in Sereno giving speeches in different forums, is hat she really has not been doing well in defending herself mainly because all she states in her public speeches, when it comes down to explanations, Sereno as well as fails to controvert the charges leveled against her. Neither does her spokesman, Jojo Lacanilao, offer any evidence to prove that the charges are false and unsubstantiated. He merely denies the charges, or just says that all these will be defended during the Senate trial where her side can be heard.
The evidence is very strong and these pieces of evidence were brought out during the 15 hearings held in the House of Representatives’ by the justice panel in its determination of probable cause.All she and Lacanilao insist on is that it will be in the Senate Impeachment Court where she, apparently, through her legal team, will answer the charges and prove them wrong and baseless.
Such statements made by her and her team are hardly going to convince the general public, and not even her supporters and propagandists, since she tries by way of public speeches, to get the sympathy of the crowd while portraying herself as a victim of political persecution—which is incidentally the same portrayal utilized by the detained senator, Leila de Lima, which also does not work with the majority of the public.
Even the Sereno spokesman’s mantra is the same as de Lima’s: Thehse are trumped up charges, These are fabrications. There is no evidence. It is al hearsay. That is not an impeachable offense.
Her answer by way of an affidavit countering the charges in the complaint against her submitted by complainant Larry Gadon to the House justice panel, is, at this time, sufficient for even a non-lawyers to realize that which she stated in her affidavit has already been proved to be false through documentary evidence and strong testimonial evidence given by very credible resource persons and witnesses, among then SC associate justices.
It will be very difficult for her and her legal team defending her before the Senate, if she continues to stand by what she stated in her affidavit, faced with the evidence compiled by the justice panel.
The fact alone that she had not submitted her Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Networth for a number of years as a University professor, SALNs must be filed yearly plus the fact that she had submitted to the Judicial and Bar Council three SALNs, two of three SALNs which were deliberately not notarized. This is highly suspect, since these unsubscribed SALNs Sereno submitted to the JBC contains false information, apart from yet another failure on her part not to include a land property.
The late Chief Justice Corona was convicted, and convicted by the Senate court, some of whose members who will serve as justices and jurors and justices, served as justices and jurors during the Corona trial and convicted him even when there was no evidence presented against. Instead, what served as evidence was, among others, a highly perjured testimony from the Ombudsman, Conchita Carpio-Morales and presented fabricated evidence.
She tried the same trick against President Duterte and his alleged P2 billion in his bank accounts, which was denied by the AMLC.
Sereno won’t admit it but she is not what she claims she is: “Calm and Battle Ready.”
That she isn’t even battle ready, is shown by her reluctance to controvert the evidence gathered by the House justice panel She isn’t calm—at least not all the time—it shows in some of her speeches in different forums where she appears to be off balance inher unscripted speeches. However, t she continues to put on a brave front, even as she knows her days may be numbered.
What she has been trying to do is take advantage of these forums held in different schools trying to convince the young that she is a victim of injustice, that she has been denied her rights and that she is innocent of all the charges and if she is ousted, why she can always claim she is innocent and thus, is victim of injustice.
Or maybe, she knows, or at least suspects, that her days in the Supreme Court are numbered, and that the Senate trial may not even happen, should Solictor-General Jose Calida win his quo warranto case against Sereno before her peers—the associate justices of the Supreme Court.

It’s over for the commies and their movement

Saturday, 10 March 2018 00:00 Published in Commentary


Communists, here and in Europe won’t have anywhere to run, once branded by the State as terrorists, which should be soon, as the Department of Justice (DoJ) has tagged as terrorists the underground commies as well as the aboveground terrorists as contained in a list.
It is unknown still if certain European countries, that have granted some kind of political asylum to known Communist leaders such as Jose Maria Sison and the Jalandoni couple of the National Democratic Front, would keep them out of reach of the Philippine authorities.
But they have only themselves to blame, since there had been so many opportunities through peace talks with different governments after the Marcos regime was toppled, for them to take the constitutional path of joining the political mainstream and of course, giving up their arms. But no, They wanted power sharing with the Duterte government, which was no different from their asking for the moon.
Their best shot at joining the mainstream government, both politically and as nationalists while fighting for what they call justice through legal means, such as amnesty, was through the peace talks under the Duterte Cabinet, who went as far as showing his sincerity in peace talks to finally end this battle between the government armed forces and the Communist New People’s Army (NPA) by working for the release on bail grant for the jailed communist leaders, along with the NPA leaders who are known to have kidnapped and killed soldiers and civilians, as well as extort money from firms in exchange for NPA protection, which these rebels call “revolutionary tax.”
The sincerity shown always came from President Duterte. He appointed known above ground communists and supporters of Sison and Jalandoni in Cabinet positions, as well as sub-Cabinet positions.
Some of these aboveground commies were even using their positions and government funds to help communists.
Duterte even said nothing when these appointed communists in his Cabinet would openly and proudly state that they will be joining the anti-Duterte protests, something which is not done, since these commies have become part of the legitimate government.
In time of course, given their abusive ways, they were not even fired, but were rejected by the bicameral confirmation on Appointments.
There was no sign of sincerity on the part of the communists. Despite the talks ending, none of those communists released on bail ever returned to present themselves before the courts and return to their detention quarters, since that was the condition of their bail.
There was never any intention from these rebels to return and worse, even as peace talks were ongoing, there were still killings by the armed communists.
Now, with the order of Duterte to have some 600 identified communists listed and declared as communists, the DoJ has gone to court to have them declared as terrorists.
The DoJ wants these communist leaders formally identified as terrorists, including members of the Communist Party of the Philippines, and its armed wing New People’s Army , as well as dozens of above gound communist-activists and a Filipino United Nations special rapporteur.
The list of some 600 individuals the government officially wants declared as terrorists was handed down through a petition the justice department filed before Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 19 last February 21.
The list includes, among others, a report said, CPP founder Sison, alleged ranking CPP leaders Benito and Wilma Tiamzon, National Democratic Front peace negotiators Luis Jalandoni, Connie Ledesma, Randall Echanis, and Rafael Baylosis, who is currently detained at Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City; former Bayan Muna Party-list Rep. Satur Ocampo, Catholic priest Frank Fernandez, Ilocos environmental activist Sherwin de Vera, and UN special rapporteur for the rights of indigenous people Victoria Tauli-Corpuz.
The DoJ labeled Tauli-Corpuz as a member of the CPP’s Ilocos-Cordillera Regional Committee.
UN human rights experts said they were shocked that a UN special rapporteur is tagged as a communist terrorist and want the Philippines to drop its petition against the special rapporteur.
Not surprisingly, the UN experts put a motive in this, saying that “The accusation against her comes after the public comments made, jointly with other special rapporteurs, in relation to the militarization, attacks and killings of indigenous Lumad peoples by members of the armed forces in Mindanao; this accusation is considered as an act of retaliation for such comments,” the experts said.
Why should these UN rights group be shocked? Priests and nuns have joined the movement and have engaged in murder. What makes this Filipina Special Rapporteur an exception, if she really is a communist terrorist?







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