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Impeach articles vs Sereno drafted


The House committee on justice has started drafting the impeachment complaint against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno that will be transmitted to the Senate for trial as panel chairman Oriental Mindoro Rep. Reynaldo Umali said a conviction on the Supreme Court (SC) head is almost certain.

He said the draft of the articles of impeachment against Sereno will be ready even before the scheduled vote on Thursday on probable cause on the impeachment complaint.
Sereno, in a speech in Baguio City last Friday, asked the House to allow her day in court “or admit that there is no probable cause” in the complaint against her.
Umali, in a radio interview, said if Sereno is confident she will win the case, “the more that we are confident that she will be convicted.”
Umali said Sereno’s supposedly unsound “psychiatric and psychological makeup” make her claims unreliable. Umali said hia claim on the mental capacity of the magistrate was based on the testimony of an expert witness at a recent House impeachment hearing.
“It appears in her persona, in her psychiatric and psychological makeup, attesting that she may have mood swings. All of those were revealed (in the House hearing),” Umali said.
He added that even Sereno’s peers at the High Court manifested “aversion” to the chief justice with some saying that she was “inhuman” or that she is mentally dishonest or a usurper. “Even if we grant that she has a strong case, how can she return to a court where its 13 members have an aversion to her?” Umali said.

Umali was referring to the unprecedented joint statement of 13 SC justices which stated that a “consensus” was reached that Sereno should take an “indefinite leave” from her post.
Impeach document tackled
Umali disclosed the draft of the articles of impeachment was part of the agenda during a meeting of the panel’s legal team last week.
“The discussion of the four grounds to impeach her is important so what is now being done is to organize the articles of impeachment,” he said.
Lawyer-complainant Lorenzo “Larry” Gadon has included 27 allegations in his impeachment complaint against Sereno, divided into four grounds, including: culpable violation of the Constitution, corruption, other high crimes and betrayal of public trust.
Umali expressed belief that all allegations, except one, have sufficient evidence to be included in the articles of impeachment.
“There were some points that overlap. So in the 27 allegations, what will come out in the final document will not necessarily be 27 grounds. We’ll see what will be included. It seems that all have been backed by evidence except for the Muntinlupa judges,” he said.
Gadon has accused Sereno of supposedly ordering Muntinlupa Regional Trial Court judges not to issue a warrant of arrest against Senator Leila De Lima over drug charges.
The judges referred to in the complaint have denied the allegation that they received an order from Sereno regarding the issue.
Umali said the justice panel is also preparing the list of members in the panel of prosecutors for the possible Senate impeachment trial.
He said that at least 40 lawmakers are being considered for the team, and that the panel would review the qualifications and litigation of experience of the would-be prosecutors.
Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas, who played a key role in the impeachment trial of the late Chief Justice Renato Corona, will “definitely” be part of the prosecution team, he said.
11-man House prosec team
Umali, who is himself part of the Corona impeachment team, he has started forming the 11-man House prosecution panel from the names of more than
40 lawmakers.
Corona was convicted by the Senate Impeachment Court in May 2012 for unexplained wealth.
Umali said there are 40 lawmakers who are in the list of possible prosecutors but would prefer those who have experience in graft and psychiatry.
“We will choose somebody who has experience on graft, or even in psychiatric (evaluation),” said Umali.
Umali, the incoming lead prosecutor, said he and Fariñas, are shoo-in for
the 11-man House prosecution panel.
A lawmaker who refused to be named said that Umali will also tap at least three of his vice-chairmen in the justice panel including Misamis Occidental Rep. Henry Oaminal, Oriental Mindoro Rep. Doy Leachon and Leyte Rep. Vicente “Ching” Veloso who is a former associate justice of the Court of Appeals (CA).
The source also said that Umali is also considering tapping former members of the prosecution team during the Corona impeachment trial like Citizens Battle Against Corruption (Cibac) party-list Rep. Sherwin Tugna and Pangasinan Rep. Marlyn Primicias-Agabas.
The other members of the prosecution team in the Corona impeachment
who were no longer members of the 17th Congress include Dasmariñas City Mayor Elpidio “Pidi” F. Barzaga, former Bayan Muna party-list Rep. Neri J. Colmenares, ex-Iloilo Rep. Niel Tupas Jr. who is then the lead prosecutor, and Isabela Rep. Giorgidi B. Aggabao.
Two other members of the Corona prosecution team, Dinagat Islands Rep.
Kaka Bag-ao and Northern Samar Rep. Raul Daza are not welcomed in this
latest impeachment trial being part of the opposition bloc, the source said.
Deputy Speaker and Cebu Rep. Gwendolyn Garcia, who has been ordered removed from Congress by the Ombudsman for grave misconduct, could be named as spokesperson of the House panel.
Anticipation builds up
Lawyer Josa Deinla, one of Sereno’s spokespersons, said that the chief justice is looking forward to her day in the Senate impeachment court.
Deinla said that Sereno is ready to prove that the allegations against her are not true.
“Her wish is simple: ‘give me my day at the Senate’ and she is ready to prove that the allegations against her are baseless and not true,” Deinla said. 
Deinla also said that some of the charges like the tax evasion and psychological incapacity issue, which is now being pursued by the House Justice panel, are new and not part of the impeachment case.
The Psychological Association of the Philippines (PAP), following a hearing by the justice panel on Sereno’s alleged failure to pass the psychological exam given by the Judicial and Bar Council said that no one “passes” or “fails” a psychological examimation.


  • mamoy

    A sincere advice to Sereno... just resign. You did not and never will deserve the CJ post. Your pride will bring you more misery. There's more to life than being a de facto chief justice. It's about time to stop believing in lies especially when they're your own!

    mamoy Monday, 05 March 2018 10:20 Comment Link
  • peter alagano

    Considering the volume of yerstimonial and Documentary pieces of evidence against the de facto CJ. she is guilty as charged..The ABNORMAL CJ appointed by ABNORMAL President will only escape conviction if the CORRUPT SENATONGS favors her due to MONEY and Many more MONEY povided by her patron Oligarch with 1.8B tax liabilities with the govt....Abangan!..

    peter alagano Monday, 05 March 2018 07:57 Comment Link
  • inocent

    Lourdes Sereno should be very thankful that she was subjected to this process of impeachment. The late CJ Renato Corona never hand a chance like her because the articles of impeachment was already prepared, there were no deliberations, no Justice committee inquest then the bribed Congressmen were just told to fall in line and signed the articles of impeachment then brought it directly to the Senate. Indeed, poor Renato Corona was done even the trial commenced. Money from the Philippine Treasury was flowing towards the Congressmen and Senators. God bless CJ Renato Corona in his next life.

    inocent Monday, 05 March 2018 01:35 Comment Link

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