CJ Corona swore into office four senator-judges; GMA swore in one

My  exclusive

By Raïssa Robles

Miriam-SMALL-takes-oath-befFour and not just three senator-judges were sworn into office by no less than Chief Justice Renato Corona, the very man they recently swore to convict or acquit in a fair impeachment trial.

[UPDATE: Senator-judge  Juan Ponce Enrile, presiding officer of the Impeachment Court, also took his oath of office before CJ Corona. That makes four and not three senator-judges.

I'd like to thank commenter Jeje for sending me this link to a Manila Bulletin report saying:

Enrile takes oath before Corona

By EDMER F. PANESA

June 19, 2010, 11:29am

Nearly two weeks before embarking on another six-year term as senator, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile on Friday took his oath of office before Chief Justice Renato C. Corona.

Enrile, who won re-election after placing fifth in the May 10 senatorial polls, said his swearing-in before the Chief Justice was his way of showing respect for the Supreme Court and to discourage divisiveness among the three branches of government.

I came here to take my oath before the highest magistrate of the land. And this I do in order to recognize the institutions of our government. We operate under a republican-democratic form of government where powers of government are divided into three parts – the Executive, Legislative, and Judiciary,” Enrile told reporters when interviewed after the oath-taking.

As head of the Senate – which is one half of Congress – Enrile said he finds it necessary to take his oath before “the highest officer, magistrate of the third department of the government, who is no less than the Chief Justice of the land.”

Enrile also reacted at President-elect Aquino decision who broke the tradition by not allowing the Chief Justice to administer his oath.

We should not create division. We should create an atmosphere and an environment of unity in spite of our diversity,” Enrile said.]

My thanks @Rhol for the  photo below of Presiding Senator-judge Enrile taking his oath of office before CJ Corona in 2010. Thanks, also @Maria Fema Duterte and @Mark Madrona for sharing with me the same photo on Facebook:

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile took his oath of office before beleaguered Chief Justice Renato Corona in 2010

While a fourth [Update - fifth] senator-judge took his oath of office before the now detained Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, who had insisted on appointing Corona as chief magistrate during a constitutional ban on presidential appointments.

Everytime a politician wins an election, he or she carefully chooses the official who is to administer the oath of office. The momentous occasion consequently results in a bond being formed between both state officials. A photograph of that treasured moment is usually snapped for posterity.

Following their electoral victory in May 2010, three senators opted to take their oath of office before Chief Justice Corona even after his very public snubbing by the newly-elected president of the Philippine Republic, Benigno Aquino III.

PNoy demonstrated his belief that Corona was an illegitimate CJ by refusing to be sworn into office by him on June 30, 2010 at the Luneta Grandstand in Rizal Park.

These three senator-judges apparently believed otherwise:

Senator-judge Miriam Defensor-Santiago:

 

Senator-judge Miriam Santiago took her oath of office as senator before Chief Justice Corona in 2010

Senator-judge  Pilar (Pia) Cayetano:

Corona-oath-Pia-Cayetano-ta

Senator-judge Pilar "Pia" Cayetano chooses CJ Corona to seal her maiden victory as senator in 2010

And Senator-judge   Vicente Sotto III, who is also the Senate Majority Floor Leader who steers the deliberations in the Impeachment Court:

Corona-Sotto-takes-oath-bef

CJ Corona swears in Senator-judge Vicente Sotto III for his 2010 political comeback

The senator-judges also demonstrated their belief by being sworn into office by CJ Corona.  In so doing, the senator-judges also showed that they were backing CJ Corona in his actions as chief magistrate.

A fourth senator-judge, Bong Revilla Jr., chose to be sworn into office by Gloria Arroyo, whom President Aquino had openly accused of high crimes and of appointing Corona in order to shield her from criminal suits.

Corona-Sotto-takes-oath-bef

Senator-judge Bong Revilla takes oath before his Lakas-Kampi Party chief Gloria Arroyho - Source- PEP.ph

Senator-judge Revilla apparently did not share that belief. He specifically chose Mrs Arroyo, his party boss, to take his oath of office. He and Senator Manuel Lito Lapid were the only candidates of Arroyo’s Lakas-Kampi Party who managed to squeak through.

Senator-judge Miriam Santiago’s ties with the Corona camp go a long way back

Senator-judge Santiago openly backed early on Corona’s “midnight apppointment” – or one that was done within the period banning political appointments during elections. According to Santiago’s blog (probably maintained for her):

Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago, a constitutional law expert, said that the issue of Chief Justice Renato Corona’s assumption to office has already been laid to rest under the doctrine of res judicata, meaning that it can no longer be relitigated in court, because it has already been decided with finality.

“After the Supreme Court decision in De Castro v. Judicial and Bar Council last March, which settled the issue, any petition is now precluded, on the theory of so-called collateral estoppel,” she said.

Santiago warned critics to obey the rule of law, which she defined as “the doctrine that general constitutional principles are the result of judicial decisions determining the right of private individuals in the courts.

“The problem with the critics is that they mistake the law as it is; with the law as it ought to be, according to their layman’s interpretation. A line has to be drawn between the rule of law and the dystopian concept of freewheeling ethics,” she said.

Again, it wasn’t I who found out about Santiago’s close relations with Corona, with Senate Impeachment Court presiding officer Juan Ponce Enrile and with former Senator Francisco Tatad.

Tatad is one of Corona’s closest friends and allies who is closely working with Corona’s defense lawyers and who openly castigated Senator-judge Franklin Drilon for being biased against Corona.

It was a commenter on my blog named Sui Generis correctly pointed out that Tatad was Senator-judge Miriam Santiago’s vice-presidential running mate when she lost the presidency to Fidel Ramos in 1992.

[UPDATE March 5, 2012: a commenter named Jett Rink correctly pointed out that Tatad was Senator-judge Miriam Santiago's vice-presidential running-mate in 1998, not 1992. Tatad won a Senate seat in 1992 for the first time.Thanks, Jett.]

Here is Sui Generis’ take on Senator-judge  Santiago:

In 1969, she was recruited by then Secretary of Justice Juan Ponce Enrile to be his Special Assistant. Part of her job was drafting speeches on law and justice for President Marcos.

Her most sensitive assignment as special assistant to Enrile had been to prepare a confidential memorandum for President Marcos on the advisability of declaring martial law. She cooperated with Marcos after the declaration.

When she ran for President in 1998, Francisco Tatad is his Vice President under her Peoples Reform Party. Tatad is now publicly supporting Corona.

On November 20, 2003 her son Alexander Robert Santiago allegedly committed suicide. He was brought to East Avenue Medical Center. However, Dr. Amy Banaag said the gunshot did not seem to have been fired at close range.

Law enforcement agencies of the government were not allowed to conduct scene of the crime investigation. She had the cadaver of her son immediately cremated, thus destroying, suppressing and concealing the very corpus delicti of the offense.

At her son’s wake in Christ the King chapel Miriam said “”I AM removing myself from politics to fulfill my promise to him.” In 2004 she again ran for Senator and won.

Whatever happened to her promise?

In 2009, A former Malacañang lawyer Nombraan Pangcoga filed a petition at (Comelec) seeking to disqualify Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago from running again as senator in the 2010 elections, citing her “insanity” , among other as ground.

A certain Efren G. Battad also filed a complaint against her on January 7, 2010, although the charges against her were dismissed by the SC the allegations are interesting and might need further investigation.

Miriam Santiago faces disbarment complaint

She won re-election as senator in 2010 and Takes Oath Before CJ Corona.

She was also elected to a nine-year tenure as judge of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on December 12, 2011.

She finally meet her match on February 29, 2012. My new hero, Atty. Aguirre did the unthinkable, he protested by simply covering his ear and courageously engaged the Marcos trained witch in a verbal tussle. Her BP shoot up to 190/90 while Aguirre won the hearts of many Filipino.

She is set to leave for The Hague to take oath and assume office on March 9, 2012. She requested for deferment of oath taking due to insanity, este, medical reasons.

Connect the dots…

Miriam working for Enrile during the Marcos Regime.
Tatad is the Propaganda Minister of Marcos.
Miriam and Tatad team up for the highest office.
Tatad is publicly supporting Corona.
My intuition tells me there is a conspiracy here.

No wonder Miriam is so rabid to the prosecution.

Personally, I would still give all four senator-judges the benefit of the doubt. We don’t really know yet how they will vote on CJ Corona’s case.

Still, all four senator-judges bear close watching to see how their ties to and perception of CJ Corona would affect their own verdict of him.

450 Responses to “CJ Corona swore into office four senator-judges; GMA swore in one”

Read below or add a comment...

  1. 107
  2. 106
    Magic says:

    I wonder if it’s possible to disbar Sen. Miriam Santiago. The IBP Code of Conduct states that

    “Rule 8.01 – A lawyer shall not, in his professional dealings, use language which is abusive, offensive or otherwise improper.”

    It would have to be someone with balls of steel. Perhaps if De Lima isn’t too busy?

  3. 105
    MaximoParedes says:

    I am sorry to say that again this is “MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING”….

    Just because you swore in to office, with the Chief Justice doesn’t mean they’ll vote based on this.

    But ofcourse they will vote on political expediency over the merits or weaknesses of the articles of impeachment ….

    • 105.1
      emonng says:

      If it’s not Philippine politics (which Raisa and the people here hope to change) , I would have agreed on your statement..I really wish they would do that so that they can pass a legacy. Thank you.

    • 105.2
      markus says:

      This is utterly stupid. Its like saying the world is flat just because you’re seeing things from the wrong perspective. This site is obviously pro-aquino and not pro-justice.

      • 105.2.1
        raissa says:

        It’s pro-people and pro-Philippines.

      • 105.2.2
        Alang says:

        You got it right-this the perfect perfect yellow hacks.

      • 105.2.3
        jjvillamor says:

        I am not really sure what you are referring to but it is possible that what your are seeing as pro-aquino is “coincidental” as the anti-corruption effort he is initiating are to us pro justice. I for one would not support any stupid campaign by Aquino. But if his campaign is along the line of what I believe in then I am pro-(that campaign) whether it is also pro-aquino or pro-someone else.

  4. 104
    Mel says:

    Excerpts on R Corona’s interview TODAY.

    Corona willing to appear in his impeachment trial

    MANILA, Philippines – Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona on Wednesday said he is open to attending the impeachment trial to prove there is no discrepancy between his actual income and his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN).

    Corona said he is willing to personally answer the allegations hurled against him but it would be up to his lawyers whether to attend the impeachment trial hearings or not.

    “Open ako dyan, pero depende yun sa mga abugado ko, kung ano ang sasabihin ng mga lawyers ko, eh yun ang aking gagawin,” Corona said in a TV interview.

    “Yun po ang pinalalabas ng mga naninira sa akin. Yan ay isang bagay na matagal ng pag-iintay na maipaliwanag ko. Sapul sa simula, ako ay magpapaliwanag. I will give an adequate explanation of each centavo that came in went out,” he said.

    “Pinalalabas kasi na ako daw ay walang-wala ng pumasok sa gobyerno. Eh hindi na totoo yan. Ako po ay top executive sa private sector, may naipon po ako, at ang pamilyang pinanggalingan ko ay hindi walang wala.”

    Source: From ABS-CBNnews.com
    Posted at 03/07/2012 8:23 AM | Updated as of 03/07/2012 8:49 AM

    • 104.1
      Mel says:

      Corona will open dollar deposits

      MANILA, Philippines – Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona on Wednesday said he will be opening his dollar deposits in his impeachment trial to prove he has nothing to hide.

      “Whether or not there was a TRO from the Supreme Court, I said I will open it in due time and the due time is next week. I have always said there is no problem with my dollar deposits because I can explain it, ” Corona said in a radio interview.

      ABS-CBNnews.com
      Posted at 03/07/2012 9:03 AM | Updated as of 03/07/2012 9:03 AM

      • 104.1.1
        jorgebernas says:

        @ Mel,

        Hindi ko maintindihan kong ano ibig sabihin ni thief justice nato corona na bubuksan niya ang dollar accnt. in due time & that due time is next week eh bakit wala pa hanggang ngayon at mag iisang buyan na next week. ano ba talaga tinatago mo sa dollar accnt. mo thief justice nato corona…

        Bakit abogado mo pa magsasabi kong dapat ka ngang tumistigo/ umupo sa witness stand? Kong gusto mo at wala kang itinatago ay dapat magwitness ka sa sarili mo? Pati mga anak mo ay dinamay mo pa thief justice nato corona sa mga pagbenta sa kanila nang condo gayon hindi nila kayang bumil dahil ordinaryong empliyado lang mga ito sa america. Parang hinukay mo ang kanilang sariling libingan.

        At kong mabuti kang ama bakit mo sila bibintahan nang condo/lupa gayon puwede naman hindi nila bibilhin dahil kong mamamatay kayong mag asawang cristina @ thie justice nato corona ay tiyak ay sa kanila din ito mapupunta…

      • 104.1.2
        jjvillamor says:

        Tagal ng next week niya. More than two months late at hindi pa matutuloy malamang kung hindi lumabas yung AMLC report

  5. 103
    Omar says:

    What’s Plan B if Corona ever gets acquitted?

    I am sensing that is going to be inevitable. Pnoy should be spending his political capital and go apeshit on these goons in robes.

  6. 102
    denzeldavid says:

    This information made my belief grew stronger that the 2/3 votes needed to oust CJ Corona will not happen. Analyzing the profiles of the senators, it shows that quite a number doesn’t care about the merits of the arguments, but just vote according to party lines and personalities.

    The way I read the statements and actions displayed by these senator-jurors is that they are already laying the premise why they will vote for exoneration of CJ Corona. They are already trying to indoctrinate in the people’s mind that they have no choice but to vote for acquittal because the article of impeachment is weak, poorly written and full of loopholes. Taking the attention away from the real issues and put all the blame instead to the prosecution panel.

    You can see all those double talk. To point out some –

    • Professing that only the Impeachment Court has the sole power and authority to try and decide the impeachment case of CJ Corona, but bowing to the Supreme Court’s every decisions and orders
    • Declaring that the Impeachment Court is not a Criminal Court, but the proceedings is handled more as a criminal case. Preponderance of evidence and not beyond reasonable doubt shall be applied, but evidence offered were not allowed as if it is just another of a regular court hearing a criminal case
    • And more, always castigating the prosecution panel and make them look like a Joke for people to see them as pathetic.

    I’m still hoping though that I am wrong. The optimism remains that the senators-jurors, or at least most of them, still have concern and will do well for our country. Or, am I just dreaming? I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

    However, in the eventualities, I am more than willing to take the fight to the streets again

    • 102.1
      arlon says:

      @denzeldavid

      When MDS and JPE continued to castigate the Prosecution for having a weak case, “tinutulungan na sila eh,” and “ang yayabang ninyo mga gago naman kayo,’ they are really conditioning the minds of the people and already justifying their vote for an acquittal.

      I think a lot of ordinary people, including me, will take to the streets again, if the TRUTH will be cirmcunvented by an acquittal. I believe Atty V. Aguirre can become the new face in a new PEOPLE POWER. He can crystallize a people’s power action in the event of an acquittal. He was able to jolt the ordinary people with his defiance of MDS. And with all the tweets, barrage of anti-MDS comments in blogs, newspapers, radio shows, social net sites, the Senate BOWED TO THE PEOPLE and just admonished him.

  7. 101
    Eileen Arboleda-Orbeta says:

    … the Senate should compel CJCorona to appear in the impeachment court… kahit kumuha pa ang defense team ng mga witnesses hindi pa rin magiging sapat ang mga sasabihin nila lalo na kung personal bank accounts ang pag uusapan.

  8. Magic says:

    I wonder if it’s possible to disbar Sen. Miriam Santiago. The IBP Code of Conduct states that

    “Rule 8.01 – A lawyer shall not, in his professional dealings, use language which is abusive, offensive or otherwise improper.”

    It would have to be someone with balls of steel. Perhaps if De Lima isn’t too busy?

  9. MaximoParedes says:

    I am sorry to say that again this is “MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING”….

    Just because you swore in to office, with the Chief Justice doesn’t mean they’ll vote based on this.

    But ofcourse they will vote on political expediency over the merits or weaknesses of the articles of impeachment ….

    • emonng says:

      If it’s not Philippine politics (which Raisa and the people here hope to change) , I would have agreed on your statement..I really wish they would do that so that they can pass a legacy. Thank you.

    • markus says:

      This is utterly stupid. Its like saying the world is flat just because you’re seeing things from the wrong perspective. This site is obviously pro-aquino and not pro-justice.

      • raissa says:

        It’s pro-people and pro-Philippines.

      • Alang says:

        You got it right-this the perfect perfect yellow hacks.

      • jjvillamor says:

        I am not really sure what you are referring to but it is possible that what your are seeing as pro-aquino is “coincidental” as the anti-corruption effort he is initiating are to us pro justice. I for one would not support any stupid campaign by Aquino. But if his campaign is along the line of what I believe in then I am pro-(that campaign) whether it is also pro-aquino or pro-someone else.

  10. Mel says:

    Excerpts on R Corona’s interview TODAY.

    Corona willing to appear in his impeachment trial

    MANILA, Philippines – Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona on Wednesday said he is open to attending the impeachment trial to prove there is no discrepancy between his actual income and his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN).

    Corona said he is willing to personally answer the allegations hurled against him but it would be up to his lawyers whether to attend the impeachment trial hearings or not.

    “Open ako dyan, pero depende yun sa mga abugado ko, kung ano ang sasabihin ng mga lawyers ko, eh yun ang aking gagawin,” Corona said in a TV interview.

    “Yun po ang pinalalabas ng mga naninira sa akin. Yan ay isang bagay na matagal ng pag-iintay na maipaliwanag ko. Sapul sa simula, ako ay magpapaliwanag. I will give an adequate explanation of each centavo that came in went out,” he said.

    “Pinalalabas kasi na ako daw ay walang-wala ng pumasok sa gobyerno. Eh hindi na totoo yan. Ako po ay top executive sa private sector, may naipon po ako, at ang pamilyang pinanggalingan ko ay hindi walang wala.”

    Source: From ABS-CBNnews.com
    Posted at 03/07/2012 8:23 AM | Updated as of 03/07/2012 8:49 AM

    • Mel says:

      Corona will open dollar deposits

      MANILA, Philippines – Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona on Wednesday said he will be opening his dollar deposits in his impeachment trial to prove he has nothing to hide.

      “Whether or not there was a TRO from the Supreme Court, I said I will open it in due time and the due time is next week. I have always said there is no problem with my dollar deposits because I can explain it, ” Corona said in a radio interview.

      ABS-CBNnews.com
      Posted at 03/07/2012 9:03 AM | Updated as of 03/07/2012 9:03 AM

      • jorgebernas says:

        @ Mel,

        Hindi ko maintindihan kong ano ibig sabihin ni thief justice nato corona na bubuksan niya ang dollar accnt. in due time & that due time is next week eh bakit wala pa hanggang ngayon at mag iisang buyan na next week. ano ba talaga tinatago mo sa dollar accnt. mo thief justice nato corona…

        Bakit abogado mo pa magsasabi kong dapat ka ngang tumistigo/ umupo sa witness stand? Kong gusto mo at wala kang itinatago ay dapat magwitness ka sa sarili mo? Pati mga anak mo ay dinamay mo pa thief justice nato corona sa mga pagbenta sa kanila nang condo gayon hindi nila kayang bumil dahil ordinaryong empliyado lang mga ito sa america. Parang hinukay mo ang kanilang sariling libingan.

        At kong mabuti kang ama bakit mo sila bibintahan nang condo/lupa gayon puwede naman hindi nila bibilhin dahil kong mamamatay kayong mag asawang cristina @ thie justice nato corona ay tiyak ay sa kanila din ito mapupunta…

      • jjvillamor says:

        Tagal ng next week niya. More than two months late at hindi pa matutuloy malamang kung hindi lumabas yung AMLC report

  11. Omar says:

    What’s Plan B if Corona ever gets acquitted?

    I am sensing that is going to be inevitable. Pnoy should be spending his political capital and go apeshit on these goons in robes.

  12. denzeldavid says:

    This information made my belief grew stronger that the 2/3 votes needed to oust CJ Corona will not happen. Analyzing the profiles of the senators, it shows that quite a number doesn’t care about the merits of the arguments, but just vote according to party lines and personalities.

    The way I read the statements and actions displayed by these senator-jurors is that they are already laying the premise why they will vote for exoneration of CJ Corona. They are already trying to indoctrinate in the people’s mind that they have no choice but to vote for acquittal because the article of impeachment is weak, poorly written and full of loopholes. Taking the attention away from the real issues and put all the blame instead to the prosecution panel.

    You can see all those double talk. To point out some –

    • Professing that only the Impeachment Court has the sole power and authority to try and decide the impeachment case of CJ Corona, but bowing to the Supreme Court’s every decisions and orders
    • Declaring that the Impeachment Court is not a Criminal Court, but the proceedings is handled more as a criminal case. Preponderance of evidence and not beyond reasonable doubt shall be applied, but evidence offered were not allowed as if it is just another of a regular court hearing a criminal case
    • And more, always castigating the prosecution panel and make them look like a Joke for people to see them as pathetic.

    I’m still hoping though that I am wrong. The optimism remains that the senators-jurors, or at least most of them, still have concern and will do well for our country. Or, am I just dreaming? I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

    However, in the eventualities, I am more than willing to take the fight to the streets again

    • arlon says:

      @denzeldavid

      When MDS and JPE continued to castigate the Prosecution for having a weak case, “tinutulungan na sila eh,” and “ang yayabang ninyo mga gago naman kayo,’ they are really conditioning the minds of the people and already justifying their vote for an acquittal.

      I think a lot of ordinary people, including me, will take to the streets again, if the TRUTH will be cirmcunvented by an acquittal. I believe Atty V. Aguirre can become the new face in a new PEOPLE POWER. He can crystallize a people’s power action in the event of an acquittal. He was able to jolt the ordinary people with his defiance of MDS. And with all the tweets, barrage of anti-MDS comments in blogs, newspapers, radio shows, social net sites, the Senate BOWED TO THE PEOPLE and just admonished him.

  13. Eileen Arboleda-Orbeta says:

    … the Senate should compel CJCorona to appear in the impeachment court… kahit kumuha pa ang defense team ng mga witnesses hindi pa rin magiging sapat ang mga sasabihin nila lalo na kung personal bank accounts ang pag uusapan.

  14. -->