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March 19 Senate impeachment court record

March 19 Senate impeachment court record

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03/20/2012

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MONDAY, MARCH 19, 2012
1
Republic of the Philippines
Senate
Record of the Senate
Sitting As An Impeachment Court
Monday, March 19, 2012
Pasay City 
AT 2:13 P.M., THE PRESIDING OFFICER, SENATE PRESIDENT JUAN PONCE ENRILE,CALLED THE IMPEACHMENT TRIAL OF SUPREME COURT CHIEF JUSTICE RENATO C.CORONA TO ORDER.
The Presiding Officer.
The continuation of the Impeachment Trial of the Honorable Chief Justiceof the Supreme Court Renato C. Corona is hereby called to order.We shall be led in prayer by Sen. Francis G. Escudero.
Senator Escudero.
Thank you, Mr. President.
Panginoon, sa muli Po Ninyong pagpapahiram sa amin ng panibagong buhay at lakas sa araw na ito, tanggapin Po sana Ninyo ang aming pagpapasalamat at pagkilalasa Inyong biyaya.Sa muli Po naming pagtitipon ngayon, Ikaw Po sana ang aming maging gabay at  panuntunan.
May You grant us the spirit of fairness, right thought and speech.Teach us to look at, weigh and appreciate different perspectives based on truth andreason.Please impart Your supreme wisdom among all of us and guide us to make the best useof our own.This we pray in Jesus’ Name.Amen.
The Presiding Officer.
Amen.
 
2
MONDAY, MARCH 19, 2012
______________
*Arrived after the roll call
The Secretary will please call the roll of Senators.
The Secretary
,
reading
:Senator Edgardo J. Angara...............................................................PresentSenator Joker P. Arroyo...................................................................Present*Senator Alan Peter “Compañero” S. Cayetano.................................AbsentSenator Pia S. Cayetano...................................................................Present*Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago....................................................PresentSenator Franklin M. Drilon................................................................PresentSenator Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada.......................................................PresentSenator Francis G. Escudero.............................................................PresentSenator Teofisto L. Guingona III.......................................................PresentSenator Gregorio B. Honasan II........................................................PresentSenator Panfilo M. Lacson................................................................PresentSenator Manuel “LitoM. Lapid.......................................................PresentSenator Loren Legarda......................................................................PresentSenator Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr...................................PresentSenator Sergio R. Osmeña III...........................................................PresentSenator Francis N. Pangilinan............................................................PresentSenator Aquilino L. Pimentel III........................................................PresentSenator Ralph G. Recto....................................................................PresentSenator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr......................................................PresentSenator Vicente C. Sotto III.............................................................PresentSenator Antonio “SonnyF. Trillanes IV...........................................Present*Senator Manny Villar.........................................................................Present*The Senate President.........................................................................Present
The Presiding Officer.
With 18 Senator-Judges present, the Presiding Officer declares thepresence of a quorum.The Floor Leader.
Senator Sotto.
Mr. President, may I ask the Sergeant-at-Arms to make the proclamation?
The Presiding Officer.
The Sergeant-at-Arms is directed to make the proclamation.
The Sergeant-at-Arms.
All persons are commanded to keep silent under pain of penalty whilethe Senate is sitting in trial on the Articles of Impeachment against Chief Justice Renato C. Corona.
The Presiding Officer.
The Floor Leader.
Senator Sotto.
Mr. President, I move that we dispense with the reading of the March 15, 2012
 Journal
of the Senate sitting as an Impeachment Court and consider the same as approved.
The Presiding Officer.
Is there any objection?
[Silence]
Hearing none, the March 15, 2012
 Journal
of the Senate sitting as an Impeachment Court is hereby approved.
 
MONDAY, MARCH 19, 2012
3
The Secretary will now please call the case.
The Secretary.
Case No. 002-2011, in the Matter of Impeachment Trial of Honorable Chief Justice Renato C. Corona.
The Presiding Officer.
Appearances, the Floor Leader.
Senator Sotto.
May we ask the parties to enter their appearances, Mr. President?Prosecution.
Representative Tupas.
Good afternoon, Mr. President.For the Prosecution Panel of the House of Representatives, same appearances. We are ready,Your Honor.
The Presiding Officer.
Noted.Defense.
Mr. Bodegon.
Good afternoon, Mr. President and members of the Impeachment Court. For theDefense, Your Honor, same appearance.
The Presiding Officer.
Noted.The Floor Leader.
Senator Sotto.
Mr. President, for a manifestation, may we recognize Sen. Miriam DefensorSantiago?
The Presiding Officer.
The lady Senator from Iloilo is recognized.
Senator Defensor Santiago.
Thank you, Mr. President.It appears to me that we have come to the point in this Impeachment Trial when we are faced withthe centerpiece of the Prosecution, meaning to say, the accusations against the filing of the SALN(Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth) by the Chief Justice. It appears to be the showpieceof the Prosecution and therefore we must take time, not only take time out of number crunching whichwe are doing last week and see what the Constitution and what the Supreme Court have said aboutthe filing of the SALN.First, let me begin with Article II of the Articles of Impeachment. I will read it verbatim:“Respondent committed culpable violation of the Constitution and/or betrayed the public trust when hefailed to disclose”—I repeat—“when he failed to disclose to the public Statement of Assets, Liabilitiesand Net Worth as required under Section 17, Article XI of the 1987 Constitution.” Notice that thisheading under the Articles of Impeachment only uses the phrase “failed to disclose.” If he had disclosedand we are going to apply this Article literally and very strictly, then there is no more case. Becauseit turns out now that he disclosed his Statement of Assets and Liabilities as provided by law as I shallexplain later.So, in my view, Article II is suffering from at least incompetence in phraseology. Because if wewere to apply it strictly, if there is evidence and evidence has been shown in this Court that Defendantfailed to disclose, meaning to say, failed to show his statement or make his Statement of Assets,Liabilities and Net Worth unavailable or inaccessible to the public, then he would have committed theimpeachable offense. But if he already took steps to do otherwise, then the whole case falls. What

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