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We beg to differ.


A critic of Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona lamented over Twitter, “But Corona is using the law for his own protection.” Eureka! Corona’s critic had the answer to the dilemma dividing the sentiments of the entire nation. Indeed, if the law cannot protect the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, then the law cannot protect anybody in the country. Equal protection of the law applies to everybody including Corona. As stated in Article III, Section 1,2,3, of the Bill of Rights:

Section 1. No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of the laws.

Section 2. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature and for any purpose shall be inviolable, and no search warrant or warrant of arrest shall issue except upon probable cause to be determined personally by the judge after examination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.

Section 3. (1) The privacy of communication and correspondence shall be inviolable except upon lawful order of the court, or when public safety or order requires otherwise, as prescribed by law.

(2) Any evidence obtained in violation of this or the preceding section shall be inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding.

On the last day of his testimony at the impeachment trial, Corona claimed that apart from the violations committed by the prosecution, the Office of the Ombudsman was in violation of his rights and other laws as stipulated in the constitution, which includes the Anti-Money Laundering Act (AMLA) and the dollar secrecy law:

“I am not aware of being guilty of a predicate crime,” he said. “I am not under any investigation and there is no court order, yet the Ombudsman released the alleged AMLC report and made a PowerPoint presentation during her testimony.”

Under the Anti-Money Laundering Act, investigators must first establish a suspect’s link to a predicate crime before they can look into his bank accounts.

The law also requires a court order before a suspect’s bank accounts can be opened for scrutiny.

The suspect also needs to be informed that he is being investigated by the AMLC before his bank accounts can be checked.

Technically speaking, the prosecution and Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales did not have authority to look into Corona’s accounts without the waiver allowing access to his bank accounts that he only issued on the 25th May 2012. This means that the manner with which they gathered the evidence used in their investigation into Corona’s accounts was in violation of the Constitution particularly Corona’s right to privacy.

It is interesting to note that the prosecution is now relying heavily on the presentation by defense hostile witness, Ombudsman Morales to secure his conviction. According to prosecution spokesman Congressman Miro Quimbo, the AMLC report supposedly obtained for the Ombudsman was enough evidence and that whatever results Corona’s waiver would produce would be of no use to them. However, the evidence presented by the Ombudsman should not even be admissible for any purpose in any proceeding including Corona’s impeachment trial as stipulated in Section 3.2 of Article III.

Even more bizarre, something highlighted by Senator Chiz Escudero, is the fact that the prosecution is not interested in checking the accuracy of the unauthenticated AMLC report on which Ombudsman Morales based her spurious interpretation. Escudero was in disbelief upon hearing that the prosecution does not need the waiver from Corona at all considering that it was the issue of access to Corona’s account that caused the Senators a lot of stress during one of their earlier caucuses at the start of the trial.

The prosecution had almost caused branches of government to collide with each other when they insisted the court subpoena Corona’s dollar accounts — a request which would have put the Senate court in violation of the dollar secrecy law. One can be forgiven for thinking that prosecution is afraid to find out that the Ombudsman’s report might not match what’s in Corona’s account. It likely means that they are afraid that Corona could be telling the truth.

The Senator Judges are likewise not interested in looking into Corona’s account now that it is finally open for inspection citing that “the court is hearer of facts” and not supposed to produce evidence for the defense and the prosecution. It seems no one is interested in the truth after all. The golden opportunity to find out if Corona is telling the truth about his dollar accounts and peso accounts with co-mingled funds is being ignored to be able to stick to their self-imposed deadline to end the trial by 31st of May.

How can the Senators arrive at an objective decision when they don’t want to look at all the facts? This would constitute a denial of due process.

Some say that the point of contention now is whether or not the Senators will agree to Corona’s interpretation of the Foreign Currency Deposit Republic Act 6426 or the dollar secrecy law and the The Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act 6713 that covers the law on filing the Statement of Assets, Liability and Network (SALN).

Corona was very clear in his response to a bewildered Senator Kiko Pangilinan’s question on which law takes precedence, is it the SALN or the dollar secrecy law? The Chief Magistrate of the Supreme Court did not even see a conflict in the two laws because the SALN law includes the words “as may be provided by law” and that particular law in Corona’s case is the dollar secrecy law, which requires absolute confidentiality of the depositor’s accounts. To be sure, here is the part of the laws on disclosure of the SALN under Art. XI, Section 17:

A public officer or employee shall, upon assumption of office and as often thereafter as may be required by law, submit a declaration under oath of his assets, liabilities, and net worth. In the case of the President, the Vice-President, the Members of the Cabinet, the Congress, the Supreme Court, the Constitutional Commissions and other constitutional offices, and officers of the armed forces with general or flag rank, the declaration shall be disclosed to the public in the manner provided by law”

How can you argue with that? It is crystal clear that Corona was just following the law when he did not include his dollar deposits in his SALN and as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court; it is expected of him to do so. I can’t imagine any of the Senators — except, perhaps, for Senator Drilon and Pangilinan — making a big deal of this unimpeachable offense considering it is Corona’s money, which he simply invested in US currency.

His salary had already been taxed and his dollar deposits would have been presumably taxed accordingly. Besides, now that we know that he only has a measly total of $2.4 million dollars – not $12 million, as earlier reported, we can all sleep at night knowing that he has not siphoned public funds into his accounts. And let’s not forget what Corona kept repeating during his testimony. If he really wanted to hide his money, he would not put it under his name. A CPA-Lawyer even claims that Corona did not have to include his dollar deposits in his SALN:

Estrella Martinez, a CPA-lawyer who served in the BIR for 32 years, on Thursday said Corona was under no obligation to reveal such accounts because of the Foreign Currency Deposit Act (Republic Act No. 6426).

Martinez, an expert on SALNs having spent years at the BIR and with a master of law degree in taxation from the University of the Philippines, said foreign currency deposits have “no place in the SALN” because of the strict rules of RA 6426.

That partly explains why, she said in a paper given to the Inquirer, “in all my 32 years as a tax collector, I have never encountered a government official declare his dollar deposits in his SALN.”

“A dollar deposit cannot be declared as assets in the SALN because this will not affect his net worth,” she wrote. “It is of judicial notice that increase in net worth is taxable under Section 24 of the Tax Code, because net worth comprises such acquisition in ‘peso’ only.”

Martinez added: “Some passive income, like interest on dollar deposit, has been subjected to a final withholding tax, which the dollar depositor is not mandated to declare in his income tax return or SALN. This dollar transaction will just appear in an alpha list submitted to the BIR.”

There you go. Martinez’s explanation is easy enough to understand. I hope the Senators will not make things too complicated for them when they decide on Corona’s verdict.

Corona’s critics do lament about a lot of things against him but most of it is grossly exaggerated. Their failure in pinning down Corona has to do with their defiance of the law and in going against someone who knows how to use the law to protect himself.

[Photo courtesy Washington Examiner.]

Ilda

In life, things are not always what they seem.

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75 Comments

  • Fan Ni Ilda says:

    Idol kita ilda! Pakasal na tayo! I lab yu!

  • vinsanity says:

    Given this fact, how else can the senator-judges think that the chief justice’s interpretation is wrong?

  • viking logarta (@vikinglogarta) says:

    Your article is shot full of inaccuracies. The AMLC, Ombudsman, nor the prosecution ever opened the dollar accounts of Corona.

    • Ilda says:

      My dear, the prosecution was in possession of copies of Corona’s dollar accounts, which were provided by the “small lady” and a fairy who left documents on Congressman Banal’s gate. They even used those illegally obtained docs to request for a subpoena from the senator judges. And as stated in the article, Corona was unaware that he was under any investigation and “there was no court order, yet the Ombudsman released the alleged AMLC report and made a PowerPoint presentation during her testimony.”

      • Jojo says:

        Pointing out one thing: the ombudsman was compelled by the counsel of the Thief to testify in the court, hence he should bear the consequence.

        • ici says:

          the consequence being that the ombudsman was unmasked as a willing pawn of a vindictive government.

        • Impaler Triumphant says:

          Uh, Jojo, while the Yellow Tards cannot legally-prove CJ to be a thief, neither can we prove Peenoy and his cohorts to be thieves as well, unless we take the legal procedures. 😉

          From what you said, Ombudsman Morales has let herself be used by the Banana Administration, just as Corona had allegedly made Arroyo use him.

          Pag talaga nagpagamit ka, ikaw ang kawawa, hay.

          I seriously don’t think that CJ’s acquital will be the end of the story. They have violated some laws once. They will do it again.

      • rod says:

        Ma’m Ilda, well said. Congratulation and Mabuhay po tayong lahat who respect the Rule of Law.

  • J says:

    “A public officer or employee shall, upon assumption of office and as often thereafter as may be required by law…”

    Let’s repeat that…

    “As often thereafter as may be required by law”

    Clearly, the limitation of this constitutional provision by an enabling statute refers only on the FREQUENCY of filing the SALN.

    In Sec 11, Art 17, the phrase “as may be provided by law” was mentioned twice. First is on the frequency of disclosure and second is on the manner of disclosure.

    The law mentioned by that provision is the SALN Law or RA6713 since it’s the only law that deals with the method of disclosing assets. A pre-1987 Marcos-era law can’t be an enabling/limiting law since, firstly, that law has nothing to do with the manner of filing SALNs and that, secondly, the Constitution didn’t even mention any exemptions at all.

    Citing that BIR person is an appeal to authority. The Ombudsman declared her dollars in her SALN.

    • Ilda says:

      @J

      To borrow the words of Atty: Benjamin Cardinez:

      The divergence of opinion on non disclosure of dollar deposits (as exception to saln law) will be debated in years to come until settled once and for all by the supreme court in a proper case. meanwhile, i find it unacceptable to hinge the impeachment of a public official, let alone a chief justice, on an alleged violation of a DOUBTFUL provision of the law. i don’t think it can rise to the level of “culpable violation of the Constitution“.

      ————–

      Lawmakers should make amendments to plug the loophole once and for all as soon as possible.

      I suggest you erase the memory of the $12M that the ombudsman announced. It was for maximum damage and to condition the minds of the public prior to his testimony. It’s only $2.4M according to Corona.

      Citing that BIR person is an appeal to authority. The Ombudsman declared her dollars in her SALN.

      It doesn’t really matter who said it as long as it makes sense.

      • J says:

        Perhaps not culpable violation, but it’s likely to be betrayal of public trust, which the Senate is free to define.

        I pointed out that the Ombudsman declared her dollars in her SALN to dispute that BIR expert’s implied claim that none has ever declared dollars in SALN.

        • Eye says:

          Had due diligence been applied in the preparation of the impeachment complaint then perhaps the House of Representatives would have known of the conflicting laws (RA 6426 & SALN) that has been left subject to interpretation all these years.

          Guess if the House actually did their elected tasks then we won’t be in this dilemma. But that would be too much to expect from the Law Markers who as we have all witnessed have been the law breakers.

    • Domingo Arong says:

      @J

      Note that the provision Ilda referred to is Section 17, Article XI and NOT Sec. 11, Art. 17, and the relevant line that speaks of the manner in which “the declaration shall be the disclosed to the public” actually appears at the end of the provision:

      “the declaration shall be disclosed to the public in the manner provided by law.”

      The two somewhat similar phrases found in the provision are: “as may be required by law” (regarding frequency) and “in the manner provided by law” (regarding mode of disclosure).

      The two laws Ilda cited are:

      –RA 6426 “Foreign Currency Deposit Act of the Philippines” Approved, April 4, 1974
      http://www.lawphil.net/statutes/repacts/ra1974/ra_6426_1974.html

      –RA 6713 “Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.” February 20, 1989
      http://www.lawphil.net/statutes/repacts/ra1989/ra_6713_1989.html

      The provision on SALN in RA 6713 is provided in:

      “Section 8. Statements and Disclosure. – Public officials and employees have an obligation to accomplish and submit declarations under oath of, and the public has the right to know, their assets, liabilities, net worth and financial and business interests including those of their spouses and of unmarried children under eighteen (18) years of age living in their households.

      “(A) Statements of Assets and Liabilities and Financial Disclosure.”

      Note further that RA 6713 (on SALN) is NOT “a pre-1987 Marcos-era law,” since the law was approved on February 20, 1989.

  • Eye says:

    It is just so very sad that the Filipino people are still so very sensational … so very easily taken in and swayed by whatever garbage is thrown at them.

    No one bothers to zoom out and take a minute or so to evaluate the issues. The media is taken as the gospel truth.

    After all these years our media has not found their independence and still give out irresponsible reports all for the sake of rating and perhaps loyalty and then some …

    Without facts, solid unaltered facts they will judge and when revelations are presented to differ, they will squirm to be corrected and bullishly will maintain the lies to be the truth … or twist the issues.

    It has not yet occurred to Filipino people that PNoy is not Ninoy (if that is to mean anything) nor is he Cory. PNoy is but just simply PNoy, one who has no obligation, no wife, no child, no girlfriend, no much of anything … but the mandate of the people who he then entrusts to his buddies to guide him on how to serve? GREAT!

    I pray for acquittal because of all the Rules of Law that were broken. Any omission in the SALN as per the law of the SALN itself is correctable and bottom line is it is NOT a high crime. GET REAL!

    • jeanne says:

      good that this will end soon but it’s useless to predict somethig that might (I repeat, might) not happen. I’d rather be sure and hear the actual verdict itself before passing jugdemt on the said verdict… that’s another guise of trial come election day.

    • Daido Katsumi says:

      Sorry, baka IKAW ata iyon. I think those who are EMO are vindictive and malicious trolls like yourself.

      I’m sure that site is full of pro-Noynoy tsismis. Ang sarap maging vindictive, ‘no? 😛

    • Winter is Coming says:

      I would not call the Freethinkers site full of Aquino propaganda. And just to be fair, the author of the piece did say he was not giving the org’s position on the matter, only his own.

      The essay, as the title implies, makes much of the “spirit” of the SALN law because indeed its “letter” mentions nothing regarding dollar accounts, specifically whether or not it is superior to the laws guarding the confidentiality of foreign currency deposits. My problem with this argument is that (and feel free to correct me on this one if I am mistaken) the law on foreign deposits existed before the SALN law. If indeed the SALN law was supposed to supercede other laws, it should have explicitly say so with words like “And this takes precedence over such laws as blahblahblah.” The legal document was wordy enough. It would not have suffered becoming wordier if it was really interested in being the superior law.

      If the SALN law had such a gaping loophole, then plug it. Wag a finger at those who may have blatantly exploited such a loophole and tell them “Never again!” (Isn’t that the purpose of all those investigations “in aid of legislation.”) But you can’t say “well, what I meant at the time was all deposits. And I meant to say that it should be higher than that older FCDC law which I totes knew about.” As the essay itself says, this shouldn’t be about intentions, good or bad, just what the law says. As a corollary, you can’t make the law say what it did not. Never mind your intentions. (“Sorry, I don’t think it’ll work out. It’s not you. It’s the law.”)

      Also, the SALN law itself offers a remedy for erroneous declarations: after the error is pointed out, the public official is instructed to correct it. The law is clear and simple on that one. Let’s go with clear and simple whenever we can so that even the slow amongst us can get with the program.

      I also disagree with the conclusion that we should convict Corona to send a message that we would not tolerate the breaking of laws. So many laws were blatantly broken by the accusers. You can’t convince me that such wanton disregard for both letter and spirit of others laws in the service of “implementing” that one SALN law is acceptable. If we truly believe that we live in a nation of laws, none of us should find that acceptable.

      I’m a little disappointed at the aside that people who do not believe in conviction are “Corona supporters” and that the entire position is based on the belief that Corona isn’t the only one who broke the SALN law. Clearly there are people who aren’t convinced he actually broke the law. Moreover, there are people more disgusted by how other laws were broken.

      • Eye says:

        Absolutely … and who is responsible if we have conflicting laws … RA 6426 and SALN?

        The prosecution claims the they presented a solid case … excuse me, you didn’t even have a solid complaint much less any solid evidence …

        • Winter is Coming says:

          That’s why it irritates me so much when congresistas claim they authored no laws because we have so many laws already and that in fact, there’s so many they are even in conflict. (1) Then why run for a legislative position when you believe the work there is already done? Shouldn’t you be doing something else, in an area where your labors are actually needed? (2) As a lawmaker, did you then try to make the laws more synchronous/more harmonious? Aargh!

  • jerome says:

    I wonder when will the Filipino people rational and objective about things. The political nature of this trial is already enough to call it a mistrial. I do hope that our senator judges would not give in to the mob mentality.

    If running the Philippines would be compared to running a corporation, president pnoy should have been fired or asked to resign for non performance and incompetence. So much wasted resources and time is being spend on this impeachment proccess initiated by malacanang.

    At the end of this trial no matter what the decision is. The result is a net loss for the Philippines

    If corona gets an acquittal, would there be another impeachment complaint?

    If corona gets a guilty verdict, would there be other officials be impeached if they perceived to be an enemy of malacanang?

    How come the results of this meaningless trial are not being weighed by the Filipinos

    • jeanne says:

      The Ombudsman hints that might be another one come December, if he gets the acquittal. if he gets convicted, then it’s like the line for Madame Guilottine. I’m sensing that it might resemble a wicthunt or something. What do we get out of this? that’s one big question. It’s not sure if reforms will push even after trial. Politicians will be busy campaigning.

      • Winter is Coming says:

        Does Double Jeopardy come into play here?

        If the Ombudsman’s “evidence” matters in the current proceedings and, hypothetically, Corona is acquitted, could the same “evidence” be recycled? Would that not constitute double jeopardy? (As the Senate President said, the proceedings may be sui generis but akin to criminal proceedings?

        • Eye says:

          Wonder where was it said that Ombudsman Morales is an honorable person …

          Her loaded appearance in the witness stand, hostile and belligerent showed me that she was indeed an obvious pawn — an illegal AMLC report that will not withstand a proper scrutiny — an over kill with Heidi Mendoza and that bizarre PowerPoint meant to deliberately confuse or cause a total mental shut down —

          Then, her press con where she was foaming at the mouth … woe too unbecoming for my taste …

          But YES, I would expect another complaint regardless of whether it is double jeopardy and or if it is against the law because this admin have NO regard for the Rule of Law must less Due Process.

  • Impaler Triumphant says:

    I have a meme catchphrase for this:

    “One does not simply show their own bank accounts.”

    Yep, we still have to consider the bank secrecy law. And we know why.

    Fir example: Any black-hat hacker would see this impeachment as an opportunity to hack into CJ’s bank account and steal his money for some reason. And do not underestimate their power. The cleverest can cover their tracks.

    Now a cookie to eat before going to sleep: what if this impeachment is for the Yellow Tards to find out about his bank accounts so that their hackers could steal his money and justify it “in the name of the Daang Matuwid”? Maybe CJ’s account numbers won’t be revealed explicitly, but hackers can be good in hacking by induction.

  • Aegis-Judex says:

    And PNoy and co’y claim to be the Constitution…

    facepalm.png

  • J says:

    Let me quote a real lawyer:

    Notwithstanding the well-written script and the well-staged drama, Chief Justice Renato Corona did not present any positive evidence to substantiate or corroborate his bare and self-serving allegations that he supposedly did not grossly underdeclare his Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALNs)

    To recall, during previous hearings, bank documents were produced and presented by the Prosecution showing that Corona, as of 31 December 2010, had balances of P12,024,067.70 under BPI Express Teller Checking Account No. 1445-8030-61 and P19,728,555.39 under PSBank Peso Account Nos. 089121021681 and 089121019593, or a total of P31,752,623.09 in peso-denominated cash deposits.

    This is contrary to his sworn declarations in his SALNs that, as of 31 December 2010, he had only P3,500,000.00 in “Cash and Investments”, which can only mean that Corona falsely declared and undervalued the “Cash and Investments” component of his assets in his SALNs by at least P28,252,623.09.

    Add to this the newly-found P17,000,000.00 worth of deposits with PSBank and the underdeclaration be as high as P45,252,623.09 depending on the other accounts to be produced and the declarations he will make in his SALN for 2011 (which will be filed on or before 30 April 2012).

    Worse, during today’s hearing, Corona even admitted as having at least $2.4 Million, or approximately P100 Million, which he likewise did not declare in his SALNs, raising the undeclared “Cash and Investments” as high as P145,252,623.09.

    O_0

    Kaloka!

    In his defense, Corona only made broad, general and sweeping conclusions regarding the accusations against him. Simply stated, he merely (1) denied the evidence presented against him without corroborating testimonial or documentary evidence; and (2) made legal conclusions as to why he was supposedly excused from declaring his dollar and peso accounts from his SALN.

    First, as previously stated, the Prosecution has positively shown, through testimonies of bank representatives, that Corona had bank deposits under his name that greatly exceeds the amounts he declared in his SALNs.

    Corona, on the other hand, simply made bare denials and nothing more.

    He even admitted that he will not be presenting documentary evidence to support his conclusions. If he intended to prove that the accounts presented by the Prosecution were not accurate, he should have presented bank records to show the contrary.

    It is elementary that denial is inherently a weak defense that cannot outweigh positive testimony. It is established that “as between a categorical statement that has the earmarks of truth on the one hand and bare denial, on the other, the former is generally held to prevail.” [People vs. Bitancor, G.R. No. 147968, 4 December 2002]

    As stated by the Supreme Court in People vs. Tamano, G.R. No. 188855, 8 December 2010:

    As between a categorical testimony that rings of truth on one hand, and a bare denial on the other, the former is generally held to prevail. A mere denial, like alibi, is inherently a weak defense and constitutes self-serving negative evidence which cannot be accorded greater evidentiary weight than the declaration of credible witnesses who testify on affirmative matters.

    Thus, as opposed to the positive evidence presented by the Prosecution that Corona indeed possessed bank accounts that are far greater than what were declared in his SALNs, Corona’s bare denials have little probative value, or none at all.

    Moreover, Corona’s written waiver is not unlimited. It is limited only to balances. His waiver, to be truly unconditional, should allow opening of all his transactions/accounts.

    It’s still a fake waiver.

    It’s a trick, ruse.

    Anything more than that would be so uncharacteristic of the self-professed saint.

    Indeed, a review of his SALNs reveals that the material omissions, undervaluation and non-disclosure are not mere good faith errors that may be corrected. The discrepancies are too glaring to be passed off by the Defense as mere errors. What is clear, at this point, is that there is already a clear pattern of nondisclosure, false declarations and undervaluation.

    Second, it is elementary that a witness can only testify on matters of fact. His/her opinion is not admissible, unless he/she was presented as an expert witness. [Sections 48 and 49, Rules 130 of the Rules of Court]

    In this case, Corona, although a Member of the Supreme Court, was never presented as an expert witness. In fact, he was called to the witness stand to answer the factual allegations made and proven by the prosecution, not to give any expert opinion.

    That being said, Corona’s statements that the law supposedly does not require disclosure of dollar accounts in one’s SALN should not be given credence by the Impeachment Court. Aside from being inadmissible, it also lacks probative value since it is only the Impeachment Court, having the sole power to try and decide all cases of impeachment [Section 3(6), Article XI of the Constitution], which can answer the issue on whether or not Corona’s non-disclosure of his dollar accounts in his SALNs was justified.

    In this regard, it should be remembered that the filing of an accurate SALN is a constitutional requirement, which supposed to serve as a tool to check whether a public officer is indeed faithfully serving the public trust. Section 1, Article XI of the Constitution provides that public officers and employees must “at all times be accountable to the people, serve them with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty, and efficiency, act with patriotism and justice, and lead modest lives.” Further to this mandate, the same Constitution explicitly declares that SALNs of public officers and employees, including Justices of the Supreme Court, are required to be disclosed to the public. Section 17, Article XI of the 1987 Constitution specifically provides:

    Section 17. A public officer or employee shall, upon assumption of office and as often thereafter as may be required by law, submit a declaration under oath of his assets, liabilities, and net worth. In the case of the President, the Vice-President, the Members of the Cabinet, the Congress, the Supreme Court, the Constitutional Commissions and other constitutional offices, and officers of the armed forces with general or flag rank, the declaration shall be disclosed to the public in the manner provided by law. [Emphasis and underscoring supplied]

    As Chief Justice, Corona could not have been ignorant of the purpose behind the requirement that every public official file a SALN every year. In The Ombudsman Fact-Finding and Intelligence Bureau, Office of the Ombudsman, et al., vs. Valeroso, 520 SCRA 140 (2007), the Supreme Court stated the rationale for the filing of SALNs as a way for the public to monitor a public official’s wealth:

    Section 8 above, speaks of unlawful acquisition of wealth, the evil sought to be suppressed and avoided, and Section 7, which mandates full disclosure of wealth in the SALN, is a means of preventing said evil and is aimed particularly at curtailing and minimizing the opportunities for official corruption and maintaining a standard of honesty in the public service. x x x By the SALN, the public are able to monitor movement in the fortune of a public official; it is a valid check and balance mechanism to verify undisclosed properties and wealth.[Italics in the original; emphasis supplied]

    In recognition of the vital role of the SALN in relation to good governance, Congress enacted Republic Act No. 6713 (Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees), which require the following information to be disclosed by a public official in his SALN:

    SECTION 8. Statements and Disclosure. — Public officials and employees have an obligation to accomplish and submit declarations under oath of, and the public has the right to know, their assets, liabilities, net worth and financial and business interests including those of their spouses and of unmarried children under eighteen (18) years of age living in their households.

    (A) Statements of Assets and Liabilities and Financial Disclosure. —

    All public officials and employees, except those who serve in an honorary capacity, laborers and casual or temporary workers, shall file under oath their Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth and a Disclosure of Business Interests and Financial Connections and those of their spouses and unmarried children under eighteen (18) years of age living in their households.

    The two documents shall contain information on the following:

    (a) real property, its improvements, acquisition costs, assessed value and current fair market value;

    (b) personal property and acquisition cost;

    (c) all other assets such as investments, cash on hand or in banks, stocks, bonds, and the like;

    (d) liabilities, and;

    (e) all business interests and financial connections. [Emphasis and underscoring supplied]

    Clearly, nowhere in the foregoing provision is there any distinction between Peso denominated and foreign currency denominated cash. So long as a public official has cash, whether these are held by the official personally or maintained in bank accounts, the same must be declared under law.

    In view of the evidence presented by the Prosecution and as bolstered by the admissions of Corona himself, the properties under his name, as well as that of his wife and children – which are grossly and manifestly disproportionate to his lawful income – are presumed under law to have been ill-gotten. As such, it is incumbent upon him to discharge his burden of evidence to prove that the properties in question were acquired through lawful means. This he failed to discharge, in spite of all the opportunities afforded to him by the Impeachment Court.

    Hence, in light of the overwhelming evidence presented in support of the allegations in the Impeachment Complaint – which are uncontroverted until now and even bolstered by the Defense – Corona should be removed from public office and prohibited from serving in any other public office in the future.

    • Ilda says:

      @J

      Notwithstanding the well-written script and the well-staged drama

      The intro alone of that long-winded article already tells us that the writer is not objective. In your desire to get rid of the man, you ignore his basic rights to due process. Some of the documents produced by prosecution were either fake; had been illegally obtained; or had been tampered with. Besides, Corona already explained the contents of his bank accounts and he is even inviting the prosecution and senator judges to look into it. The accuracy of the amount can be verified already. How come they don’t want to look into it now? They are afraid of the truth. They want the people to keep thinking that he has more money than what he really has.

      You didn’t have to paste the whole article because some of it didn’t make any sense. It wreaks of biased opinion against Corona. Just look at this statement:

      In this case, Corona, although a Member of the Supreme Court, was never presented as an expert witness. In fact, he was called to the witness stand to answer the factual allegations made and proven by the prosecution, not to give any expert opinion.

      That is weird considering the prosecution and some of the senators kept insisting before that only Corona can shed light into his accounts. Now this Jester guy is saying he is not an expert witness. You guys are never going to be satisfied, are you?

      I already know the SALN law anyway. It’s not the only law that the prosecution should look at. Aside from the dollar secrecy law and the ALMC law, they should also look into the Bill of Rights. Prosecution did not follow this too in filing the complaints:

      Article XI Section 3(2) states that:

      “A verified complaint for impeachment may be filed by any Member of the House of Representatives or by any citizen upon a resolution of endorsement by any Member thereof, which shall be included in the Order of Business within ten session days, and referred to the proper Committee within three session days thereafter.”

      • Eye says:

        Let’s simplify it:

        Legislative made the conflicting laws.

        Judiciary interpreted the laws.

        Executive broke the laws.

      • tchaynis says:

        With both the prosecution and the senator judges not pursuing the verification of CJ’s accounts included in his waiver, this also raises the same question to the defense. Their client already signed a waiver, why not present details account mentioned therein? It’s something that would help their case immensely, why did they decide in closing their presentation of evidence with mere testimony from the CJ?

        • Ilda says:

          Well I think impeachment court is also putting pressure on defense to wrap things up because of their self-imposed deadline. Sen Santiago even said they can stop the trial if they want to. Maybe they will present documentary evidence in their closing arguments.

    • Teabag Deluxe says:

      How great of you to accuse Ilda of appealing to authority when you are doing the same thing. Hypocrite much?

      You should read this: http://getrealphilippines.com/blog/2012/05/cara-doble-the-unofficial-philippine-national-dance/

  • Hyden Toro says:

    The five (5) minutes deliberation of the 188 Congressmen, who impeached Justice Corona. Due Process of the law, was not rendered. The 188 Congressmen, acted like the Benigno Aquino’s Hooded Traitors, during the Japanese occupation. They wear hoods, or put “Bayong” over their heads; to conceal their identities. Point to people suspected of fighting the Japanese invaders. Then, in five (5) minutes or less, the Japanese Firing Squad of the Kempei Tei (Secret Police)…were ready to execute the Filipino Patriots, who are branded as suspects…It is Ironic that Benigno Aquino III, is doing what Benigno Aquino I, the top Japanese collaborator, to the Filipino people who cross their paths…at least, there are no “Bayongs” and Hoods, at this time…their Bank Accounts are the ones concealed…not their faces…

  • J says:

    Also, let a real Chief Justice speak. Former Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban thinks the Prosecution succeeded, while the Defense failed. And I’m sure he knows more law than all of us here combined:

    —–

    The Senate is on the threshold of history. For the first time ever, it will complete an impeachment trial tomorrow. Unlike in the case of former President Joseph Estrada that ended in a walkout, it will have the singular opportunity to render a historic decision based on the evidence presented by the parties. By this judgment, the Senate and the senators will be judged by our people and by the world.

    Case for the prosecution. Though besieged initially by stumbles and foibles, the prosecution still managed to build a prima facie case against Chief Justice (CJ) Renato C. Corona by proving at least one of the eight articles of the impeachment complaint: that the respondent culpably violated the Constitution and betrayed public trust via his repeated failure to include some of his properties in his statements of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALNs).

    Such a failure, according to the Senate’s order dated Jan. 27, 2012, “is substantially and inextricably linked” to his constitutional and legal duty to “completely, truthfully and faithfully declare his assets, liabilities and net worth.” Citing jurisprudence, it explained that though the prosecution was barred from presenting evidence directly proving ill-gotten wealth, nonetheless, undisclosed assets constitute ill-gotten wealth when shown to be grossly disproportionate to legitimate income.

    The prosecution’s evidence shows that the acquisition value of the real estate assets of the respondent and the yearend balances of his bank accounts are much more than his legal income. Thus, the legal conclusion of ill-gotten wealth may be logically implied.

    Case for the defense. The defense hemmed and hawed about the invalidity of the complaint’s verification and the insufficiency of the prosecutors’ evidence. If it truly believed that the prosecution failed to muster a prima facie case, the defense should not have wasted the valuable time of the Senate; it should have promptly asked for judgment on the basis of the supposedly weak prosecution case.

    However, it opted to go ahead and to present its own evidence. And this is when it showed damning cracks in its armor. Not unlike the prosecution, the defense, in my humble view, was not free of miscues and miscalculations. Far from overturning the prosecution evidence, it unwittingly bolstered it in at least two ways.

    First, it called Ombudsman (OMB) Conchita Carpio Morales to the witness stand after the OMB sent a confidential letter to the CJ requesting him to explain within 72 hours “several bank accounts in the PSBank and several other banks … including those denominated in US dollars the aggregate value of which amounts to at least $10” million.

    Probably thinking that the OMB had no proof for her charge, given that the three complaints lodged with her merely cited evidence already presented in the impeachment court and overlooking the portion of her letter saying she had already conducted an initial investigation, the defense lawyers called her to the stand without foreknowledge of her testimony.

    To their total surprise, the OMB waved 17 sheets of paper she obtained from the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) showing more than 400 transactions made by the respondent in his many accounts in five banks in 2003 to 2012.

    Instead of recklessly haling the OMB to the witness stand, the defense lawyers—in response to her confidential letter—could have simply asked her to provide confidential details of her claimed dollar accounts. In this manner, they would have known in advance the bases of her letter and would not have extracted her damaging testimony.

    The prosecution may have been aching to call the OMB to the stand but could not, because it had already rested its evidence. Moreover, the Supreme Court’s temporary restraining order barred it from looking into the respondent’s dollar accounts. But having called the OMB to the stand, the CJ’s lawyers cannot disown her testimony. Since she was their witness, albeit “hostile,” they were bound by her testimony, as aptly ruled by Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile.

    Ultimate miscalculation. As if this were not enough, the defense lawyers committed yet a second miscalculation by calling their client to the stand. Taking advantage of Enrile’s utmost liberality in allowing him to read, and at times extemporize, a 3-hour “opening statement,” the CJ insisted that most of his accounts have been closed and had only four dollar accounts remaining.

    By this admission, he strengthened the prosecution’s charge of nondisclosure of his assets. Worse, he admitted upon questioning by Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano that his undisclosed (repeat, undisclosed) balances amount to $2.4 million plus P80 million, totaling nearly P190 million! Apart from this, the prosecution would surely comb the various exhibits, as Sen. Franklin Drilon did, and show during the oral argument the gross disparity between his assets and SALN disclosures.

    In sum, instead of destroying the prima facie case built by the prosecution, the defense—unfortunately for the CJ—unwittingly and ironically fortified it. The OMB’s testimony and the CJ’s admissions plus the prima facie prosecution evidence inexorably lead to the legal conclusion of ill-gotten wealth.

    Finally, the Filipino people and the world witnessed the impeachment trial via the magic of TV, radio, Internet and other telecommunication wonders. By the Senate’s historic decision, our people will stand proud in showing the world the maturity and vibrancy of our constitutional democracy.

    * * *

    Comments to chiefjusticepanganiban@hotmail.com

    • UP nn grad says:

      The one who knows more law than all the bloggers combined is PersiNoynoy. As he has mentioned a few times, he — PersiDente Noynoy — has no need of any lawyer or judge to tell him how Batas should be implemented in Pilipinas.

    • Ilda says:

      @J

      Former Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban thinks the Prosecution succeeded, while the Defense failed.

      That’s because the impeachment court kept ignoring defense objections. We all know that some of the senator judges are even acting as prosecutors. They don’t even hide their biases against Corona. And unfortunately, the presiding officer, in the “spirit of liberality”, did not even cite the prosecution in contempt for all their violations. The court should have thrown the case out as soon as they found out that prosecution was just fishing for evidence.

      Cuevas did ask for a pre-trial but Enrile objected to it. Had he agreed, the trial might not have proceeded at all. It is unfortunate that defense could not easily seek the help of the SC because of the obvious conflict of interest. It would have been valid for the SC to stop the trial for gross violation of due process.

      Now this does not make any sense again:

      If it truly believed that the prosecution failed to muster a prima facie case, the defense should not have wasted the valuable time of the Senate; it should have promptly asked for judgment on the basis of the supposedly weak prosecution case.

      We all know that defense had no choice but to present a rebuttal because the public’s mind was already conditioned to think that Corona was hiding something. Ano ba naman yan?!? You are ignoring the media’s role in poisoning the mind of the public including yours!

      Regarding the OMB, Cuevas also objected to her power point presentation but the court ruled against it. What kind of court allows a power point presentation anyway?!? And it doesn’t really matter now that ombudsman Morales presented her PPP. At least she it was proven that her “report” was wrong.

      Corona already explained that the contents of P80M includes co-mingled funds and that dollar account is covered by the foreign currency law. Ay! Paulit-ulit!

      Don’t forget the fact that from eight articles of impeachment, it went down to three and not it boils down to just one! How dumb is that?!?

    • Ilda says:

      Ombudsman’s presentation was a Colossal deception on Corona’s accounts By: Rigoberto Tiglao

      “Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales’ allegation that Chief Justice Renato Corona has $12 million in dollar accounts will go down in Philippine history as one of the biggest and most deviously constructed deceptions ever foisted on the public.

      Morales unfortunately swallowed hook, line and sinker the deeply flawed analysis of raw data made by Heidi Mendoza, whom President Aquino deep-selected to overtake five officer-levels to become deputy commissioner of the Commission on Audit.

      Morales’ allegations are based on two colossal errors. One involves confusing the meanings of “transactions” and “balances”; the other exploits laymen’s ignorance of banking transactions and how these are documented.

      The first error actually was deliberate as Aquino’s operatives still had a big problem when they got raw data from the secretariat of Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC). These didn’t report Corona’s bank balances but merely transactions, whose average amount per transaction for deposits was only $104,737, hardly eyebrow-raising. (The AMLC report, marked “For Intelligence Purpose Only,” however, has no authorship and its entries have no source document, which opens the possibility of its tampering.)

      Morales—or Mendoza—therefore had to surreptitiously misrepresent “transactions” as “balances,” to generate significant amounts. This was done by a conceptual sleight of hand.

      Morales’ PowerPoint presentation states: “The amounts appearing in the tabulation are not account balances but transaction balances.” This was a devious invention of a term in order that the sum of transactions would be confused with “balances,” so that Corona would appear to have huge bank accounts. Indeed, Morales would later on drop the “transaction” adjective, referring only to “aggregations,” “balances,” or “bank accounts.”

      Transactions are the withdrawals and deposits on your bank account over time. The net result of these, what’s left, is your bank balance at a given time.

      To illustrate, if I have P100,000 in my bank account and lend it out at a 5-percent interest rate for a month’s use to six borrowers consecutively, my bank balance at the end of six months would be P130,000. This is the sum of my initial P100,000 plus the interest of P5,000 earned for each of the six lending transactions.

      For Morales though, my bank account would be 10 times more: P1.33 million. This is her “transaction balance” for the 13 transactions—my initial deposit of P100,000 plus P600,00 (the sum of six withdrawals of P100,000 each when I lend it) plus P630,000 (the sum of six deposits of P105,000 each when I’m repaid).”

      • Der Fuhrer says:

        I wonder… Where and when did the dictator BS Aquino learn how to fabricate, deceive and manipulate presented evidence? His intense obsession and seeming hatred of his perceived enemies drives him to step over the line. He has no scruples. His destructive tendencies reinforces the view that his is not a normal or healthy psyche. Are we being led into destruction by a mad man?

  • UP nn grad says:

    So is there a search of the person (or persons) inside Malakanyang who warned CJ Corona that his bank funds may be frozen?

  • J says:

    Also, Dean Raul Pangalangan of UP College of Law has practically called CJ’s claim that dollars are exempted from SALN as what it is: Bullshit.

    See: http://opinion.inquirer.net/29539/the-mystery-of-the-friday-hearing

    • Daido Katsumi says:

      Yours is a total bullshit. Because you’re vindictive and malicious, you know that. 😛

    • benign0 says:

      As I said before Mr Nutbox, it was all the bozos allied with the Yellow camp that first trumpeted the “power of the people” and how it wields this power in this exercise of impeachment highlighting more its political aspect as one that trumps its legal rigour.

      So it is a bit quaintly amusing to see you here now presenting the detail of what “real lawyers” have to say about all this. Too bad this now indeed has become more of that political exercise your pals initially cheered on and less of the legal exercise we had initially highlighted. 😀

      You will see evidence of the misguided thinking of your pals in my seminal piece Three really appalling ideas being spread by prominent Filipino opinion shapers where I expounded on the following three moronisms being propagated by the Yellow mob though its self-described “thought leaders”:

      (1) Rule of Law is a detestable notion. (Raissa Robles)

      (2) Popular support for a person or idea necessarily makes said person or idea right. (Randy David)

      (3) Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is “evil” and had presided over one of the darkest chapters in Philippine history. (BS Aquino)

      Too late, dude. To be fair, real lawyers may have won this case for your Uncle Peping. Too bad the prosecution team did not have such.

      ha ha!

  • Der Fuhrer says:

    The continuing attempts to undermine the underlying principles of the constitution is very apparent. The present regime of BS Aquino and his strategy of lies and deception is needed to project a false image of a crusader anti-corruption president.

    Those who continue to believe that there is no more corruption in the Philippines must be living in a cuckoo clock world. Watch the dictator as he destroys the constitution. When the rule of men prevails over the rule of law then anarchy and chaos will rise. The darkness of dictatorship has started and is spreading. Truly, Mr. BS Aquino is a very dangerous man.

  • up nn Grad says:

    It is good that the Senate court decides soon — guilty versus acquit.

    The Supremo Korte needs to address this deLima item and her assertion that Malakanyang’s POLICE POWER means that Malakanyang-agencies (PNP, Army, BIR, etcetera) do not need to obtain to get Court Orders.

  • J says:

    Wow, so you throw ad hominem against the lawyers I cited. And you conveniently say it’s all politics now, as the Yellows had said. Plus you dump me with all those die-hard Aquino legions, too.

    I thought we don’t fallacies blur the discourse?

    And let me say for the record yeur heneur that I resent that shot cheap shot saying Peping is my Uncle. I did not vote for the President and I’m not a die-hard Yellowist. Ah, but you don’t make a distinction, do you?

    Now The Nutbox wishes to be excused.

    • Der Fuhrer says:

      @Nutzi J

      As First Officer Spock would say… Fascinating! Your logic is not infallible. Sympathetic and/or biased lawyers and their opinions carry no weight. Except of course, when used as black propaganda for vilification and demonization purposes. Besides the opinion makers are not judges of the Impeachment Court.

    • Ilda says:

      Where is the ad hominem? Please be specific. When did I call you a die-hard Aquino fan? You are putting words into my mouth.

      Your bias is showing. The article by that Jester guy was full of ad hominem and yet you ignored it. Just read the intro. According to him, Corona was engaging in dramatics. Now you are crying foul. Gees

    • benign0 says:

      Mr Nutbox,

      You and your copy-and-paste “insight” are excused.

      – 😀

  • bujad says:

    hahahaha “get real”… nangyon may nag post ng mga legal na opinion ng mga tunay na abogado sa kaso ng idolo nyong si corona, naghihimutok ang mga butsi nyo!!! sayang ang mga galing at talino nyo dahil sarado pala ang pagiisip nyo at may motibong sirain lang ang pamamalakad ng gobyerno para maisulong ang sarili nyong agenda, hindi palitan ang sistema ng gobyero pero palitan ang mga taong naihalal na magpatakbo nito….!!!

    • Daido Katsumi says:

      Hi, Yellow Troll. You need to read Benignz’ response on J. Maybe you’ll get what he says. Don’t be such an EMO. 😛

      Oh yeah, who helped the author of the 1987 constitution? Policies that helped Cory and her personal cronies do their thing LEGITIMATELY and set the country back for years while she and her group get kickbacks. Honestly, I’m in for Charter Change because this kind of government is a flawed version of American presidential system; the Filipinos took it and copied the wrong way.

      You’re becoming a conspiracy theorist after all. Where is the hidden agenda that you are talking about? We are not destroying the government. YOU are. Why? Because you never wanted to see progress in our society but to be part of a MEDIOCRITY.

      • jeanne says:

        I read somewhere that someone said that the present democracy is not suitable to the character of our people. Personally, I prefer a parliament with a mature people. If we have that, we don’t have a misuse of vote of no confidence. but we can use that for leaders not doing their jobs. Easier than to wait for 6 years before another showbiz election.

        • Daido Katsumi says:

          The pros of a parliamentary government is to prevent any airhead, incompetent politician to be put into office. They select the BEST and not what some soothsayers tell them

      • bujad says:

        “we are not destroying the government….” eh ano po ang ginagawa niyo? imbes na makatulong eh pang aalipusta sa pamahalaan ang inyong inaatupag, di lang nga pala pamahalaan, pati madlang people… pang aalipusta sa sambayanan… panay ang puna sa mga kamalian eh wala namang ipinapamahaging solusyon… panay ang batikos sa mga kaugaliang di maganda… eh pawang kabastusan naman ang pamamaraan ng pag puna.

        totoo ng nuong umupo ang si cory, sinamantala ng mga naitalagan bumago ng saligang batas ang pakakataon na pumabor para sa kanila, pinawalan ang pinuno ng komonismo sa pilipinas, pinag push-up ang mga sundalong nag alsa at marami pang iba… sa simpleng salita “bobo”.

        panahon ni ramos, isinaligal ang pag kilala sa communist pary of the philippines bilang isa sa legal na partidong politikal sa pilipinas dahil sa multi-party system natin, ginamit ang kapangyarihan para ibenta lahat ng kampo ng militar (us) na pag aari ng gubyerno sa pangakong modernisasyon ng sandatahan lakas ng pilipnas, pinilit na ipinasa ang ipira law na ngayon ay nag papahirap sa mga class c to e na mamamayan… sa simpleng salita “manggangantso”.

        panahon ni erap, itinutok nya ang pwersa ng gobyerno sa pagkikipaglaban sa sipsip sa ekonomista, ng mga smuggler… sa mga rebelde sa kamindanawan, sa armadong sangay ng cpp dahil ung ang sa tingin nila ang humahadlang ng pag usad ng ekonomiya ng pilipinas… eh ano ang ginawa ng mga naaapektohan businessman at mga intelektuwal, ginamit ang kahinaan ng masa para patalsikin siya at iniluklok ang pangalawang pinuno… sa madaling salita “mangmang”.

        gloria gloria gloria…. ano ang inabot ng mga masa? lalong nalugmok dahil sa pagtatampisaw sa kapangyarihan ng gloria at ng kanyang pamilya, kaalyado sa politika, mga negosyanteng playing same… sa simpleng salita “wais”. (ayaw ko ng bangitin ang last defense line, baka sabihin may hepa nanaman ako hehehe)

        panahon ni aquino… mas alam nyo yan, diba…

        tanong, kung ang pagbabago ng sistema ng gobyerno ang nais nyo, bakit ayaw nyong isulong sa kongreso, may nabasa ako noon na may kumililos na daw sa kongreso… eh anong status? bakit hindi nyo ipapliwanag sa katulad kong utak-iskwater kung ano talaga ang pag babagong ito? bakit instead of educating the people, you’re insulting the capacity of the masa to understand the changes that you think will give a chance for a better philippines?

        ok, say that yes there are yellow trolls, but are all those wanting corona to be convicted are yellow trolls? at insulto at batikos nalang ang aabutin sa mga sagot nyo dito?

        sa tingin ko, ano mang sistema ang ipalit nyo sa pamahalaan kung ang mga taong kilalangayon ang siyang uupo di at ang sakit ng lipunan (kurapsyon, padrino, palakasan, rebelyon, kakulangan sa edekasyon, kakulangan sa trabajo, kawalan ng desiplina… at marami pang iba) ay wala ding patutunguhan ang pilipinas…

        kaya katsu, hinay hinay lang… imbis na mapaniwala mo ang tao sa layunin ng pahinang ito, eh itinataboy mo lang at binibigyan mo ng pagkakataong makapag isip na wala ding kwenta ang isinusulong nyong parliamentary form of government dahil may mga tulad mo ding taong nakasuksuok dito… di pa man, akala mo na kung sino hehehe

        mabuhay ka kaibigan!

        • Daido Katsumi says:

          Let me get this straight: Just because we are criticizing the current government doesn’t mean we are ‘destroying’ it. It was the government itself is destroying everything; I think Corona has a point on what PNoy is doing: trying to control all the branches of the government to suit his tastes. So because of your insane mind, you call it ‘alipusta’. EMO people like you would never succeed if you ask me. It’s like you said “Ok lang na mag-ganito siya at least I’m supporting him.” You’re out of your mind.

          You mention Cory, Ramos and Erap yet you overrate Gloria and the controversies during her admin. She was not perfect but she was indeed hardworking. Lesser evil from the other presidentiable candidates her time -Yes. We here in the metro may not have felt the improved economy she claimed but from a rural POV, sobrang nakatulong sila – and I mean joined effort of the government her time – sa road improvements which made it more convenient to transport goods from the provinces. Ano meron tyo ngayon, inflation rate na lumolobo! The growth rate is low add increased rate in inflation, patay ang taumbayan. Rare will we find an honest politician, but I would rather have someone who invests his/her ill gotten wealth inside the country kasi kahit papaano hindi outflow ung resources natin. There is a lot to criticize about her admin, but we must admit, mas solod and effective ang economic programs nya..Ngayon anong meron? And you can’t even give me a good explanation on the 7.6% GDP increase during her time, as opposed to the current 3.4% GDP increase.

          If you call criticizing the masa as insulting, then you’re an idiot. Totoo nga ang kasabihan na “If someone wants to educate Filipinos, they will take it as an insult to their intelligence.” The masa were nothing but ignorant and arrogant chumps, saying that they are entitled for this and that, relying on the government and instead of working hard, they just sit there and watch shows like Wil Time Bigtime and such. MENDICANCY, another term for DOLE-OUTS is bad if you ask me. And if they have done something wrong, instead of taking responsibility, they went EMO and play victims in public, saying nonsense like ‘Mahirap lang kami’. That’s insanity if you know what I mean. Also, the masa is easily manipulated by what the media tells them; so when the media tells them that people like Gloria and Corona are ‘evil’, they will easily believe on it and never use their brains. Oh yeah, no wonder why competent people who had CONCRETE vision like Gordon would never be put on office because most of the people, including the masa, never took his criticisms as a stepping stone (like blaming his fellow Filipinos for having dysfunctional attitude and thinking). Instead of saying “Oo nga, ‘no?”, they say “Mayabang ito, akala mo kung sino hehehe.” Can you imagine that? And the masa that you’re talking about are the ones who put a fellow idiot as President in the form of Noynoy Aquino!

          Honestly, you won’t even like to take criticism either and always resort to rhetorics and EMO-ness. Malaysia is a perfect example of a country whose people are willingly taking criticism and made a response: change. Mahathir is one of the greatest Asian statesmen in history because of his 21 year rule as PM, Malaysia have changed… a LOT. He criticized his own fellow Malays due to their backward and dysfunctional thinking and attitudes. Instead of going EMO, the Malays take Mahathir’s criticisms at heart when he gave them a message of hope: “If we can CHANGE, then we can be successful.” Because of that, Malaysia became an economic giant in Southeast Asia, next to Singapore. Ngayon, ano na tayo? We are now Asia’s laggard and laughingstock. And instead on blaming our dysfunctional culture and system, you instead blame the people around it. Get my drift?

          Walang maipapamahaging solusyon? Nah, meron naman. Culture change is what we need. In fact, all of your comments is what we call balat-sibuyas. No wonder why the masa was sometimes hated by the critically-thinking, enlightened Filipinos because in reality, instead of looking forward for progress, the masa crooks wanted to remain in the status quo. And instead of being educated, they are the ones who throw tantrums and cry like babies.

          At akala mo rin kung sino ka. Are you telling me that corruption is the root of all problems? Yours is dysfunctional thinking. And I am right that people like you would instead dwell in mediocrity. I would never surprised if one masa twat will easily be jailed if he was in Singapore.

    • Daido Katsumi says:

      Aside from YOU, it’s also the leftists who are also destroying the government. I’m just reminding you that Ronald Llamas, PNoy’s political adviser, is also a member of the leftist group Akbayan.

      So Corona is right about it. Yellow trolls like yourself will never get the drift. :)

      • bujad says:

        in dont know if ronald llamas and the pulitburo member of the cpp/npa/ndf is one and the same… hindi naman siguro ganon ka bobo ang mga graduate ng pma para mapabayaan nilang mapasok ng makakaliwang grupo ang pamunuan ng gobyerno at hayaan nilang mamayagpag ito… hindi sila nakapako sa paguutos o kagustuhan ng pangulo kundi ang isulong ang demokrasya, pangalagaan ang batas na nakasaad sa saligang batas at ipagtangol ang mamamayang pilipino.

        • Daido Katsumi says:

          Flawed logic. The left is trying to take over the government. Actually Noynoy is stupid for giving millions of pesos to rebels at the expense soldiers being killed in battle. In fact, naapektuhan na ang militar sa kabobohan ni Noynoy. Why I say this? Because the president is also the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.

          Oh yeah, it was also reported that Noynoy attended a leftist congress and you what he said about Llamas? “We think alike.” E ano ang tawag mo doon?

      • Der Fuhrer says:

        I do not like participatory socialism. This is seen as a leftist ploy of using democracy against itself. You can never convince our knowledgeable people to adopt socialism and reject capitalism. Socialism is synonymous to red, commie and communist.

  • roi says:

    I think the bigger issue now is not about his guilt on non-declaration of some of his assets. Many senators now think that their judgment must be premised on whether CJ Corona is still fit to remain in office. This is very dangerous because some senators may decide to impeach him not based on the grounds of the complaint nor on evidence, but solely on their perception that he is no longer fit to remain as CJ of the SC.

    • Eye says:

      No one can withstand the brutal attack of the forces of the government. They threw him the book and still, all we have is his omission in his SALN, which is correctable. Surely, that cannot compare to the litany of lies promulgated.

      The prosecution has turned our country into lynching mob. Who, then is fit to stay in office.

  • Domingo Arong says:

    Ilda

    The find the link below to be relevant: “RULES IMPLEMENTING THE CODE OF CONDUCT AND ETHICAL STANDARDS FOR PUBLIC OFFICIALS AND EMPLOYEES (REPUBLIC ACT NO. 6713)”
    http://www.doj.gov.ph/files/rulesra6713.pdf

    Take careful note that Section 1 of Rule VIII (Review and Compliance Procedure) of the Rules provides that:

    “The following shall have the authority to establish compliance procedures for the review of statements to determine whether said statements have been properly accomplished:


    “(c) In the case of the Judicial Department, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court;


    “The above official shall likewise have the authority to render any opinion interpreting the provisions on the review and compliance procedures in the filing of statements of assets, liabilities, net worth and disclosure of information.

    “In the event said authorities determine that a statement is not properly filed, they shall inform the reporting individual and direct him to take the necessary corrective action.

    “The individual to whom an opinion is rendered, and any other individual involved in a similar factual situation, and who, after issuance of the opinion acts in good faith in accordance with it shall not be subject to any sanction provided in the Code.”

    In short, as the official in the Judicial Department solely bestowed with “the authority … to determine whether [SALNs] have been properly accomplished” and “In the event … a statement is not properly filed … inform the reporting individual and direct him to take the necessary corrective action”; it is clear that CJ Corona’s interpretation and opinion of the laws pertaining to the filing of SALN declaration is binding in so far as the Judicial Department is concerned.

    In fact, note that as the compliance officer of the Judicial Department, CJ Corona is also authorized to direct “the necessary corrective action” and that such “corrective action” done “in good faith in accordance with it shall not be subject to any sanction provided in the Code.”

    • Ilda says:

      @Mr Domingo

      That makes a lot of sense, indeed. Galing nyo talaga!

      The CJ should just instruct the senators to tell him to do the corrective action in his SALN. :)

      • Domingo Arong says:

        Thanks Ilda. Clearly, the rules are silent regarding the procedure to follow in the particular case where the compliance officer is the “public officer” found to have filed an incorrect statement in the SALN. In fine, who will watch the watchers here?

        To my mind, the opposing view of some Senators may be regarded at the moment merely as “dissenting opinion” to CJ Corona’s majority–the CJ being the duly authorized compliance officer of the Judicial Department.

  • Gregory Macaltao says:

    I recommend that you watch was this gentleman says about the case…and his conclusion that the CJ should be convicted.

    This guy explains things without hysterics…what he states is very logical……

    http://anc.abs-cbnnews.com/videos/526/salipsip-a-conviction-for-corona-will-make-public-officials-more-honest-in-their-salns/

  • jay says:

    will enrile, who has been corrupt and a coward all his life do the right thing or having taken the money hide behind an abstention

  • Eye says:

    Has the Legal system and language succumb to a system and language from the streets … how utterly embarrassing.
    Don’t know if we will ever recover from this internationally. No Rule of Law, No Due Process …

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