House leader on senator's vote: Wah!-A A +A
Thursday, May 31, 2012
This was the brief comment of House Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales II to Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago's explanation of her acquittal vote on ousted Chief Justice Renato Corona.
Defensor herself used the "Wah!" remark when the prosecution panel decided to rest its case and drop five of its eight articles of impeachment.
On Tuesday, the senator from Iloilo entered a "not guilty" vote for Corona along with senators Joker Arroyo and Ferdinand Marcos Jr.
House leaders, including Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr., said they have no hard feelings toward the senator even after prosecutors received an earful from her in explaining her vote Tuesday.
"We don't take it personally, even the spokespersons who also received criticisms, and of course, the prosecution," lead public prosecutor Niel Tupas Jr., also from Iloilo, said.
"There are 23 senators, three dissented and they all gave their reasons; although I could not follow her (Santiago) reasoning. She says she was a former RTC (Regional Trial Court) judge. Apparently, it gave her a special view on things," Belmonte said.
In her explanation, Senator Santiago said she finds it "reprehensible" that the document from the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) was introduced as evidence even without authentication.
Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales referred to the AMLC document when she said that Corona has 82 dollar accounts with transactions amounting to at least $10 million.
Santiago added that there is no conflict between the 1987 Constitution and the Foreign Currency Deposit Act.
The senator is set to leave Senate to assume a seat as one of the judges at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands. (Kathrina Alvarez/Sunnex)