Impeachment of Supreme Court Chief Justice
During the inauguration speech of President Aquino, he mentioned about ways on improving the Philippine economy and eradicating poverty in the country. The President also warned those who were put in positions in the government by unlawful means, he warned those who have intentions to ruin or block the country on progressing. The President mentioned that the government wanted to gain back the trust of its people by reviewing midnight appointments. One of the midnight appointees of Former Pres. Arroyo is Chief Justice Renato C. Corona, who will undergo impeachment trial, which is one of the Aquino administration’s attempts to remove corruption in the country.
The Philippines had begun its impeachment proceedings on Monday (January 16, 2012) against the nation's Chief Justice, Renato C. Corona, in the Senate. The Senate will serve as the judge to determine whether the Chief Justice should be removed from his position. The impeachment proceedings will be televised live and it is expected to end in three months.
This is yet another issue related to the corruption of the former administration of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. Chief Justice Renato C. Corona is close to former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, he was Arroyo's former staff before he was appointed to the court in 2002. Corona, after President Aquino won the Presidential Election in 2010, became the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. It was called by President Aquino as a “midnight appointment”. Prosecutors wanted to prove that Corona has been protecting the former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo from investigation and prosecution for a string of corruption charges by ruling in her favour. Corona declared to fight the charges and had said that all the accusations were part of an attempt to “ruin the court and our system of justice”.
The arrest of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on November 18, took as a major step against corruption by the Aquino government. Jose Miguel Arroyo, husband of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has also been charged in the broadband case and prosecutors have indicated more charges.
The impeachment has divided the opinions of the Filipinos and many of them have extended called for prevalent corruption in the nation to be stamped outside. There are critics regarding the removal of Corona in his position, the veterans of the Arroyo’s administration said that the moves appear to be a consolidation of power by President Aquino that will weaken the judiciary, legislature and Constitution. According to Senator Gordon, who served as the secretary of tourism under Mrs. Arroyo and ran for presidency against Mr. Aquino in the last election, the impeachment is not an effort to improve the governance but a crackdown on opposition. Some agrees not to remove the Chief Justice for the reason that it would affect the constitution.
Whaley, F. (2012). Philippine Judge's Trial Draws Interest, and Critics. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/14/world/asia/philippine-judges-trial-draws-interest-and-critics.html?_r=1.
Linao, G. (2012). Analysis: Impeachment trial puts Philippines on edge. Retrieved from http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/asiapacific/news/article_1685350.php/ANALYSIS-Impeachment-trial-puts-Philippines-on-edge