[Blueboard] Newsbriefs 26 November 2008 Afternoon

Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan slb at admu.edu.ph
Wed Nov 26 17:19:59 PHT 2008

Newsbriefs 26 November 2008 Afternoon

Simbahang Lingkod Ng Bayan



Impeach rap junked again (INQUIRER.net)

MANILA, Philippines - The impeachment complaint against President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is insufficient in substance, the committee that deliberated on the case at the House of Representatives ruled Wednesday.

Members of the justice committee voted 42-8 against the complaint that detailed allegations of bribery and electoral fraud, among others, which the President was supposed to have been a part of.

The committee will report its decision to the plenary for either adoption or rejection.

Impeachment charges have been filed against Arroyo every year since 2005, over allegations of corruption and election fraud, but would always be dismissed by the pro-administration majority.

Palace: Respect ruling on impeachment (INQUIRER.net)

MANILA, Philippines -- Malacañang has called on the public to respect the decision of the lawmakers at the House of Representatives to dismiss the latest impeachment complaint against President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo for insufficiency in substance.

After two days of debates, 42 of the President's allies in the committee on justice that deliberated on the case voted Wednesday to trash the complaint as against eight who voted for it.

"Respetuhin na lang natin boto ng Kongreso. Wala naman tayo magagawa diyan eh. Either way, its best to leave it at that dahil alam naman natin may sariling procedure yang Kongreso [Let's respect the vote of Congress. We can't do anything about it. Either way, it's best to leave it at that because we all know that Congress has its own procedure]," Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita said shortly after the vote was made.

Plan to zap 2010 elections exposed (INQUIRER.net)

MANILA, Philippines -- (UPDATE) THE NO-EL GAMBIT has been revived by supporters of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to postpone the holding of the 2010 elections.

No-el refers to no elections.

A resolution extending the term of Ms Arroyo beyond that year has quietly found its way into the powerful House committee on constitutional amendments.

The resolution filed by administration Rep. Hermilando Mandanas of Batangas seeks to keep Ms Arroyo in her post for one more year should his parallel proposal of moving the May 2010 elections a year later be adopted.

Term extension requires Charter change (INQUIRER.net)

MANILA, Philippines -- Supreme Court Chief Justice Reynato Puno said the proposal to extend the term of elected officials, including that of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, requires amending the Constitution which will revive the question of whether the Senate and the House Representatives will vote on the issue separately or jointly.

"That is a constitutional issue that only the Supreme Court can decide," Puno said on Wednesday morning.

"If it reaches us, we will decide on the issue, not only based on the letter of the law, but also the spirit of the law," he also said.

The question is "how will the court interpret this omission of the phrase," Puno added.

LP mulls impeachment raps vs Ombudsman (INQUIRER.net)

MANILA, Philippines -- The Liberal Party is studying the possibility of filing an impeachment case against Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez for her alleged "failure to do her duty," its president, Senator Manuel Roxas II, said Wednesday.

"Ang pinag-aaralan naming ngayon ay paano mag-file ng impeachment [case] laban sa Ombudsman. 'Yun lamang ang check and balance laban sa Ombudsman [What we are studying now is how to file an impeachment case against the Ombudsman. That is the only check and balance against the Ombudsman," Roxas said at a press conference.

"Sa aking palagay, napapanahon nang ma-impeach si [In my opinion, it is about time to impeach] Ombudsperson Merceditas Gutierrez for failure to do her duty," he said.

DA execs pin down Bolante on fertilizer fund scam (www.philstar.com)

Three regional directors of the Department of Agriculture yesterday nailed former Agriculture undersecretary Jocelyn "Jocjoc" Bolante on the P728-million fertilizer scam, saying he had signed dubious purchase orders and had personally gave questionable instructions to some officials.

The testimonies of the three officials appeared to have stolen the momentum from Bolante, who was generally believed to have won the first round of the Senate investigation last week.

In the previous hearing, Bolante appeared to have run circles around the senators with testimonies on how he merely "downloaded" the money for project "proponents," and on other issues like his travels, bank accounts, and confinement at the St. Luke's Medical Center. 

The regional directors - Roger Chio of Region 11, Leo Caneda of Region 8 and Ricardo Oblena of Region 7 - belied Bolante's claim that he had nothing to do with the implementation of the project.

"It's not correct, your honor," Chio said of Bolante's claim upon questioning by Sen. Francis Escudero.

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