4 SC justices to appear at Sereno impeachment proceedings; 2 more expected to testify


FOUR justices of the Supreme Court – three incumbent and one former – are expected to testify at the House of Representatives on Monday when it resumes impeachment proceedings against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.

In a phone conversation with The Manila Times, Oriental Mindoro Rep. Reynaldo Umali, Justice Committee chairman, said Associate Justices Teresita de Castro, Francis Jardeleza and Noel Tijam, as well as retired Justice Arturo Brion, would shed light on the allegation that Sereno committed culpable violation of the Constitution — one of the charges filed against her by lawyer Larry Gadon.

This will be de Castro’s second appearance after her testimony last week.

Umali also confirmed that Associate Justices Samuel Martires and Mariano del Castillo would face the House panel although no schedule has been set as to when they would appear.

Umali reiterated his call to Sereno to face the committee and personally answer the allegations against her.

“Dun sa mga sagot ng witnesses, parang may mga lumalabas na bagay na hindi na-explain [ng verified answer nya]at medyo namimislead kaya kailangang i-clarify ito. That is why maganda kung i-clarify [ni Sereno and]seize the opportunity to clarify this matter,” Umali said.

(The answers of the witnesses, there were things that were said that could not be explained by her verified answer and were misleading so this would need to be verified. That is why it is better if Sereno could clarify them, seize the opportunity to clarify this matter.)

Sereno is facing impeachment for alleged corruption, betrayal of public trust and culpable violation of the Constitution. RALPH EDWIN U. VILLANUEVA


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