• Erap hopeful SC won’t unseat him

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    Manila Mayor Joseph Ejercito “Erap” Estrada does not expect the Supreme Court (SC) to order his disqualification, despite a draft of the court decision penned by Associate Justice Marvic Leonen.

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    In the draft, a copy of which was obtained by The Manila Times, Leonen said he believed Alfredo Lim should be installed as the winner of the 2013 mayoral election in Manila.

    The draft had been submitted to the SC en banc, but justices asked for more time to study it.

    Estrada “does not expect the Supreme Court to pass judgment countering the same issues,” his public information officer, Diego Cagahastian, told The Times on Monday.

    Cagahastian cited the ‘Vox Populi, Vox Dei’ adage, which means ‘The Voice of the People, the Voice of God.”

    Estrada said Lim gave up his quest for reelection after he conceded defeat even before the Commission on Elections (Comelec) had proclaimed the winner in Manila.

    He refused to say who he suspects as behind the campaign to discredit him.

    The former president cited several points why he should not be disqualified.

    He said the depositive portion of an executive clemency issued by then-President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo had restored his civil and political rights

    When he filed his certificate of candidacy in 2010, a Regional Trial Court, the Sandiganbayan and the Comelec en banc all ruled that he could seek elective position, Estrada notedd.

    Even the Supreme Court had dismissed similar pleadings when he ran for President in 2010.

    The disqualification case was filed by Alicia Risos-Vidal, a former lawyer of Lim, in her capacity as a taxpayer.

    Leonen based his position on the theory that Arroyo’s pardon was conditional, not absolute.

    The magistrate cited precedents such as the Monsanto vs. Factoran, and the provisions of Article 36 and 41 of the Revised Penal Code.

    The former University of the Philippine College of Law dean said Lim should succeed Estrada, instead of the elected vice mayor, citing Section 44 of the Local Government Code as was in the case in the Aratea vs. Comelec and Antipolo.

    Supreme Court justices have expressed reservations on Leonen’s draft ponencia.

    A source in the court said if Estrada is disqualified because of his conviction for the crime of plunder, it will set a precedent that will bar him from running for President in 2016.

    Estrada was allowed to run for President in 2010 after the Supreme Court en banc failed to rule on whether a former leader can run for reelection as provided by the 1987 Constitution.

    Then-Chief Justice Renato Corona, ponente of the case, said the disqualification case against Estrada shall be “moot and academic” after Estrada lost to then-senator Benigno Aquino 3rd.

    Before the SC went on its Christmas break, Chief Justice Maria Lourdes had pushed for a vote on the disqualification of Estrada based on the Leonen ponencia.

    But some justices were reluctant to hold the vote and would rather wait for their colleagues to return from their leave.

    The court will take up the Estrada case on January 20.

    It was learned that an SC member will write a dissenting opinion on Leonen’s draft ponencia.

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    9 Comments

    1. every election agency and even the SC at that time did not disqualify Erap from running for an elective position, and now Pnoy’s appointee wants Lim (a Cory ally and loyalist) to be mayor despite conceding to Erap. Sus mariosep naman, tapos na yan, binabalikan pa.

    2. It will be stupid if Leonen will disqualify Erap now. The pardon is very clear, Erap political rights was restored. Erap was able to vote twice in the last 2 elections and was qualified to be a candidate in both elections. The last 2 Comelec chair are brilliant lawyers especially Brillantes who has years of experience of election lawyer. How can justice Marvic Leonen whose only experience is teaching law can read GMA pardon otherwise.

    3. First of all Associate justice Marvic Leonen was political appointed by BS Aquino, leonon is unknown lawyer and no experienced to be one of the supreme court justices, if there is one to be disqualified it should be him.The pardon given by Pgma is enough for Mayor estrada to run in any position in government, ” Sabi nga ni natanggal na governor ng laguna Er Ejercito ” iniisa isa na kaming mga Estrada ( ejercito)” dapat dito kay Pnoy makulong sa 2016 pag baba niya sa puwesto”. Leonen should inhibit himself in voting his comment is his own wrong decision.

    4. There we go again- a Supreme Court which in many times flip-flopped itself on many cases, e. g. Cityhood, PALEA etc. cases failed to rule on Estrada’s 2010 disqualification case due to “mootness”?
      Santa Quiteria, (sorry Jurado of MST) a first year law student knows that “mootness” (because Estrada lost to PNoy) does not apply when the controversy is “capable of repetition, yet evading judicial review”. This doctrine which was enunciated in Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, (1973) is a challenge to Texas abortion law. Texas argued but failed that since Norma McCorvey (a.k.a. Roe, the Petitioner) was no longer pregnant (she gave birth while case is pending) the case is already moot. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that mootness will not apply because Roe (or other women with same issues) might become pregnant again and same controversy is repeated again so there a need to confront the issue NOW.
      On Estrada, the SC should have ruled on the 2010 case not only because Estrada is a popular political figure and the controversy might be repeated (as what have happened) but also as precedent to future similar cases. Had the SC followed this doctrine this case should have never been in the courts again and Estrada spared of this “pain”.

    5. as much as i don’t like erap, i think his public information office is correct. why did all governing bodies approved of erap’s candidacy for mayor if in their understanding, erap is not violating the conditions of his pardon by then president arroyo. mind it that the comelec chairman is a lawyer. likewise, i assume, the head of the sandiganbayan and also that of the appeals court are. otherwise, they should not be in any of those offices nor should be in any position if they are not. now, given that these are all lawyers, i am sure they all know and understand the conditions of erap’s pardon or clemency. or do they and did they? did they or did they not really studied erap’s case before they allowed him to run? i think the governing bodies that ruled in favor of erap to run as mayor should carry the burden. they allowed erap to run and he won. that said, the citizens of manila have spoken. and that makes it binding.

    6. Alam ni Aquino at abad na banta si erap sa pagiging president ni Mar Roxas,!! Gagawin lahat ng mga ito para mawala lahat ang hadlang,
      Grace poe ay kontrolado nila at pueding pakiusapan na magpass muna at pangangako at ng buong supporta pagkatapos ni Mar!
      Leonen ang magiging daan para hindi magkaroon ng pagkakataon na tumakbo si erap!
      Ngayon pa lang nakalatag na ang plano!
      Marami pang susunod!!
      Ganito katuso ang mga taong ito, pati supreme court ay nagagamit na,!paiklat lang ng halal na supreme court ni Aquino!na against sila sa ginagawa ni Aquino!!padama lang sa tao!!
      Alam nila kahit ang gawin paninira nila kay erap marami pa rin sampalataya dito!
      Para muling hiyain ang mga edukado at matalino na walang alam kung hindi ipagmalaki ang natapos,pero wala naman nagawang mabuti sa mahihirap!!

    7. The people who voted you is not considered the voice of God because money was used to win your election.