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Senator-judges poised to finish impeachment trial before June 7

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With exactly one month left before the sine die adjournment of the second regular session of the 15th Congress, more senator-judges have appeal for early conclusion of the impeachment trial of Supreme Court (SC) Chief Justice Renato Corona.

Senator-judge Miriam Defensor Santiago has supported the call of Senate President-presiding judge Juan Ponce Enrile to finish the historic trial before June 7.

Santiago said under the rules of court, the court has power to stop further evidence on a particular point “when the evidence is already so full that some witnesses to the same point cannot be reasonably expected to be additionally persuasive.”

The lady lawmaker said the rules of court also provided that “justice shall be impartially administered without unnecessary delay.”
”Under Sec. 5, entitled Inherent Powers of Courts, “every court shall have power: (d) To control, in furtherance of justice, the conduct of its ministerial officers, and of all other persons in any manner connected with a case before it, in every manner appertaining thereto,” Santiago said, quoting the Rule 135, Section 1 of the rules of court.

Santiago said that former United States President Bill Clinton’s impeachment trial has lasted a little over a month only.
”Therefore, I humbly submit that this impeachment court, after nearly five months of trial, possesses authority to order the conclusion of trial on or before June 7, so as to allow judgment to be promulgated before Congress ends this session,” Santiago said in her manifestation.
In a media interview, Enrile said his fellow senator-judges are determined to finish before May 31 even as he pushed for his proposal to conduct an eight-hour impeachment trial every day.

”We want to finish it already. We will not go beyond the 31st of May,” Enrile said.Last Sunday, Enrile said he would propose to both the prosecution and the defense panels to extend the impeachment trial up to 10 p.m. The trial starts at 2 p.m.

”I will propose to both the prosecution and defense panels to hold impeachment trial up to 10 p.m. each day because many proposed bills have already been affected,” Enrile said.

The impeachment trial which started last January 16, resumed on Monday which marked the 35th day of the trial of Corona who was accused of betrayal of public trust and culpable violation of the Constitution.

by: PNA/PIA9-ZBST




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