More solons seek Sereno’s impeachment
Twenty-five members of the House of Representatives endorsed the impeachment complaint filed on Wednesday against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.
The complainant, lawyer Larry Gadon, filed the verified complaint at the office of the House Secretary General, having vowed earlier to get at least 10 members to endorse it.
Gadon said his complaint involved Sereno’s alleged betrayal of public trust, an impeachable offense in the 1987 Constitution, over the Supreme Court’s “whimsical” and “excessive” purchase of the latest model of the Toyota Land Cruiser amounting to P5.1 million, as well as her alleged failure to declare “exorbitant lawyer’s fees” allegedly amounting to $745,000 or P37 million.
The luxury vehicle was purchased at P5.1 million even though it was only priced at P4.5 million, Gadon said.
The first impeachment complaint was filed by the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) and Vanguard of the Philippine Constitution Inc. (VPCI) over Sereno’s alleged culpable violations of the Constitution by allegedly bypassing the Supreme Court en banc.
But the complaint was filed without an endorsement of a House member, which means it might not be considered filed.
The impeachment complaints against Sereno gained traction after the Supreme Court allowed the release of the documents cited in those complaints.
House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez had earlier warned that he would support an impeachment complaint against Sereno because she ordered Court of Appeals (CA) justices to snub the House probe on the Ilocos Norte provincial government’s alleged misuse of tobacco excise funds, in which Gov. Imee Marcos was implicated.
Sereno allegedly told the CA justices to snub a show cause order asking them to explain why they should not be cited for contempt for granting the petition for habeas corpus of the so-called Ilocos Six.
The six provincial government officials were later released by the House.
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