Friday, January 20, 2012

Eleven Years Ago Today

ELEVEN YEARS AGO TODAY, on Saturday, 20 January 2001, Hilario Davide, was wearing the robes of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court when he strode up to the stage at the Edsa Shrine to swear into office as President of the Republic of the Philippines, its grey-garbed Vice President, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.  But it was without legitimacy that he administered this oath, for contrary to the fiction he had forced upon the Court earlier that day, then President Joseph Estrada was not PERMANENTLY DISABLED, as claimed in a towering lie of a fax sent to the Court on behalf of  Mrs. Arroyo (by her then Chief of Staff Renato C. Corona [sic!] )but watching in disbelief from Malacanang Palace, with a gun to his head held by agents of AFP Chief o Staff Angelo Reyes, their co-conspirator in a coup d'etat that would later be hailed as the Edsa 2 People Power Revolution.

I was in the hooting throng that cheered this event as liberation from a corrupt President Estrada, but we did not know of the fiction by which the Supreme Court Chief Justice was acting in utter violation of the 1987 Constitution, did not know that Joseph Estrada would not leave Malacanang until after this incredible turn of events.  Three months later, and based on an alleged diary kept by then Executive Secretary Edgardo Angara, the Supreme Court would "construe"--actually they would CONSTRUCT--an Erap resignation, in the landmark ruling Estrada v. Arroyo.

But whatever eloquent arguments are to be found in that decision, the simple fact is that to this day, Joseph Estrada denies he ever resigned, and there is no resignation letter to be found. Moreover, just four days previous, on 16 January 2001, a crucial vote at his Senate impeachment trial, the so-called Second Envelope Vote, proved to one and all that he had at least eleven votes to sustain an eventual and near certain ACQUITTAL in that trial. So that since he had submitted entirely to the processes of impeachment by the House and Trial by the Senate, he had every expectation of being found not guilty of all four charges brought against him. WHY THEN WOULD HE RESIGN except for fear of his life and that of his family at the hands of the mutineers led by Gen. Angelo Reyes in conspiracy with Arroyo and Davide?

ELEVEN YEARS AGO TODAY, a date that is hardly mentioned now in the newspapers or by any one at all, because it is in fact the date of a Filthy Family Secret, the Supreme Court of the Philippines had usurped the "sole power of the Senate to TRY and DECIDE all cases of impeachment." This, it did not by some jurisprudential act or decision, but by authorizing Hilario G. Davide Jr. to simply and illegally swear in the Vice President. Instead of carrying out his duty as Presiding Judge of the Senate Impeachment Court, and pretending to be "preventing violence" Davide threw out the Rule of Law, violated the 1987 Constitution, and forever etched his name in history as a villain who destroyed democratic rule and opened the gates to the ruinous nine year reign of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

Related: When Last the Military Withdrew Support

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