13 SENATORS LUMAGDA. Sila raw ang natatanging may Kapangyarihan na Magpatanggal ng Impeachable Officials.
1.) Franklin Drilon
2.) Ralph Recto
3.) Antonio Trillanes IV
4.) Risa Hontiveros
5.) Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV
6.) Francis Pangilinan
7.) Leila de Lima
8.) Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III
9.) Francis “Chiz” Escudero
10.) Sherwin Gatchalian
11.) Joel Villanueva
12.) Grace Poe
13.) Juan Edgardo Angara
Thirteen senators so far have signed the draft resolution insisting that Senate has the sole power to try and decide the removal of impeachable officials such as Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.
Among those who signed were Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, Senate Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto, Senators Antonio Trillanes IV, Risa Hontiveros, Paolo Benigno Aquino IV, Francis Pangilinan, and Leila de Lima.
Members of the majority bloc including Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III, Senators Francis Escudero, Sherwin Gatchalian, Joel Villanueva, Grace Poe, and Juan Edgardo Angara also affixed their signature.
Hontiveros urged her colleagues to take “decisive action” against the Supreme Court ruling, which she said “robbed the Senate of the jurisdiction to remove an impeachable officer through an impeachment trial.”
“The Senate has the duty and responsibility to formally communicate with the Supreme Court and ask it to review its decision and restore balance among the different co-equal branches of the government,” she said in a press statement.
“I appeal to my fellow Senators to cross party lines and unite in defending the integrity of the Senate. We cannot issue strong statements on this travesty of the inviolability of the Constitution, yet not back it up with decisive action. We must not allow the Senate to be relegated to a hollow institution howling ineffectually at the margins,” she added.
She said the resolution is not about the Chief Justice and the accusations against her but about safeguarding the integrity of our democratic institutions, diffusing the tension among the different branches of government and preventing a constitutional crisis.
Villanueva said he signed the resolution because of his firm belief that the Constitution is unequivocal that the only way to remove a Chief Justice is through impeachment.
The resolution entitled “expressing the sense of the Senate to uphold the Constitution on the matter of removing a Chief Justice from office” states Senate recognizes that the continued harmonious interdependence of these branches lies in the faithful adherence of each branch of government to the Constitution.
It said the Supreme Court’s decision to grant the quo warranto petition sets a dangerous precedent that transgresses the exclusive powers of the legislative branch to initiate, try, and decide all cases of impeachment.
“The decision of the Supreme Court to allow an extra-Constitutional means to remove a Supreme Court justice blatantly usurps the constitutional power of the Senate to remove an impeachable official from office,” it added.
The senators, through the resolution, urges the Supreme Court to review its decision to nullify the appointment of Sereno as Chief Justice.
By Amita Legaspi / GMA News
13 senators sign draft resolution: Senate has sole power to remove impeachable officials