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Guilty verdict based on a case of dismissal 15 years ago

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SACKED COURT INTERPRETER Delsa Flores, now 63, interviewed inside her laundry shop in Panabo City, Davao del Norte, on Wednesday. Frinston Lim/Inquirer Mindanao

PANABO CITY, Davao del Norte—Seven senator-judges cited her dismissal in their decision to convict and remove Renato Corona as Chief Justice.

Delsa Flores, a former court interpreter here, who lost her job 15 years ago partly because she did not declare that she owned a market stall, is  elated that the ruling of the Senate impeachment court on Tuesday led to the dismissal of Corona.

“I was very happy that even a rich and powerful person like the former Chief Justice could still be punished for committing a wrongdoing. Not just the poor and common people like me,” Flores said Wednesday.

She said she was “proud of the 20 senator-judges who convicted Corona.”

“I lost my job for not declaring a business interest worth just several thousand pesos. It would be just as fair that he be removed from office for hiding millions of pesos worth of property,” Flores said.

By a vote of 20-3, the Senate, sitting as an impeachment court, found Corona guilty of culpable violation of the Constitution for failing to declare in his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN) $2.4 million in bank deposits and P80 million in commingled funds.

Administrative complaint

The amount involved in the Flores case was small compared with that of Corona, but the question boiled down to the question of honesty.

Flores, who first worked as an assessor for the Panabo municipal treasurer’s office and later as court interpreter of Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 4, was found to have violated the law when a stall owner filed an administrative complaint against her.

Narita Rabe accused Flores of taking “advantage of her position as a court employee by claiming a stall” at Panabo public market.

Flores denied illegally claiming ownership of the stall.

Double compensation

In an en banc decision, the Supreme Court required Flores to explain why she had failed to declare the market stall in her SALN.

She was also asked to explain why, although she was already working at the RTC from May 16 to June 17, 1991, she continued to receive her salary from the local government of Panabo up to June 3 of that year.

The salary in question was only P1,000.80, for May 16 to June 3, 1991, but the court had pointed out that it amounted to “dishonesty” while holding a public trust, hence, punishable by dismissal from service.

Flores, who, like Corona, is 63 years old, admitted her  wrongdoing.

“It was really my fault that I did not disclose my ownership of a stall at Panabo public market. I regretted it,” she said.

She said the circumstances behind her dismissal from service were somehow comparable to but not really the same as Corona’s “offenses.”

“I was found guilty of being dishonest for having received double compensation from the municipal assessor’s office and at the same time from the RTC. My nondeclaration in my SALN of our stall at the market further aggravated it.”

No permanent job

Flores said life was very difficult for her family following her conviction and subsequent sacking as court interpreter in 1997. For 15 years, she had no permanent job. Although her children are now all professionals, she has a heavy responsibility as a widow.

Flores lost her husband several years after her dismissal from government service and is now taking care of her ailing 88-year old mother.

Laundry shop

She now manages a laundry shop next to her house in downtown Panabo.

Flores refused to talk about the market stall that led to her dismissal saying “it was sold a long time ago.”

Flores followed the more than 40 days of the impeachment proceedings on television. She said she listened intently to the arguments, and even listed the points and questions raised by the senator-judges.

“I was even expecting an acquittal as what I understood with the flow of reasoning from a number of senator-judges,” Flores said of the verdict. “Thankfully, Corona was convicted.”

As to her case, the former court interpreter maintained she did not intend to defraud the government.

Asked what lessons one could draw from her case and Corona’s, Flores said: “If one wishes to work in government, he or she should be honest at all times.”

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Tags: Corona Guilty , Corona Impeachment , Corona verdict , Delsa Flores , Government , Judiciary , Politics , Renato Corona , Supreme Court

  • ryan andres

    Asked what lessons one could draw from her case and Corona’s, Flores said: “If one wishes to work in government, he or she should be honest at all times.” – AMEN

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/IAXSH5MU2ZLZ67FCVXOVYIK2E4 Jessie Savilla

      If we follow the lesson drawn from CORONA and DELSA Flores’  Case…How many Government Employees and Elective and Public Officials will be left to work?.  Separate the Goats from the Sheeps….

      • ryan andres

        Sign of the times, my friend…sign of the times…

  • Lapaz_guardians

    “Q.E.D.” AMEN

  • quirinomayer

    Flores and Corona now belong to the SALN (Sa Asset Lang Nasisante) Club. The club should elect Corona its president.  

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ZWTTKJTI57YO7TZBJC66GA2OLU dennis

    “Two birds with the same feather,fall together”

  • http://pedestrianobserver.blogspot.com/ Political Jaywalker

    Delsa’s dishonesty was nothing compared to Renato Corona but at least she acknowledge and admitted her mistake unlike Corona who deludes himself of being a martyr and one willing to die for a cause, LOL…… Which brings me to the question, what was that cause again Renato? Oh, yeah the cause of narcissistic people defending their bloated ego with illusions or bout of delusions that they are heroes in the making who believes that they are worth dying for, hehehe.



    YONG 3 bulok na itlog, what are you of them?  WOW, bulok na itlog….take it from there.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/TJ5NWTX2FJHRB3RDBDGMRVUMZY Asyong

    News: Guilty verdict based on a case of dismissal 15 years ago.

    Translation: Tuso man raw ang matsing, napag-lalangan din !

    Tama ba?

  • yellow_zombies

    In her explanation, respondent maintains the position that she has no business interest, implicitly contending that there is nothing to divulge or divest from.  As discussed above, respondent had a business interest.  We do not find her administratively liable, however, for failure to divest herself of the said interest.  The requirement for public officers, in general, to divest themselves of business interests upon assumption of a public office is prompted by the need to avoid conflict of interests.” From the Rabe vs Flores case.
    Yellow media should stop spinning lies trying to deceive the people. Flores was NOT removed from her position because of her failure to include the stall in her SALN, but because it was a conflict of interest.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_L7PILUDK6IPFGJLJNCM2IROCRY Albin

      talagang engot yung mga senators na ginawang comparison itong kaso ni flores.

    • Royal_Flush

      Mga coronatards talaga mga engot na, sore loooosers pa. Andami nyo pang sinasabi, e di ipa-reverse nyo ang verdict kung talagang tama kayo, now na! Better luck next time na lang mga zombies ni corokot.;-)

  • http://www.yahoo.com JOSE RIZAL

    This is an ill-prepared Malacanan spin over the Impeachment Court’s American Idol-based voting.  The decision of the SC cannot be paralled to an AMERICAN IDOL-TYPE SENATE IMPEACHMENT COURT under the leadership of a chameleon Enrile…
    However effective a spin, it doesn’t negate the fact that the impeahment process has no process at all.  They (the 20 senators) decide based on HUNCHES, brought about by Noynoy’s offer (for Christ’s sake)…and now they wanted the old SC decision to be their basis…
    The Supreme Court, as a collegial body, acted based on their knowledge/wisdom of the law and not by politicizing/polluting the law based on political benefits…
    A democrazy Philippines, indeed!  Enjoy it YELLAHS! 

    • JuanTamadachi


    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_L7PILUDK6IPFGJLJNCM2IROCRY Albin

      korek ka dyan

    • Royal_Flush

      Corny ka, jr.

  • JuanTamadachi

    This is poetic justice..

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/IAXSH5MU2ZLZ67FCVXOVYIK2E4 Jessie Savilla

    So sad for CJ Corona, the side issue that “aggravated” the case of Delsa Flores was picked up to   nail him down.  I may not totally agree with the seven senator, but the verdict shall serve as the cleansing of all government officials including the pro-administration.  Heed to the challenge of /Senator Escudero, the Makabayan  and the Minority Block in the House  The Lesson of this Impeachment is for all of us to be vigilant over corruption and for all public employees to  maintain the highest degree of integrity and honesty.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/3TDK2XD7U4PWR563OEAF7HL55A arturo

    If P-noy heeds the suggestions of Senators Jinggoy, Honasan, JPE, etc., to forgive Corona and not pursue investigation by the Ombudsman, he should also forgive Ms. Flores and all the others who lost their jobs when found guilty of not producing correct honest SALNs, and they should also receive their benefits from government just like what Corona is getting as published in newspapers! That is fair justice!

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