Senators’ suspension violates separation of powers – Sotto
MANILA, Philippines – Senator Vicente “Tito” Sotto III said Monday that the preventive suspension of Senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada, and Ramon Revilla Jr., violated the principle of separation of powers enshrined in the Constitution.
He cited the Constitution, as well as previous cases, which rules that only Congress has the sole power to impose sanctions or penalties on its members.
Estrada was suspended from the Senate last September 2 following the order of the Sandiganbayan currently hearing their plunder cases in relation to the Pork Barrel Scam.
Enrile and Revilla were suspended a day before Estrada. The three Senators are currently in detention.
“We received the order of the Sandiganbayan also denying the motion for reconsideration of Senator Estrada and again we’re left with no recourse but to implement the order,” Senate President Franklin Drilon had said during the previous session.
Senate Majority Floor Leader Alan Cayetano noted the previous cases cited by Sotto where suspension orders were not followed by the Senate but said that they will stand by their decision to comply with Sandiganbayan’s preventive suspension order.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.