SC asked to let De Lima join oral arguments on PH’s ICC withdrawal
Opposition senators have asked the Supreme Court (SC) to let detained Senator Leila de Lima appear in the tribunal to join the oral arguments on the Philippines’ withdrawal from the International Criminal Court (ICC).
De Lima is currently detained at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center in Camp Crame, Quezon City as she faces trial over alleged links to illegal drugs trade before a Muntinlupa court.
In a manifestation with motion filed Tuesday, Senators Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan, Franklin Drilon, Bam Aquino, Risa Hontiveros and Antonio Trillanes urged the SC to allow De Lima to personally argue the case during the oral debates.
The SC has scheduled the oral arguments on the issue for August 14, 2018 at 2:00 p.m.
“As a matter of practice, this Honorable Court allows members of Congress to appear before it and argue cases that they file in their capacity as representatives or senators, not as counsels appearing on behalf of clients, but as the real parties-in-interest representing themselves before the Honorable Court,” the manifestation read.
Instead of a legal counsel, the opposition senators said they prefer De Lima to present their arguments and positions during the oral arguments.
They said they are “of the strong conviction that the arguments for the cause of all the petitioners will be best presented before this Honorable Court by their colleague, Senator De Lima.”
“The issues in this case being of transcendental importance, Senator De Lima should not be prevented from personally arguing the case before the Honorable Court by the mere reason of her incidental detention,” they said. /kga
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