Miriam ‘heartsick’ over Corona’s passing
BACOLOD CITY, Philippines—Presidential candidate Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago on Friday mourned the death of former Chief Justice Renato Corona, the first member of the High Tribunal to be impeached in Philippine history.
“I am heartsick. I would have hoped he could have redeemed himself,” said the feisty senator who opposed the impeachment of the former Chief Justice in 2012.
At that time, Santiago voted “not guilty” for Corona’s failure to disclose his assets and discrepancies in his statements of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN). He was ousted by a 20-3 vote in the six-month impeachment trial in the Senate.
“I always believed that he did not commit an impeachable offense. I think because he was a brilliant lawyer it was his basic belief it helped to send him to the grave,” the senator told reporters.
“Those who are enthusiastic about sending him to an early grave succeeded,” she added.
Corona, the 23rd chief justice of the country, died from cardiac arrest early Friday at 68 years old. He was survived by his wife Cristina and their three children.
He served as Chief Justice from 2010 to 2012, a controversial one after being designated by former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo a month before her term ended. Critics tagged his designation as a “midnight appointment.” President Benigno Aquino III, who was against his appointment, replaced him with now Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno. RAM/rga