CA panel recommends confirmation of Aguirre’s appointment
Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II’s ad interim appointment was finally endorsed for confirmation by a panel of the Commission on Appointments (CA) on Wednesday despite opposition raised by Senator Antonio Trillanes IV.
The approval came after the CA’s committee on justice and judicial bar and council held an executive session to discuss Trillanes’ request to suspend Aguirre’s confirmation hearing pending investigation on various issues being leveled at him.
When the committee resumed its public hearing, Senator Loren Legarda called for a vote on Senator Panfilo Lacson’s pending motion to recommend Aguirre’s appointment.
The recommendation of the panel will be transmitted to the CA plenary for either rejection or adoption.
“Definitely, happy,” Aguirre told reporters after the hearing.
“Makakatulog na siguro ako (I could probably sleep now),” he said as he admitted to having sleepless nights.
Trillanes had predicted the committee’s decision, despite the issues he raised against Aguirre, including the latter’s alleged order to restore the lavish lifestyles of certain high-profile inmates, who had testified against Senator Leila de Lima over her alleged drug links.
“Depende kung ano yung pressure ng Malacañang sa kanila (It depends on the pressure Malacañang has raised on them). If they will submit to the pressure, then they will confirm. If not, if they will do their duty, if they will hold on to their basic sense of what is right and wrong, then hindi talaga pwedeng ma-confirm (his appointment could not be confirmed),” he told reporters when asked if he thinks the committee would approve Aguirre’s appointment.
“Kung iri-rail road nila at least sana makita ng taumbayan na I presented my case na marami pang (If they will railroad the appointment, at least the people would see that I presented my case that there are many) issues that have yet to be resolved and yet they confirmed him just the same so it’s not my problem anymore.”
“Sa Commission on Appointment, largely it’s not about merit e. It’s about political alliances, political conveniences and political pressure,” the senator added.
Asked then if he believes the CA had been pressured by Malacañang to approve Aguirre’s appointment, Trilanes said: “I believe so medyo determinado sila pero sa amin kasi (they are slightly determined but for us) this is not the end of it.”
“In the unfortunate scenario that Secretary Aguirre will be confirmed, hindi yan ang katapusan noong (it’s not the end of our) oversight functions namin. We will continue to be vigilant and guard against abuse and misuse of power,” he said. RAM
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
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.