2 Aquino allies warn vs anarchy, charter crisis over Arroyo travel issue
MANILA, Philippines–Two senators allied with the administration have warned of anarchy and constitutional crisis if the Department of Justice would continue to defy the order of the Supreme Court, allowing former President and now Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to seek medical treatment abroad.
“May panganib na nasa bingit na tayo ng constitutional crisis sa pagitan ng Korte Suprema at sa Pangulo ng bansa (There’s danger we’re at the edge of a constitutional crisis between the Supreme Court and President Aquino),” Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero said over radio on Wednesday.
Escudero said there would be a constitutional crisis when a motion to contempt is filed against Justice Secretary Leila de Lima and immigration officials and the court rules in favor of the motion.
“Pag sinabing ikulong ang mga yan at huwag pakawalan hanggang hindi pinapayagan, sinong pulis ang huhuli kay Secretary de Lima? Sino ang pulis na pwedeng utusan ng SC na sundin yung utos na yun? Dyan magkakaroon ng stalemate at deadlock ang magkabilang panig (If the court rules to jail Secretary de Lima, who’s policeman is going to arrest her? Who will SC order to enforce the order to jail her? There will be a stalemate and deadlock between the two sides),” he said.
Senator Ralph Recto sounded the same alarm.
“Para sa akin ang naramdaman ko ang pagyurak sa batas, hindi sinundan ang Korte Suprema. Para sa akin ang pinakamahagala dito yung Korte Suprema dahil yun ang rule of law. Kung hindi natin susundin ang Korte Suprema, then you have anarchy (To me, I felt the law was trampled upon, the Supreme Court was not obeyed. If we don’t follow the Supreme Court, then you have anarchy),” Recto told Senate reporters.
“Follow the rule of law. (The consequence of constitutional crisis) is anarchy. Anarchy ho ang kalalabasan,” he further said.
Escudero also advised the DOJ to stop inventing legal theories like filing a motion for reconsideration on the temporary restraining order issued by the Supreme Court against the travel ban on the former leader.
A motion for reconsideration, the senator said, could not be filed against a TRO.
Escudero also feared that the DOJ’s move to stop Arroyo from leaving the country could be used to generate sympathy for the former leader and seek political asylum from other countries.
Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Vicente “Tito” Sotto III described as an “embarrassment to the international community” the DOJ’s defiance to comply with the Supreme Court’s order.
“It’s an embarrassment to the international community…Hindi nasusunod ang batas dito sa atin e. Hindi ba embarrassing yun?” asked Sotto.
“Pangit sa mata ng international community. Nakakahiya, very embarrassing (In the eyes of the international community, it’s a very embarrassing situationj,” he added.