House plenary will ‘overwhelmingly approve’ articles of impeachment vs Sereno — Umali
House justice committee Rep. Reynaldo Umali is confident that the House plenary will “overwhelmingly approve” the articles of impeachment against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno and consequently elevate the impeachment complaint to the Senate.
“Wala akong nakikitang reason why the plenary will not support the committee on the matter kasi sinunod namin proseso and if you will look at the vote 33-1, and in the past, it has always been lopsided,”
Umali said in a media briefing after the justice panel voted to approve the committee report and the articles of impeachment against Sereno.
“You can already safely conclude that the plenary will overwhelmingly approve this committee report and the accompanying articles of impeachment,” he added.
For her part, Sereno’s spokesperson lawyer Josa Deinla said the Chief Justice on-leave “eagerly awaits” the transmittal of the articles of impeachment to the Senate where she is ready to defend herself against the “unfair, unjust and malicious allegations” thrown at her.
Umali said they would remain ready and willing to proceed with the impeachment proceedings even though a quo warranto petition, which seeks to invalidate Sereno’s appointment, is currently pending before the Supreme Court (SC).
“Handa na kami. Kaya nga tinapos na namin ito. We would like to show the public that we are ready, willing and we have a very strong case,” he said, noting that they are currently finalizing their panel of prosecutors who would argue for Sereno’s impeachment before the Senate.
The House plenary is set to tackle the articles of impeachment within 60 session days from its submission by the justice committee.
If the committee report and articles of impeachment garner one-third votes of the entire House members, the lower Chamber would then transmit the impeachment complaint to the Senate, which would then convene as an impeachment court. /muf