Culture of impunity rules in the SC

BY DUCKY PAREDES
MALAYA

“What better proof of a prevailing culture of impunity in the SC than that its justices see wrong in what others do but not in the exact same thing when it is them doing this exact same thing.”

IT was a familiar tableau — the most hated person in the country at the time and his beauteous edy wife beside him, thanking the loyal followers cheering them below their balcony.

A bit teary-eyed, the man extends his arms as if to embrace them all, much like some errant Pope, having been rejected by the Almighty, embracing all of his still-loyal followers. It is, of course, simply something as from a play — a production to show that they still have supporters even if the masses have already gotten sick of them.

The difference is that in 1986, the Marcoses were soon gone. This time the Coronas are still here, vowing to fight their perceived enemies — the Filipino people — to the death.

Why do they hold on? Whence can they expect their saviors to come? Can there still be any? After all, their evil has been discovered, the lies they lived already proven false; their telltale horns and tails now permanently and prominently visible.

***

The pervading culture of impunity that is the primary source of rottenness in this country is not limited to those who kill on orders and expect to get away with it. Clearly, the Supreme Court itself has a majority who think that impunity is their right. Their being in the highest Pinoy tribunal makes them feel almost God-like. They can come up with decisions captured faithfully by the SCRA (Supreme Court Reports Annotated); then, come up with another completely espousing the opposite view. The SC has also been known to decide that white is white one day and that white is black the next; and, still later, that white never even existed.

We have a Supreme Court that belongs to Alice’s Wonderland. In fact, it may actually be totally corrupt which is maybe why those who write decisions condemning former presidents and dictators for clearly violating our laws will often turn around and do the exact same act that they condemned in damning these malefactors.

What better proof of a prevailing culture of impunity in the SC than that its justices see wrong in what others do but not in the exact same thing when it is them doing this exact same thing. The culture of impunity is deeply imbedded in the Supreme Court.

In standing at the SC’s veranda, Corona seemed to be saying: “This SC is my house and in my house I reign supreme.” Of course, for now, he certainly does. Proof of this is that the remainder of Gloria’s Gang in the SC issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) against a subpoena of the Senate on Corona’s dollar accounts with PSBank.

A lawyer sent me a long treatise on foreign currency deposits, part of which says: “In Salvacion v. Central Bank and China Bank, 278 SCRA 27 (1997), the Highest Tribunal adopted the opinion of the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) that only foreign currency deposits of foreign lenders and investors are given protection and incentives by the law, and further ruled that the Foreign Currency Deposits Act cannot be utilized to perpetuate injustice. Following such pronouncements, it is respectfully submitted that foreign currency deposits of Filipino depositors, including herein complainant, are not covered by the Foreign Currency Deposits Act, and are thus not exempt from the processes duly-issued by the BIR.

“We do not perceive any grave abuse of discretion on the part of the public respondents when they issued the aforecited rulings. We, thus, defer to the policy of non-interference in the conduct of preliminary investigations… ”

Even to non-lawyers, that is clear enough: “only foreign currency deposits of foreign lenders and investors are given protection and incentives by the law”.

And, later: “In Salvacion v. Central Bank of the Philippines, 278 SCRA 27 (1997), the Supreme Court provided for an exception to this absolute secrecy of foreign currency deposits ruling that when the interest of justice requires:

“’In fine, the application of the law depends on the extent of its justice. Eventually, if we rule that the questioned Section 113 of Central Bank Circular No. 960 which exempts from attachment, garnishment, or any other order or process of any court, legislative body, government agency or any administrative body whatsoever, is applicable to a foreign transient, injustice would result specially to a citizen aggrieved by a foreign guest like accused Greg Bartelli. This would negate Article 10 of the New Civil Code which provides that ‘in case of doubt in the interpretation or application of laws, it is presumed that the lawmaking body intended right and justice to prevail. Ninguno non deue enriquecerse tortizeramente con dano de otro.’

“Simply stated, when the statute is silent or ambiguous, this is one of those fundamental solutions that would respond to the vehement urge of conscience. (Padilla vs. Padilla, 74 Phil. 377).

“It would be unthinkable, that the questioned Section 113 of Central Bank No. 960 would be used as a device by accused Greg Bartelli for wrongdoing, and in so doing, acquitting the guilty at the expense of the innocent.

“Call it what it may — but is there no conflict of legal policy here? Dollar against Peso? Upholding the final and executory judgment of the lower court against the Central Bank Circular protecting the foreign depositor? Shielding or protecting the dollar deposit of a transient alien depositor against injustice to a national and victim of a crime? This situation calls for fairness against legal tyranny.

“We definitely cannot have both ways and rest in the belief that we have served the ends of justice.”

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After Corona, Rep. Rodolfo Fariñas has made it very clear that he wants the eight SC justices — Gloria’s Own Gang of 8 –who handed the TRO to go down with him for trying to hide the truth.

Fariñas says that he will spearhead the impeachment of the eight – Associate Justices Teresita Leonardo-de Castro, Arturo Brion, Roberto A. Abad, Jose Portugal Perez, Lucas Bersamin, Martin Villarama Jr., Bienvenido L. Reyes and Jose Castral Mendoza.

Go, Rudy, go!

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Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@yahoo.com


2 Responses. Have your say.

  1. Go,Farinas, go! The people are behind you! Keep writing about this, Ducky.
    The moment of truth has arrived again for the people.

  2. dan norman says:

    There is one glaring fact they you and the SC, along with the impeachment panel, law, the constitution, so on and so forth have overlooked Ducky. With all due respect to you. The case of Greg Bartelli, which the SC refers to in its decision as having merit as ” used as a device by accused Greg Bartelli for wrongdoing, and in so doing, acquitting the guilty at the expense of the innocent.”was never tried. Mr Bartelli never faced his accuser in a court of law. His side never heard. And the evidence purportedly against him never weighed. The only thing they state accurately is referring to him as ” the accused” not convicted. And if my knowledge serves me correctly, the Philippines constitution provides people the presumption of innocence until proven guilty, which the SC later in the same sentence claims Mr bartelli is. Certainly, if the measure of the SC desision is based on truth, and justice, then there wording that “it is presumed that the lawmaking body intended right and justice to prevail.” is negated by their ( the SC’s) own actions. I hope you agree. My name is dan norman. I am an American. And I have seen first hand the ugly truth of the Philippines system of impunity and the selective application of law. If you wish to know my store contact me at captaindan47@yahoo.com. Kindest regards.

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