Senators voted overwhelmingly yesterday to remove Chief Justice Renato Corona from office for betrayal of public trust by failing to disclose all his assets.
With this, Chief Justice Renato Corona accepted yesterday the verdict of the impeachment court convicting him of culpable violation of the Constitution.
The verdict ended more than four months of an impeachment trial that gripped the nation and put to test the Aquino administration’s resolve to fight corruption.
Only three senators – Joker Arroyo, Miriam Defensor-Santiago and Ferdinand Marcos Jr. – voted to acquit Corona.
In a statement released hours after the voting at the Senate, Corona said he had surrendered his fate from the start when he submitted himself to the impeachment process.
“Kung ito po ang ikabubuti ng ating bayan, tinatanggap ko na po ang kalbaryong aming pinagdaanan (If this will be for the better of our country, I am accepting this Calvary we’re going through),” he said.
“Dahil sa simula’t sapul naman ay handa na akong mag-alay ng sariling buhay para sa bayan (Because even from the start I was ready to sacrifice my life for the nation).
“Kung kaya, ipinapaubaya ko na po sa ating Poong Maykapal at sa taong bayan na higit na makapangyarihan sa ating demokrasya ang aking kinabukasan at ang kinabukasan ng ating Hudikatura (That’s why I am surrendering myself to the Lord and our people who are more powerful in our democracy, my fate and the future of our judiciary).”
Corona said the impeachment had drawn a bad picture of him contrary to the truth.
“Hindi kaila sa akin na gagamitin ng Pangulo ang buong puwersa ng gobyerno, kasama na ang mga ahensiyang dapat sana ay malayang nagpapasiya – ang Kamara, ang BIR, ang LRA, ang AMLC, ang Ombudsman, at iba pa. (We all know how the President used the entire force of government, including agencies that should be independent – the House, the BIR (Bureau of InternalRevenue), the LRA (Land Registration Authority), the AMLC (Anti-Money Laundering Council), and the Ombudsman and others,)” he said.
“Hindi rin kaila sa akin na gagamit ng kabang-yaman para sa mapanira at mapang-aping media campaign, sa radyo, telebisyon a tdyaryo, laban sa akin at sa aking pamilya. (We are also aware how resources of government were used in destructive media campaign in radio, television and newspapers against me and my family).”
Corona said he was saddened by the verdict, especially since he hoped he would be cleared after facing the charges head on.
He thanked the three senators who voted to acquit him – Joker Arroyo, Miriam Defensor-Santiago and Ferdinand Marcos Jr. – and who believed in his cause to fight for rights and the independence of the judiciary.