Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile on Wednesday insisted that the Supreme Court cannot change Senate’s decision to convict Chief Justice Renato Corona.
“I will say this very frankly and I hope they understand. If they will question the jurisdiction of the impeachment court and reverse our decision, we will defy them. If they want a Constitutional crisis in this country, they will have one," Enrile said in an interview with ANC.
Following the overwhelming vote against Corona, lead defense counsel Serafin Cuevas said the Corona camp may resort to a petition for certiorari before the SC to review the proceedings of the impeachment court with a motion to nullify the entirety of the trial.
Cuevas, however, said it is still up to the convicted chief justice to determine their next move.
Enrile said that he has been very liberal in favor of the defense team during the course of the trial, stretching out the rules for them, so that they cannot accuse the Senate of any grave abuse of discretion.
“Where in this country could you point out a case where the witness was allowed to testify through a narrative? The defense did not ask any direct questions addressed to the chief justice. I allowed him to recite and say anything he wanted to defend himself,” he said.
But now that the impeachment trial is over, the senate president said he can no longer tolerate any action that will violate the Constitutional provision which says that the Senate has the sole power to decide and try all impeachment cases.
“In fact, I told the lawyers of the defense when the chief justice walked out, you want to create a revolution in this country, go to the streets, I will face you. A law must be enforced in this country. We cannot be lackadaisical of our laws. Otherwise, we will have anarchy,” Enrile said.
As of now, the Corona camp has yet to confirm whether they will pursue with the SC petition or accept the Senate's decision.