Alvarez admits House ‘supermajority’ can impeach anybody: Pero ayaw namin magmukhang gago
Speaker Bebot Alvarez admits supermajority can impeach anybody it chooses to kick out of office.
But the House has been careful in wielding this weapon because it wants to make sure it will win its impeachment case in the Senate, said Alvarez in an interview with ANC’s Karen Davila.
“Sa totoo lang, kung halimbawa, gusto lang namin iimpeach yung isang impeachable official, madali yun, may signatures lang na kailangan. Nasa majority kami, kaya lang, pagsampa niyan doon sa impeachment court, magmumukha kaming tanga doon. Ayokong mangyari naman yun,” said Alvarez.
The supermajority has more than double the minimum one third vote or 97 of the 292 House members needed to pass an impeachment complaint to the Senate.
“Yung impeachment kasi, ayaw namin na magmukha naman kaming gago. Ipo-process namin, wala naman kaming ebidensya, it will not stand trial in an impeachment court, hindi ba? So nakakatawa naman kami roon. Kaya maghinay-hinay tayo diyan,” said Alvarez.
In the first years of the Duterte administration, the House has so far received four impeachment complaints against President Rodrigo Duterte, Vice President Leni Robredo, Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, and Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno. It is expected to receive an impeachment complaint against Commission on Elections Chair Andy Bautista over his alleged P1 billion ill-gotten wealth.
Alvarez said Duterte’s impeachment complaint has been dismissed while the three complaints against Robredo, Morales, and Sereno were still pending with the Committe on Justice.
Of the three pending cases, Alvarez said only the impeachment case against Sereno had evidence with certified true copies from the High Court. He said the House had a difficult time proceeding with the impeachment cases against Robredo and Morales because the evidence were mostly news clippings.
“Unfortunately wala tayong mga ceritified true copies, so mga clippings, allegations, mahirap po. We have to be fair hindi ba, doon sa person accused,” said Alvarez.
Alvarez stressed that the President does not tell Congress whom to impeach or not. “Wala akong pakialam kung ano ang sasabihin ng Presidente. We are a separate branch of government.,” he said.