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Umepal si Gazmin! Palace insists only Aquino could’ve approved amnesty for Trillanes

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By Prince Golez

I beg to disagree.

Harry Roque Jr. made the comment after the ex-spokesperson of former President Benigno Aquino III said the grant of amnesty issued by former Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin is covered by the qualified political agency.

“Proclamation No. 75 & concurred by House & Senate comply with the constitutional requirement. Sec. 2 authorized the DND to process & approve each application. SND is not the president but he is his alter ego under the doctrine of qualified political agency. Hindi nya alam?” Atty. Edwin Lacierda wrote on Twitter yesterday.

Duterte’s mouthpiece Roque disputed Lacierda’s statement citing the 1939 case of Villena vs. Secretary of Interior and the 2009 case of Angeles vs. Gaite.

“Secretaries of department, of course, exercise certain powers under the law but the law cannot impair or in any way affect the constitutional power of control and direction of the President,” he said, referencing the Supreme Court’s decision.

“There are certain constitutional powers and prerogatives of the Chief Executive of the Nation which must be exercised by him in person and no amount of approval or ratification will validate the exercise of any of those powers by any other person,” it further said.

Roque maintained that only the President can exercise the privilege of granting amnesty.

The power to grant amnesty and pardon, he added, “must be exercised by the President in person.”