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Bacolod City, Philippines Monday, January 16, 2012
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Corona trial starts,
mass set for him


The impeachment trial of Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona kicks off today with Negros solons hoping that focus will be on the facts.

Court  employees  are also set to hold a mass in support of Corona at the Bacolod Hall of Justice at  8 a.m. today , Executive Judge Edgardo Garvilles said yesterday.

He, however, assured that work at the Hall of Justice will go on as usual.

Rep. Alfredo Abelaro Benitez (Neg. Occ., 3rd District) said he hopes there will be no grandstanding among those participating in the trial  and that they just focus on the facts.

        Rep. Julio Ledesma IV (Neg. Occ., 1st District) said “Let’s allow this  process fair passage. We should set aside personalities and focus on the issues,” he said.

“I also pray that we all grant both sides the latitude  to present their case. May the Lord’s most Holy Spirit leave in us His calm and peace-laden countenance,” he said.

Meanwhile, 13 more congressmen, including allies of former president and now detained Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, have signified their support for the impeachment complaint against  Corona, bringing the total number of pro-impeachment lawmakers to 201.

Last month, the House of Representatives transmitted to the Senate the Articles of Impeachment signed by 188 members, accusing Corona of betrayal of public trust, culpable violation of the Constitution, and graft and corruption.

The number is almost twice the minimum 95 signatures, or one-third of all the members of the House required to impeach the chief justice.

In a three-page motion, the 13 congressmen asked for their inclusion as additional complainants in the impeachment case against Corona.

The 13 are Reps. Erico Basilio Fabian (Zamboanga City), Christopher Co (AKO Bicol party-list), Dan Fernandez (Laguna), Alfredo Marañon III (Negros Occidental), Eric Singson Jr. (Ilocos Sur), Florencio Flores Jr. (Bukidnon), Maximo Rodriguez Jr. (Abante Mindanao party-List), Jane Castro (Capiz), Al Francis Bichara (Albay), Mark Aeron Sambar (PBA party-list), Rodolfo Antonino (Nueva Ecija), Emil Ong (Northern Samar), and Antonio Kho (Masbate).*CPG/PNA



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