Arroyo machinery backing Corona, Casiño claims


Posted at Feb 21 2012 06:16 PM | Updated as of Feb 22 2012 02:16 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's political and public relations machinery is allegedly supporting Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona, a lawmaker said Tuesday.

"From all indications, Gloria’s machinery is going all out for Corona, starting with his defense panel, his PR handlers, his coordinators for mass mobilizations and even the new House minority’s efforts to investigate the prosecution for getting hold of Corona’s bank statements," Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy Casiño claimed.

Casiño, who is one of the 188 congressmen who signed the impeachment complaint against Corona, said in a press statement that the Chief Justice's lead counsel, former Associate Justice Serafin Cuevas, also led the defense panel for former Ombudsman and Arroyo ally Merceditas Gutierrez, who was also impeached by the House.

"In the same light, Gutierrez and Corona have the same PR operators which are also linked to the former president. Many sources have also confirmed to us that GMA was the one who funded the last rally supporting Corona, which supposedly gathered around 7,000 warm bodies, at P300 per person this would amount to P2.1 million in just one offing. Of course, the new House minority now is unquestionably loyal to Mrs. Arroyo," he claimed.

"Even with his millions, Corona simply does not have enough clout, money and experience to orchestrate the ongoing campaign to thwart the ends of the impeachment trial. It is GMA and her political and propaganda teams who are apparently supporting Corona," Casiño said.

"As a matter of survival, Gloria has to bet all her cards on Corona. Her support explains to a great extent Corona's belligerence despite clear evidence of his guilt," he added.