CJ Sereno camp braces for intensified smear campaign

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 08 2018 03:57 PM

MANILA - The camp of Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno expects efforts to pin her down to intensify as the House of Representatives justice panel is set to resume impeachment hearings this month.

Lawyer Jojo Lacanilao, spokesperson of Sereno, said Monday the House committee on justice has so far deprived the chief magistrate of her right to cross examine her accusers through her lawyers. 

"The Chief Justice accepted the invitation of the committee to attend the hearings through her counsel, which is her right under their own rules and the Constitution," he said in a statement. 

"Unfortunately, while the Chief Justice respected the process, the committee ignored its own rules and violated her constitutionally guaranteed rights," he added. 

The statement comes after Sereno's performance ratings dropped 4 percentage points to +35 in the last quarter of 2017, according to the latest Pulse Asia survey. 

Pulse Asia President Ronald Holmes sees the Chief Justice's ratings to further slide down until she presents her side in the ongoing justice panel impeachment hearings.

But even without her side, and even with the testimonies of Supreme Court justices, Sereno's camp believes the hearings have failed to prove the charges against her.

"We expect her detractors to intensify their smear campaign against the Chief Justice to cover up for the fatally defective impeachment case," Lacanilao added.