MANILA, Philippines – A lot of people were delighted when Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago went back to work in the Senate on Tuesday.
The senator-judge was on leave during the first week of the impeachment trial of Chief Justice Renato Corona because of hypertension.
On Wednesday, Santiago's presence was surely felt when she scolded private prosecutor Arthur Lim for speaking loudly and making it difficult for Presiding Judge Juan Ponce Enrile to recognize her so she could speak.
Santiago also got mad because the prosecution was urging the court to allow Bureau of Internal Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares to testify in the trial.
Santiago spoke too fast that she was able to say at least 3 words per second.
It also caused difficulty for the ANC translator for the hearing-impaired to interpret what she said.
Below is an excerpt of Santiago’s lengthy “speech”:
May I request the opportunity to speak. I have been here for 5 minutes. Out of courtesy to me as a senator-judge, will you please keep quiet until the Senate President has acted. Please do not treat me as a mere observer. I am a judge in this proceeding. In any trial court, you go into a courtroom, you should not speak, you should not take any behavior at all unless with the consent of the presiding judge. Do not drown me out by screaming in this courtroom. Only I can scream here and my fellow judges.
Kaya tayo tumatagal, may oration pa eh. Huwag niyo kami i-orate dito. This is not a school on oratorical skills. This is a school of logic and experience. Ano ba ang istorya ninyo, na ang Chief Justice nagnakaw ng pera? Iyon ang mayor niyong storya eh. Ngayon, anong relasyon dito sa income tax return niya? I-establish lang naman ninyo na nag-file siya ng income tax return, ngayon mayroon kaming panibagong mga ebidensya na itong income tax return niya kulang. Mayroon pa siyang ibang pag-aari kaya mayaman siya. Kaya ngayon kapag tatanungin, pinayaman pala niya ang sarili niya. Eh ‘di siguro suspetyoso ang taong ito at hindi dapat manatili na chief justice. Ganoon ang pagtatanong. Huwag tayo dito naglalaban tungkol sa mga puntong ito. Nililito niyo ang publiko at nagagalit sa inyo eh. Pakinggan ninyo ang radyo.
Marking na lang ng documents. That can be done with the clerk of court outside with 2 parties represented there. Wala na tayong pinagtatatanong pa rito. Next witness na dapat. Tapos na itong babaeng ito dapat. May trabaho pa ito, pauwiin mo na iyan. Markahan mo na ang papel. Huwag mo kaming pilitin ng ayaw naming gagawin. Nag-ruling na ang presiding officer sa iyo eh. You cannot prove anything if true or false until you have the proper witness to do so and she is not the proper witness. Bakit pa natin papatagalin ito? Sinabi na ng presiding officer na tama na eh. Sige ka nang sige eh. You’re already in danger of contempt.