PNoy calls for meeting to plan Gutierrez impeachment

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 18 2011 11:10 PM | Updated as of Feb 19 2011 07:49 PM

MANILA - Sources in Malacañang say President Aquino is set to call House Speaker Feliciano 'Sonny' Belmonte and his other allies in the House to a meeting to plan the impeachment of Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez.

President Aquino will supposedly try to convince the Speaker to begin the impeachment proceedings before the long congressional break on March 26.
   
Belmonte surprised his allies after earlier saying he would wait for the Supreme Court to rule with finality on the impeachment process before scheduling the proceedings.

House Justice Committee Chairman Niel Tupas and Deputy Speaker Erin Tañada disagree with Belmonte's reasoning.

On Thursday, Belmonte said: "We will wait for the end. Basta it [impeachment] won't happen. Kailangan matapos ito."

However, Tañada, on Friday, said he "would argue that we are a separate but co-equal branch so that the Supreme Court cannot interfere."

The House justice committee is scheduled to vote on the next step in the impeachment proceedings against Ombudsman Gutierrez next Tuesday.-- report from Lynda Jumilla, ABS-CBN News