Marcos camp denies involvement in impeachment rap vs Justice Leonen

Mike Navallo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 08 2020 01:39 PM

MANILA - The camp of former senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos on Tuesday denied involvement in the impeachment complaint against Supreme Court Associate Justice Marvic Leonen, the member-in-charge of the former lawmaker's electoral protest at the Presidential Electoral Tribunal. 

“No, Sen. Bongbong is not connected and has nothing to do with the impeachment complaint filed against associate justice Leonen,” lawyer Vic Rodriguez, Marcos' spokesperson, said in a statement.

“We refrain from commenting on an event or case where we are not a party as it is inappropriate for anyone to make wild accusation on something that they have no basic comprehension of the allegations, have not read the complaint and are just but the usual bally hoos,” he added.

Various groups like NUPL, BAYAN and lawyer Chel Diokno have claimed the Marcoses were behind the move to oust Leonen from the high court, initiated by once-suspended lawyer Larry Gadon. 

Leonen is the justice in charge of the election protest Marcos filed against Vice President Leni Robredo for his 2016 loss. Marcos, son of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos, had tried but failed to force Leonen to inhibit from the case, despite backing by the Office of the Solicitor General.

Gadon, a Marcos loyalist, had lodged the impeachment complaint with the House of Representatives on Monday, accusing Leonen of culpable violation of the Constitution for supposedly delaying resolution of pending cases before the Supreme Court and the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal, and of betrayal of public trust for allegedly failing to file his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN) while he was teaching at the University of the Philippines for 15 years.

It was endorsed by Rep. Angelo Barba, a cousin of Marcos who claimed the only reason he endorsed it was because the complainant, journalist Edwin Cordevilla, is his constituent, being based in Batac, Ilocos Norte.

Batac is the hometown of the Marcoses.

“The case of the PET of BBM has not been mentioned here. There’s no connection,” Gadon told reporters in a press conference Monday.

Gadon continued to reiterate this on ANC on Tuesday, lamenting why the media often describes him as a Marcos loyalist.

He said he wants to be known as a lawyer respected by the court and claimed he is even more qualified than Leonen in terms of litigation experience and knowledge of the law.

Gadon, along with Solicitor General Jose Calida, another known Marcos supporter, had previously tried to secure copies of Leonen’s SALN but were twice rejected by the high court.

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