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MANILA, Philippines - Senator-judge Joker Arroyo voted to acquit Chief Justice Renato Corona as the impeachment court rendered a verdict on Day 44 of the historic trial.
Arroyo, who second in the line of senators called upon to declare and announce their vote, said an impeachment is a political process, not a political assassination.
He said this aspires to be a judicial proceeding that thus "makes imperative that it stick to judicial rules," one that "must ever uphold due process that no citizen high or low may be denied."
Arroyo warned that , "we are veering close to bill of attainder," where a law passed by one house and approved by another creates an offense where there was none, "inventing a crime," of acts that were "not offenses when committed." He was referring to the charge that Corona failed to disclose his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN).
This is not justice, certainly not law, but "naked power, as it was in 1972," when, as a human rights lawyer, he recalled the declaration of martial law.