By Arjay L. Balinbin, October 23 2018; Business World


Image Credit to Business World

THE Department of Justice (DoJ) is set to file, “not later than Friday” this week, a motion for partial reconsideration before the Makati Regional Trial Court (RTC)-Branch 148, which earlier denied its motion to issue an arrest warrant and travel ban against opposition Senator Antonio F. Trillanes IV.

“The DoJ will file, not later than Friday, a motion for partial reconsideration of the order of RTC-Makati branch 148 (coup d’ etat) only insofar as it found that Sen. Trillanes had sufficiently shown that he filed his certificate of amnesty, and that therefore it follows that he also admitted his guilt for the offense of coup d’ etat and recanted all statements inconsistent with such admission of guilt,” Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra said in a statement on Tuesday, Oct. 23.

For his part, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador S. Panelo said in a press briefing, “I’ve talked with the SolGen (Jose C. Calida) and he said he will not file a motion for reconsideration, but go immediately to the Court of Appeals and appeal the ruling of the court with respect to the issuance—or the non issuance of the warrant of arrest.”

But Mr. Guevarra said in a text message to reporters that “it is the DoJ (that) will decide what legal steps to take.”

“We saw that there has been a violation in the grant of amnesty, and that is precisely why a proclamation was issued to declare its nullity. So, until this is decided by the Supreme Court, saying we’re wrong, we will consistently make our stand that we are right,” Mr. Panelo added.

The President’s spokesman described Mr. Trillanes’s victory as “pyrrhic.”

“Well, it’s one of a pyrrhic victory because if you noticed the court decided that the proclamation issued by the President is valid. They are claiming at the time that the President does not have the power to void any amnesty, and the court said he has,” he said.

Mr. Panelo also noted that there are procedural matters decided by the Makati RTC Branch 148, “which to (his) mind are erroneous, (like) how it accepted evidence despite the fact that they are all secondary evidence.”

“So there are questions that can be properly raised in the Court of Appeals and subsequently doon sa (in the) Supreme Court,” he said.