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Widened ambit seen to weaken truth body 07/07/2010

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Widened ambit seen to weaken truth body

Expanding the scope of the so-called Truth Commission to include alleged irregularities and abuses committed during the Ramos and Estrada administrations could only muddle, if not weaken, the purpose of the body and affect its initial expressed purpose of giving closure to issues raised against former President Arroyo.

Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago also expressed pessimism over the competence of the fact-finding body under the helm of former Chief Justice Hilario Davide Jr. in taking up unresolved cases supposedly committed in the last three adminis-trations.

“That is justified under the circumstances but it might have a problem building up a case or finding evidence to sustain the charges against (former) President Arroyo. We might be asking too much from it,” she said in a phone-patched interview with Senate reporters.

Some church leaders have urged Malacañang to expand the mandate of the body and not focus solely on Arroyo but to include past presidents.

Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said the Palace was open to this idea but clarified that it is up to Davide to decide on this matter given his authority to oversee the commission.

“For me, the magnitude of the task makes it impossible. You’re talking the presidency. There are so many layers of bureaucracy that insulates the president. So it’s very hard to prove that the (former) president was first liable for an official act of the State. That’s why if the investigation against all other prior presidents are conducted at the same time as the investigation against (former) President Arroyo, that is the best way to dilute the limited resources of government and in effect, stymie the proceedings,” she pointed out.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100707hed5.html


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