Duterte’s proclamation not intrusion, usurpation; Trillanes violates amnesty- Palace
Malacañang on Saturday defended President Rodrigo Duterte’s issuance of Proclamation No. 572, saying it is “by no means an intrusion or usurpation into the powers of the other independent branches of government” and said it is Senator Antonio Trillanes IV who continues to violate the concept of amnesty and seeks to subvert it.
The Palace issued the statement on Saturday in response to Trillanes’ motion for partial consideration filed before Makati City Regional Trial Court Branch 148 which seeks to have the judge nullify Proclamation No. 572.
The senator’s camp is claiming the Department of Justice is trying to use Proclamation No. 572 to assert that a previous court decision — particularly the dismissal of the coup d’etat case in 2011, after Trillanes was amnestied — is void. If this is the intent of the presidential proclamation, Trillanes’ lawyer Reynaldo Robles said it is “illegal and unconstitutional,” as it amounts to the President trying to “arrogate unto himself the power to nullify previous court decisions, which even the Supreme Court does not have at this point.
“We stand with the decision of Makati RTC Branch 148, in so far as it upheld the legality of Presidential Proclamation No. 572 (s. 2018),” presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said.
“The President’s Proclamation on the nullity of the supposed grant of amnesty to Senator Trillanes is a valid exercise of executive power as it is part of the Constitution’s mandate for the President to ensure the enforcement of all laws, including the lawful prosecution of those who violate such laws,” he added.
‘Not an invasion’
Panelo said the said proclamation is “by no means an intrusion or usurpation into the powers of the other independent branches of government.”
“As correctly stated by the Makati court, the President’s proclamation does not trample upon the Congressional prerogative to concur with the grant of amnesties since it is not the amnesty proclamation that was declared void, but its implementation,” he added.
“Further, Proclamation No. 572, in so far as it may eventually lead to the prosecution of Senator Trillanes, is not an invasion upon the prerogative of the Judiciary since it merely seeks to correct an error upon which the dismissal of the charges against Senator Trillanes was based,” Panelo said.
He stressed that the court still has the prerogative whether or not to have Trillanes prosecuted.
“Proclamation No. 572 cannot also be considered as a bill of attainder or an ex post facto law precisely because it is an executive exercise of power and not a legislative one,” Panelo added.
The presidential spokesperson also said Trillanes had and “is being given his day in court” and thus “cannot claim any denial of his right to due process.”
Panelo likewise said “there was additionally no danger of illicit capture” against Trillanes.
He included that Duterte even arranged law implementation organizations to trust that the best possible warrants will be issued by the court.
“Representative Trillanes’ proceeded with opportunity from capture and capacity to introduce his contentions under the watchful eye of the court are confirmations of the administration’s regard for his protected ideal to fair treatment,” he said.
Panelo brought up, nonetheless, that “the standard of unchanging nature of conclusive court choices or decisions may not be utilized as a shield to sustain illicitness.” He refered to the instance of misrepresentation which “can never estop the administration from implementing the law in light of a legitimate concern for ensuring the general population.”
“Verily, it is Senator Trillanes himself who keeps on disregarding the simple definition and idea of a reprieve and tries to subvert it,” Panelo said.
“As the legislature prosecutes the criminal allegations against Senator Trillanes through legitimate lawful channels, it will keep on regarding the autonomy of the Judiciary in choosing his cases, and additionally bear the cost of him his established appropriate to fair treatment,” he included.