Trillanes blasts Calida, defends 2011 amnesty

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IN HIS privileged speech on Tuesday, Senator Antonio F. Trillanes IV presented anew documents and media reports attesting to his full compliance to his 2011 amnesty application.

He said the presidential proclamation voiding his amnesty and the revival of his rebellion case by the Makati Regional Trial Court Branch 150 have set dangerous precedents into the practice of giving amnesties in the peace process and the separation of powers between the executive and judicial branch of governments.

“These issues are very alarming. It will destroy basically the various institutions of government so I hope my colleagues will participate at some point to be intervenors in the Supreme Court so this can be resolved once and for all,” he said.

Mr. Trillanes also raised as well in his speech the alleged conflict of interest of Solicitor General Jose C. Calida in connection with the government contracts obtained by security firms allegedly owned by the government lawyer’s family.

He maintained that Mr. Calida violated provisions regarding conflict of interest under Republic Act 6713 or the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees and the constitutional provisions prohibiting Cabinet members to participate in business enterprises.

He also pointed out the Solicitor General’s job, as counsel of the government, to review contracts entered into by government as provided in the Administrative Code of 1987.

“So he will review the contracts of the government with his own companies? So that it’s clear that there’s conflict of interest. We have filed a corresponding resolution to further investigate this matter because we haven’t exhausted all the contracts secured by Mr. Calida. Our information is that he got more than the P350 million worth of contracts,” he said.

“It was referred to the committee on public accountability of officers and investigation so I hope this will be given attention by the committee chairman Senator (Richard J.) Gordon,” he added. — Camille A. Aguinaldo