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CBCP official joins calls for Corona inhibition

MANILA, Nov. 29, 2011— An official of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has joined calls for the Chief Justice Renato Corona to inhibit himself from all cases involving former President Gloria Arroyo.

Fr. Edu Gariguez of the National Secretariat for Social Action said this is to remove doubts on the High Court’s impartiality in deciding cases involving Arroyo who was recently charged and arrested for electoral sabotage.

“For delicadeza, he should inhibit himself from the cases of Congresswoman Gloria Arroyo,” said Gariguez.

Corona served as the chief-of-staff and spokesperson when Arroyo was vice president. He was appointed by Arroyo, now Pampanga lawmaker, as chief justice in May last year.

Some lawmakers earlier said that the chief justice cannot anymore be objective in his work because of his perceived closed personal and professional relationship with the former president.

Senators Franklin Drilon and Francis Pangilinan believe that if the chief justice will inhibit, he will help keep the public trust on the Supreme Court.

At the House of Representatives, Deputy Speaker Lorenzo Tañada said he joined calls for Corona to inhibit not because he was appointed by Arroyo, but because “given their long history together, he can no longer be objective in his work as Chief Justice.”

“Inhibit yourself and let the Supreme Court restore the public’s trust in the integrity of our legal processes to which we have subjected the former President,” he told Corona. [CBCPNews]