Impeach bid vs PNoy? House minority bloc to discuss

Carmela Fonbuena
Complaint stems from the sale of government land in Baguio to SM

MANILA, Philippines – On their regular Monday meeting, February 13, the House minority bloc will discuss the planned impeachment complaint against President Benigno Aquino III.

Newly installed minority leader Danilo Suarez told Rappler they will discuss if the impeachment complaint is “valid.”

The Philippine Daily Inquirer reported that Danilo Lihaylihay, president of the Philippine Association of Revenue Informers Inc., wants to impeach the President for supposedly selling the 3.4-hectare Governor’s Park property on Session Road in Baguio City for only P500-M to SM Investments when its value was pegged at P1.9-B.

He said the President could not sell the state property without a law or legislative approval. Lihaylihay also dragged Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. and Environment Secretary Ramon Paje into the case, accusing them of tax evasion for failing to remit the taxes on the sale.

Suarez said the complaint was sent to him, although he hasn’t read it. “We will discuss it. Let’s see,” he said.

Sought for comment, House Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales II said they’ll wait for the minority’s action.

“If they will file, we will wait for it. It will follow the natural course,” Gonzales said.



Based on current numbers, it may be difficult for the minority to impeach President Aquino. The minority bloc is composed of less than 30 congressman. About 95 votes are needed to impeach the President.

Lihaylihay is no stranger to controversial cases. In December 2010, he filed plunder charges before the Ombudsman against Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, Internal Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares, and others for the revocation of Lihaylihay’s claim to a 25% informer’s reward in connection with 2 tax evasion cases against the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

Only recently, he filed a petition before the Supreme Court asking it to stop the impeachment trial of Chief Justice Renato Corona. – Rappler.com

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