Corona denies pointing gun at Basa caretaker

Corona grants rare live interviews a week before his lawyers present their evidence before the Senate impeachment court

MANILA, Philippines – In a rare television interview on Wednesday, March 7, Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona denied an accusation by his wife’s relative that he pointed a gun at the Basa family’s caretaker.

Corona spoke for over 30 minutes in a live interview on GMA-7, and referred to allegations by Ana Basa, one of the heirs of Basa-Guidote Enterprises Inc (BGEI), the company which allegedly loaned P11 million to Corona.

Basa has accused Corona of using his power to oppress family members and gain control of their corporation.

Corona, then an adviser of former President Fidel V Ramos, allegedly even pointed a gun to the family caretaker’s head. “Gusto mo bang pasabugin kong mukha mo?” (Do you want me to blow up your face?” the embattled Chief Justice allegedly said. Read the full affidavit here.

‘Yan ay kasinungalingang malaki… hindi naman ako ganyang klaseng tao,” Corona said. (That is a big lie… I am not that kind of person.)

The Chief Justice also pointed out that the alleged victim, Pedro Aguilon, was the Basa family’s “house boy.” “Eh di siyempre sasabihin no’n kahit na anong sabihin nila na pirmahan o sabihin,” he said. (Of course he will say whatever the Basas instruct him to sign or say.)

CONTROVERSIAL WIFE. Cristina Corona is at the center of a family controversy that allegedly involves Chief Justice Renato Corona. Photo by Emil Sarmiento

Corona’s wife, Cristina Basa Roco, is at the center of a bitter family dispute that has divided the Basa family for over 2 decades, Rappler editor at large Marites Dañguilan Vitug earlier reported.

Breaking silence

Following his TV interview, Corona also spoke on live radio with GMA-7 anchor Mike Enriquez.

The Chief Justice said he chose not to grant interviews with media upon the advice of his lawyers, who did not want him to give out statements alongside the prosecution, which then had not finished presenting their evidence.

Ngayon oras na pong magpresenta ng depensa ko kaya puwede na,” Corona said. (Now it’s time for my defense lawyers to present our evidence so I can do this.)

Corona said he might testify before the Senate impeachment court once the defense begins presenting its evidence next week. He said his decision to take the witness stand will depend on his lawyers. – Rappler.com