Palace laughs off Corona’s ‘transparency’ call

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The Palace branded former Chief Justice Renato Corona's call for continued transparency as "gimmickry"

MANILA, Philippines – The Palace branded former Chief Justice Renato Corona’s call for continued transparency as “gimmickry.”

“I don’t know what Atty. [Judd] Roy (Corona’s counsel) was referring to when he said the chief justice set a new high for transparency…Atty Roy is making me laugh on a Sunday,” Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said during a press briefing.

Valte was responding to questions regarding Corona’s statement released June 3, days after he was found guilty of betraying the public trust and committing culpable violation of the Constitution in a historic impeachment trial.

In his statement, Corona stressed that while he will be leaving the Supreme Court, “The quest for transparency in government service…has in fact only just begun…as many have taken up the cudgels of demanding higher levels of transparency through the outright waiver of confidentiality.”

Valte said,”It’s just plain gimmickry which is obvious from what we have seen with what the former Chief Justice did.”

“We did not see his (Corona’s) SALN (Statement of Assets, Liabiities and Networth) until the impeachment court compelled the production of the SALN. And, obviously, he admitted to not declaring…US$2.4-M and then P80-M in his SALN,” she said.

She also mentioned that Corona used to teach Corporation or Taxation Law in law school, noting the irony.

“Perhaps if it’s taxation law then maybe he can for a refresher course from (Bureau of Internal Revenue) Commissioner (Kim) Henares…On the stand, he said he does not know the difference between an asset and a debit and a credit. That’s basic in taxation. So perhaps he should give Commissioner Henares a ring for a refresher course,” she said.
Henares, a key ally of President Aquino, is one of the names being floated to take the Supreme Court post that Corona will vacate. –

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