16 lawmakers endorse VACC, Vanguards impeachment complaint vs Sereno

MANILA, Philippines – More than a month after their first attempt to initiate impeachment proceedings against the Chief Justice, the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) and the Vanguards of the Philippine Constitution got 16 members of the House of Representatives to endorse their complaint.

This is the second verified complaint filed against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno. The first one, filed less than a week ago by lawyer Larry Gadon, was endorsed by 25 House members

The VACC and Vanguards, represented by Dante Jimenez and Eligio Mallari, respectively, earlier filed an impeachment complaint on August 2. However, since it was not endorsed by any lawmaker then, it was not considered a valid complaint.

The impeachment complaint was received by the House Secretary General on August 15. 

As of Monday, September 4, the following lawmakers signed the second verified complaint against Sereno:

So far, there are no common endorsers for the two complaints against Sereno, according to files obtained by media. 

In August 2017, the the Supreme Court granted VACC and Vanguards’ request for documents to support their impeachment complaint against the Chief Justice.

Once a valid complaint is received by the House Secretary General, it is referred to the House Speaker, who will then include it in the House’s Order of Business. Once a complaint is transmitted to the House Speaker, additional endorsements from lawmakers will no longer be entertained, to prevent the practice commonly referred to as a "creeping impeachment."

It will then be referred to the committee of justice, which will determine if the complaint is sufficient in form and substance and if there is probable cause to pursue it through a majority vote.

A resolution is forwarded to the House plenary. If there is probable cause, the resolution will include the Articles of Impeachment. If one-third of the House votes in favor of the resolution, it will be forwarded to the Senate. The Senate will then sit as the impeachment court.

Gadon, in late August 2017, also filed an impeachment complaint against Sereno. It was endorsed by at least 25 lawmakers. (READ: Two impeachments? Alvarez says House ready)

This would be the 3rd verified impeachment complaint overall filed before the House. An impeachment complaint against Commission on Elections Chairman Andres Bautista was filed on August 23. – Rappler.com