Corona accepts verdict, leaves future to God

Jonathan de Santos
Yahoo! Southeast Asia Newsroom

Impeached Chief Justice Renato Corona is leaving his future to God and the Filipino people, as an impeachment court finds him guilty of misdeclaring his assets.

"Kung ito po ang ikabubuti ng ating bayan, tinatanggap ko na po ang kalbaryong aming pinagdaanan [If this is for the good of the nation, I am accepting all the hardships we had to endure]," Corona said in a statement issued just after 20 Senators moved for his removal as Chief Justice.

"Ipinapaubaya ko na po sa ating Poong Maykapal at sa taong bayan na mahigit na makapangyarihan sa ating demokrasya ang aking kinabukasan at ang kinabukasan ng ating Hudikatura [I am leaving my and the judiciary's future to God and to the Filipino people who are more powerful in democracy]."

"Dahil sa simula’t sapul naman, ay handa na akong mag-alay ng sariling buhay para sa bayan. [From the very beggining, I was ready to offer my own life for this nation]," Corona added.

In a statement in Filipino, Corona also said "bad politics" prevailed in the impeachment trial even if he faced it "with full courage and intelligence."

Corona insisted his conscience is clean and lamented having to go against public perception when one person holds "the whole machinery of government and the media."

"If the case (against me) was really strong, why did they have to invent evidence?," he stressed.

Corona said, however, that it is time to end the "politics of personal attacks." He said it is also time to end the divisions in the country.

Corona was convicted by the Senate impeachment court, 20-3, for failing to disclose $2.4 million on his Statements of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth.

He said he was merely following the law that held foreign-currency accounts are confidential.

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, the last to vote, said, however this constituted a "deliberate act of excluding substantial assets from his sworn Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth constitutes a culpable violation of the Constitution."