Influential business group flags series of impeachment cases

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Pres. Rodrigo R. Duterte delivers his speech before members of the Makati Business Club during the MBC 2016 Presidential Dialogues -- PHOTO: MAKATI BUSINESS CLUB

THE INFLUENTIAL Makati Business Club (MBC) in a statement on Thursday, Sept. 14, flagged the series of impeachment cases of late that the group warned may have an “unfavorable impact” on the government’s socioeconomic agenda.

“The Makati Business Club remains steadfast in its position that an impeachment process is a vital part of the country’s democratic system of checks and balances,” the group said, adding:

“However, we are deeply concerned over the unprecedented number of impeachment complaints lodged against high-ranking officials from the President, the Supreme Court Chief Justice, the Ombudsman and the COMELEC (Commission on Elections).”

“We believe that the impeachment process engraved in the Constitution must not be invoked arbitrarily to persecute and silence individuals with opposing views, nor to undermine independent institutions, the bulwark of our nation’s democracy,”

“The impeachment cases must be substantiated by strong evidence of culpable violation of the Constitution, betrayal of public trust, corruption or other high crimes, and not supported by mere accusations or anecdotes,” the group also said.

“We also wish to express serious concern over the implications of impeachment cases on our nation’s development.”

“We worry that these would divert the attention of Congress away from addressing the heavy legislative agenda which, in turn, will have an unfavorable impact to the attainment of the government’s ten-point socioeconomic agenda.”

“Undoubtedly, impeachment cases will also negatively affect investors’ perception to the economic and political stability of our country. As such, we respectfully remind Congress to be judicious in applying this ultimate accountability tool and to treat this as a weapon of last resort, as our Constitution intends it to be.”

Despite its character as being essentially a business organization, the MBC, founded in 1981, has also taken an active civic role in the country’s modern history — beginning with the aftermath of the Aquino assassination in 1983, when the Central Business District of Makati became the new Plaza Miranda of street protests against the Marcos dictatorship, to the later chapters of the Estrada and Arroyo administrations.


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