By Edwin Espejo
Two weeks into the turn of embattled Filipino Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona to present evidence and witnesses to disprove allegations against him in his own impeachment trial, more questions are arising, instead of refuting what the prosecution has so far presented.
His defense panel has been plugging holes instead of addressing squarely his failure to fully and truthfully declare his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth and explaining his peso deposits and dollar account.
True, a good defense is like weaving a plausible story why an accused should be acquitted.
Building it like Lego blocks to form a shape may be a good strategy for his lawyers but not for himself.
The longer it takes for the defense panel to present solid evidence that will unequivocally prove his innocence, the more people will tend to believe that the chief justice is taking more than just time to cover up the trail of his ‘transgressions.’
And there is nobody that can better dispute all the allegations hurled against him than himself and perhaps his wife.
If anything, the chief justice will only have himself to blame if the impeachment court orders his removal from office for his failure to testify and explain his undeclared, underdeclared or misdeclared assets.
Perhaps it was also a misjudgment on his part when he promised to refute all the charges against him point by point only for his counsels to now declare they may not be going to put him into the witness stand.
More seriously, it was a wrong call on the part of Chief Justice Renato Corona to go on a media blitz and throw mud and stinging accusations at his colleagues in the Supreme Court.
It only exposed him as a man who is not willing to make his statements and allegations under oath.
All however is not yet lost for him. Chief Justice Corona has more than eight weeks to replace his leaking roof and faucets.
Sending repairmen with adhesives who do not know where the leaks are will do him no good.
Corona knows where his Achilles heels are.
He knows how to defend them.
But will he be willing to face his accusers at the witness stand and defend his case before the waiting nation?