ECG: Either way, Sandiganbayan verdict on Erap spells big trouble for GMA,
Quezon City -- Former presidentiable Eddie Gil today said that whether the Sandiganbayan finds deposed President Joseph “Erap” Estrada guilty or not of the plunder charges and other anomalies he has been accused of having committed, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will face a big trouble.
If the Sandiganbayan’s decision is for Estrada’s acquittal, ECG says, “That would mean that Mrs. Arroyo’s presidency after his ouster was illegal and therefore invalid,”said ECG.
“On the other hand, if Erap is found guilty, the pro-Erap forces would strongly protest the decision and might even suspect that the Arroyo administration has had a hand in influencing it,” he added.
The Sandiganbayan is slated to hand down its decision on Wednesday, Sept. 12.
Eddie Gil warned of an impending chaos that could result from the mass media announcement of the graft court’s decision, saying that both pro-administration and pro-Erap sympathizers may clash in a turbulent situation that could grow into a more serious problem if it is not handled properly.
“I’m still hoping that there would be no violence and, much less, bloodshed, that may be an aftermath of the Sandiganbayan decision,” he said.
“Whatever violent upheaval may result will not be good for our country, as it would re-open old wounds, further disunite our country and people, as well as discourage foreign investors and tourists,” said ECG. “These, aside from bloodshed that could occur.”
“Of course, Mrs. Arroyo and her advisers are aware of the scenarios that could crop up whether the court’s finding is favorable to Estrada or not,” he said, “and they have been making feverish preparations in anticipation of either acquittal or conviction.”
“More importantly, however, Gloria believes that if Erap is finally found to be guilty, she personally considers that the case will set a precedence that could be applied to herself and her husband, Atty. Miguel “Mike” Arroyo who has been accused of having been involved, directly or indirectly, in cases similar to those of Erap’s,” ECG said.
“Mrs. Arroyo is worried sick that if Erap is convicted and is sentenced to life imprisonment, she knows that when she steps down from Malacanang upon expiration of her term, the same fate could await her as she and some of her Cabinet officials, as well as her husband – Atty. Mike Arroyo -- have been linked to various large-scale anomalies,”
“She has all the reasons to suffer from anxiety,” he said.
“That is why as early as last year, Gloria’s propagandists had floated the idea of a presidential pardon for Estrada, in case of conviction,” ECG said.
Insisting on his innocence, Estrada – for his part -- has rejected the idea of a presidential pardon which, he says, is an admission of his guilt should he accept it.
Thousands of policemen and soldiers are planned to be deployed at various points in Metro Manila and nearby provinces starting Wednesday in anticipation of mass protests and demonstrations. #
(By: Valiente Rodriguez News Correspondent Manila Today)
Posted on Sep 11, 2007, 2:37 PM from IP address 220.127.116.11