IT was impeached Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona and his lawyers who unhesitatingly brought the name of Basa-Guidote Enterprises Inc. to the public in a bid to justify the reported unexplained cash position of the former but now they are singing a different tune when the Basa family members volunteered to testify and rebut their claims.
The BGEI was relentlessly used by the defense panel to explain the questionable answer and non-answer of Corona in his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth or SALN, the discovered million peso deposit in his bank accounts, and the money used to buy prime properties in Metro Manila. The defense lawyers made it clear that the multi-million pesos found in Corona’s bank accounts were owned by BGEI which explains why it was not included in his SALNs.
In explaining how Corona was able to buy prime properties, defense lawyers alleged that the chief magistrate obtained a P11 million cash advance from BGEI which he used to partly finance his purchase of several prime properties.
While at the same time they explained that the P37.7 million withdrawn from the banks by Ms. Corona last December, shortly after her husband was impeached, is owned by BGEI stressing that it was in the chief magistrate’s account only for safekeeping.
The BGEI used to be a corporation jointly owned by his wife Cristina and her relatives until the latter sued her for estafa and she counter-attacked with a libel charge. Now the corporation has become completely hers or so she says.
Ms. Corona’s cousin Ana Basa and her 90-year old aunt, Sister Flory Basa, recently came out after learning that the Coronas are using BGEI to explain their alleged hidden-wealth. They volunteered to testify against Corona. As if on cue, the defense lawyers immediately announced that Ms. Basa and her aunt cannot testify since they will be testifying on issues not touched upon by the prosecutors.
With his lawyer’s opposition to the testimony being offered by the new witnesses, it is now very clear that Corona does not want the people to know the truth concerning his wealth and the BGEI. After using BGEI to the fullest, Corona and his lawyers shamelessly are now claiming that any testimony concerning BGEI is useless and cannot hold water.
I only pray and hope that the senator-judges would hear Ms. Basa and Sister Flory in court so the people may know the truth.
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