By Genalyn Kabiling
The Executive branch merely implements the country’s laws and does not interfere with the affairs of the judiciary, Malacañang said Sunday.
Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo highlighted the independence of the judiciary after the administration drew flak for the arrest warrant issued against Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV for libel and the acquittal of former Sen. Ramon Revilla Jr. of plunder.
“We, in the Executive branch, are mere implementers of the Constitution and laws created by Congress, as well as of the interpretations or orders arising out of legal conflicts by the Judiciary,” Panelo said.
“Detractors and critics of the President are quick to malign the Administration thinking that it has a role in decisions deliberated upon and pronounced by courts of law. For their information, we do not. This is particularly true in graft cases, as these are prosecuted not even by us but by the Office of the Ombudsman before the Sandiganbayan,” he said.
Panelo maintained that the Palace respects the independence of the other branches of the government. “We do not – and we will never – interfere in their affairs,” he added.
On Friday, Trillanes has been ordered arrested by a Davao court in connection with the libel complaint filed against him by former Davao Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte and his brother-in-law Manases Carpio.
Earlier that day, the Sandiganbayan acquitted Revilla of plunder in relation to the pork barrel scam, saying the prosecutors failed to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt.
Trillanes recently slammed the unfair justice system under President Duterte, saying plunderers were set free while critics were hailed to court for trumped-up charges.
Panelo however urged Trillanes to focus on legal remedies instead of resorting to squid tactics and attacking the administration.