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Aquino should respect the rule of law— Arroyo

Should respect independence of democratic institutions

Gulf News

Manila:President Benigno Aquino III should respect the rule of law and independence of democratic institutions, former president Gloria Arroyo said.

Arroyo, in a statement released by her spokesperson Elena Bautista-Horn, also said that the country’s economic performance had been laudable under Aquino’s watch, much is to be desired on how this numbers will translate to tangible benefits for the large percentage of Filipinos who remain mired in poverty.

On Thursday, Aquino had boasted that the economic policies of his administration has resulted in a 6.6-per cent growth in the country’s gross domestic product in the fourth quarter of 2012

But Arroyo said the economic performance of the present administration is still lags the 7.9 per cent growth rate achieved by the country during her leadership.

“Going beyond the anti-corruption campaign, President Aquino is to be commended for the latest GDP (gross domestic product) growth rate. It is welcome news. He is on track restoring the growth of 7.9 per cent where it was before the first half of 2010. She (Mrs. Arroyo) will support his policies that will translate such policies to poverty alleviation,” the statement said.

AArroyo said that the government’s fight against corruption must be accompanied with respect for the rule of law.

Aquino had been known to meddle in the workings of other government institutions which should be independent from the executive branch. During the impeachment of then Supreme Court chief justice Renato Corona, he had made public statements on his desire to oust the latter.

Corona was eventually impeached in early 2012 on the basis of wrongful declaration of his personal worth.

“Even former President Arroyo fought corruption through available legal remedies including the passage of legislation. But she followed the rule of law, due process, and the independence of the judiciary by respecting and implementing all court decisions, studiously avoiding any interference or comment on judicial proceedings and rulings,” Bautista-Horn said.

Responding to this, Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said the Aquino administration always followed “due processes and the independence

of the judiciary.”

“The anti-corruption fight of the President has always been within the

bounds of the rule of law with respect to other institutions, which is why

it translates into good governance, and good governance translates to good

economics,” she said.