Ombudsman Morales faces disbarment complaint

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 24) — Losing senatorial candidate and former Manila City councilor Greco Belgica filed a disbarment complaint against Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales.

Belgica accused Morales of violating her oath as a lawyer, by clearing former President Noynoy Aquino in the Disbursement Acceleration Program case. He added, this shows Morales failed to support the Constitution, and "(deprived) the people of their right to procedural due process."

"As a lawyer, especially as an Ombudsman you know it's in the lawyer's oath that you will apply justice. You will not be partial. You will not be biased. And by dismissing the cases against PNoy and Abad she refused the Filipinos of justice," Belgica said.

He pointed out, Morales found probable cause to charge former Budget Secretary Butch Abad with violation of Article 239 of the Revised Penal Code; that refers to the usurpation of legislative powers.

However, Belgica also said, Morales absolved Aquino of criminal liability by omitting his name in the discussion related to the finding of probable cause against Abad.

He also accused Morales of violating Rule 6.01 of the Canon of Professional Responsibility when "she failed to perform her primary duty to see that justice is done."

Belgica added Morales also violated Canon 7 and Rule 7.03 when "she failed to uphold the integrity and dignity of the legal profession in absolving the former president of usurpation of legislative powers without reason."

"Taking into consideration the fact that the former president appointed her… Her conduct of favoring the former president adversely reflected her fitness to practice law," Belgica said.

But Belgica concedes Morales can only be disbarred after her term as she is an impeachable official.

Belgica also revealed, he is also preparing an impeachment complaint against Morales--to be filed when Congress resumes session in May.

He said other groups are also preparing their own impeachment raps against the Ombudsman

"Sa akin si Ombudsman Public Enemy Number 1. 'Yun talaga 'yun kasi siya ang lumalabas na protector ng mga corrupt na criminal na nasa opisina eh. Siguro si Trillanes [Public] Enemy Number 2," Belgica said.

Morales to Belgica: Wish them luck

In a statement, Morales said she has yet to know the grounds of the complaint.

She added, anyone is at liberty to file one.

"Being charged is part of the territory. I am ready to meet head-on any complaint, anytime, anywhere. Wish them luck," Morales said.