March 30, 2017
Magdalo Partylist Rep. Gary Alejano filed a supplemental impeachment complaint against President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday in connection with his alleged failure to assert the country’s sovereign rights over the Benham Rise and South China Sea.
Alejano said Duterte should be impeached for his refusal also to protest and raise the issue over the plan of China to construct an environmental monitoring station in the South China Sea.
Through his actions and pronouncements, Alejano said Duterte has continued to ignore national interest and refused to act on urgent security matters from reported activities of China.
“Respondent Rodrigo Roa Duterte betrayed the public trust reposed upon him, culpably violated the Constitution, and committed the high crime of dereliction of his sworn duty as President when he utterly failed and/or refused to assert the country’s exclusive sovereign rights and maritime rights and territorial claims over Benham Rise and Panatag
Shoal and the rest of the West Philippine Sea,” the complaint said.
"Apparently, because he is afraid to offend his Chinese friends," Alejano said in filing the supplemental impeachment complaint.
In his complaint, Alejano cited what he described as "disturbing" reports that China is preparing to build either environmental monitoring station or radar station at a number of islands, including the Scarborough Shoal; and Duterte’s pronouncement that he cannot and would not stop China from building structures because it was too powerful.
Alejano also included in his complaint Duterte’s alleged permission to China's sending of survey ships to Benham Rise, without the knowledge of the Defense and Foreign Affairs Departments.
“While no one is expecting Duterte to declare war with China over these territorial disputes, as President and Commander-In-Chief and Chief Diplomat of the country, he should condemn China’s aggressive actions and expansionism, and insist it to respect the exclusive sovereign rights, and maritime and territorial claims of the country
through diplomatic and peaceful means," Alejano, a former Marine captain, said.
Alejano earlier filed his first impeachment complaint against Duterte for betrayal of public trust, culpable violation of the Constitution, bribery, denouncing the administration's war on drugs and the Davao Death Squad which had allegedly been tolerated by Duterte during his stint as city mayor.
“From local to international affairs, the President has betrayed the public’s trust, culpably violated the Constitution, and committed other high crimes when he masterminded the killing of political opponents and alleged criminals when he was still a mayor; has an
unexplained accumulated wealth amounting to more than two billion pesos; has encouraged the killing of more than 8,000 suspected drug offenders; and now his failure to prioritize our national interest over the issues with China," Alejano said.
"It just shows that he is not fit to lead this country, and through the impeachment process, we hope that we could make him accountable for his acts,” Alejano added. DMS
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