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Impeachment move filed against Philippines President Aquino

Published on Jul 7, 2014 3:37 PM
Philippine President Benigno Aquino gestures as he speaks to reporters on the sidelines of an Asia-Europe meeting in Manila on June 5, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP

MANILA (REUTERS) - A former Philippine congressman on Monday filed an impeachment complaint against President Benigno Aquino for bribery and violating the constitution, but analysts said the popular leader could defeat the motion, thanks to his grip on the legislature.

It is the first time that Aquino, whose popularity rating in the past four years has stayed above 40 percent, could face impeachment for distributing his discretionary funds to lawmakers, an act the Supreme Court has declared illegal. "The complaint is based on three grounds, namely, bribery, betrayal of public trust and culpable violation of the constitution," Augusto Syjuco, who also questioned Aquino's discretionary fund action before the top court, told Reuters. "It has been filed to the records office of the House of Representatives until the resumption of Congress," he said.

The complaint will wait until Congress reopens for its second regular session on July 28, when a sitting member of Congress will endorse it, he added.

Syjuco said the complaint had been signed by 25 other concerned citizens, but he was gathering still more signatures.

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