Sen. Escudero on Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez Resignation

Senator Francis "Chiz" Escudero
The resignation of Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez has relieved the country, the Senate and even the ombudsman herself of the pain and burden of an impeachment trial scheduled to open in May, Senator Chiz Escudero said.

Escudero, chairman of the Senate committee on justice and human rights, said the resignation of Gutierrez now renders the impeachment case lodged against her moot and academic, but clarified that it does not give her immunity either from other suits filed against her by other entities.

"If at all, any case filed against her is not for the Senate to oversee anymore. It would have to be the regular courts or the Sandiganbayan itself. This is always a distinct possibility," Escudero said.
The senator commended Gutierrez for her statesmanship, though belatedly, for considering not only herself but the country in general.

"We have other pressing matters to consider and focus on such as rebuilding our country and meeting and delivering social services needed. An impeachment trial will take away our time, energy and attention from these important gut issues," Escudero said.

With Gutierrez's resignation, "I don't think anyone should not be magnanimous after this," Escudero said, referring to those who hold on to their positions in the public service amid controversies and ill-will.