14 December 2011

Sharp-tongued Miriam to sit as judge in the International Criminal Court


Individuals who commit crimes against humanity including those relating to genocide and war crimes better beware.
Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago – a fiery orator known for decimating her perceived enemies through grandiloquent declarations -- on Tuesday was elected judge of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
The senator’s media officer Tom Tolibas confirmed the news in an interview with GMA News, saying that Santiago garnered 79 votes in the first round of voting.
“It’s a big deal since she got enough votes in the first round of voting meaning she doesn’t need to go through the second round,” Tolibas said.
More than qualified
As a former trial court judge and an expert in international law, Santiago is more than qualified to vie for the six vacant seats on the ICC, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said in the same GMA News report.
The DFA added that the Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC) concurred naming Santiago among several candidates qualified for the job.
Sharp-tongued senator
It is not known however, if Santiago’s penchant for scorching oratorical prose had allowed for her election, given that she once lambasted the powers that be when she was dropped from consideration for the position of Chief Justice.
"I am irate. I am foaming at the mouth. I’m homicidal. I’m suicidal. I’m humiliated, debased, degraded. And not only that, I feel like throwing up to be living my middle years in a country of this nature. I am nauseated. I spit in the face of Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban and his cohorts in the Supreme Court," said she.
She was likewise as acerbic when she lost in the ’92 presidential elections.
 "Many, if not all, of my presidential opponents are certifiable idiots," she declared.
Santiago's fellow legislators weren't spared either.
"When I die, I will rise from my grave and scare the wits out of them,” she once stated.
But what is the ICC really?
According to its official website, the ICC is the first permanent, treaty based, international criminal court governed by the Rome Statute, established in 2002 to help end impunity for the perpetrators of the most serious crimes of concern to the international community.
The independent international organization is based in The Hague, Netherlands.
Still here for a spell
Not that Santiago will move to Europe anytime soon.
In an interview with radio dzBB on Tuesday, Santiago said she might still stay for at least a year before she is called to The Hague to assume her post.
"Wala namang conflict of interest. As long as I'm not called by the ICC in The Hague, I shall remain in my present job," she said.
She also called on her enemies saying, "May masamang balita ako sa aking kalaban. Hindi ako agad aalis ng Pilipinas. Sa March pa ang oath-taking. Kahit oath-taking hindi pa kami maka-report sa korte sa Netherlands."
Santiago said that once she leaves the Senate, her Senate post will remain vacant until the next polls.
Santiago was singing a different tune in October, wherein she said she might just resign from the Senate if and when she is elected to the ICC.
“I’ll have to resign [as senator]. Isn’t that good news for my enemies? I would have to live in The Hague. I will look like a European and speak like a European and I will be as snooty as a European when I come back," said she via dzBB.
Showdown with Boy Pick-up?
Meanwhile, the infamous Boy Pick-up is gearing up for a showdown of sorts with the feisty senator, this, after the latter exhibited her funny side in a recent speech where she allowed for several pick-up lines including, “Sana FB status ka na lang, para pwede kitang i-like.”
Another goes, “Ibenta mo na bahay mo, total nandidito ka na, nakatira sa puso ko” and “Pag wala ka ang buhay ko parang lapis na hindi natasahan: pointless” among others.
In a separate interview with GMA News, Boy Pick-Up invited Santiago to meet up with him on the set of the gag show, “Bubble Gang.”
“Iniimbitahan namin siya,” said he. “Sana makasali siya [with the cast] kung hindi naman kahit sa movie.”
Of course, Boy Pick-up is just a fictional character -- the alter-ego of singer-actor Ogie Alcasid, who only a few months ago was assigned by president Noynoy Aquino to head this year the EDSA People Power Commission, which supervised the anniversary celebration of the peaceful uprising that took place in 1986.
By NEIL RAMOS
mb.com.phj

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