‘Puro abono’ work for Mabini stalwarts
Your editorial on Jan. 31 (“You’ve seen this before”) identified Joker Arroyo and me as among Mayor Junjun Binay’s lawyers on Jan. 29 who “[made] sure they earned their keep.” Joker and I are not his lawyers in his cases, about which we know nothing or little. We were there because we had perceived a possible violation of the human and constitutional right NOT to speak. Senators Koko Pimentel and Sonny Trillanes assured us they would honor the mayor’s such right and released him, after asking him a few questions. We also protected the mayor from himself (impetuous, like his father at that age).
Our work was pro bono (puro abono) which we have rendered for many decades as Mabini lawyers in countless other cases all over the land. All I got paid with was pancit and mamon (for this pusong mamon) after the hearing (burp, burp) at the Coco Palace. Joker did not even collect his.
It did not hurt that Senator Sonny had been jailed for his political convictions. Lawyers Abigail Binay, Rebo Saguisag Jr. and I had helped a baker’s dozen of Oakland mutineers that Sonny led. So was the father of Senator Koko, Sen. Nene Pimentel, detained by Marcos more than once. And Senator Joker and I did time in jail, thanks also to Marcos. With us also that Thursday was lawyer Dodo Sarmiento, whose brother, Ditto, was martyred during the unlamented Marcos regime.
Joker’s, Abby’s, Rebo’s, Dodo’s and my appearance in the hearing was not about earning our keep.
—RENE A.V. SAGUISAG, Saguisag & Associates Lawyers, 4045 Bigasan Street, Palanan, Makati
(It’s abundantly clear in the editorial that the esteemed attorneys Rene Saguisag and Joker Arroyo were not the “abogados de campanilla” referred to as “earning their keep.”—Ed.)
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