Manila Standard Today reports that House Majority Leader Rep. Neptali Gonzales II confirmed that Iloilo Rep. Niel Tupas Jr. "will not have a role and will not debate with the senator-judges on the merits of Article 3" in Chief Justice Renato Corona’s impeachment trial. However, Gonzales clarified that Tupas "will remain the lead prosecutor for the entire eight articles of the trial."
The report noted: "The prosecutors for Article 3 said they did not assign any case to Tupas [anymore]. Four prosecutors will handle Article 3 with Isabela Rep. Giorgidi Aggabao as team leader. The prosecutors said they did not want Tupas to bungle their case after his dismal performance on Article 2."
According to the report, Tupas had "monopolized the argument on Article 2 asserting that he was the team leader." He was ready to argue with defense lead counsel retired Justice Serafin Cuevas, but then Ilocos Norte Rep. Rodolfo "Rudy" Fariñas suddenly "edged him out" of the rostrum. Tupas decided to step aside. The report further revealed: "Spectators cheered when it was Fariñas who engaged the defense in a tit-for-tat."
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