CHRONOLOGY OF A BATTLE ROYALE


May 1 to 26, 2008—GSIS-Meralco row starts. GSIS demands from Meralco, among others, access to corporate documents. Meralco claims GSIS plans to wrest control of the utility firm.

May 27, 2008—Meralco holds its annual stockholders’ meeting on May 27 despite a cease and desist order from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

May 29, 2008—Meralco files a petition before the Court of Appeals (CA) for the issuance of a temporary restraining order. The petition enjoins the SEC not to implement its show-cause order against Meralco’s acting corporate secretary for allowing the validation of the 1.9 billion proxy shares during the annual stockholders’ meeting that saw the Lopez group emerge victorious over the GSIS.

May 30, 2008—The CA’s Special Ninth Division, in a four-page resolution penned by Associate Justice Vicente Roxas, issues a 60-day temporary restraining order prohibiting the SEC, the GSIS, SEC Officer-in-Charge Enrique Garica and Huberto Garcia, director of the SEC’s compliance and enforcement department, from implementing the controversial SEC cease and desist order.” CA Associate Justices Jose Sabio and Myrna Dimaranan-Vidal concurred with the ruling.

June 21, 2008—Meralco lawyers argue that SEC’s cease and desist order has no date and is signed by only one commissioner.

July 24, 2008—The CA voids the cease and desist order. Its Eighth Division, in a 57-page decision penned by Associate Justice Vicente Roxas, said the SEC has no jurisdiction over the case. It adds that it is the regional trial court that should decide on intra-corporate disputes.

July 24, 2008—Presiding Justice Conrado Vasquez Jr. writes letter to Justices Reyes and Roxas over which division should issue the decision on the Meralco-GSIS case.

July 26, 2008—Justice Sabio writes a letter to Presiding Justice Vasquez, complaining that there is something “fishy” about the July 24 CA decision.

July 28, 2008—CA Presiding Justice calls for en banc session to settle controversy between CA’s Eighth and Ninth Divisions over Meralco-GSIS row.

July 30, 2008—Justice Sabio reveals that a businessman has offered him P10 million for his silence on the case.

July 31, 2008—CA en banc holds session, tosses to Supreme Court the issue of propriety regarding actuations of justices.

July 31, 2008—Cagayan de Oro City businessman Francis Roa de Borja surfaces. He issues affidavit claiming he is the one being referred to by Justice Sabio. He also claims that Sabio has told him that an emissary from the GSIS offers him millions of pesos and a post at the Supreme Court in exchange for a favorable decision.

August 1, 2008—Justice Sabio calls a press conference, denying the allegations of de Borja, saying they are filthy lies.(ManilaTimes)

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