Court allows GMA to visit parents' graves

Posted at 10/30/12 5:52 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The Sandiganbayan has, in principle, allowed former President Gloria Arroyo to visit the tomb of her parents at the Libingan ng Mga Bayani on November 1.

Arroyo is detained at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) for plunder in connection with the alleged misuse of P366 million in Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) funds.

Renato Bocar, Executive Clerk of Court and Spokesman of the Sandiganbayan, said the request was expected to be granted as the prosecution had posed no objections when the plea was filed.

However, the actual resolution is expected to be promulgated by the Sandiganbayan’s first division at a hearing Wednesday.

Mrs. Arroyo's lawyers had also been asked to present a medical certificate at that hearing to show that she is fit to leave the hospital.

Bocar said conditions shall be imposed by the court, including:

- maximum 6 hours stay at the Libingan ng Mga Bayani (excluding travel time from VMMC to Libingan ng mga Bayani);
- permit is for November 1 only;
- no media interviews allowed;
- Sandiganbayan sheriff must be present at all times to ensure compliance to the conditions set by the court;
- Philippine National Police must be in charge of security.
Bocar said, however, that some of these conditions are still subject to change.