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Sandigan urged to grant GMA bail

Paolo Romero (The Philippine Star) - May 4, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The spokesman of former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo renewed calls for the Sandiganbayan to grant her bail as the latest medical emergency due to a bleeding highlighted the lawmaker’s frail condition.

Arroyo is currently detained at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) in Quezon City for alleged plunder of funds of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) lodged before the Sandiganbayan. The lawmaker is afflicted with a degenerative disease affecting her spine.

Her lawyers have filed petitions for bail, claiming the evidence against her was weak.

On Friday, Arroyo, 67, was brought to St. Luke’s Medical Center in Quezon City for a “urodynamic” test after she had repeated episodes of difficulty in urinating and bleeding.

Lawyer Raul Lambino, Arroyo’s spokesperson, said they had been requesting Philippine National Police (PNP), which handles her detention, to allow her to undergo the procedure but they were told to bring the matter to the Sandiganbayan after making them wait for some weeks.

“She’s trying to put up a brave front but the former President’s health is really precarious,” Lambino said, adding Arroyo’s private physicians as well as her doctors at the VMMC have issued advisories and had testified before the Sandiganbayan that she needs to be moved to a place more conducive to her recovery during bail hearings.

He said the PNP last year disallowed Arroyo from attending mass at the nearby VMMC chapel and ordered that they be held in her hospital room if she needs to fulfill her religious obligations.

The PNP also reduced her sun time to one hour a day and barred her husband Jose Miguel from making conjugal visits and for other family members from staying overnight, he said.

“The doctors have been recommending a wholistic approach for her healing like letting her recover at home, close to her family,” Lambino said.                         

 

GLORIA MACAPAGAL-ARROYO JOSE MIGUEL LAMBINO LAWYER RAUL LAMBINO MEDICAL CENTER ON FRIDAY PAMPANGA REP QUEZON CITY SANDIGANBAYAN
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