Just when we were about to forgive and forget

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"Just when we were about to forgive-and-forget [respondent's] checkered past, he himself reminded us of what a wily, shifty chameleon he truly and naturally is. x x x In Juan Ponce Enrile: A Memoir, and bio-documentary 'Johnny' that aired in ABS-CBN-he recants his previous recantation of the assasination attempt on him, which Marcos used as one more reason to justify Martial Law. x x x Did he expect national amnesia to afflict Filipinos who know the truth?" x x x "In his attempt to leave an acceptable legacy for posterity and bequeath a Senate seat for junior, the nonagenarian is sanitizing his recollections instead of asking for absolution. Stem cell therapy can deter dementia but it cannot regenerate an innocent man." x x x "We are being wooed to perpetuate the 40-years-running Enrile saga. Every night we should pray: Dear God, Make all who want our vote, be the men we want them to be." 2.4 The libelous article's opening sentence alone - "Just when we were about to forgive-and-forget [respondent's] checkered past, he himself reminded us of what a wily, shifty chameleon he truly and naturally is" - already indicates [petitioner's] malicious objective: to discredit the integrity of [respondent] and degrade his accomplishments and success as an elected public official. Read with the succeeding paragraphs cited above, the libelous article clearly depicts [respondent] as a liar and a hoax who deceives the public to believe that he is an honorable and respectable public figure. 2.5 Worse, the libelous article insinuates that [respondent] is a criminal who committed the crime of smuggling of cars. Thus: "Another misdeed associated with father-and-son is the alleged rampant car smuggling in Port Irene. In 1995, the Cagayan Export Zone Authority (CEZA) was established through Republic Act 7922, authored by Cagayan native [respondent]. x x x Despite E0156 issued in 2008, which prohibited such importations, smuggling continued. Enrile countered that CEZA is not covered by the prohibition because the importers pay the correct duties and taxes. Ford reportedly pulled out its manufacturing business to protest the nefarious activities in CEZA." 2.6 These statements clearly tend to cause dishonor, discredit, disrespect, and contempt of [respondent] by characterizing him as a liar, fraud, manipulator, criminal and smuggler of cars. 2.7 At the time of publication of the libelous article, [respondent] is a public officer holding office in Pasay City.5 (Underlining omitted and italics in the original) On January 17, 2013, petitioner filed an Answer with Compulsory Counterclaims,6 the pertinent portion of which, states: COMPULSORY COUNTERCLAIMS First Compulsory Counterclaim 2.4 [Petitioner] reiterates and incorporates by reference each and every allegation made in each and every preceding paragraph and subparagraph of this Answer.

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