"We cannot have our country run by a thief like
JOKER ARROYO, prosecutor for the Republic of the Philippines,
ended his opening statements in the impeachment trial
of President Joseph Estrada.
38 days that followed, of contrasting drama and humor,
of surprises and duds, of heightened emotions and ultimately
of triumph, perhaps one figure among many whose actions
were indelibly marked in our minds was Joker Arroyo.
who were glued to our TV sets, agree that Joker was
the de-facto leader of the pack. It was he who threw
the most damaging accusations at the President, and
accused him of a presidency mired in profligacy and
stupidity, and of crimes committed in bad taste. Joker
seemed to have taken the task of asking questions we
the public wanted to ask, of statements we wanted to
make, and at times, of frustration we wanted to express.
can forget his trademark "anguished" plea
to the Senators during the vote on the first envelope,
his verbal exchanges with Estelito Mendoza, his opening
statement, and his final arguments that culminated in
the infamous 11-10 vote on the second envelope. Perhaps
we remember him best for his silver mane and off-colored
barongs, juxtaposed against the minted Armanis and coiffed
hairdos of the others.
Joker was, and is one of the Impeachment Trial heroes.
With Clarissa, Emma, Menchu, Ed, the other prosecutors
-- we somehow know them by their first names - Joker
has become a friend, one of us. For they have contributed
to the spectacle of the Impeachment Trial that culminated
in our EDSA dos, that ended the praetorian reign of
the links, and relive the travails of Joker Arroyo during