HK hospital says former Philippine president is fit enough to be discharged The head judge sitting in a Philippine anti-graft court yesterday quit in disgust over an attempt by the country's deposed president Joseph Estrada to extend his stay in Hong Kong by six days on medical grounds. The move came as a spokesman for the hospital Estrada is staying in said the former president was fit enough to be discharged after undergoing knee surgery. 'Clinically speaking he is ready for discharge,' said a spokesman for the Adventist Hospital. 'He is doing extremely well.' Estrada's lawyers have until tomorrow to pursue the extension. The disgraced president has a 30-day visa from the Chinese embassy in Manila permitting him to stay in Hong Kong, said Estrada's nephew and personal physician, Lorenzo Hocson. Estrada has until Saturday to return to Manila to resume house arrest while awaiting trial on corruption charges - or forfeit a bond of 1 million pesos ($138,600). January 21 is the fourth anniversary of the date he was ousted from office. 'Our stay in Hong Kong is good for 30 days, from the day of our arrival on December 27,' said Dr Hocson, who is accompanying Estrada with the former first lady, Senator Luisa Estrada. Dr Hocson said the application was made on the recommendation of Estrada's consultant surgeon, Christopher Mow, to allow his patient one more week of therapy. In Manila, Associate Justice Edilberto Sandoval, presiding head of the Sandiganbayan Special Division, announced his resignation in court yesterday, saying: 'It is not only Estrada that is on trial here but the Sandiganbayan as well.' Judge Sandoval noted that his two fellow judges, who kept granting Estrada's motions for house arrest and foreign medical travel, were always overruling him. His resignation suspended yesterday's hearing, which was set to tackle Estrada's urgent motion to stay on for six more days in Hong Kong. The unprecedented action surprised Estrada's lawyer, Rene Saguisag, who criticised the judge for abandoning his post before a replacement could be named. Special Prosecutor Dennis Villa-Ignacio said they were also surprised because 'he [Sandoval] has taken the side of the prosecution in many significant issues'. The presidential palace remained confident of Estrada's return in a month's time at the latest. A presidential aide expressed confidence that Estrada, who is using a regular passport, would not seek political asylum abroad. 'It will be politically unfavourable to him and his case.'