Carpio, Leonen decline nomination to SC Chief Justice post

Robie de Guzman   •   August 20, 2019   •   587

(L-R) Supreme Court Senior Associate Justices Antonio Carpio and Marvic Leonen

MANILA, Philippines – Supreme Court Senior Associate Justices Antonio Carpio and Marvic Leonen have declined their respective nominations for the chief justice post, the Supreme Court (SC) said on Tuesday.

The SC Public Information Office (PIO) confirmed this on its official Twitter account.

“Senior Associate Justice Antonio T. Carpio and Associate Justice Marvic MVF Leonen have declined their respective nominations as Chief Justice,” it said.

The SC said Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin is set to retire on October 18.

In a message to reporters, Carpio said he declined his nomination as he will also retire in October when he reaches the compulsory retirement age of 70.

Carpio has been serving the judiciary for 18 years.

Leonen on Monday said he also rejected his nomination to the SC top post but did not cite his reasons.

“There is no requirement to state our reasons for declining the nomination. For now, in my considered judgement, my decision is the right thing to do. I will be able to do what I do best for our people in my current position at this time,” he said in a statement.

He, however, gave assurance that he would be supportive of the next chief of the high court.

“As always, I am committed to giving my support to whoever is constitutionally appointed as the next chief justice,” he said.

Leonen, 56, is one of the most senior SC justices who are qualified for automatic nomination for the position.

Aside from Carpio and Leonen, other magistrates who are automatically nominated for the post are Associate Justice Diosdado Peralta, Associate Justices Estella Perlas-Bernabe and Benjamin Caguioa.

The Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) has set August 20 for the deadline for applications and acceptance of nomination for the chief justice post.

Marcos wants Leonen to inhibit from poll protest vs Robredo

Maris Federez   •   November 9, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos is asking Supreme Court Associate Justice Marvic Leonen to inhibit from the hearing of his election protest against Vice President Leni Robredo.

The Marcos camp claimed that Justice Leonen had shown his prejudices against the said election protest.

Marcos said Leonen, the justice-in-charge on the case, had been one of those who had been against the burial of the late former President Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. He is also an appointee of former President Benigno Aquino III whose family is known as a political rival of the Marcoses.

Marcos claims that Leonen has been dragging the case with his inaction.

“Justice Leonen has prejudged this case. He’s hostile to me and to our entire group if you may call that. And we see some instances where he expressed an opinion against the Marcoses. Me, in particular, and the Marcoses, in general,” the former senator said.

He also alleged that Justice Leonen had been delaying the proceedings of the case by asking the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and the Office of the Solicitor-General on whether the high court has jurisdiction on the case.

“Naging maliwanag sa akin ang dahilan kung bakit niya hiningan ng comment ay magdelay ulit at imposible para sa akin na hindi niya nalalaman. Isang justice ng Supreme Court, hindi nalalaman ang batas tungkol diyan? Hihingi tungkol sa jurisdiction?” he said.

Aside from Leonen’s inhibition, the Marcos camp also wants to have the election protest raffled off again and for the court to arrive at a resolution for all the pending details on the said protest.

Among these is the nullification of the votes in Lanao del Sur, Basilan and Maguindanao due to the reported harassment of voters and alleged preshading of ballots.

Marcos personally went to the Supreme Court on Monday morning (November 9) with his lawyers, Atty George Erwin Garcia and Atty. Vic Rodriguez who is also his spokesperson.

Marcos hopes that, with Leonen’s inhibition, the case will proceed accordingly and will be immediately resolved.

“Pag wala na si Justice Leonen kung mag-inhibit siya may pag-asa na hindi na madelay; may pag-asa matatapos in time. Pag si Justice ang nakaupo, in charge diyan, sa aking pananaw, imposibleng matatapos ito in time. Pipilitin niya ipupwersa abutin ang filing para maging moot and academic.  Eleven months walang ginawa walang sinulat walang inilabas na desisyon,” he claimed. — (from the report of Dante Amento) /mbmf

Morales, Carpio, UP law profs file petition vs anti-terror law

Robie de Guzman   •   July 22, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Retired Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio, former Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, and law professors at the University of the Philippines on Wednesday filed a petition before the high court against the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020.

In their 86-page plea, Carpio, Morales and several lawyers urged the Supreme Court to declare the entire law unconstitutional and to stop its implementation.

Carpio and Morales were joined by UP Law professors Dante Gatmaytan, Jay Batongbacal, Theodore Te, Victoria Loanzon and Anthony Charlemagne Yu, former Magdalo Party-list Representative Francisco Ashley Acedillo and student leader Tierone James Santos.

The petitioners questioned the vague and broad provisions of the law that may lead to arbitrary and discriminatory enforcement and malicious prosecution of innocent people.

The group also blasted the powers granted to the Anti-Terrorism Council that, they say, are greater than those given to the president in times of invasion and rebellion, including the power to authorize the arrest and detention of suspected terrorists for up to 24 days without court intervention.

This is the 11th petition to be filed against the anti-terrorism law. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Joan Nano)

Former chief justice Bersamin appointed as new GSIS chair

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 14, 2020

Former Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin

President Rodrigo Duterte has appointed former Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin as the new chairperson of the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS).

Bersamin will replace Ronald Macasaet, who acted as GSIS officer-in-charge.

According to Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo, the government is confident that Bersamin will be able to perform his duties as the new GSIS chair.

“We are confident that Mr. Bersamin would serve the GSIS with the same dedication and integrity he demonstrated in his many years of government service,” he said in a statement.

Bersamin is also named as a member of the Board of Trustees of the GSIS.—AAC

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