Ang 2012 barristers sa University of Santo Tomas. (UNTV News)
MANILA, Philippines — Pinaigting pa ng pulisya ang seguridad sa pagbubukas ng 2012 bar examinations sa University of Santo Tomas (UST) kahapon.
Mahigit isandaang mga pulis, intelligence at NBI agents ang idineploy upang magbantay sa palibot ng unibersidad.
Naglabas naman ng isang ordinansa ang pamahalaang lungsod ng Maynila upang magpatupad ng liquor ban sa palibot ng venue habang isinasagawa ang bar exams.
“Bawal po ang liquor at alam din po ng mga candidates, yung mga stall owners yung mga restaurants sinabihan din namin, may copy-furnished sila ng ordinansa,” pahayag ni MPD Station 4 Commander P/Supt. James Afalla.
Mas hinigpitan din ng mga otoridad ang mga kaanak at kaibigan na naghahatid sa mga examinee. Kabilang sa ipinagbabawal ang pagdadala ng mga streamer at pagtitipon-tipon ng grupo ng mga supporter at fraternity.
“’Yan ang instruction sa amin nung nagkaroon kami ng meeting sa Supreme Court na lahat po ng mga grupo lalo kung mga nagkakantiyawan, nagsisigawan ay dapat pigilan ng ating mga security officials.”
Ito na ang ikalawang pagkakataon na idinaos ang bar exams sa UST gamit ang bagong format ng pagsusulit kung saan 60-percent ng mga tanong ay multiple choice questions at 40-percent ang essay type.
Hangad naman ng mga otoridad na maging maayos at mapayapa ang kabuuan ng bar exams ngayong taon.
Sa loob ng apat na linggo ngayong Oktubre ay tatangkain ng mahigit limang-libo at anim na raang bar examinee na makakuha ng hindi bababa sa 75-percent na grado sa walong bar subjects upang maging ganap na mga abogado. (Roderic Mendoza/Ruth Navales, UNTV News)
by Robie de Guzman | Posted on Friday, July 19th, 2019
MANILA, Philippines – The Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) said on Friday that it has filed a motion to withdraw its petition for Writ of Kalikasan, seeking for the protection of the environment in the West Philippine Sea.
In its motion, the IBP asked the Supreme Court to grant its request to withdraw the suit for eight of the petitioners, including the organization itself.
“With due regard to the plight and position of the fishermen-petitioners, the views and recommendations of the handling lawyers and the IBP Chapters involved, and the matters raised and guidance by the Honorable Supreme Court, a motion has been filed for the withdrawal or discharge of the counsels for the fishermen and for the withdrawal of the petition,” the IBP said in a statement, signed by its president Domingo Egon Cayosa.
The IBP’s motion is the latest in a series of case updates that followed after Solicitor General Jose Calida claimed last week that several Zambales and Palawan fishermen who were named as petitioners backed out from the case.
Petitioners of the case originally sought the Court to order the Duterte administration to stop neglecting its duty to protect the Ayungin Shoal, Panatag Shoal and Panganiban Reef, following reports of Chinese fishers harvesting endangered marine species in the area.
But Calida claimed, 19 fishermen have denied knowledge of the case, 13 of the total 37 petitioners also did not sign their affidavits while 24 signed but had no identification.
Calida’s claims led to the suspension of the oral arguments and Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin calling for a closed-door meeting of the parties.
After the conference, Calida said the government and the petitioners’ lawyers agreed that the case be dismissed.
The petitioners’ side did not confirm Calida’s statement but requested the high court to give them time to confer with their clients on the developments of the case.
by Robie de Guzman | Posted on Tuesday, July 16th, 2019
MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday granted the request of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) for more time to talk with Zambales and Palawan fishermen who were involved in a petition for the West Philippine Sea.
SC Public Information chief Brian Keith Hosaka said the high court has decided to grant the IBP’s motion for extension of time to confer with clients to comply with SC’s order to move in the premises in the Writ of Kalikasan suit.
“Supreme Court En Banc has granted the ‘motion for extension of time to confer with clients and obtain special authority’ filed by the IBP on behalf of the petitioners in the case of Abogado et al. vs DENR et al. GR No. 246209 last July 12, 2019,” Hosaka said.
A “move in the premises” resolution means that the parties involved are obliged to inform the Court of pertinent developments to the case which may be of help to the Court in its immediate disposition.
The IBP earlier asked the SC to give them time to confer with the fishermen in Zambales and in Palawan so “they can more appropriately act on the developments in the case” after the government claimed fishermen involved in the case have disowned the petition.
Solicitor General Jose Calida earlier said 19 of the fishermen who were named as petitioners backed out from the case, saying they had no knowledge of the Writ of Kalikasan suit seeking for the protection of the West Philippine Sea. Of the total 37 petitioners, 13 said they did not sign their affidavits while 24 signed but presented no identification.
A Writ of Kalikasan is a legal remedy available to persons or groups whose right to a balanced and healthy ecology is threatened or violated.
The IBP was given until July 19 (Friday) to talk with their clients and comply with the SC’s order.
by Marje Pelayo | Posted on Monday, July 1st, 2019
MANILA, Philippines – The Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) has filed a motion before the Supreme Court (SC) asking SC Associate Justice Antonio Carpio to inhibit from participating in the petition urging the Duterte government to protect the marine resources in the West Philippine Sea.
Solicitor General Jose Calida cited ‘personal bias’ and ‘manifest partiality’ against Carpio for his active participation in the South China Sea Arbitral Proceedings in 2016 and for being critical of the Duterte Administration’s actions in relation to the issue in the West Philippine Sea.
Calida insisted that Carpio’s representation of the Philippines in the International Arbitral Tribunal is enough to disqualify him from holding the case.
In May, the SC upheld the Writ for Kalikasan petition filed by a fisherfolk group in Palawan and Zambales seeking protection of marine resources in the West Philippine Sea particularly the Scarborough Shoal or Panatag Shoal; the Ayungin Shoal, and the Panganiban Reef also known as the Mischief Reef.
Among the respondents in the case are the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR); the Department of Agriculture; the Philippine Navy (PN); the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG); the Philippine National Police (PNP); and the Department of Justice (DOJ), which according to the petitioners, failed to protect the country’s territory from irresponsible fishing and damaging activities of Chinese fishermen.
The group also cited the Permanent Court of Arbitration’s decision considering Ayungin Shoal and the Panganiban Reef as part of the Philippines exclusive economic zone (EEZ) while based on Republic Act 95-22 also known as the Philippine Baselines Law, Panatag Shoal is also part of the country’s EEZ.
On the other hand, the SC cannot force a magistrate to inhibit from a case, said Attorney George Erwin Garcia of the Pamantasang ng Lungsod ng Maynila College of Law.
According to Garcia, it is the magistrate’s personal decision whether to inhibit or not from any case.
“It’s an absolute discretion din ng mismong huwes, ng mismong judge or justice na pinapa-inhibit (It’s an absolute discretionof the judge or justice being requested to inhibit). Walang pwedeng mag-force sa kanya (Nobody can force him). It is best left to the sole discretion and wisdom of the judge subject of the motion for inhibition,” Garcia said.
Likewise, it is also inappropriate to cite “personal bias” as ground for inhibition.
The Canon 3 or impartiality provision of the New Code of Judicial Conduct states that: “Judges shall disqualify themselves from participating in any proceedings in which they are unable to decide the matter impartially or in which it may appear to a reasonable observer that they are unable to decide the matter impartially.”
These reasons include cases wherein the judge “has actual bias or prejudice concerning a party or personal knowledge of disputed evidentiary facts concerning the proceedings; has served as a lawyer or was a material witness in the matter in controversy; has a member of his or her family who has an economic interest in the outcome of the matter in controversy; and has served as executor, trustee or lawyer in the case or matter in controversy.
“Minsan, to a certain extent, sasabihin, ‘ka-classmate kasi ‘yan nung college,’ o kaya ‘ninong kasi ‘yan nung anak nung lawyer’ (Sometimes, to a certain extent, people will say: ‘They’re classmates in college’ or ‘he is a godfather to the lawyer’s child’). So, madaming mga reason kung bakit pinapa-inhibit (A lot of reasons can be used to petition (a judge) to inhibit),” Garcia noted.
Pero ‘yung pagiging partial, ‘yung pagiging bias, that’s the least ground that you can use. Kasi parang napaka-personal kasi noon. So meaning, kung ako ‘yun, ‘yung parang bias lang, perception of bias, mukhang hindi tamang ground for inhibition, (But being partial or biased, that is the least ground that you can use because it’ll appear very personal. So meaning, if I were in his shoes, if they use only perception of bias, I think that is inappropriate ground for inhibition),” he added.
As of this writing, Carpio has yet to respond on the issue. – with details from Harlene Delgado.
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