CHIEF Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno can no longer be removed through quo warranto proceedings because the Supreme Court’s internal rules prohibit the grant of a quo warranto petition against any of its members they have been a year in office, a retired Supreme Court justice said Monday.
Retired Associate Justice Vicente Mendoza, who served as SC’s associate justice from 1994 to 2002, said the justices knew of the rule against granting a quo warranto petition against a magistrate who had more than one year in office, since they were the ones who promulgated it.
“They are very much aware of it. I do not want to think that it [SC] will not follow its own rules, I want to think the Court will be aware not only of its rules, but also of its prior decisions,” Mendoza said in an interview over ANC News.
Mendoza was referring to Rule 66, Section 11 of the 1997 SC’s Rules of Civil Procedures, which states: “Nothing contained in this Rule shall be construed to authorize an action against a public officer or employee for his ouster from office unless the same be commenced within one year after the cause of such ouster, or the right of the petitioner to hold such office or position, arose.”
Mendoza said the SC should junk a quo warranto petition if it violates the said rule for lack of jurisdiction.
Mendoza explained that filing a quo warranto proceeding against a member of the court or any impeachable official after a year of his or her assumption into the post “will undermine the security of tenure guaranteed by the 1987 Constitution to public officers who are removable by impeachment proceedings.”
He said such a move would also undermine the independence of the judiciary.
Earlier, Solicitor General Jose Calida filed a quo warranto petition before the SC challenging the validity of the appointment of Sereno to the post in 2012 due to her alleged failure to file her Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth.
Calida said the one-year prescription period does not apply to his petition since Sereno’s alleged offense was only discovered last year after the House of Representatives started its hearing on the impeachment complaint filed by lawyer Larry Gadon.
Gadon’s complaint includes Sereno’s alleged failure to file all her SALNs.
The SC held an oral argument on Calida’s petition last April 10 and Acting Chief Justice Antonio Carpio said the en banc is set to issue a decision on the second week of May. Sereno has gone on leave since last month.
Earlier, Sereno egged thec to immediately transmit the articles of impeachment against her to the Senate for trial so she would have a chance to defend herself and air her side on the allegations raised by Gadon.
Her camp expressed confidence the impeachment complaint will be dismissed by the Senate sitting as the impeachment court, adding that none of the allegations raised by Gadon rise to the level of an impeachable offense /Manila Bulletin / posted May 01, 2018 at 01:30 am by Rey E. Requejo / /All photographs, news, editorials, opinions, information, data, others have been taken from the Internet ..aseanews.net | [email protected] / For comments, Email to : Aseanews.Net | [email protected] | Contributor:-