JBC to submit to PGMA shortlist of nominees for next chief justice

May 3, 2010 7:17 pm 

MANILA, May 3 – The Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) on Monday decided that they will submit their shortlist of nominees for the next Supreme Court (SC) Chief Justice to President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on May 5 to replace Chief Justice Reynato Puno who retires on May 17.

The SC ruled with finality on April 20, 2010 that President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has the power to appoint the next Chief Justice, saying that, the appointment to the Judiciary is exempted from the constitutional ban on appointment during the election period.

It also ordered the JBC to submit its shortlist of nominees to President Arroyo on or before the retirement of Chief Justice Puno on May 17.

The eight-member JBC chaired by Chief Justice Puno opted to submit the names of all the four nominees SC Associate Justices Renato Corona, Teresita Leonardo-De Castro and Arturo Brion and Sandiganbayan Presiding Justice Edilberto Sandoval.

Among others, the members of the JBC are House Committee on Justice Chair and Quezon City Rep. Matias Defensor Jr.; Senator Francis "Chiz" Escudero; and Justice Secretary and concurrent Solicitor General Alberto Agra.

The three SC justice nominees garnered eight votes each, respectively while Sandoval received 7 out of 8 votes from all the JBC members.

Both SC Associate Justices Antonio Carpio and Conchita Carpio-Morales, who are distant cousins, have declined their nomination, saying that, they would only accept such nomination of the JBC if the appointment of the next Chief Justice will be made by the next President. (PNA)

vcs/PTR

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