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De Castro vs Sereno: De Castro appears to have a more solid credentials than Sereno

Legit CJ
By The Editorial Board
“Compared with Sereno, De Castro has more solid credentials in government and law practice.

The moment Special Assistant to the President Kuya Bong Go and Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra spread the news that President Rodrigo Duterte has chosen Associate Justice Teresita Leonardo-de Castro as Supreme Court (SC) Chief Justice, social media exploded with yellow venom.

The yellow defenders of Sereno are crying political payback on Rody’s choice of De Castro.

De Castro testified against Sereno during the impeachment trial in Congress against her ousted predecessor Maria Lourdes Sereno where she said Sereno’s appointment to the top judiciary post was “unfair to other contenders.”

During the oral arguments on the quo warranto case Solicitor General Jose Calida filed, Sereno and De Castro jousted for over two and a half hours over the ousted Chief Justice’s failure to file Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net worth which was the basis of Calida’s petition to oust Sereno.

At one point of the long exchange, Sereno called De Castro’s line of questioning as “oppressive.”

The appointment of De Castro was doubly painful for the yellow mob since she assumed the slot as the 24th Chief Justice that used to be the title of Sereno before being erased in the High Court roster after her appointment was invalidated by the SC on ground of ineligibility.

She also became the first woman chief justice of the country instead of Sereno.

Rody, however, merely followed the line of succession based on seniority in appointing De Castro to the top SC post. The line was broken by Sereno, who was among the junior justices when former President Noynoy Aquino made her chief justice in 2012.

Compared with Sereno, De Castro has more solid credentials in government and law practice.

In 2012, for instance, De Castro was the only applicant for Chief Justice who obtained a grade of “1” in the psychiatric and psychological tests which was the highest score. Sereno got a grade of “4” according to former SC clerk of court Enriqueta Vidal during the House Justice Committee hearing on the impeachment complaint against Sereno.

“De Castro now also has the distinction of having served at the helm of two collegial courts, the SC and the Sandiganbayan.

Also in 1998, former President Fidel Ramos awarded her with the Presidential Medal of Merit for Exceptionally Meritorious and Valuable Service Rendered and Remarkable Accomplishments for her contributions to peace, unity and progress in Mindanao.

She was designated from 1988 to 1997 as one of the government’s peace negotiators.

From 2012 to 2014, she was also president of the International Association of Women Judges which has membership in over 100 countries.

As the country’s top judge, De Castro now also has the distinction of having served at the helm of two collegial courts, the SC and the Sandiganbayan where she was presiding justice from 2004 to 2007.

She rose from the ranks as her entire professional career was in government, starting as law clerk at the SC in 1973.

From there, she transferred to the Department of Justice where she assumed the highest post of assistant chief state counsel in 1997. On the same year she was appointed by Ramos as associate justice of the Sandiganbayan.

Six years later, in 2004, she became the Sandiganbayan’s presiding justice.

The irony is that De Castro is set to retire in October giving her just over a month in the post as she will reach the mandatory retirement age of 70 on 8 October.

The yellow backers of Sereno, however, are disconsolate since their muse, Sereno, would have occupied her post until 2030 had the quo warranto process been unsuccessful in ousting her.

Sereno was deemed the insurance against Noynoy and his yellow cohorts against the many cases they are and will be facing as a result of abuse of position and sheer neglect during their term.

Also, Rody’s restoring the honored line of succession at the SC made their next bet for the top judiciary post very improbable for the next many years.

Order has been restored at the crucial judiciary branch which is what matters most.

De Castro vs Sereno: De Castro appears to have a more solid credentials than Sereno De Castro vs Sereno: De Castro appears to have a more solid credentials than Sereno Reviewed by AsianPolicy.Press on 3:21:00 AM Rating: 5

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