CA justice: Highest conviction vs Marcos made by People Power
MANILA, Philippines – Court of Appeals (CA) Associate Justice Amy Lazaro-Javier disagreed with the majority of the Supreme Court (SC) justices when they allowed the burial of the late president Ferdinand Marcos.
During her interview with members of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) on Thursday, November 17, Javier said that personally, she believes the highest conviction against Marcos was made by the people through the People Power Revolution, and no further conviction – not even the SC's – can "trivialize" that conviction.
"It lasts forever and ever, even beyond life," Javier said. "[He was] convicted by People Power – the highest form of conviction – and no higher court can wash it off."
Javier is vying for the slot of SC Associate Justice Arturo Brion, who will reach the mandatory retirement age of 70 on December 29. Brion himself voted in favor of giving Marcos a hero's burial.
On the credibility of the High Court, Javier said that while it may have rendered decisions that "did not sit well with the perception of some regarding a just decision," these perceptions must not diminish the SC as an institution which has only one standard: to apply the law.
Still, she thinks the challenge for the SC is to be very keen about serving justice, since it is the final arbiter of all cases.
Asked what is needed to improve the moral fiber of the legal profession, Javier said every lawyer and judge has the obligation and duty to be a role model, especially to those studying to become lawyers.
"We have to be very strict in implementing our own code of conduct, [we have to be] very strict [about the] demeanor of every member of the judiciary," she added.
On changes she would like to see in the country's Bar examinations, Javier said the highly competitive exam should be reasonable and relevant.
"They should be limited to the basics, and there must be no unreasonable or unfair questions that are not relevant to what...the first year lawyer would need in his first practice of the law," she added.
Based on her profile posted on the CA website, Javier graduated magna cum laude from the Philippine Normal University with a degree in education.
She taught in public schools while pursuing her law studies at the University of Sto Tomas, where she graduated class valedictorian in 1982. She passed the Bar that same year.
She joined the Office of the Solicitor General in 1983 as trial attorney, and later became Assistant Solicitor General in 1994. She has also been teaching political law, commercial law, and civil law subjects at the UST Faculty Civil Law since 1983. Javier was appointed to the CA in 2007.
The JBC interviewed applicants eyeing two slots in the SC on Wednesday and Thursday, November 16 and 17.
A shortlist of candidates will be submitted by the JBC to President Rodrigo Duterte, who will appoint the new SC magistrates. Under his term, Duterte will get to appoint 10 SC magistrates to replace retiring justices in the next 3 years. – Rappler.com