Alvarez wants more trial courts, CA abolished
MANILA, Philippines – House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez reiterated his call to abolish the Court of Appeals (CA) “unless it can be shown that is it facilitates rather than delays the speedy disposition of justice” and instead, create more trial courts “in proportion” to the country’s population.
Alvarez made the assertion in a speech during a conference on Judicial Institution Building and Reforms on Tuesday, November 21, 2017. The conference is hosted by the PDP-Laban Federalism Institute and Philippine Center for Islam and Democracy. Alvarez is secretary-general of PDP-Laban.
The House Speaker, a lawyer, said the Philippines needs to “simplify” the judicial process. This comes as President Rodrigo Duterte pushes for a shift to a federal form of government.
“Our cases take so long to resolve at the trial level. Then it’s brought to the Court of Appeals where decisions take another couple of years to be resolved. After the CA, the litigants will then still bring the matter to the Supreme Court. Cases take years if not decades to be resolved,” he said in his speech.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the event, Alvarez said the lengthy nature of the country’s justice system makes it close to impossible for victims to get justice.
Aside from matching the number of trial courts to the current population, Alvarez is pushing for the creation of “special courts” that would be devoted to civil or criminal cases solely. He also wants “marathon hearings” over repeated postponements to “avoid delaying tactics” by lawyers. – Rappler.com