Mar Roxas' ally among 3 new CA justices
MANILA, Philippines – A close ally of Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Manuel Roxas II makes it as one of the 3 newly-appointed justices of the Court of Appeals (CA), sources from the Supreme Court (SC) and the DILG said.
Among the appointees by President Benigno Aquino III is DILG Undersecretary Rafael Antonio Santos, who previously vied for the position of Sandiganbayan presiding justice. Santos had served as undersecretary of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) when Roxas was DOTC chief. He was also one of Roxas' election lawyers in his 2010 vice presidential bid.
The President made the appointments 3 months after he received the shortlisted candidates for Associate Justices of the CA. (READ: Aquino to review JBC shortlist for CA justices)
Aquino holds full executive power to appoint for the vacancies resulting from the impending retirement of CA Associate Justices Rosalinda Asuncion-Vicente, Angelita A. Gacutan, and Pampilo A. Abarintos.
Also appointed as CA justices were Pablito "Pabs" Alhambra Perez and Maria Filomena "Monette" Dumandan Singh, who will be replacing Gacutan and Asuncion-Vicente respectively. Santos will be replacing Abarintos.
Perez previously taught Media Law in the Ateneo de Manila University, MA Journalism program and was the dean of the San Beda College of Law.
Singh, one of Sereno's early communicators on judicial reform, is a vice executive judge of the Quezon City regional trial court. She once served as a "briefer" on judicial reforms in the Supreme Court. (READ: SC has new 'briefer' on judicial reforms)
Malacañang on Friday, March 14, called SC Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno to inform her about the 3 final choices by the President from the list submitted to him, according to Court insiders.
Santos was part of the Villaraza Cruz Marcelo & Angangco (CVCLAW), known in legal circles as “The Firm.” The law firm was co-founded by SC Senior Justice Antonio Carpio. – Buena Bernal/Rappler.com