Aquino: It seems the SC wants to meddle in everything

Natashya Gutierrez
President Benigno Aquino III says the involvement of the Supreme Court in various issues seems 'excessive'

TOO MEDDLESOME? President Benigno Aquino III says the Supreme Court appears to want to meddle in everything. File photo by Malacañang Photo Bureau

MANILA, Philippines – President Benigno Aquino III did not mince words when it came to the Supreme Court.

In his most recent interview with Bombo Radyo aired on Thursday, August 28, Aquino continued to express his disappointment with the Supreme Court, saying it seems to be involving itself with everything.

“There were other instances wherein, like in martial law, they didn’t want to meddle [in some cases] and now they want to meddle in everything,” he said.

Mukhang sumobra naman ata (It appears that it’s become excessive),” he added.

Aquino echoed his earlier opinion regarding a need to limit judicial overreach, saying the changing policies of the Supreme Court is problematic.

The president then returned to the decision on the administration’s economic stimulus package, the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), which was declared partly unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.

He said rather than being “innocent until proven guilty,” the SC decided his administration was “guilty until proven innocent.” He insisted that his administration followed the law, and added that rather than the actors possibly being held culpable, it should be the law itself that should be declared unconstitutional.

In an interview with News5 almost two weeks ago, Aquino admitted for the first time that he was open to amending the Constitution after noticing the Supreme Court failed to practice judicial restraint.

Aquino admitted in the interview he began considering the possibility of charter change after recent events. Since the DAP decision, the relationship between the president and the Supreme Court has soured.

What followed was a back and forth between the two branches ranging from probing court spending to the rejection by the Judicial and Bar Council of Solicitor General Francis Jardeleza as a nominee for Supreme Court associate justice.

In a separate interview, constitutionalist and Jesuit priest Joaquin Bernas – who was among the drafters of the 1987 Consitution – said he does not think Aquino should pursue clipping judicial powers, pointing out he is unlikely to get support for such a move. –

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