MANILA, Philippines – Government peace panel head Marvic Leonen has been nominated for the chief justice post.
Rappler gathered from a court insider that Leonen, who was also a former dean of the University of the Philippines Law School, was recommended by the Black and White Movement to replace dismissed chief justice Renato Corona on Wednesday, June 13.
Leonen was admonished by the Supreme Court in 2011 for leading 36 other faculty members of the UP Law School in calling for the resignation of Justice Mariano del Castillo, who allegedly plagiarized parts of his decision on the case Vinuya v. Executive Secretary.
If he accepts his nomination, Leonen will compete against a UP law professor he recommended to the Supreme Court before — Katrina Legarda. Legarda, who was nominated by UP Professor Myrna Feliciano, has already accepted her nomination for the highest judiciary post.
Leonen is the 13th SC “outsider” to be nominated for chief justice. The others include former congressman Teodoro “Teddy Boy” Locsin Jr, former Solicitor-General Francisco “Frank” Chavez, Bureau of Internal Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, incumbent Solicitor-General Francis Jardeleza, University of the Philippines professors Rafael Morales and Legarda, former UP law dean Raul Pangalangan, former Ateneo law dean Cesar Villanueva, laywer Nepomuceno Aparis, reitred judge Manuel Siayngco, and former assistant provincial prosecutor Cesar Sasondoncillo.
The only applicant for the post is a certain teacher and nurse, Jocelyn Esquivel.
Meanwhile, automatically nominated are the 5 most senior justices of the SC: Acting Chief Justice Antonio Carpio and Associate Justices Arturo Brion, Teresita Leonardo-de Castro, Diosdado Peralta and Presbitero Velasco Jr.
The Judicial and Bar Council will accept applications and nominations for the post vacated by Corona until June 18. Corona was found guilty by the impeachment court of violating the Constitution and betraying public trust after he failed to declare P183 million in peso and dollar bank deposits in his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth. – Rappler.com
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