Rappler Talk: Constitutional law professor Dan Gatmaytan on Sereno scenarios

MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court (SC) is expected to vote on the quo warranto petition seeking to oust Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno on Friday, May 11.

The petition itself has been slammed as an unconstitutional route to remove a sitting chief justice. Legal experts also said that granting the petition would open the floodgates to more similar petitions, and make justices – even the President –  vulnerable to such suits.

On Thursday, May 10, Rappler talks to Professor Dan Gatmaytan, who teaches constitutional law at the University of the Philippines (UP) in Diliman, to discuss possible scenarios should the SC oust Sereno on Friday.

Can Sereno defy the decision if she is ousted? Can the Senate question the validity of an SC ouster? And what happens to the judiciary if it does remove its own chief justice?

A possibility that Gatmaytan raised is ousting Sereno pro hac vice, which  literally means "for this moment" or "for this occasion." It means that the decision only applies to Sereno and the pecularities of her case, and cannot be used as a legal precedent.

This, Gatmaytan said, would address the fear that quo warranto will put at risk the security of tenure of many government officials.

Tune in to Rappler Talk on Thursday, May 10. – Rappler.com