Hataman’s appointment now an SC case

Purple S. Romero

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Lawyer told the High Court that its verdict on ARMM is not yet final.

MANILA, Philippines – Will this be another conflict area for Malacañang and the Supreme Court?

Lawyer Romulo Macalintal asked the Supreme Court on Wednesday, Dec.21, to clarify its decision upholding the constitutionality of having the elections in Muslim Mindanao postponed to 2013.

In his motion, Macalintal questioned Malacañang’s move to appoint former Anak-Mindanao Rep. Muijiv Hataman as officer-in-charge of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, saying the high tribunal has yet to rule with finality on the case.

Hataman took his oath as ARMM OIC before President Benigno Aquino III on Dec. 20, 2011.

The Partido Demokratiko Pilipino Lakas ng Bayan and petitioners Almarim Centi Tillah, Datu Casan Conding Cana, on the other hand, filed a manifestation and motion urging the Court to “rectify” the problem of Hataman’s appointment, which they assailed as “an insidious attempt at demeaning the judicial process.”

The high court previously stopped the executive from screening and appointing OICs on Sept. 13, 2011. 

On Oct.18, however, the SC voted 8-7 to uphold the constitutionality of Republic Act 10153, which synchronizes the elections in Muslim Mindanao with the midterm elections in 2013.

The ruling consequently allowed President Aquino to appoint officers-in-charge for all elective posts in ARMM – from the governor to members of the Legislative Assembly. 

On Nov. 3, 2011, Sen. Aquilino Pimentel III of PDP-Laban, Tillah and Cana asked the High Tribunal to reconsider its decision. Macalintal also filed a separate motion.

The SC has yet to issue a final ruling on the case. Macalintal said that absent such ruling, the TRO issued by the SC in September remains in effect.

“Any attempt to implement the 18 October 2011 Decision in this case pending resolution by the Supreme Court of petitioners’ motions for reconsideration is a contemptuous act and “borders on disrespect (to the Supreme Court) if not outright insolence,” Macalintal wrote in his motion. – Rappler.com


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