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The Next Chief Justice

Ex-SolGen Frank Chavez, Teddy Boy Locsin nominated as next chief justice

June 14, 2012 1:31pm

(Updated 3:25 p.m.) Former Solicitor General Francisco "Frank" Chavez and former Makati Rep. Teodoro "Teddy Boy" Locsin became the latest additions to the growing list of people being nominated to replace ousted Chief Justice Renato Corona.

Both Chavez and Locsin served during the administration of the late President Corazon Aquino — Chavez as solicitor general while Locsin, as Mrs. Aquino's speechwriter and Information minister. 
Chavez was nominated by Manuel Baviera, organizer and founding member of the Whistle Blowers' Association of the Philippines.
"An active and fearless trial lawyer for forty years, Atty. Chavez has been consistently in the forefront of fighting injustice, graft and corruption not only in government but also in the private sector," said Baviera.
Chavez graduated cum laude  with a bachelor's degree in law from the University of the Philippines.
He served as the youngest solicitor general during the administration of the late former President Corazon Aquino.
He was a Ten Outstanding Young Men (TOYM) awardee for Law and Human Rights. He was likewise given the lifetime achievement award, "Tribune of the People," by the National Union of People's Lawyers and the Senate's minority bloc.
Baviera said if ever Chavez gets appointed as chief justice, he "will no doubt immediately regain the people's confidence in the judiciary by weeding out the so-called hoodlums in robes."

Meanwhile, Locsin was recommended by lawyer Brigido Dulay, legal counsel for former Elections Chairman Benjamin Abalos in the former poll chief's electoral sabotage case in Pasay. Locsin is a lawyer, writer, journalist, broadcaster, and lecturer.
Locsin served as Makati congressman for three terms from 2001 to 2010. He also wrote speeches of former President Joseph Estrada, as well as former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo for her State of the Nation Address. Locsin currently hosts an editorial segment on ANC.
Chavez and Locsin now join 16 other applicants, recommendees, and automatic nominees to the chief justice post.
Among those so far nominated are Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, Revenue chief Kim Henares, former UP Law dean Raul Pangalangan, former Ateneo dean Cesar Villanueva, Solicitor General Francis Jardeleza, and womens' right lawyer Katrina Legarda.
The five most senior justices of the high court are automatically nominated for the post, namely: Acting Chief Justice Antonio Carpio, Associate Justices Presbitero Velasco Jr., Teresita Leonardo-de Castro, Arturo Brion, and Diosdado Peralta.
Other nominees are retired judge Manuel Siayngco Jr; Rafael Morales, law professor and Sycip Salazar Hernandez & Gatmaitan managing partner; lawyer and Vice Mayor Nepomuceno Aparis of Ormoc City; and lawyer Marianito Sasondoncillo.
A school principal-nurse, Jocelyn Esquivel, is so far the only one who volunteered herself to become the next chief justice. Esquivel, a non-lawyer, applied even if rules strictly prohibited non-law practitioners from trying out for the post.
Deadline for application is on June 18, the day the Judicial and Bar Council, which screens applications, will come out with a long list.
President Benigno Aquino III will have to pick a replacement from the shortlist that the JBC will prepare. The President has 90 days to choose the next chief justice after a vacancy resulted from the conviction of Renato Corona by the Senate impeachment court on May 29. — RSJ, GMA News
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