JBC all set to grill CJ aspirants on Tuesday
The Judicial and Bar Council is all set for the public interviews of aspirants to the chief justice position. The post was left vacant by Renato Corona after he was convicted by the Senate sitting as an impeachment court last May 29. The public interviews start Tuesday.
In a phone interview with GMA News Online, JBC academe representative Jose Mejia said that he has formulated his questions based on the aspirants' personal data sheet and the other requirements that they have submitted.
“I will ask [every one of them] of their preparedness to become the next chief justice,” the De La Salle University commercial law professor said.
The nominees will be interviewed for a maximum of one hour, Supreme Court public information officer Jay Rempillo said in a separate phone interview with GMA News Online.
Rempillo reminded the public that they may also ask a question of a nominee via Twitter @SupremeCourtJBC. Rempillo assured the public that JBC officials will entertain the tweets.
The public interviews will run from July 24 to 27, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and will be broadcast live online, on television and on radio.
Among the first to be grilled by the JBC panel on Tuesday will be Justice Secretary Leila De Lima, Solicitor General Francis Jardeleza, and human rights lawyer Jose Diokno.
De Lima, who earlier took an indefinite leave of absence as Justice secretary in order to attend to her ailing father, confirmed to GMA News Online in a text message that she will be present in her scheduled public interview.
De Lima was the Executive Branch’s ex-officio representative at the JBC. However, she inhibited herself from the council’s proceedings as she was also nominated to be chief justice.
She was replaced by Undersecretary Michael Frederick Musngi from the Office of the President’s Office of Special Concerns.
Meanwhile, JBC ex-officio member Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero will not be present during Tuesday's panel interview owing to the High Court’s recent ruling that Congress should only have one representative in the JBC.
Prior to the ruling, Escudero sat on the JBC, along with Iloilo Rep. Niel Tupas Jr. who represented the lower house.
Tupas will be representing Congress in the JBC’s panel interview on Tuesday. He also confirmed his attendance via text: “The Senate and the House [of Representatives] have not yet discussed this. But in the meantime, I’ll attend the public interview tomorrow.” — AE/DVM/KG, GMA News
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