Former Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona died before dawn Friday, a report on Unang Balita said.
Corona died at 1:48 a.m. after suffering a cardiac arrest at The Medical City in Pasig City.
He was 67 years old.
A post on the Twitter account of the Supreme Court's Public Information Office said the information about Corona's passing away was relayed by a member of the Corona family.
The PIO has just been informed by the family of former CJ Renato C. Corona that he has passed away this morning. No details available. (1/2)— SC PIO (Official) (@SCPh_PIO) April 28, 2016
Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno and the associate justices, in a statement, mourned the passing of Corona, the 23rd chief justice.
Sereno has directed that the flags at the SC and all courts nationwide be flown at half mast to mourn the passing of the former chief justice.
The CJ has directed that the flag in the SC and all courts nationwide be flown at half mast to mourn the passing of the former CJ (2/2)— SC PIO (Official) (@SCPh_PIO) April 28, 2016
Corona suffered from diabetes, a report on News TV Live on Friday said.
The SC PIO office said viewing of his remains will start tomorrow at The Heritage Park in Taguig City.
Additional details:Former CJ Corona passed away at 1:48 AM,April 29, 2016. His remains will be at Heritage starting tomorrow,April 30.— SC PIO (Official) (@SCPh_PIO) April 28, 2016
In a statement, Malacañang extended its condolences to the family of the former SC chief justice.
"We extend our condolences to the bereaved family of the late CJ Renato Corona and join them in fervent prayers for his eternal repose," Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. said.
Former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo also issued a statement conveying her and her family's condolences to Corona's family.
"With heartfelt prayers and sympathy, my family and I convey our deepest condolences to the family of Chief Justice Renato Corona on his passing. His unblemished record of service to the Republic, the rule of law, and legal education deserves the praise and emulation of every Filipino and every advocate of truth and justice. May the exemplary life of Chief Justice Corona be a beacon to light our way," Arroyo said, in the statement conveyed to media by Atty. Larry Gadon, a friend of Corona, who likewise extended condolences.
Lawyer Rico Quicho, part of the defense team of Corona during the impeachment trial at the Senate in 2012, expressed deep sadness Friday on the passing of the former Chief Justice.
"He is a good man, loving husband and father. CJ Corona fought a good fight to uphold the independence of the institution he dearly loved. His moral courage is second to none," Quicho, now spokesperson of Vice President Jejomar Binay, said in a statement.
He added that he is thanking Corona for the trust that he gave him during the former Chief Justice's challenging times.
"I will continue to fight for the rule of law and judicial independence," he said.
"My family extends our deepest sympathies to the loved ones left behind by CJ Corona. May his soul rest in peace," he added.
Corona was appointed in 2010 by former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as Chief Justice, succeeding Reynato Puno.
Before he assumed the position, he served as Associate Justice of the SC from 2002 to 2010.
The ex-chief magistrate also served as Arroyo's chief of staff from 2001 to 2002.
He earned his Bachelor of Laws degree at Ateneo Law School in 1974.
In 1981, he was accepted to the Master of Laws program of the Harvard Law School.
In April 2011, Corona graduated summa cum laude from the University of Santo Tomas Graduate School with a degree of Doctor of Civil Law.
Corona was implicated in an impeachment case in 2012.
On May 29 that year, the Senate, voting 20-3, found Corona guilty of violating Article II of the Articles of Impeachment for his failure to disclose his assets in his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN).
Corona was the first Chief Justice to be removed from office through impeachment process in the Philippines. His ouster came after a nearly two-year feud with President Benigno Aquino III over his “midnight appointment” and undue influence on SC decisions that supposedly favored Arroyo.
In 2013, Senator Jinggoy Estrada bared in a speech that P50 million in additional funds were given to lawmakers who voted to convict Corona. Up until that day, Corona has continually denied charges levelled against him, saying his ouster was unconstitutional. —Bernadette Parco, Kiersnerr Gerwin Tacadena, Mark Merueñas, Kathrina Charmaine Alvarez, Amita Legaspi and Xianne Arcangel/LBG/KG, GMA News