The Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) released on Monday, June 26, its shortlist of eight candidates vying for the position of outgoing Supreme Court (SC) Associate Justice Presbitero J. Velasco, Jr. who is set to retire on Aug. 8.
According to a statement released by the SC Public Information Office, the eight candidates are Court of Appeals (CA) Associate Justices Apolinario D. Bruselas, Jr., Rosmari D. Carandang, Ramon R. Garcia, Ramon Paul L. Hernando, Amy C. Lazaro-Javier, Jose C. Reyes, Jr., SC Court Administrator Jose Midas P. Marquez, and former Ateneo Law School dean Cesar L. Villanueva.
Whoever is chosen will be President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s fifth appointee in the Supreme Court, with Associate Justice Alexander G. Gesmundo being the most recent when he was appointed on Aug. 14, 2017.
BusinessWorld reported on June 21 that Mr. Marquez’s bid was challenged over allegations he misused funds from a World Bank loan amounting to $21.9 million which funded the judiciary’s modernization program.
In the same statement released on Monday, the JBC also announced it is now accepting applications to replace ousted Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P.A. Sereno.
“The deadline for filing and completing all requirements is on July 26, 2018,” it said in a statement.
Aside from the Chief Justice and Associate Justice posts, Mr. Duterte is also set to choose a replacement for outgoing Ombudsman Conchita C. Carpio-Morales who will retire on July 26. — Dane Angelo M. Enerio