JBC nominates 3 associate justices to top SC post


THE JUDICIAL and Bar Council (JBC) has shortlisted three associate justices as nominees for the ’s chief justice position. In the shortlist transmitted to the Office of the President, Associate Justices Diosdado M. Peralta and Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe, who will both retire in 2022, garnered seven points each. Associate Justice Andres B. Reyes, Jr., who will retire on May 11, 2020, has four votes. Associate Justice Jose C. Reyes, Jr. did not make the cut. The shortlist was signed by JBC Ex-Officio Chairperson Chief Justice Lucas P. Bersamin and ex-officio members Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra and Senator Richard J. Gordon, and members Jose Catral Mendoza, Toribio E. Ilao, Jr., retired SC associate justice Noel G. Tijam, and Franklin J. Demonteverde. Mr. Bersamin is set to retire on Oct. 18. In his speech during his last flag ceremony Monday, Mr. Bersamin called on the officials and employees of the judiciary to be loyal to the Constitution and the rule of law. “All I ask as I exit from the judiciary is just as forthright as that nothing more,” he said. — Vann Marlo M. Villegas

Bill vs landmines filed

PAMPANGA 2ND District Rep. Juan Miguel Macapagal-Arroyo has filed House Bill No. 121 or the Philippine Comprehensive Act on Landmines, which calls for a total ban on anti-personnel landmines. The bill is based on the UN Mine Ban Treaty and Protocol on the Prohibition or Restriction on the Use of Mines, Booby-traps and other Devices. Under the measure, an indiscriminate use of the said devices is defined as when not directed or against a military objective; and when targeted on places of worship and other public places like schools. Further, the measures requires the Armed Forces of the Philippines to develop and use alternatives to anti-personnel mines for its field detachments. “The Duterte Administration is determined to put an end to the suffering and casualties caused by anti-personnel mines, that kill mostly innocent and defenseless civilians and children and obstruct economic development. The Administration further recognizes that a total ban of anti-personnel mines would be an important confidence-building measure,” said Mr. Arroyo in his bill.—Vince Angelo C. Ferreras