Palace sees no reversal of SC decision ousting Sereno
Malacanang expressed belief on Tuesday that the Supreme Court would not reverse its ruling on ousting Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.
“I wish her the best, but with the decision which is more than a 150 pages, I think it will be difficult. It looks like the justices really think hard on their decision,” Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in a press briefing when asked on the possibility of a reversal of the high court's decision on the quo warranto petition against Sereno.
After the 8-6 ruling of the Supreme Court, the quo warranto petition filed by Solicitor General Jose Calida was criticized by some lawmakers.
Roque said the decision did not make the SolGen powerful as the decision did not grant his office additional powers.
"I think that’s purely speculative, because what is clear is that the quo warranto was filed against a specific government official who was required to file her SALNs (statements of assets, liabilities and net worth) by virtue of the Constitution and the law," Roque said.
"So if there is no violation on the provision of the Constitution, then the Solicitor General will not have powers. Meaning, there is no new power given to the SolGen. The Constitution is the one which requires the filing of SALN, and this became the basis of the Solicitor General,” he added.
He also said the decision of the Supreme Court in ousting Sereno did not mean that the president and vice president could be removed through the same process of filing a quo warranto petition.
In its decision, the SC said both the president and the vice president of the Philippines may also be subject to quo warranto petition under the Presidential Electoral Tribunal rules.
“We don’t believe on that, because Chief Justice Sereno is the only one who didn’t follow the requirements of the Constitution that a Chief Justice nominee should submit a SALN,” he said.
"Well, there are other grounds for quo warranto, citizenship for instance. If there is a requirement that one should be a national born citizen and that is a requirement also for the Supreme Court, then if there are issues involving citizenship of a Supreme Court Justice then it could be filed and questioned through a petition for quo warranto," he added.
Sereno is the first Chief Justice to be removed from office through quo warranto proceedings. Ella Dionisio/DMS