Press Release
March 17, 2010


Opposition senator Chiz Escudero today expressed disappointment with the Supreme Court when it ruled that President Arroyo can appoint the next Supreme Court Chief Justice despite the constitutional ban on midnight appointments before elections.

Escudero maintained that it is the Judicial and Bar Council's constitutional mandate to submit a short list of nominees for the new Chief Justice replacing incumbent Chief Justice Reynato Puno who is set to retire on May 17.

The senator, who is the senate representative to the JBC, said the decision does not augur well in the coming elections especially now that talks and fears of different scenarios meant to derail the elections are ripe.

"As a lawyer, I have my own interpretation of the law, but this decision is really a big disappointment because the law clearly states that the incumbent cannot appoint anyone within the period of the constitutional ban. However, this is not that first time that I have been disappointed by the decision of the court".

Escudero said that despite petitions and motions for reconsiderations that can still be filed before the court, he expressed doubts that the SC decision can still be reversed given the number of votes favoring the decision.

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