Press Release
August 13, 2012

Transcript of Interview of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile

On the JBC Shortlist

Q: Sir, reaction lang po dun sa inilabas ng JBC na shortlist.

SP: Sino ang lumabas

Q: Walo po. Sila Carpio, Abad, Brion, Sereno, Jardeleza, Zamora, De Castro and Villanueva...

SP: Carpio is included? They're all capable. Sino 'yung Villanueva? Incumbent?

Q: Ateneo law dean. Sir, okay po ba 'yun na walo? Di ba usually tatlo lang? Masyado bang mahaba 'yun?

SP: Ewan ko dahil alam mo there are two appointments dapat diyan. 'Yung mapipili is one for the Associate Justice position because there are 15 Associate Justices di ba? And one of them will be appointed Chief Justice. So, necessarily, the President may opt to fill the position of Associate Justice and then, at the same time, appoint a Chief Justice that may include any of the incumbents. 'Yung position na bakante ngayon na formerly occupied by Chief Justice Corona was not earmarked for a Chief Justice. That is the most junior position for any Associate Justice. Kaya siguro 'yan ang dahilan kaya maraming nominees.

Q: Can President Aquino legally point at the same time Associate Justice and a Chief Justice?

SP: Pwede rin pero hindi ko malaman kung pwede mong i-fill up 'yung most junior position of an Associate Justice as Chief Justice because in the practice and tradition of the Supreme Court, the vacant position will become the most junior member of the Court, the new appointee. Ngayon, it's the prerogative of the President to select anyone he wants to become Chief Justice based on the list given to him but that position of an Associate Justice would be in the ranking, in the seating order of the Court will be the most junior. Kailangan pag-aralan nilang lahat 'yan.

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