Press Release
October 9, 2017

Sen. Leila M. de Lima's statement on Supreme Court Associate Justice Presbitero Velasco's resort to the media in replying to De Lima's motion to inhibit

The press statement released by the Honorable Supreme Court Associate Justice Presbitero J. Velasco Jr. denying the grounds of my motion for inhibition is unusual to say the least, and highly irregular if not in violation of judicial ethics at most.

There is a prejudgment on the motion for inhibition filed against him when Justice Velasco first makes a press release on his opinion on the motion even before acting upon it thru a proper resolution as a judge should. As the judge who will act upon the motion, Justice Velasco is not entitled to expressing his position on the litigated motion by press release. That is prejudgment already and hence, a lack of impartiality.

My own motion was reported in the media as is, as the subject of legitimate news about developments in my case. And now here comes Justice Velasco responding to it not thru a resolution, but practically making a decision on the motion via a press release. This violates the canon of judicial ethics on appearances of regularity and impartiality, precisely adding to the grounds of my motion, or at least strengthening them or proving them more. Res ipsa loquitur. This media-oriented predisposition of Justice Velasco on the motion for inhibition speaks for the credibility of the allegations raised against him in said motion.

If Justice Velasco wants to engage in a media tit for tat on the motion by taking the venue from the court and bringing it to the media, instead of thru a court resolution, all the more he should inhibit, to give him leeway in his choice of settling the issue regarding his inordinate interest in the case before the media.

News Latest News Feed