De Lima: I agonized over decision to accept nomination for SC top postBy Marlon Ramos
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines–Justice Secretary Leila de Lima on Monday admitted that she “agonized” over her decision to join the screening process of the Judicial and Bar Council for the top position in the Supreme Court.
Speaking with reporters, De Lima vowed to keep her independence should President Aquino appoint her as successor of ousted Chief Justice Renato Corona.
While her designation as secretary of justice made her an alter ego of the President, she said it did not mean that she could no longer keep her own principles if she joins an independent institution like the high tribunal.
“One’s ability for independence is in the person. One’s capacity to exhibit sense of independence is in the character of the person,” De Lima said.
She said she had already proven her independence from the appointing authority when she was named chair of the Commission on Human Rights in 2008 by then President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.
De Lima said she was actually reluctant to accept her nomination for the top judicial post, but decided to make a run for it after speaking with the President and her family.
“I definitely agonized. Initially, I was hesitant. But I thought why not take a shot and just try? I’m just offering myself as a strong and hopefully acceptable alternative,” she said.