2 applicants for SC chief to be excluded from list – JBC memberBy Tetch Torres
MANILA, Philippines—The Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) will exclude the only two applicants in the selection process for the next Chief Justice.
Lawyer Jose Mejia, a member of the Judicial and Bar Council representing the academe, told reporters Tuesday that they will remove Jocelyn Esquivel and dismissed Judge Florentino Floro Jr. from the initial list of candidates whose names will be published on Monday, July 9.
Mejia said the two lacked the minimum requirement to be qualified to vie for the Chief Justice post.
Esquivel is not a lawyer but a nurse while Floro had been disqualified in his previous applications after failing the mandatory psychological exam. Floro was dismissed in 2006 for admitting he was consulting with dwarfs before rendering his decisions.
Under Article 8 Section 7 of the 1987 Constitution, a member of the Supreme Court must be a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, at least 40 years of age, and must have been for 15 years or more a judge of a lower court or engaged in the practice of law in the Philippines.
The same law also requires that a member of the Judiciary must be “a person of proven competence, integrity, probity, and independence.”
Currently, there are 24 aspirants to the Chief Justice post after lawyer Vincent Veloso withdrew his acceptance of his nomination on July 2.
In the initial evaluation, Mejia said, the 24 aspirants have met the minimum requirements under the Constitution.
Once the names have been published, Meja said they will start accepting comments and oppositions to the nominations of each of the 24 aspirants after which, they will proceed to conducting the public interview.