PHNOM PENH, Cambodia––President Benigno Aquino III hopes to beat the Nov. 22 deadline for filling a vacancy on the Supreme Court by a full day, saying he intends to transmit his decision to the high tribunal by Wednesday afternoon.
But first, he will interview government peace negotiator Marvic Leonen, the final candidate for the position, upon his return from Cambodia on Nov. 20, the President told Manila-based reporters at a briefing at the hotel Sofitel here Monday night.
Aquino interviewed six of the seven candidates vying for the post of justice of the Supreme Court before he flew to this city to attend the 21st Association of Southeast Asian Nations Summit hosted by Cambodia.
“When I return, I’ll interview the 7th of the seven then we will discuss,” he said. “We will gather all the information that everybody has been able to ferret out from all of them and I will ask the advice of my legal advisers as to which of the seven would be the best appointee for the associate justice position,” Aquino said.
The President played it coy when asked to comment on rumors he favored Leonen because of the latter’s success in forging the preliminary Bangsamoro framework agreement with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
“Abangan ang susunod na kabanata (wait for the next episode),” he said.