Quantcast
Latest Stories

Lawyer tells Aquino: Don’t name pal chief counsel

By

A classmate of Mr. Aquino’s from grade school to college at the Ateneo de Manila University, Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa topped the bar exams in 1986, was an honor graduate of Ateneo Law School and was an “able” law practitioner, according to Secretary Edwin Lacierda. PHOTO FROM CAGATLAW.COM

A lawyer has written President Aquino advising him against appointing his classmate, Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa, as chief presidential legal counsel.

Lawyer Ernesto Francisco Jr. said the President should refrain from appointing a practicing lawyer like Caguioa as his chief legal counsel to avoid a conflict of interest.

He said Caguioa and his law firm, Caguioa and Gatmaytan, had served as the legal counsel of three mining companies that had appealed the revocation by the Office of the President of agreements to explore, develop and use minerals in the Court of Appeals and Supreme Court.

Thus, he said, Caguioa may not be “impartial” in handling the government’s position on mining matters.

In an opposition letter filed with the Office of the President, Francisco said the position of presidential legal counsel was perceived to have been used in the past to favor private interests, law firm’s and colleagues of the lawyer occupying the post.

“But this perception can be changed if in line with your avowed policy of ‘daang matuwid,’ you will deliberately refrain from appointing a private law practitioner to the position of presidential legal counsel,” Francisco wrote Mr. Aquino.

Francisco said there were many retired justices, judges, government lawyers and nonpracticing lawyers, including some in the academe, who were “more than competent and qualified” for the post.

Before the new year, presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said that Caguioa was being considered to replace Eduardo de Mesa, who had quit and moved on to the Bases Conversion Development Authority as board director.

A classmate of Mr. Aquino’s from grade school to college at the Ateneo de Manila University, Caguioa topped the bar exams in 1986, was an honor graduate of Ateneo Law School and was an “able”  law practitioner, according to Lacierda.

In his letter, Francisco said Caguioa’s law firm had lawyered for Narra Nickel Mining and Development Corp., Tesoro Mining and Development Inc. and McArthur Mining Inc. whose financial and technical assistance agreements (FTAAs) issued in the homestretch of the Arroyo administration were revoked by the Office of the President.

He said the OP had ruled that the issuance of FTAAs was “highly anomalous and irregular.”

“I must stress that I am not casting aspersions on the person of Attorney Caguioa or his law firm,” Francisco said, but their lawyering for the three mining companies could lead to a conflict of interest and “impact on national interest” if Caguioa were appointed.

Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said Monday there was no word from the Office of the Executive Secretary on the appointment of a new presidential legal counsel.


Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa , Benigno Aquino , Government , Politics




Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  2. Opinions split on Napoles turning state witness
  3. Delfin Lee: Blame Pag-Ibig, not me
  4. Plunder complaint filed vs PNP chief, firearms office head over license delivery deal
  5. Cedric Lee’s cohort flies out of PH despite look-out order – De Lima
  6. San Juan cops fail to arrest Cedric Lee
  7. More ‘Yolanda’ bodies found
  8. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  9. Lawyer: Napoles ‘will tell all’
  10. Boy ‘sexually assaulted’ at Indonesia international school
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Estrada: Gigi Reyes won’t testify vs JPE
  3. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  4. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  5. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  6. Bernice Lee arrested by NBI team
  7. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  8. Suspect in Vhong Navarro’s mauling wants to turn state witness – De Lima
  9. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  10. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  8. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  9. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
  10. Ex-PBA player Bryan Gahol dies in road mishap
Advertisement

News

  • Napoles tags over 100 officials in pork scam – Lacson
  • Vitangcol to sue Czech envoy
  • Senator’s kickback from pork bigger than those of Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – Lacson
  • 43 out of 414 Etihad passengers yet to be found, tested for MERS-CoV – Palace
  • Maid confesses in killing of 2 and stabbing of employer in Laguna
  • Sports

  • San Mig Coffee grinds out win over Alaska to force decider
  • UP nips St. Benilde; Adamson blasts RTU in Filoil women’s caging
  • Kevin Garnett responds to Raptors’ GM F word
  • Albert Pujols hits 500th HR of major league career
  • UST posts twin kill in Filoil pre-season cup opening day
  • Lifestyle

  • Entering the monkhood a rite of passage
  • Haneda International Airport: A destination on its own
  • Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  • Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  • Life lessons I want to teach my son
  • Entertainment

  • Bollywood Oscars, film stars come to Florida
  • Ex-Fox exec denies allegations in sex abuse suit
  • Kris Aquino backtracks, says Herbert Bautista and her are ‘best friends’
  • Summer preview: Chris Pratt enters a new ‘Galaxy’
  • Bon Jovi helps open low-income housing in US
  • Business

  • SM to rebuild Tacloban hospital
  • PSEi slips after 4-day rally
  • Toyota sells 2.58 million vehicles, outselling GM
  • McDonald’s 1Q profit slips as US sales decline
  • SEC approves SM’s P15B retail bond offer
  • Technology

  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Viber releases new design for iPhone, comes to Blackberry 10 for the first time
  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Bam Aquino becomes Master Splinter’s son after Wiki hack
  • Mark Caguioa lambasts Ginebra teammates on Twitter
  • Opinion

  • One-dimensional diplomacy: A cost-benefit analysis of Manila’s security deal with Washington
  • No ordinary illness
  • Reforest mountains with fire trees and their kind
  • Day of the Earth
  • When will Chinese firm deliver new coaches?
  • Global Nation

  • Filipinos coming home from Mideast must obtain MERS clearance – DOH
  • US Secret Service in Manila ahead of Obama visit
  • Palace thanks Estrada for successful HK mission
  • Hong Kong accepts PH apology; sanctions also lifted
  • China won’t budge, wants PH gov’t to apologize to HK
  • Marketplace
    Advertisement