Garcia denies abandoning plea for TROBy Ador Vincent Mayol
CEBU CITY, Philippines—The daughter and legal counsel of suspended Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia claimed that they had not abandoned their plea for the issuance of a temporary restraining order (TRO), contrary to what Associate Justice Vicente Veloso of the Court of Appeals 12th division stated.
“Please note that the application for TRO and the application for preliminary injunction are two separate incidents,” said lawyer Cristina Codilla-Frasco.
“The TRO had already been submitted for resolution on Jan. 10 as declared by Justice Vicente Veloso during the hearing on the TRO. He reiterated this in his written order dated Jan. 22,” said Frasco, who acts as lawyer for her mother.
Frasco said they filed a motion asking for time to reply on the question of the preliminary injunction, not on the TRO.
“For indeed, how could we possibly file a reply on the TRO when the TRO had already been submitted for resolution? To say that we have abandoned our petition for TRO because we seek to file a reply on the injunction is illogical, unjust, and unfair,” she said.
She said Justice Veloso’s resolution makes more evident his “bias and prejudice” against Garcia.
The CA’s 12th division abandoned any action on Garcia’s plea for a TRO.
Veloso said the appellate court had to forego any ruling on the TRO after Garcia abandoned the plea and was pressing solely for the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction which would hold while the case of her suspension is pending.
Frasco said they have not formally received the resolution from the appellate court.
Garcia’s lawyers have filed a motion for the inhibition of Justice Veloso, the chairman of the CA’s 12th division.
Frasco said Veloso demonstrated “undue bias, prejudice, and partiality when he made sweeping statements against Gov. Garcia during the oral arguments of the TRO last month.”
“There has been inordinate delay in the resolution of the application for TRO. The delay in the resolution of the TRO is tainted with political bias seeing that Justice Veloso immediately granted a TRO to Liberal Party member Aga Muhlach on the same day as his hearing while Veloso has delayed and refused to issue a TRO to Garcia of the United Nationalists Alliance,” she said.
The appellate court stopped a Camarines Sur court from implementing a ruling that directed the Election Registration Board to exclude Muhlach and wife Charlene Gonzales from the area’s list of voters.