ON TARGET

Abusive Tagum City judge sued in SC

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Some judges abuse their lofty position by shouting, insulting and humiliating litigants and even their lawyers in court during trial.

These judges forget that when they insult or humiliate lawyers in their courtrooms, they invite retaliation from their compañeros or compañeras.

An administrative case against Susanna T. Baua, presiding judge of Branch 31 of the Regional Trial Court of Tagum City, Davao del Norte, has been filed in the Supreme Court.

The case against her alleged:

“Failure to resolve motions within the three-month reglamentary period;

“Stopping lawyers in their tracks while they are presenting evidence on grounds not found under any rule;

“Offensive arrogance, acting like God, rude and maleducated;

“Always shouting, insulting, scolding and humiliating every person in her courtroom, from lawyers—young and old, prosecutors and witnesses;

“There is no day she would not shout, insult, scold and humiliate a person in her court;

“Being plainly unfit to remain in her position and a disgrace to the judiciary and should be subjected to neuropsychiatric examination to determine what is ailing her.”

The administrative case against Baua was filed by lawyers Pantaleon Alvarez and Eddie Tamondong.

By the way, Alvarez is a former secretary of transportation and communications and congressman of Davao del Norte.

Alvarez and Tamondong also presented a copy of a complaint filed by some lawyers in Davao del Norte and Compostela Valley against Baua for “unprofessional and abusive conduct” in the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP).

The IBP complaint against the Tagum City judge says she “relishes bullying, humiliating and castigating lawyers without any provocation; is always angry; is a problematic judge.”

The IBP complaint reads further: “Although we understand her plight, coming from a broken marriage and troubled family, to the extent that she filed a disbarment case against her own father, it doesn’t give her a reason nor a license to act very irrationally every time she conducts hearings in court.”

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It is the fault of the Judicial Bar Council (JBC), which screens applicants for the bench, why there are many unfit judges out there.

The JBC doesn’t make a thorough screening of its applicants.

An applicant for the position of judge or justice should be made to undergo a neuropsychiatric examination to determine his or her mental state.

This columnist was told that at the Court of Appeals, there is one justice who acts in such a weird manner that only deserves confinement  at a mental institution, instead of an appointment to the appellate court.

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