Latest Stories

UNA bucks appointment of Roxas ‘guy’ to Sandiganbayan


UNA secretary general Toby Tiangco: Two roads diverging in the woods. FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—The United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) is raising a cry against the possible appointment of a Sandiganbayan presiding justice known to have close ties with the head of rival Liberal Party, Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas.

UNA secretary general Toby Tiangco said he found something “sinister” with the inclusion of Rafael Santos on the shortlist of contenders for the position of Sandiganbayan presiding justice. Santos got the most number of votes from the Judicial and Bar Council despite objections from a civil society group due to his political ties, said Tiangco.

Santos is an undersecretary at the DILG, and was appointed to the post by Roxas. He also used to be an undersecretary at the Department of Transportation and Communications when Roxas headed this department, Tiangco cited.

Santos also used to work for the influential Villaraza, Cruz, Marcelo, and Angangco law office, popularly referred to as “The Firm.”

Tiangco expressed fears that Santos’ possible appointment as top justice at the antigraft court might compromise pending cases against his Liberal Party allies. Conversely, rivals of the ruling party could be unfairly treated, he said.

“If he will be the next presiding justice of the Sandiganbayan, then it is most likely that allies will be treated with kid gloves, and iron fists for known adversaries,” he argued.

He said he hopes President Aquino would skip Santos when selecting the next Presiding Justice, adding that the Sandiganbayan leader must be someone who is above suspicion.

“If we are serious in cleaning up the judiciary and instituting genuine reforms in the judicial system, we have to pick those who have unquestionable character and integrity,” he said.

“We see two roads diverging in the woods: one is a tuwid na daan [straight and righteous path], and one a super expresslane,” he added.

The others on the JBC shortlist for the next Sandiganbayan presiding justice are Court of Appeals Associate Justice Apolinario Bruselas and Sandiganbayan Associate Justices Amparo Tang, Efren de la Cruz and Gregory Ong.

Should Santos be appointed the next presiding justice, it would be the first time in a long time that an outsider would head the antigraft court.

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: antigraft court , Appointments , Judicial and Bar Council , Mar Roxas , Rafael Santos , Sandiganbayan , Toby Tiangco

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
  1. Gigi Reyes back to face charges
  2. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  3. In the know: Gigi Reyes
  4. SC suspends proctor in 2011 bar exams
  5. Senator Pimentel backs German think tank’s stand vs dynasties
  6. Bar proctor suspended for photographing test papers
  7. Collector Danny Garcia says Inquirer worth more than news
  8. Meteor shower to light up PH skies
  9. What Went Before: Enrile denies Gigi Reyes was ‘other woman’
  10. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  7. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  8. Massive infra spending set
  9. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  10. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  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. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  8. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  9. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia


  • Palace renews appeal for plane passengers to test for MERS—CoV
  • 2 teenagers killed in Mlang, North Cotabato
  • No sympathy from North Korea over ferry disaster
  • 4 French journalists freed from Syria captors home
  • De Lima on Gigi Reyes: Let’s wait and see
  • Sports

  • Pacquiao courtesy call to Aquino set for Monday
  • Nick Calathes suspension a reminder of supplement risk
  • Teague scores 28 as Hawks soar past Pacers in Game 1
  • Warriors beat Clippers in playoff opener
  • Pacquiao top Mayweather contender
  • Lifestyle

  • Angono petroglyphs in danger of disappearing
  • Britain’s baby Prince George visits Australian zoo
  • Noli Yamsuan, Cardinal Sin’s ‘official’ photographer: ‘I could smell the aftershave lotion of the Pope’
  • Simplifying and lightening life
  • Where to go for Easter night-out
  • Entertainment

  • Show-biz celebrities’ other choices of summer getaway
  • Why ‘Noah’ can’t dock his ark at Philippine theaters
  • Acclaimed artist goes wild while on holiday
  • Believing in this mermaid
  • Missing Xian
  • Business

  • Top-selling insurance agent opens her dream café
  • Connecting and transacting with one another
  • Building wealth for health
  • Why Mandaue Foam buys, rather than rents, space
  • A workplace of new possibilities
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Epiphany
  • Unpaid creditor vs distressed debtor
  • Moving on
  • From culinary desert to paradise
  • Response to China: ‘Usjaphil’
  • Global Nation

  • Asia seeks Obama’s assurance in territorial spats
  • Cesar Chavez movie sparks memories of Fil-Am labor leaders
  • Filipinos in US poised for success
  • Visas for priests and other faith leaders
  • DOH to continue tracking co-passengers of OFW infected with MERS virus
  • Marketplace