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Follow rule of law, Sereno tells officials implementing anti-crime campaign

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Follow rule of law, Sereno tells officials implementing anti-crime campaign

/ 11:54 PM September 21, 2017

Supreme Court Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno.
INQUIRER FILE PHOTO / GRIG C. MONTEGRANDE

In the government’s fight against criminality, the government’s action should be guided by the rule of law, Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno said Thursday.

In her speech during the unveiling of the monument of the late human-rights defender Jose “Ka Pepe” Diokno at the Commission on Human Rights, Sereno said if the rule of law will not be followed, even the law abiding citizens will become victim on the government’s war against crime.

“Dapat tugisin ang kriminalidad, at kung kailangan magbuwis ng buhay upang matupad ito, gawin ang kinakailangan; ngunit siguruhin na ang lahat ay ayon sa batas. Kung hindi, di-kalaunan ay ang mga masunurin sa batas na ang magiging biktima ng kapangyarihang walang takot sa Diyos at batas,” said Sereno in her first public appearance after the House of Representative approved the impeachment complaint filed by Atty. Lorenzo Gado as sufficient in form and substance.

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(We should hound criminality, and if we need to shed life to attain this, we should do what it takes; but we need to assure that everything is in accordance with the law. If not, sooner or later those who abide the law will fall victims of those in authorities that do not fear God and the law.)

Sereno said shortcuts cannot be done in implementing the law because a life lost can never be restored.

“Ipaalala mula sa pinakamataas hanggang sa pinaka mababang lingkod ng bayan…lahat sila ay nanumpang ipagtanggol ang karapatan ng bawat Pilipino (Let us remind our public servants from highest to lowest levels that all of them swore to protect every right of Filipinos),” the Chief Justice said.

She reminded government officials that those who violate human rights and those involved in corruption will eventually be “bothered by their conscience” and will have to pay their “debts to the people.”

The Chief Justice also called on the youth to follow the patriotism and courage shown by Diokno in fighting for democracy.

“We must continue to relive his struggles and articulate his thoughts,” she said.

The Chief Justice also assured that the Constitution will always be the Supreme Court’s “north star.”

She said the Constitution “will guide us as we, through our decisions, in our own way help stter the court of our nation’s history. May this light not be dimmed.”

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A group of supporters from the “Stand with CJ Movement” cheered Sereno during the event which was also attended by former President Benigno Aquino III and Vice President Leni Robredo.

The unveiling of Diokno’s monument commemorated the 45th anniversary of the declaration of martial law. /jpv

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TAGS: Judiciary, rule of law, SC, Sereno
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