Sereno: Protect judicial dignity
Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno told her colleagues in the judiciary not to be distracted by the impeachment case pending against her in the House committee on justice as she continued a campaign to fight her possible ouster.
Delivering the closing remarks at a lecture series held at the Supreme Court and attended by justices and judges on Thursday, Sereno stressed that the “dignity and independence” of the judiciary must be preserved amid the impeachment hearings.
Crying for justice
“To the men and women of the judiciary, please continue to focus on your work. Nothing should distract us. There is much to be done for this country,” she said, adding that the “country is crying for justice.”
At the same time, Sereno urged her fellow magistrates to “monitor and watch and be on the lookout” to safeguard the judiciary’s independence and integrity.
“It is most important to me that the dignity and independence of the judiciary is preserved and that has been the principle I have been observing in my conduct in all of these times,” she said.
She did not comment on the decision of Supreme Court Associate Justice Teresita de Castro and Court Administrator Midas Marquez to appear before the House committee, which is trying to justify the impeachment charges against her.
As if to defend her decision not to participate in the hearing, Sereno told the magistrates that she had submitted herself to the impeachment process. She denied any wrongdoing, though.
“I hope that you have taken it in all good faith that my intent is to defend the dignity and independence of the judiciary,” she said.
The lecture series was organized by the Philippine Judicial Academy (Philja) and the Metrobank Foundation.
Philja serves as a training school for justices, judges, court personnel, lawyers and aspirants to judicial posts.
Sereno was also scheduled to speak at another forum in Manila organized by the militant group Gabriela.
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