Tolentino launches free legal aid clinic, to open first office in Manila
MANILA, Philippines — On the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, Senator Francis Tolentino will launch a free legal aid clinic for marginalized and impoverished sectors and overseas Filipino Workers.
Tolentino said the Philippine Legal Justice Center (PLJC), which he founded, would open its first office in Manila and start accepting clients on Wednesday, December 8.
It will later open satellite offices in other parts of the country, as embodied by the “three stars” present in its logo, which represents Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
According to the senator, PLJC will render “free, adequate and accessible legal assistance to marginalized and indigent litigants, overseas Filipino workers and indigenous peoples and their communities.”
Among the services the center will offer include legal advice, drafting of legal instruments, and representation and counseling in cases filed before the Office of the Prosecutor and in any court of justice, quasi-judicial bodies, and other administrative bodies.
“The program aims to instill civic consciousness through social engagement among members of the Bar by instituting a legal clinic and serving the community and the country through pro bono legal work,” Tolentino pointed out in a statement on Tuesday.
He said the center likewise aims “to uphold and concretize the people’s rights to speedy disposition of their cases and to be given fair, impartial, and efficient justice.”
“The initiative is also directed towards legal literacy and nation-building by promoting justice, including environmental justice, across all sectors of society,” the senator stressed.
Tolentino said PLJC is collaborating with law schools soon to provide practical legal training and internships to law students.
No less than Supreme Court Chief Justice Alexander Gesmundo commended the senator’s advocacy, saying this initiative “will help enhance and strengthen the administration of justice in the country.”
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