Anti-corruption group asks probe on CA associate justice
An anti-corruption advocacy group on Wednesday called on the Supreme Court to investigate a male Court of Appeals associate justice for alleged biased decisions he issued on the case involving two cases under his watch.
In a statement Wednesday, the Alliance for Good Governance (AGG) said Associate Justice Noel Tijam has displayed his partiality in deciding the cases involving State-owned Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and the case of Home Guaranty Corporation (HGC).
“The Philippine government is at the losing end in these cases,” AGG spokesman Alberto Vicente said.
Vicente’s observation was one of the arguments raised by BCDA in its appeal to the Supreme Court.
The appeals court through Tijam, in its July 31 ruling reversed and modified a decision of the Arbitral Tribunal of the Philippine Dispute Resolution Center last February that ordered the private CJH Development Corporation (CJHDevCo) to vacate Camp John Hay and deliver leased property including new constructions and permanent improvements to BCDA.
It also ordered BCDA to return P1.42 billion in rentals to CJHDevCO subject to proper processes by the Commission on Audit (COA).
On the HGC case, the appeals court where Tijam was part of the division that issued the ruling upheld the decision of the Manila court who refused to dismiss the civil case filed by R-II Builders against it.
The case went to the Supreme Court and reversed the appeals court ruling.
“Justice Tijam has lost his credibility when he showed clear partiality in deciding cases,” Vicente said.
Meanwhile, Tijam maintained that the decision is based on factual, legal and jurisprudential bases.
“There is no truth to BCDA’s assertion that the Court of Appeals decision is detrimental to the government’s financial interests,” Tijam said adding that the order for BCDA to pay Camp John Hay Development Corp. (CJHDevCo) the amount of P1.4-billion is not the doing of the Appeals court but that of the arbitral tribunal.
“Any perceived financial detriment to the government is not due to the CA decision, it is solely attributable to the bad judgment on the part of the BCDA in failing to involve and implead the third parties from their contracts from the lease agreement between BCDA and CJHDevCo,” Tijam added. Tetch Torres-Tupas/TVJ
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