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Sereno skips Independence Day rites in lieu of SC proceedings on martial law

/ 09:55 AM June 12, 2017
Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno - August 9, 2016

Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno (File photo by RAFFY LERMA/Philippine Daily Inquirer)

Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno has begged off the invitation to raise the Philippine flag on Monday at the Bonifacio Monument in Caloocan for Independence Day to prepare for the oral arguments on petitions against President Rodrigo Duterte’s martial law proclamation.

The Supreme Court has a scheduled preliminary conference on Monday, June 12, and oral arguments on June 13, 14 and 15 to hear the three separate petitions seeking to nullify the 60-day martial law in Mindanao.

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“She (Sereno) and the other members of the Court En Banc have been preparing to discharge their constitutional duty to review the petitions and hear arguments,” the high court said in a statement.

“For this reason, she has begged off in order that she and the other members of the Court can attend to the preliminary conference and the oral arguments,” the Supreme Court added.

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A total of five martial law-related petitions have been filed with the Supreme Court. Three of the petitions filed by the minority bloc from Congress, residents of Mindanao with members of cause-oriented groups and women from Marawi City have been challenging the factual declaration of martial law. The three petitions have been consolidated and will be heard for three consecutive days.

Last year, the Chief Justice led the Independence Day flag-raising rites at the Quezon City hall grounds. JPV

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TAGS: Chief Justice Sereno, court en banc, Martial law, Oral argument, President Duterte, Supreme Court
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