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5/14/2018 7:21:58 AM

a REPOST with permission from Dan I. Amosin

The decision of the 8 justices in the Sereno case has rendered nugatory the functions of the constitutionally-created Judicial and Bar Council as regards the vetting and determination of the qualifications of candidates for any vacancy in the Supreme Court and the Ombudsman.

The Supreme Court is represented in that body, where it is given the opportunity to vet candidates. It likewise usurped and stultified the power of Congress to remove the Chief Justice by impeachment, which was actually ongoing when the 8 justices raced Congress to the draw and removed the Chief Justice themselves without so much as saying by your leave.

Assuming arguendo without admitting that indeed the Supreme Court has CONCURRENT jurisdiction with Congress as a co-equal body to remove the Chief Justice by Quo Warranto, then it should have deferred to Congress on the issue in this instant case, because there was already an ONGOING impeachment proceeding in Congress before the Quo Warranto case was filed in the Supreme Court. In fact, 6 of the justices recognized the legitimacy and pre-eminence of this primary jurisdiction by participating and testifying in the proceedings therein against the Chief Justice. Because of this action, the 6 justices are barred by the doctrine of ESTOPPEL from turning around and establishing the subsequent parallel jurisdiction of the Supreme Court, then trying and deciding the same issue in the subsequent Quo Warranto proceedings. More importantly, the 6 justices were barred from participating in the Quo Warranto case because that resulted in their acting as witnesses for the prosecution in one forum ( congress impeachment) and judges in their own forum ( quo warranto case in the Supreme Court ) on the same issues at the same time, thus the exercise of their discretion was tantamount to abuse thereof, rendering their action in excess of jurisdiction and therefore null and void.

Finally, the Supreme Court, thru its majority of 8 justices , acted in blatant abuse of its discretion by assuming a parallel jurisdiction on a matter of which Congress has already assumed primary jurisdiction, thus summarily truncating or aborting the ONGOING impeachment process in a co-equal body, Congress, also vested with such jurisdiction. The supreme court’s competing action is an abuse of its discretion rendering its act in excess of jurisdiction, and therefore null and void. In case of concurrent jurisdiction between two legal forums, it is a matter of law that the one which took cognizance of the issue FIRST should be allowed to exercise the same to the exclusion of another forum , in order to obviate the eventuality of two competing bodies having concurrent jurisdiction trying the same issue and ultimately rendering CONTRADICTORY judgments thereon.

This professional courtesy in legal proceedings is designed to achieve the orderly rendering of justice in every case . The Supreme Court is duty bound to promote it. Alas, it has not only reneged on its duty in this case , it also promoted tumult and a constitutional crisis by stultifying an ongoing congressional impeachment process with its unnecessary and parallel action of conducting a concurrent, parallel and competing hearing on the same issue by way of giving due course to a Quo Warranto case In derogation of law , the demands of equity and fairness, the orderly rendering of justice and the clear delineation and non-competing apportionment of powers in the Constitution. It would have been different if the Quo Warranto case was filed first with the Supreme Court before Congress ever started the impeachment process. These are good points for a Motion for Reconsideration of the Supreme Court’s erroneous decision. My two cents’ worth as a practicing lawyer and former university instructor on the constitution. (Dan I. Amosin)



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