Feb 15, 2021 @ 17:33

Guevarra pours cold water on calls to join next CJ race

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra on Monday poured cold water on incessant calls for him to join the nomination process to the highest judicial seat in the country, which will soon become vacant due to the early retirement of Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta this March.

“With all sincerity, I believe that there are many judges and justices who are more qualified and deserving than I am to be considered for the illustrious position of chief justice. Many of them have spent their entire professional career in the judiciary, and it is only fair that they be given the privilege of being considered preferentially.”

” I am happy serving the people as the secretary of justice, and I aspire for nothing more, ” Guevarra said.

” I find this matter totally irrelevant and insignificant, although I must admit that there are also some other people (law classmates, fellow lawyers, and colleagues) who prod me to think about it. Maybe it’s helpful to squelch such speculations and simplify the selection process, ” he continued.

Last year, Guevarra has declined his nomination to the Supreme Court, saying his service at the Department of Justice is most needed that the country is facing the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Retired Sandiganbayan associate justice Raoul Victorino nominated Guevarra for the seat to be vacated by then retiring SC justice Jose Reyes.

The SC has approved Peralta’s request
for early retirement effective March 27, 2021, or during his 69th birthday.

Peralta was supposed to retire on 2022, or upon reaching the mandatory retirement age of 70 years old.

His request for early retirement was approved by the SC en banc on January 5, 2021.

The JBC came up with a notice, announcing the opening for application or recommendation for the post to be vacated by Peralta.

Last November, the high court accepted the application for early retirement filed by Associate Justice Priscilla Baltazar-Padilla due to health reasons. #

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