Sereno unfazed by ouster raps, won't resign


Posted at Sep 15 2017 01:34 PM

Supreme Court Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno with Members of the House of Representatives gather as they attend the State of the Nation address by President Duterte, July 24, 2017., Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

MANILA- Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno won't resign from her post despite an ongoing impeachment process, her spokesman said Friday.

Lawyer Carlo Cruz assured that the chief magistrate remains committed to her work in the Supreme Court even after the House of Representatives justice committee found an ouster complaint against Sereno sufficient in form and substance.

"The public may rest assured that the Chief Justice remains committed to her duties at the Supreme Court, and continues to pursue the judicial reform agenda even as the impeachment process unfolds," Cruz said in a statement.

He added that Sereno has already received a copy of the impeachment complaint and will explain in her answer as to "why the complaint must fail."

"Chief Justice Sereno has always been a staunch defender of the Judiciary and our democracy, and has always exercised utmost competence, integrity, probity, and independence in her official conduct and in the performance of her functions," Cruz said.

The House justice committee on Wednesday found the impeachment complaint filed by lawyer Lorenzo Gadon against Sereno to be sufficient in form and substance.

Gadon's complaint alleges that Sereno had committed culpable violation of the Constitution, betrayal of public trust, corruption, and other high crimes for allegedly lying in her statement of assets, liabilities and net worth, falsification of High Court documents, delayed court action, alleged use of judiciary funds for a P5-million vehicle, and luxury travels, among others. 

Cruz has belied the charges against Sereno, saying "many of the allegations in the Gadon complaint are unsupported by evidence or rely mainly on hearsay consisting of newspaper clippings."