Marquez to Palace: No need to interpret SC ruling on GMA travel


Posted at Nov 16 2011 02:17 PM | Updated as of Nov 17 2011 01:48 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Supreme Court (SC) spokesman and Court Administrator Jose Midas Marquez reminded anew the executive department to heed to the orders of the high court on allowing former President Gloria Arroyo and her husband to leave for abroad.

The Arroyo camp has already threatened to file indirect contempt charges against government officials led by Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, but the Supreme Court can decide on its own to order them to show cause why they should not be held in contempt, Marquez told ABS-CBN News on Wednesday.

Marquez said he does not want to pre-empt what the high court would do. He only reminded de Lima of her role as a lawyer.

“I’m calling on the executive to follow the order of the court. The decision is very clear. There is no need for interpretation, only application," he said.

Mr. and Mrs. Arroyo will attempt anew to leave the country today, according to the Arroyos' lawyer Ferdinand Topacio.

A standoff similar to Tuesday night’s in NAIA may yet happen again, with de Lima insisting that the high court should first resolve a motion for reconsideration on the TRO.

Marquez said there are already a lot of lawyers in the country, but only one can interpret the Constitution – the Supreme Court.

He said, “that will be unfortunate if they don’t heed the order again. We lawyers are officers of the court. We know that everyone should comply with the orders of the court.”

A person who is found to be liable for indirect contempt of court is required to pay P30,000 and can also be imprisoned for 6 months.