MANILA- A lawyer has expressed interest in testifying against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno before lawmakers hearing an impeachment complaint against the top magistrate.
Lawyer Eligio Mallari has written to House justice committee chair Rep. Reynaldo Umali that he be allowed to testify on the inordinate delay of the disposition of a case at the Supreme Court before him and the Philippine National Bank (PNB).
"Ito po ay dapat tingnan na po ng Committee on Justice ng HoR (House of Representatives) because ito ay isang culpable violation of the constitution and a betrayal of public trust dahil masyado na po ang delay," Manuelito Luna, lawyer of Mallair said Thursday.
Lawmakers are hearing an impeachment complaint agaisnt the top magistrate filed by lawyer Lorenzo Gadon.
Sereno late last year was accused by the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) of sitting on the case.
The group alleged that Sereno received a letter from PNB regarding the bank’s pending case against spouses Eligio and Marcelina Mallari over two parcels of prime commercial lots in San Fernando, Pampanga and thereafter, the case, pending before the First Division, which is Sereno's division, “no longer moved."
The Chief Justice, however, denied sitting on the case and noted that the Supreme Court has already released 3 decisions on the case in the years 1988, 2002, and 2004.
The House justice committee, however, has yet to respond to Mallari's letter.