MANILA – Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella on Thursday said that alumni of San Beda College do not necessarily have an edge for upcoming vacancies in the High Court.
This week, the president appointed Court of Appeals Associate Justice Noel Tijam and Sandiganbayan’s Samuel Martires--two alumni of San Beda College of Law—to the Supreme Court.
"Yesterday I heard him say twice, 'It's never a matter of personal interest, it's always public interest first.'… From his gauge of public interest first, he must probably have seen that these schoolmates… were within that standards that he demanded of. But certainly it's not just confined within his alma mater," Abella said.
Tijam’s and Martires are Duterte’s first two appointees to the country’s highest judicial body.
“His knowledge of contacts is limited within a certain scope. However, he is, like I said, he is man who listens, he is a man who is deeply interested, he is a man who studies his subject matter and certainly he can go beyond his alma mater," he said.
Tijam replaced Associate Justice Arturo Brion, who retired last December. He graduated Cum Laude from San Beda College, and was a classmate of Duterte.
Martires is also a graduate of San Beda College of Law.