MANILA - Associate Justice Teresita De Castro has been nominated to replace Ombudsman Conchita Morales, who will end her 7-year term in July.
Retired associate justice Arturo Brion nominated De Castro as Ombudsman in a letter to the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) last Wednesday.
"Through all these years, she has served the government with competence, probity and integrity," reads Brion's 2-page letter.
"Her long years in the prosecutorial service (almost 19 years) and in the Sandiganbayan (more than 10 years), not to mention her more than a decade of experience as an associate justice of the Supreme Court qualify her for the position of Ombudsman," it added.
De Castro, who had testified in the impeachment hearings against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, is set to retire from the Supreme Court in October.
De Castro has yet to accept the nomination, which is necessary for her to be considered for the post.
She is an alumna of the University of the Philippines, where she was a consistent member of the College of Law honor society, according to the Supreme Court website.
She began her career in public service as a law clerk at the high court's Office of the Clerk of Court in 1973.
She served at the Department of Justice from 1975 to 1997 before rejoining the judiciary as Sandiganbayan associate justice and eventual presiding justice.
De Castro was appointed to the Supreme Court in 2007.
Brion noted that the retiring justice has received several awards, including the Chief Justice Hilario Davide Reform Award for her work in the Sandiganbayan, and the Presidential Medal of Merit for serving as a peace negotiator during the terms of the late former president Corazon Aquino and former president Fidel Ramos.
Aside from testifying against Sereno, De Castro also made headlines recently for engaging in a fiery exchange with the Chief Justice during oral arguments on a petition to remove the top judge from office.
With a report from Johnson Manabat, ABS-CBN News