MANILA - The leader of the House justice committee believes the quo warranto petition to nullify the appointment of Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno will be granted by the Supreme Court.
Oriental Mindoro Rep. Rey Umali said Wednesday his "fearless forecast" on the case is that all magistrates will vote to oust the embattled leader of the judiciary.
"Basing it from an earlier action taken by the Supreme Court where the court en banc voted 13-0 on her leave of absence, I think the numbers would not differ so much. If it differs there will only be one or 2 siding chief justice," he told ANC.
The quo warranto case seeks to nullify Sereno's appointment as Chief Justice for her alleged failure to submit required statements of assets, liabilities, and net worth when she was applying for the top judiciary post.
Umali said that if the Supreme Court ousts Sereno, the House will still "go through the motions" and vote on the impeachment of the Chief Justice just "to perform our mandate."
He said the Chief Justice was given all the opportunity in the justice panel impeachment proceedings to prove that she properly declared her wealth.
"She had all the opportunity to present that during the impeachment hearings but they opted not to. And I think in the Supreme Court she did not also submit it kasi she wanted to submit it before the Senate impeachment court," he said.
An ABS-CBN News source earlier said the voting on the petition filed by the Solicitor General will be on May 11, instead of the original May 17 schedule.
Sereno, who was on leave since March to prepare for her looming Senate impeachment trial, returned to the Supreme Court today.