MANILA- The Court of Appeals' decision to declare illegal the payment of attorney’s fees to ousted Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno and other lawyers in the arbitration case against the Philippine International Air Terminals Co. Inc. (Piatco) should have no effect on her ouster appeal at the Supreme Court, her spokesperson said Friday.
Lawyer Jojo Lacanilao said they are not expecting the appellate court's latest decision to have any effect on Sereno's motion for reconsideration over the quo warranto case against her.
"Things happen as they are and the context of the whole thing is highly political in some way but there shouldn't be any impact at all," Lacanilao told ANC.
"Hopefully there are no interconnections between them but legally there shouldn't be any," he added.
Lacanilao also clarified that the CA's recent decision has personally nothing to do with the former top magistrate.
"The Chief Justice (Sereno) is not a party to this case," Lacanilao said.
"Chief Justice Sereno is not part of the case. She does not know what is going on in the case. This has nothing to do with her right now personally," he added.
The Philippines' first female chief justice, Sereno was ousted last May 11 by her peers with a vote of 8-6 in an unprecedented grant of a "quo warranto" plea.
The ruling nullified her 2012 appointment, citing her failure to file the required number of Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth, including those from her time as University of the Philippines law professor, to the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) when she applied for the post.
Sereno appealed her ouster, arguing that the decision was "null and void" and that she may only be removed through impeachment proceedings.
The high court might vote on Sereno’s motion for reconsideration on June 19.