Ex-chief justice wants Leonen or Bernabe as next ponente in Marcos poll protest

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 17 2019 12:05 PM

MANILA - Former chief justice Artemio Panganiban on Thursday floated the names of two justices whom he said should be the member-in-charge of the electoral protest of former Senator Ferdinand "BongBong" Marcos against Vice President Leni Robredo if the ponente in the case is replaced.

"To my mind, I’ll be revealing a little secret, I think it should be [Marvic] Leonen or [Estela Perlas] Bernabe because to my knowledge, they were the ones who pushed for this resolution to have comments first," Panganiban said.

Associate Justice Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa penned the report on the recount of votes from 5,415 polling precincts in 3 provinces chosen by Marcos as his pilot provinces in his electoral protest.

"The crucial question is this, will he be changed? A new ponente recall or a new member-in-charge will be chosen by the majority," Panganiban said on ANC's Headstart. 

The Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, on Tuesday voted to release the report on the initial recount of ballots in 3 pilot provinces of Camarines Sur, Iloilo and Negros Oriental and require parties to comment.

Caguioa and Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio voted to dismiss Marcos' protest because he failed to make substantial recovery in the 3 pilot provinces.

Panganiban said he has not yet read Caguioa's report or the dissent.

"He should have asked for comments first on this report of the committee that looked at the ballots and made the counts," he said. 

Panganiban believes that justices will not intentionally delay the case.

"It's very important, not only to the PET, the judiciary but to the country. That's why I think my former colleagues, for love of country, will decide this straight, fast and according to law, and according to the best interest of the country," he said.