By Rey Panaligan
The Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) expanded on Friday its procedure in the selection of a new Chief Justice by inviting the public to submit, not later than November 15, any sworn complaint, report or opposition to the five aspirants to the top post in the judiciary.
It said the aspirants, in alphabetical order, are Supreme Court Associate Justices Lucas P. Bersamin, Antonio T. Carpio, Diosdado M. Peralta, Estela M. Perlas Bernabe, and Andres B. Reyes Jr.
Bersamin, Carpio, Peralta and Bernabe are the senior SC justices who have been automatically endorsed to the post vacated with the retirement on October 10 of Chief Justice Teresita J. Leonardo de Castro. Reyes was endorsed by a retired Sandiganbayan associate justice.
Since October 10, Carpio — as the most senior associate justice — has been acting Chief Justice.
Under the Constitution, President Duterte has 90 days from October 10 to appoint a new Chief Justice from the list of nominees that would be submitted by the JBC.
In its announcement, the JBC said a sworn complaint, report or opposition may be sent to it by personal delivery or mail, by facsimile through telephone No. 02-552-9607 or by electronic mail email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
The JBC said it will meet on November 16 “to discuss, among other matters, the comments or oppositions from the public, if any.”