Another case of judicial overreach is the SC’s favorable decision on the appeal of Solgen Jardaleza that he be re-included in the JBC’s list of nominees to the SC after the JBC dropped him.
“During Tuesday’s deliberations in the Supreme Court, the key argument raised by those who voted to retain Jardeleza’s name on the JBC shortlist was “due process.” Led by Justices Arturo Brion and Teresita Leonardo-De Castro, they argued that integrity should not be discussed because Jardeleza had previously gathered 4 out of 6 votes in the JBC anyway.
“Two other justices – Sereno and Carpio – inhibited themselves from the deliberations on Tuesday, leaving Justice Marvic Leonen to argue against the inclusion of Jardeleza. Leonen, according to sources, cited “judicial overreach.”
“The SC should presume that the JBC, an independent constitutional body, knows what it is doing. To supplant its discretion by insisting on the inclusion of Jardeleza would have been tantamount to judicial overreach. The argument however failed to convince the majority.” (Excerpt from Rappler
Read Art 8 of the 1987 Constitution on the JBC. Granted that the JBC is under the Court’s supervision Art 8(1) but Art 8(5) says the principal function of the JBC is to recommend appointees to the Judiciary. Note that the list of appointees is submitted to the president and not to the SC for approval. Now the Court has given itself the power to amend the JBC’s list of nominees. So what happens to the JBC? And what happens to the president’s power to choose a nominee from the JBC’s list? Do they now need the Court’s prior approval?
Power play. Both CJ Sereno and AJ Carpio raised integrity questions and the JBC dropped Jardaleza from its list of nominees.
But Jardaleza went to the Supreme Court and claimed that “he was not given due process during JBC deliberations and that the body had committed grave abuse of discretion in leaving him out of the nominees.”
Backroom politicking by Jardaleza and his backers got the SC to do another judicial overreach i.e. they voted to re-include Jardeleza in the list of nominees even if the JBC which is the body tasked by the Constitution to vet nominees to the SC dropped him from the list.
A new list including Jardaleza was submitted to the president. Aquino was torn between Jardaleza and Grace Tan of COA. Jardaleza’s backers won the president’s ear.