A lawyer has asked the Supreme Court (SC) to stop Vice President Jejomar Binay from continuing to occupy his post as head of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines, saying it is against the Constitution.
In a 15-page petition for certiorari and prohibition, Jesus Nicardo Falcis 3rd also asked the High Court to issue a temporary restraining order (TRO) “pending determination of the merits of this case.”
The petition was filed on Thursday, but copies reached reporters only on Friday.
Falcis, who was appearing in the case in propria persona, a resident of 47-E Scout Rallos Street, Barangay Laging Handa, Quezon City, said Binay is prohibited by the Constitution to hold dual or multiple positions.
His name was included in the list of bar passers released last April.
He is a graduate of University of the Philippines College of Law.
Aside from Binay, also named respondent is the Boy Scouts of the Philippines with office address 181 Natividad-Almeda Lopez Street, Ermita, Manila.
He was elected the group’s president in 1994 and served until 1996. He was reelected in 1999 and served since then. He was again reelected last June 20, his 19th year as head of the government-owned and-controlled corporation or GOCC.
Binay is the presidential candidate of the United Nationalist Alliance, one of the biggest opposition parties in the country today.
He is facing several corruption cases before the Office of the Ombudsman.
“The prohibition against the holding of dual or multiple offices has been characterized by this [court]as a stricter prohibition on the highest officials of the land. The circumvention of such affects the operation of the government and all Filipinos,” Falcis said.
According to him, Binay violated Article VII, Section 13 of the constitution, which provides, “The President, Vice President, the members of the Cabinet and their deputies or assistants shall not, unless otherwise provided in this Constitution, hold any other office or employment during their tenure. They shall not, during said tenure, directly or indirectly, practice any other profession, participate in any business or be financially interested in any contract with, or in any franchise or special privilege granted by the government or any subdivision, agency or instrumentality thereof, including government-owned or controlled corporations or their subsidiaries. They shall strictly avoid conflict of interest in the conduct of their office.”
The Vice President, as heads Scout, is also being accused of an anomalous land deal between the group and Alphaland.
Falcis said Binay as the group’s president is not a Cabinet position, hence the post does not fall under any of the exceptions to the prohibition.
He added that the High Court can decide on the case using its power of judicial review and its decision can further guide the lower courts.