The Supreme Court (SC) has ordered Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno to explain on a plea for the release of her psychiatric evaluation results.
During Tuesday’s en banc deliberations, it gave Sereno five days to comment on the request filed by Lorenzo Gadon, a lawyer, for the release of such results.
Gadon recently filed an impeachment complaint against the Chief Justice before the House of Representatives.
His plea was denied by the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC), which is headed by Sereno.
The JBC is constitutionally mandated to screen applicants for posts in the judiciary and those in the offices of the Ombudsman and Deputy Ombudsman.
It has also been ordered by the High Court to file its comment on the same request.
Court sources said it was SC Justice Marvic Leonen who moved to give a chance to Sereno to file her comment on the issue and not to immediately release the results of her psychiatric tests.
In a motion, Gadon said such tests were a mandatory requirement when Sereno in 2012 applied for Chief Justice, a post “imbued with great public interest” and must be declared a public record, contrary to the JBC’s position that results of the tests are confidential in nature.
“Considering that the JBC is ‘under the supervision of the [SC],’ as expressly provided in Section 8 (1), Article VIII, of the 1987 Constitution, and the results of the psychological/psychiatric test[s]of Chief Justice Sereno are not covered by the confidentiality rule as they concern her very fitness to be and remain as Chief Justice, and thus imbued with great public interest, it is most respectfully prayed that this honorable court reverse or reconsider the disapproval by the JBC and order the immediate release of certified true copies of the results of the psychiatric tests of Chief Justice Sereno,” Gadon’s motion read.
In an exclusive story of The Manila Times that was published on August 24, 2012–the very day that Sereno was appointed by then-President Benigno Aquino 3rd as Chief Justice, it was discovered that she got a “GRADE OF 4” in her psychiatric tests.
Page 10 of the psychiatric report showed that Sereno had an IQ of “ Average.”
“She projects a happy mood but has depressive markers too. There is a strong tendency to make decisions based on current mood, thus, outcome is highly subjective and self-righteous,” the report said.
It added that Sereno “keeps a smiling face to project that she is happy” and that “she is dramatic and emotional, she appears energetic and all smiles and agreeable, but with religious preoccupation in almost all significant aspects of her life.”