THE Supreme Court en banc slammed the deception and confusion caused by the camp of Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno on the issue of her leave.
In a press briefing, spokesman Theodore Te said the justices expressed regret over the press statement issued by Sereno’s lawyers that the Chief Justice would go on “wellness leave.”
Thirteen justices signed the statement except for Benjamin Caguioa who was not present in the en banc session on Tuesday when The Manila Times first reported that Sereno was forced to go on “indefinite leave.”
“The SC en banc ordered Sereno to go on indefinite leave and there is no truth that would just be a wellness leave,” said Te.
Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio has been designated acting Chief Justice starting today, Thursday, the first day of Sereno’s leave.
Sereno is facing impeachment at the House of Representatives where she has been accused of corruption, betrayal of public trust and culpable violation of the Constitution.
Anticipating her impeachment, Sereno, through her lawyers, said that she was going on leave so that she could prepare for her impending trial at the Senate, which would be transformed into a court that would determine whether she was guilty or not based on the articles of impeachment that would be transmitted by the House. JOMAR CANLAS