Negros court workers show support for SC

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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

COURT employees in Bacolod City and Negros Occidental joined their colleagues nationwide in showing support to the Supreme Court (SC) after it was criticized by President Benigno S. Aquino III for declaring some parts of the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) unconstitutional.

Lawyer Gerald John Joven, president of Philippine Association of Court Employees (Pace) Negros Occidental Chapter, said they observed the Black Monday starting last week and yesterday about 80 percent of the court employees at the Hall of Justice wore black in support of the High Tribunal.

"We will continue to hold the protest or the Black Monday during the State of the Nation Address (Sona) of the President," Joven said.


Aquino will deliver his Sona next Monday, July 28.

Pace-Negros said in their official statement Monday that they “stand firm and one in support of the SC in its thrust of providing and maintaining a strong judicial system founded on the principles of efficiency, probity and independence.”

They added: "In these embattled times, when the integrity of the SC as a co-equal branch of the government is subjected to unsound political accusations and attempts to undermine its fiscal autonomy, the Pace strongly believes that the rule of law has to be respected and that the sacrosanct role of the Philippine Constitution, upon which all political rights and powers emanate from, has to be upheld at all times.”

They noted that “the SC, being the court of last resort and the last bulwark of democracy, recently promulgated decisions nullifying several national legislative and executive programs on the ground of unconstitutionality, thus earning the ire of these branches of government.”

In apparent retaliation, they said, new measures like the abolition of the Judiciary Development Fund (JDF) and Special Allowance for Justices and Judges (SAJ) are being undertaken to attack and impair its stability, directly and implicitly persuading it to give in to unrelenting political demands.

The Pace strongly condemns these uncalled for maneuverings and asserts that the judiciary has to be freed from all forms and vestiges of political pressures couched on personal agenda, the statement added.

They added: “The Pace manifests its vote of confidence in favor of the SC and will continue to be watchful in order to safeguard the honor of the judiciary. And notwithstanding these disheartening developments, the Pace and the SC will remain faithful to their responsibility of administering justice to everyone that is worthy of public trust and confidence."

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on July 22, 2014.

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