11 SC justices endorse Justice Martires for Ombudsman post

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DAVAO CITY (July 17) — Eleven Supreme Court  justices  on Tuesday recommended on Tuesday    Associate Justice Samuel  Martires  as replacement to  retiring Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales.

Supreme Court Spokesperson Theodore Te said  Martires received 11 votes, excluding himself and Justices Alfredo Caguioa and Estela Bernabe, who were absent during the Supreme Court en banc.

Four justices voted for special prosecutor Edilberto Sandoval, while three voted for Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III.

The justices voted  to endorse   Martires before the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC), the body tasked to screen applicants for the post , the same body which interviews  applicants for the Ombudsman post.

On Friday, July 20, the JBC will vote for the shortlist of candidates which will be submitted to  Duterte.

Duterte will choose the next Ombudsman from this shortlist.

Martires, 69, served as trial court judge in Agoo, La Union prior to his appointment to the Sandiganbayan on October 15, 2005 by then-President
Gloria Arroyo.

It was Martires who penned the Sandiganbayan decision which approved the plea bargain deal entered into by alleged plunderer retired Major General Carlos Garcia.

In 2011, Martires also wrote the Sandiganbayan decision that junked graft charges against then-Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte over the demolition of a park  built by his political rival, then Davao City First District Congressman Prospero Nograles.

He also voted to grant the Office of the Solicitor General’s ouster case against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.-Editha Z. Caduaya/NewsLine.ph

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