The Judicial and Bar Council must convene soon to avoid a vacuum in the Supreme Court with the removal of Chief Justice Renato Corona, Senator Chiz Escudero today said.
Escudero, Senate representative to the JBC said he will ask the council to immediately convene and issue a memorandum to send notice of vacancy in the chief justice position and to open the position for applications and nominations.
The senator said the Constitution provides that "any vacancy shall be filled within ninety days from the occurrence thereof".
"The law always abhors a vacuum. Not because the SC lost its Chief Justice, we stop functioning as a council. We need to continue with our works as usual and part of it is to immediately look for someone to fill the vacancy in the highest court".
Escudero openly said he wants to see an outsider to replace the former chief justice and is hoping the president would also choose to appoint someone not in any way identified to him or any particular group.
"I am hoping that the vetting will be from the outside circle of the President's official family, friends and the current Supreme Court composition so that we strictly adhere to the new leaf we all are looking forward to. The nation has been heavily divided with the recent impeachment exercise, it's time for all of us to work for healing, reconciliation so we can already move on and move forward" Escudero said.
As the JBC convenes, Escudero will move to require all applicants and nominees to execute a waiver on bank secrecy and their SALN in favor of the JBC so that it can be opened anytime, if necessary.
'As I have said in my explanation of vote yesterday, from now on, we should measure everyone aspiring to join the government with the measure we used with former CJ Corona".