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Imee Marcos’ Ilocos 6 CA Release: Congress must Deal with the Co-Equal Supreme Court

Supreme Court

welcome By: Elena Grace Flores

It is sickening to hear in every debate or hearings in Congress that lawmakers just follow the rules to justify their actions. They tend to forget why such laws are created in the first place. They exist to make people’s lives better not worst. Belittling a daughter agency of the Supreme Court like the Court of Appeals in the Ilocos 6 case because it is inferior to the House is like saying that the Committee on Good Government and Public Accountability is not at par with the SC because it is just a sub-branch under the umbrella of the House of Representatives.

Youtube video from; ABS-CBN News
[VIDEO]: Pinapanagot ng Kamara ang tatlong mahistrado ng Court of Appeals kaugnay sa isyu ng tinaguriang ‘Ilocos Norte 6.’ Dinetine ng Kamara ang anim na opisyal dahil sa hindi pagsagot sa imbestigasyon sa umano’y pagwaldas sa milyong pisong halaga ng excise tax ng Ilocos Norte.

Petition via CA

Gov. Imee Marcos’ detained employees now known as Ilocos 6 filed a petition for habeas corpus with the CA. It then ordered that the detained employees must be presented at its hearings. The Congress refused to comply with the order. Therefore, a petition for bail for the employees’ provisional release was filed. That was granted by the appellate court. The CA finally issued an order for the release of the said employees.

Alvarez’ Threats

Alvarez threatened to dissolve the CA upon knowing its course of action. He stresses that it was not a co-equal branch of Congress. It is just a mere creation of the legislature, he said. The CA Special 4th Division issued a show cause order to direct the House to explain its defiance of such release order. In response, Oriental Mindoro Representative Reynaldo Umali moved to issue a show cause order on the magistrates of the CA. He calls it an “an inferior court.” His motion was approved unanimously with 30 votes.

Supreme Court Action

Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno who invokes the separation of powers and judicial independence,  and Court of Appeals (CA) Presiding Justice Andres Reyes, Jr. urge the House of Representatives to recall its show cause order for magistrates. This pertains to the appellate court’s Special 4th Division. The order asks the justices to explain their decision. The Congress can cite them in contempt. This is for their ruling to release the 6 employees of the Ilocos Norte provincial government. Sereno and Reyes said that there are other “legal remedies” available to the House that are Constitutional. This is for cases when the Rules of Court disagrees with the CA magistrates’ order.



Blame Game

House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez returns the blame to the three Court of Appeals (CA) justices who are in charge of the detained Ilocos Norte employees’ case. He calls them “recklessness” that triggers the “unfortunate situation” between the legislative and the judiciary. This is his response to the action of the Supreme Court. Constitutional Crises is the result if these branches of government continue to disagree on the matter. Why would these congressmen deny these officials involved with their freedom if they do not give answers that are favorable to them?