AMRSP STATEMENTS

 STATEMENTS

 What have we done?​
Season of Creation
On killing of Fr. Paez
On Federalism
EDSA Anniversary
On Sr. Pat Detention
photo: CBCP News

AMRSP STATEMENT ON THE SUPREME COURT’S DECISION ON
QUO WARRANTO AND SAFEGUARDING DEMOCRACY

On  Killing of Fr. Ventura
On the Quo Warranto
My Soul Magnifies the Lord
This is to register our mind as members of the Association of the Major Religious Superiors of the Philippines (AMRSP) regarding the recent Supreme Court’s Decision on Quo Warranto and our deep concerns about safeguarding our hard earned democracy.

We as a Filipino nation have long embraced democracy and have been enjoying its blessings as the oldest democracy in Asia. Sadly, today democracy is marred with populism and rule of strong leaders, political dynasties and political patronage. The 1987 Philippine Constitution, though it may have some imperfections which can be readily remedied, is still our guiding star which defines how we should be governed as a nation and as Filipinos, being democratic and freedom loving.


Last Friday, on May 11, 2018, when the Supreme Court voted to oust Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, an impeachable officer, through a quo warranto petition, we felt that the independence and the check and balance of the three pillars of government – the executive (President), the legislative (House of Representatives and Senate) and the judiciary (Supreme Court) have just been compromised. Now there are many more government officials are in danger for whatever reason dictated from above.


We agree with Associate Justice Marvic Leonen, one of 6 justices who voted against the petition, who said in an impassioned dissenting opinion that the ruling has left the High Court "vulnerable" and that the petition has set “a precedent that gravely diminishes judicial independence.” According to Section 2, Article XI of the Constitution:


The President, the Vice-President, the Members of the Supreme Court, the Members of the Constitutional Commissions, and the Ombudsman may be removed from office on impeachment.


Not mincing words, Justice Leonen called the decision to remove an impeachable and a sitting member of the Supreme Court, “a legal abomination.” It creates a bad “precedent that gravely diminishes judicial independence and threatens the ability of this Court to assert the fundamental rights of our people. We render this Court subservient to an aggressive Solicitor General. We render those who present dissenting opinions unnecessarily vulnerable to powerful interests.”

Once again, we must uphold the 1987 Philippine Constitution. We elevate our protests to safeguarding democracy, the rule of law so that God’s promise for a new heaven and a new earth may be realized here and now (2 Peter 3,13). We pray for the well-being of ousted Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno and all who are fighting for the justice and righteousness in our country.

Can our rulers still rule like “King David who administered justice and righteousness for all his people? (2 Samuel 8,15)?