SUPREME Court Public Information Office chief Brian Keith Hosaka yesterday said the judiciary has already established its own system in fighting corruption within its rank.
Hosaka issued the statement after Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said that the government may include the judiciary in its campaign against corruption.
“Weeding out misfits in the Judiciary is a priority of Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta and is included in his 10-point program for the Judiciary which he bared a year ago upon his assumption as Chief Justice. This is also why Chief Justice Peralta endeavored to ensure that the Judiciary Integrity Board (JIB) and the Corruption Prevention and Investigation Office (CPIO) are established at the soonest possible time.”
” As for the offer of Secretary Guevarra to assist the Judiciary in its campaign against corruption, the same is very much appreciated. Any assistance for the good of the institution and to protect its integrity should not be shunned, but instead welcomed, ” Hosaka said.
Last July 7, the SC approved the proposed amendments to carry out the implementation of JIB, which will act on complaints against erring justices, judges, officers and employees of the judiciary.
On the other hand, the CPIO will conduct investigation on erring justices of the tertiary courts; and judges and personnel of the lower courts, including the Shari’a Courts; and the officials and employees of the Office of the Jurisconsult, Court Administrator, Deputy Court Administrator, Assistant Court Administrators and their personnel.
Peralta recently bared the composition of the JIB and CPIO. Retired Supreme Court justice and Philippine Judicial Academy (PHILJA) Vice Chancellor Romeo Callejo, Sr. and retired SC justice and former Mandatory Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) Governing Board chairperson Angelina Sandoval-Gutierrez were named JIB chairman and vice chairman, respectively.
Callejo and Gutierrez will serve in the JIB for three years and two years, respectively. The JIB members are Court of Appeals Justice (Ret.) Sesinando Villon, Sandiganbayan Justice (Ret.) Rodolfo Ponferrada, and Court of Tax Appeals Justice (Ret.) Cielito Mindaro-Grulla, who will serve for three years, two years, and one year, respectively.
The reinvigoration of JIB and CPIO was part of Peralta’s Ten Point Program, which are to implement the JIB and strengthen the Office of the Court Administrator. The Ten Point Program can be narrowed down to four core areas ― efficiency, integrity, security, and service.
JIB and CPIO were created in 2018. However, these two separate units were put by the SC on the back burner as the Committee on the Implementation of the Judicial Integrity Board (CIJIB) called for a review of JIB’s functions in order to harmonize and prevent duplicity with those of the OCA and other offices.
Hence, the Court resolved to approve the proposed amendments to Resolution in A.M. No. 18-01-05-SC dated October 2, 2018 and to Rule 140 of the Rules of Court, as amended.
JIB can receive administrative complaints or disciplinary actions against either the Presiding Justices and Associate Justices of the appellate courts and Judges of the lower courts, as well as act on complaints or referrals as provided for in Rule 140 of the Rules of Court, the “Internal Rules” of the JIB as approved by the SC En Banc, as well as the SC Circulars, Administrative Orders or other issuances.