Monday, November 27, 2017

CJ Sereno's 2001, 2003-2009 SALN When She Allegedly Received Hefty Amounts Are Missing From Records

In 2012, the then President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino and his allies in Congress joined forces and ousted Chief Justice Renato Corona. Aquino then appointed Maria Lourdes Sereno to take his place.

During this administration, however, there is an impeachment complaint filed to oust Sereno. The complaint grounds include culpable violation of the Constitution, betrayal of public trust, corruption and other high crimes.

During the impeachment hearing last Monday, the UP records section, Rosemarie Fabiona, told the House committe that the only SALN they have of Serena is that of 2002.

From 2001 - 2009, Sereno was employed by the University of the Philippines before she was appointed as a Supreme Court associate in 2010, and then to Chief Justice in 2012.

Fabiona, couldn't attest where the missing documents of Sereno are, since she only became a custodian in 2014.

Meanwhile, the chief of the UP Human Resources Department Office told the committee that she could not recall any instance wherein any UP professors failed to file their SALNs. These SALN's were then submitted to the Ombudsman every year.

However, she maintained that her predecessor may have turned all the documents over to the Ombudsman already.

Oriental Mindoro Rep. Reynaldo Umali, who is the panel chairman then ordered the commitee secretary to ask the Ombudsman to furnish them with copies of the missing SALNs of Sereno dated on 2001, 2003-2009.

Lawyer Larry Gadon, who was the one who filed the impeachment complaint said that the chief justice received hefty lawyer's fee between 1004-1009, which naturally should have been reflected and declared on her SALN. These should have been reflected on her real properties, cash deposits in banks and investments.

One of the charge that the previous administration filed against Corona is the failure to declare all his assets in his SALNs. Looks like history is repeating itself, as the same complaint is filed against Sereno.

Sereno denied all the allegation, but refused to attend the House hearings that are meant to determine probable cause to send the complaint to trial in the senate.

Source: Manila Standard


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