Tribunal vows to protect judges, lawyers

BW FILE PHOTO

THE Supreme Court on Monday condemned the killing of judges and lawyers and said it would change court rules and make new ones if needed to protect the Judiciary.

“To assault the Judiciary is to shake the very bedrock on which the rule of law stands,” the tribunal said in an e-mailed statement. “This cannot be allowed in a civilized society like ours.”

The high court asked lower courts and law enforcement offices “to shed light on the number and context of each and every threat or killing of a lawyer or judge within the past 10 years.”

It also urged the public to submit “vetted information” on any incidents of threats or killings of judges and lawyers before its meets next month to discuss the matter.

The court said it was working on the rules on the use of body cameras to be used when serving search and arrest warrants.

It said it had received letters from different groups on the matter and that it would refer these to trial courts so these letters could be converted into proper lawsuits.

The tribunal said it recognizes “the bravery of all the judges and lawyers who show up to administer justice in the face of fear.” It urged the entire Judiciary and members of the legal profession “to remain strong, steadfast and unwavering in the duties they swore an oath to fulfill.”

Edre U. Olalia, president of the National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers, said it was “comforting and reassuring” for the Supreme Court to have finally spoken on the matter.” — Bianca Angelica D. Anago





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