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The dissents

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The Supreme Court decision (Jesus Disini vs SOJ, Feb. 18, 2014) on the Cybercrime Prevention Law (CPL) upheld the constitutionality of libel (both printed and online), as I explained last Sunday. I will now discuss portions of the dissents that I find reasonable.

Posted: March 16th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Understanding the cybercrime decision

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The Supreme Court’s decision (Jesus Disini vs SOJ, Feb. 18, 2014) on the Cybercrime Prevention Law (CPL) is a delight for constitutional law scholars. The 50-page, single-space majority ruling penned by Justice Roberto A. Abad as well as the concurring and dissenting opinions of Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P.A. Sereno (43 pages) and Justices Antonio T. Carpio (32 pages), Arturo D. Brion (26 pages plus a 9-page annex) and Mario Victor F. Leonen (100 pages) are veritable treatises on the freedom of expression.

Posted: March 9th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

For the alumni of Mapa High

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Please talk of how you became “a sterling example of what a true-blue Mapan should be” and how we can give back to society, was the request of former congressman Benny Abante Jr., president of the Mapa High School Alumni Association. My full speech before 1,000 alumni gathered at the Metro Tent, Pasig City, on Feb. 23 may be accessed at cjpanganiban.com.

Posted: March 2nd, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Is Ruby Tuason free of criminal liability?

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Ruby Tuason, who has been charged with plunder in the Office of the Ombudsman (OOO) by the Department of Justice (DOJ), executed an affidavit detailing her participation in the crime, implicating some of her alleged coconspirators and offering to return her share of the loot, which she admitted to the Senate blue ribbon committee as about P40 million. Is she now free of criminal liability?

Posted: February 15th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Judging without deciding

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Solicitor General Francis Jardeleza, the Harvard-educated and bar-topnotcher counsel of the Republic, argued in the Supreme Court that (1) the President “authorized the disbursements under the DAP (Disbursement Acceleration Program),” (2) the “disbursements [had] an appropriation cover,” and (3) “the government [had] sufficient savings to support these disbursements.”

Posted: February 8th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Disagree, but not disobey

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Several congressmen are restive. They are dismayed by many alleged “flip-flopping” decisions of the Supreme Court and are threatening to disobey some of these and to impeach the justices for their “bad” rulings.

Posted: January 25th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Are the PDAF ‘realignments’ constitutional?

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Did the “realignment” made by nine senators of their Priority Development Assistance Fund in the 2014 national budget violate the unanimous landmark decision of the Supreme Court declaring the PDAF unconstitutional (Belgica vs Ochoa, Nov. 19, 2013, penned by Justice Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe)? In short, are the senatorial “realignments” unconstitutional and void?

Posted: January 18th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

SC hastens Maguindanao massacre cases

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Unknown to many, the Supreme Court issued “motu proprio” (on its own volition) a resolution, dated Dec. 10, 2013 (a copy of which I got a few days ago), instituting five new measures or guidelines to speed up the Maguindanao massacre trial.

Posted: January 11th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

What retired SC justices do

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The Constitution states, “Members of the Supreme Court and judges of lower courts shall hold office during good behavior until they reach the age of seventy years or become incapacitated to discharge the duties of their office.” Readers ask: What do Supreme Court justices do after they retire? Given their reclusive life on Mount Olympus, how do they adjust to “normal” life?

Posted: January 4th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Freedom of information

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Good news! Prior to its adjournment for the holidays, the Senate started plenary deliberation on the freedom of information (FOI) bill. Buried in the legislative mill for the last 14 years, the bill was resurrected by Sen. Grace Poe in the Senate committee on public information, which approved it last September. Senate President Franklin Drilon expects the entire chamber to pass it by the end of March.

Posted: December 28th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

SC: Seniors’ discounts constitutional

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The Supreme Court assured a “Merry Christmas” for our senior citizens when it affirmed the constitutionality and mandatory character of the 20-percent discount on their purchases from or use of “hotels and similar lodging establishments, restaurants and recreation centers, medicine… funeral and burial services… theaters, cinema houses and concert halls, circuses, carnivals and other similar places of culture, leisure and amusement… medical and dental services.” It also validated the implementing rules and regulations of the discounts.

Posted: December 21st, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Power sharing

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The recent signing of the “Annex on Power Sharing” of the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB) is a significant milestone in the elusive search for lasting peace with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

Posted: December 14th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

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