Statement of National Press Club President Jerry S. Yap on DOJ De Lima’s objection to NPC’s ‘special court’ proposal Press club believes De Lima will support petition to constitute special court for massacre trial
The National Press Club firmly believes that Department of Justice Secretary Leila De Lima will eventually support its petition to the Supreme Court asking to constitute a special court to speed up the Ampatuan Massacre trial. The club is very sure that as soon as Secretary De Lima reads the NPC petition she will understand that it is not what she thought that a new judge would be assigned to the special court. The NPC agrees with Secretary De Lima’s position that a new judge would only require more delay because of the need to study first the case before the trial can be resumed. However, the NPC assures the secretary that its petition is not seeking a new judge.
The petition filed by the NPC in a joint effort with Alyansa ng Filipinong Mamahayag (Afima) seeks to constitute the same court handling the trial as the special court. If the NPC petition is granted, the court that will handle the “trial of the decade” will still be the same court, the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 221. The judge that will handle the case will still be the same judge, Judge Jocelyn Solis-Reyes.
Further, the petition explicitly asks the Highest Tribunal that being a special court, Judge Solis-Reyes be relieved of all other cases and other duties in her sala to ensure that she has full focus on the Ampatuan Massacre trial...