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‘Di bagay! Marquez’s dream of being SC justice opposed

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Court Administrator Midas Marquez has been accused of being “unfit” to vie for a seat at the Supreme Court (SC) over the questionable expenses made in the implementation of the Judicial Reform Support Project (JSRP).

Because of this, the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) has been asked to disqualify Marquez as a candidate for the post as SC justice.

“Marquez’s presence as the then multi-hyphenated Supreme Court senior official for the JRSP has contributed to the breakdown of the control, increased fiduciary and reputation risks, and irregular/inappropriate procurement and expenditure decisions of the Supreme Court,” read the letter of private individual Rjhay Laurea to the JBC.

The JRSP is a judicial system accessibility initiative funded by a loan from the World Bank.

Citing news reports, Laurea said a 2011 World Bank review listed over P8.6 million worth of “ineligible expenses disallowed” by the bank.

These includes: conference registrations abroad, hotel accommodations, restaurant bills, foreign travel expenses, and computer equipment, among others.

The report also indicated 16 payments related to the Office of the Court Administrator which Marquez heads.

Laurea said the review reported that “[T]his senior official, due to the combination of his appointments and functions, was the requestor of the services, the approver of the terms of reference, the end-user of the services provided by the firm, the authorizer of contract extensions, and the authorizer of payments to the firm.”