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‘Best and brightest’: Palace welcomes Bersamin’s appointment as new chief justice

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By Prince Golez

President Rodrigo Duterte has appointed Lucas Bersamin to the top magistrate post.

This was announced by spokesperson Salvador Panelo in a statement on Wednesday afternoon.

“Justice Bersamin is presently the most senior Justice in the Supreme Court in terms of services rendered under the Judicial Branch in various capacities,” said Panelo.

For 17 years, Bersamin served as presiding judge of the Quezon City Regional Trial Court and was appointed by Court of Appeals (CA) associate justice in 2003.

In 2009, the new chief justice became the 163rd magistrate of the Supreme Court under the Arroyo administration.

Meanwhile, Panelo also announced the appointment of CA associate justice Rosmari Carandang to the high court.

Carandang was appointed as CA associate justice in 2003, following his stint as presiding judge of the Manila Regional Trial Court.

“Both Justices belong to what PRRD calls ‘the best and the brightest’ as Chief Justice Bersamin placed 9th in the 1973 Bar Examinations while Associate Justice Carandang also claimed the same spot in the 1975 Bar Examinations,” Duterte’s mouthpiece said.

Also, Panelo expressed confidence that Chief Justice Bersamin and Associate Justice Carandang “will continue to uphold judicial excellence, assert its independence and stand firm against erring members of the bench, the bar and court personnel as they lead the third branch of the government, together with the rest of the Supreme Court Justices, in remaining steadfast in its role as the guardian of the rule of law.”