Supreme Court defends bigger judiciary budget

Photo from Rappler
Citing the insufficient funding as the main cause of delays and other problems in the judicial system, members of the House of Representatives defended the bigger budget for the judiciary.

Since 2010, according to Rep. Rodante Marcoleta of party-list 1Sagip and Rep. Vicente Veloso of Leyte, the budget proposals of the judiciary had been cut and this ultimately affected the its capacity to solve problems within the system.

The judiciary asked for a P60 billion budget in 2010 but was only given P30 billion. For 2017, they asked for P40.4 billion, but only got P32.5 billion.

Marcoleta said that it is a very serious concern because “many issues raised on the ability of the judiciary to respond to the requirements and realities of time like delays (in resolution of cases).”

“But the truth is, the budgetary requirements of the judiciary are not met. I’d like to believe this is the principal constraint why the judiciary is not able to address the problems confronting the judicial system,” he explained.

Meanwhile, Veloso gave the backlog of cases as an example of the result of the lack of courts, which is also caused by insufficient funds.

According to Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Presbitero Velaso Jr., the decades-old cases are not hopeless; there will be progress in the resolution if more trial courts will be created and appointment of corresponding judges.

In Bacoor City, said Velasco, 10 regional trial courts were created but have yet to be funded. “Once a law is passed, it should be immediately funded. That’s what I heard from them, these courts are not yet funded.” Velasco said.

Harry Roque, a former law professor and practicing professor, said that these judiciary problems should be addressed by all the branches of the government. He cited the case of Asian Development Bank that complained about its graft case which took 10 years to be resolved.

Presiding Justice Amparo Cabotaje-Tang refuted this, saying that it takes 7.5 years at most in the anti-graft court. Furthermore, she said that the 15 Sandiganbayan justices proposed to allow a modified trial procedure which they hope will “lessen the delay by one year”. ASCS

Source: Philstar