December 21, 2005 · Posted in: In the News

Panganiban named new chief justice

ASSOCIATE Justice Artemio Panganiban was named as the new Supreme Court Chief Justice by the President last night.

Panganiban said he sees his appointment as "an opportunity to be of even greater service to God and country" and pledged to "protect the independence of the judiciary." The 69-year-old justice, who replaced former Chief Justice Hilario Davide Jr., is set to retire in December next year.

Some of his most known controversial decisions include the Philippine Mining Act of 1995 and the Expanded Value-Added Tax Law which he both upheld as constitutional.  

He graduated cum laude from the Far Eastern University and placed sixth in the Bar examinations. As a student, he co-founded and was once president of the National Union of Students of the Philippines. He has close links with the media, having been president of the Philippine Daily Inquirer Inc. in 1991. He was once the legal counsel of the Liberal Party and the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Prior to his appointment, he was a senior partner of the Panganiban Benitez Parlade Africa & Barinaga Law Office. (Click here for his full profile.)

But his appointment was not without controversy. Atty. Neri Colmenares of the Counsels for the Defense of Liberties said the President’s decision to appoint Panganiban puts the independence of the courts in peril.

Colmenares said there was no compelling reason for the President to break the "time-honored tradition of seniority" in the court. Senior Associate Justice Reynato Puno, the most senior among the justices, was expected to be named as new chief justice.

"Justice Panganiban is beholden to the appointing power. (The decision) was the President’s full discretion. There was no criteria, no clear reason why he was chosen," he said.

Colmenares stressed that Panganiban should inhibit himself from all cases involving the President. These cases include the Calibrated Pre-emptive Response Policy and Executive Order 464, which bars government officials from testifying in congressional inquiries without permission from the Palace.

"There will be many cases filed before the court with direct links to the Palace. His decisions on the more controversial ones might be questioned," he said.

31 Responses to Panganiban named new chief justice


john kreutz

December 21st, 2005 at 8:47 pm





December 21st, 2005 at 8:53 pm

since DAVIDE made GLORIA president instead of disciplining the rowdy senators who walked out from the impeachmetn trial… even without having erap resign first.

since PANGANIBAN admitted that he had influenced DAVIDE to make GLORIA president quoting the bible…

Since the two of them used the bible to advance their interest…

I have lost faith in the SUpreme COURT.

Our supreme court has transformed into the Supreme COurt of GLoria.

whether it is panganiban or davide….

pare-pareho lang sila!!!



December 21st, 2005 at 11:37 pm

Goodbye Philippines!!! If we all filipinos don`t do something to oust GMA andhis cohort`s,from SC down National Archives under
Mr Manapat,then we kiss our country goodbye..we just have to wait
later for her Death or resignation..with his evil cabals at their helm..
it is us filipinos who can oust her the earlier the better.
let us all unite and kick her is our only options.



December 22nd, 2005 at 3:35 am

Ito na ang simula ng walang hanggang wakas…. Hawak niya ang comelec, hello garci… hawak niya ang militar…. hello tabako… hawak niya ang pnp,,, hello lomibao,,, hawak niya makati business club,,, hawak niya ang namfrel,,, hello concepcion,,, hawak niya ang supreme court, hello panganiban, hawak niya ang senado, ang kongreso, sige pumoporma ka pa lang butata ka na… Bayan, huwag mo nang hintayin ang umaga, hindi mo na ito masisilayan…. Bukas ililibing ko sa limot ang bansang aking kinamulatan. Paalam, Inang bayan…. ayaw ko ng muling tumapak sa lupa mong pinamumugaran ng mga halimaw…..Hanggang dito na lamang ,,, tapos na ang palabas, sarado na ang telon…. Ito na ang simula ng walang hanggang wakas… Paalam, paalam….



December 22nd, 2005 at 4:58 am

The Anti Terror Bill is just like the “Pinoy Ako Pinoy” na ginaya lang ng Orange and Lemons from the ORIGINAL song “Chandeliers” by the Care, not The Cure. Just change the lyrics and presto! Nakaloko ulit ang pinoy. Ipakita sa mundo kung ano ang gaya-gaya mo…. so parang tinagalog lang yung Patriotic Act bill at tinabasan lang kung anong puwedeng i-apply sa ating mga pinoy. Jeez….sa eavesdrooping di na rin ako magtataka. Nataon lang na walang loyalty o mukhang pera yung si Doble kaya doon nagkabukulan.



December 22nd, 2005 at 9:47 am

It’s infuriating and frustrating to read comments made by skeptics and pessimists who couldn’t seem to find anything nice with every move made by the Arroyo administration.

Yeah, yeah, i know she cheated but making hasty generalizations sucks.

Chief Justice Panganiban hasn’t even started his job and yet, you have begun destroying him.


Isulong ang pag-unlad ng inyong mga sarili. Simulan natin sa ating mga sarili ang pagbabago.

Happy holidays everyone!

[Political] humor? Pls visit:



December 22nd, 2005 at 10:34 am

Ian Buckley said “Suspicion must always fall on those who attempt to silence their opponents.”



December 22nd, 2005 at 6:54 pm

I agree John Kreutz. Panganiban’s lobbying is known around legal circles and academe. He is purposedly appointed to influence whatever legal questions to the 2006 impeachment complaint against Ate Glue.



December 22nd, 2005 at 8:12 pm

i agree with you Loi_pogi. these skeptics and pessimists will criticize whoever gma appointed as SC chief justice may it be Puno, Panganiban or the other candidate.

get away with the negatives people. adopt, modify and be flexible. it’s not the end of the world!



December 22nd, 2005 at 9:18 pm

the devil has been judged. there is nothing positive about the devil.


tongue in, anew

December 23rd, 2005 at 3:18 am

Diba ito yung bugok na Justice na sumulat ng librong sabi e pinagawa nila ng antedated request si GMA pagkatapos manumpa sa EDSA dahil lalabas na initiative ng Supreme Court ang kanyang oath taking? Kahit sino iappoint dun sa mga nagdecide na iswear si Doña, puro sila palsipikador. They’ve no right to be justices.

Latest I heard, those who bought the book before it was recalled from bookstores are willing to sell it no cheaper than P10,000 per copy. Hard evidence that Gloria stole the presidency.

Binaboy na talaga ang kawawang Pilipinas. Pagbabago kelan ba makakamit?



December 23rd, 2005 at 5:24 am

…But that begs the question. If there was no vacancy in the presidency, just what were the justices doing at the swearing-in of Arroyo? Wasn’t that a highly partisan political event? And how can they later rule on her legitimacy when they themselves were a party to her ascension to a post that wasn’t even vacant?

Estrada’s new-found confidence stems from a tell-all book written by one of the key players in his ouster more than two years ago, Supreme Court Justice Artemio Panganiban. In his book Reforming the Judiciary, Panganiban takes the reader back to those days of political turmoil. Estrada’s impeachment trial had collapsed when the prosecution walked out in frustration; the military had publicly withdrawn its support from Estrada, the duly elected commander-in-chief; hundreds of thousands of anti-Estrada partisans had gathered at the shrine. Panganiban says it was at that time that the justices acted to save “the constitutional system from collapse”. He actually states that he and the chief justice decided to swear in Arroyo even though they knew Estrada had not resigned.

“Let me articulate my faith that Edsa II [the name of the event that led to Estrada’s ouster] was indeed a confluence of events planned in heaven,” he writes. “I am still wondering up to now how I had summoned the courage to propose the oath-taking of Mrs Arroyo even when President Estrada was still in Malacanang; and why Chief Justice Davide immediately agreed to it, even prior to consultation with other justices.”

Perhaps the most amazing passage out of the book comes when Panganiban talks about “restoring Zion”. He writes that both he and the chief justice have a daily habit of consulting the Bible. Panganiban has a certain passage that he reads on particular days. Davide, though, prefers to cut the Bible at random, taking inspiration from whatever passage happens to appear.

Before dawn on the morning of January 20, 2001, Panganiban tells how he called up Davide, who related that he chanced upon a passage in Isaiah, Chapter 62, about “restoring Zion”. It was then, Panganiban states, that Davide had his higher calling. Yes, that was the answer to the turmoil that was currently besetting the Philippines. The chief justice would have to “restore Zion”.

…”I could not see any partisan politics coming from the Supreme Court,” responded Arroyo’s justice secretary. “What took place [on January 20, 2001] was an event arising from the sovereign power of the people. All authority emanates from the people.” Even Panganiban, whose book has suddenly disappeared from the market, claimed they did right because “the welfare and the will of the people is the supreme law”.

How the “will of the people” in a democracy is measured in anything other than an election is anyone’s guess. What is certain, though, is that the filing of an impeachment case against the Supreme Court justices promises more political fireworks to come and exposes the deep and gaping wounds that still afflict the Philippines more than two years on.

If only they could have produced that resignation letter.


all the preceding taken from .



December 23rd, 2005 at 8:16 am

Panganiban said that the justices acted “to save the constitutional system from collapse” when they swore-in GMA. But in actuality is that… THEY, (the justices, and the Supreme Court as a whole), BY VIOLATING THE CONSTITUTION, MADE IT COLLAPSED! Now, the country is in JEOPARDY. NAKAKAHIYA ANG ATING SUPREME COURT!!! BINABOY ANG ATING CONSTITUTION!!!



December 23rd, 2005 at 8:32 am

The case of Panganiban is more than Grisham than Patterson.

I still go for Puno though :)



December 23rd, 2005 at 8:37 am

People may dispute forever the Supreme Court decision that declared Erap as resigned. But at hindsight, it is equally important to understand how difficult it must have been for the Justices to make that decision under an unusual circumstances because the unprecedented situation could not have been resolved peacefully by the statutes alone.

Think of what could have happened if the Supreme Court had reversed its decision and allowed Erap to come back. What do you think an angry people would have done. There would have been chaos where the anti-Erap fighting the pro-Erap, Filipinos against Filipinos.

If the justices referred to the bible to seek spiritual guidance, then I believe it was Divine intervention that enlightened the minds of the Justices and prevented what could have been a deadly civil war.

For me, the deciding factor was the absolute withdrawal of support by the AFP and PNP who sided with the people. Without them and the people’s support Erap’s presidency becomes meaningless. Think again how Erap would have functioned as President as he sits behind his desk in Malacanang in total isolation, without an army, without the PNP, without subjects to govern, and a multitude banging the gates of Malacanang every day in angry demonstration.

In my honest opinion, the Supreme Court did the right thing under the circumstances. It was a judgment call that saved this country from a violent civil war. It was a classic case where the statute books were discarded in favor of what the people wanted. It might have been a mistake to discard the statute books but the Justices saw it differently. It was the will of the people that had to be followed. It had its precedence in Edsa I and the Justices saw it fit to apply it again in that Supreme Court decision.



December 23rd, 2005 at 11:31 am

the SC did right
but panganiban did wrong
because what he wrote was a “SPILL-ALL-BOOK OF FLAW.”

if a glib tongue invites misfortunes, even the mightiest of the pen will do likewise.



December 24th, 2005 at 12:10 am

Divine intervention pala ang tawag dun sa paggamit ng bible sa pagdeklara kay erap na resign… Nabobobo na talaga ako o makakalimutin…. Maliwanag na isinasaad ng salligang batas ng Pilipinas na ang gobyerno at ang relihiyon ay dapat na magkahiwalay… saan ba ginagamit ang biblia… di ba sa pang relihiyong aktibidad… May nakasulat ba sa ating saligang batas na kapag hindi maresolba ang isang issue ay gumamit ng biblia upang maging divine intervention…. Meron akong nabasa,,, gusto ko lang isulat….( Justice Felix Frankfurter, commening on the moral attributes of a prospective justice, wrote that ” Judges cannot leave contradictions between two conflicting ‘truth’ as part of the mystery of things. Justices have to adjudicate. If the conflict cannot be resolved, the task of the Court is to arrive at an accommodation of the contending claims. This is the core of the difficulties and misundertanding about the judicial process. This, for any conscientious judge, is the agony of the duty”. Wala yata akong nabasang gumamit ka ng biblia para maresolba ang issue…. Ewan ko wala akong alam sa batas e… butas meron….siya sige kung talagandg divine intervention e…. alam ko kapag ukol sa batas ang usapan, batas lang,,, di kasali yang bible, bible na yan… parang amoy simbahan a……



December 24th, 2005 at 12:46 am

commenting pala, bobo talaga si ako



December 24th, 2005 at 8:43 am

Leo, when someone in your family was seriouisly sick, when you wanted to pass that very important college exams, when you wanted to be promoted to that high paying job did you ever pray?

There’s nothing in the law books that say you should not seek divine intervention, but you did. Why?

Don’t you think those Justices, just like judges everywhere, and just as you probably did when you decided to get married, asked for divine guidance because an important decision was about to be made? Was it wrong for you to seek divine intervention when someone in the family was sick? Was it wrong then for the Justices to seek divine intervention by reading the Bible to guide them and enlighten their minds in making that very important decision? Have you realized the power of the Bible that no ordinary prayer book can give to you? Do you realize what the power of the Holy Spirit can do to help you? Probably not that’s why you’ll never understand because if you are a believer no explanation is necessary.



December 24th, 2005 at 11:22 am

Ayon sa kapitulo 11, bersikulo 1 , ikaw Tembong ay hinahatulan na mabilanggo ng 3 oras, 4 na minuto at isang segundo dahil hindi ka marunong umintindi kung ano ang kaukulan ng biblia.. Ang intindi ko sa salitang Zion… e iglesia o katawan ni Cristo,,, samakatwid alin ang ililigtas ni Panganiban at ni Davide, ang taong bayan ba o ang relihiyon na kinabibilangan nila… Kung si Panganiban at Davide e Katoliko, maliwanag gusto nilang iligtas ang mga Katoliko, kung sila naman e Protestante , e di mga Protestante, kung sila naman ay El Shaddai , e di El Shaddai…. entonses hindi mo talaga puwedeng gamitin ang biblia lalo na at bumanggit ka ng isang partikular na salita na nakapaloob dito… Zion…. kung mali ako ng basa sa biblia, ewan ko…. Malinaw na nakasulat sa biblia…. tama … kung ang isang member ng isang pamilya ay may sakit…. (sabi nga seek divine guidance through bible. recall ko yung memory ko… nabasa ko ito eh… Ulitin ko nga. kung ang isang member ng inyong sambahayan ay may sakit ay ipatawag nga ninyo ang mga matatanda sa inyo upang pahiran ng langis ang maysakit at siya ay pagalingin ng Diyos. mali yata ako, maghahanap ako ng Biblia, parang mali ata ang basa ko, pati kapitulo at bersikulo ay hindi ko na matandaan… Ang biblia ay nakalihim sa hiwaga, mababasa mo siya at mabibigyan ng sariling interpretasyon subalit kaylan man hindi mo ito maiintindihan. Si Davide at Panganiban nagpapahid kaya sila ng langis at ipinanalangin ng mga matatanda sa kanilang relihiyon, o baka sa doktor sila nagpagamot..?. Si Frankfurter kaya nagbasa kaya muna siya ng Biblia bago siya humatol… Ewan ko, patungo yata tayo sa relihiyon a, Supreme court ang paksa natin, bakit napunta tayo sa relihiyon….. posible, pero hindi niya ito isinama sa kaniyang komento….. tingnan natin… Ayon dito sa biblia ikaw ay hinhatulan na mabilanggo dahil sa iyong kasalanan…. Wala yatang ganoon, ganito yata yon e, Sa pamamagitan ng kapangyarihang ipinagkaloob sa akin ng Republika ng Pilipinas, ikaw Tembong ay hinahatulan mabilanggo dahil sa iyong mga kasalanan…. Nagbasa nga siguro siya ng biblia bago humatol, pero hindi niya isinama sa hatol…. Kay Panganiban at Davide maliwanag na tinukoy nila,, nabasa nila sa aklat ng Isaiah, na dapat iligtas ang Zion,, kaya dapat silang humatol ayon dito…. Ito ang argumento… Kung sinabi nilang … Tayong mga judge ay dapat na humatol para sa kapakanan ng bayan ayon sa saligang batas na umiiral…. tapos na ang argumento… Kaya nagkaroon ng pag-aalinlangan sa kanila , dahil ginawa nilang dahilan ang biblia sa kanilang paghatol. Ang biblia ay isang sagradong aklat at hindi dapat makaladkad sa hibo ng maruming sanglibutan……



December 24th, 2005 at 11:38 am

Sabi ng mga Katoliko, si Cristo ay Diyos ayon sa bibllia, sabi ng mga Protestante, si Cristo ay tao na at Diyos pa.. Paliwanang naman ng mga Iglesia Ni Cristo , si Cristo ay tao at kailanman ay hindi naging Diyos…Sige nga gamitin nating reperensiya ang argumento ni Davide at Panganiban,, sinong makapangyarihan ang sumulat ng salitang Zion…. si Cristo ba na Diyos ayon sa mga katoliko, Diyos na e tao pa ayon sa mga Protestante o ang magkahiwalay na taong si Cristo at isang Diyos ayon sa mga Iglesia ni Cristo. tapos gamitin natin sa paghatol… wala lumayo na tayo ng lumayo… Ito ang sinasabi ko tama, tama basahin mo at gawin mong reperensiya, pero hindi mo dapat sabihin at isama sa iyong paghatol…. Hahatol ang mga huwes ayon sa saligang batas na umiiral, hindi ayon sa nabasa nila sa biblia…



December 24th, 2005 at 6:03 pm

……even the devils are quoting the scriptures. Nakakapangilabot nga kapag nakikita mo ang mga litrato ng mga politiko na nasa loob ng simbahan hawak hawak pa mga kamay ng bawat isa, siguro nagpapasalamat sila sa mga nakurakot nila galing sa mga buwis natin. Chief Justice inalis mo na ba yung libro mo sa mga bookstore hirap hanapin eh simula ng pinuna ka.



December 25th, 2005 at 8:52 am

nice arguments there Leo. maybe the president can use devine intervention as an alibi for unrational decision, but not the highest court of the land. it should based its decision on the merit or circumstances of the case or events and if there no precedent to the case- to establish a precedent where future cases maybe based but not necessarily. i always believe that every case should be dealt on its own merits. again just my piece.



December 25th, 2005 at 9:15 am

Ang alam kong dapat mag-base sa biblia ay mga pari, pastor, mangangaral, rabbi, o anupamang religious authority, pero ang mga abugado, lalo na ang mga justices ay dapat sa SALIGANG BATAS ibatay ang mga desisyon para makapagbigay ng FAIR JUDGEMENT. Kaya nagkaletse-letse ang ang bayan natin dahil ang SUPREME COURT AY NAGMAGALING PERO MALI NAMAN! Tama ba namang ibase ang desisyon sa Biblia. Ang mga nakaupo sa SUPREME COURT NGAYON AY MGA BOBO! BOBO! BOBO! BOBO! BOBO! BOBO! BOBO! BOBO!



December 25th, 2005 at 10:12 pm

ayon sa kasabihan: vox populi vox dei. the voice of the people is the voice of GOD.

pero what happened in EDSA dos is the voice of the few people is the voice of GMA and the supreme court.

what happened then to the 10 million votes that hoped for ERAP and hoped for the constitution to be followed.

biglang na erase yon nang pinuno ng tao ang EDSA. kahit sino sa atin, walang puwedeng magsabi na ang EDSA ay ang PILIPINAS.

kahit sino sa atin walang magsabi na ang mga ELITE at ang mga police, at ang mga pari, at ang mga politico, ay ang PILIPINAS.

kaya itution ay mali. kaya naniniwala ang marami na ang pag legitimze

nga may election. kaya may constitution. kaya may minority at may majority.

ang mali ay hindi puwedeng gawing tama ng isa pang mali.

ang pag tanggal kay erap without following the constitution ay isang mali. panganiban said they consulted the bible… and assumed that what they have read in the bible is what God told them.

history has shown worse than that. Isn’t it that the spaniards came to the Philippines and made our lives miserable (as per history books) and all because of their belief that their doing it for their god and their king.

sigurado ba siyang iyon talaga ang sinabi ni God o iyon ang kangyang nasaisip at gusto niyang gawin ni God.

understanding what God wants is not just flipping the pages of the bible.

kaya nga meron din tayong constitution.

as Jesus said: give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.

you cannot just flip the pages of the bible and assume that what you want is what God wants.



December 28th, 2005 at 8:46 am

I concur with the views of Leo.

There ought to be a strict observance of the proper usage of the Bible viz the Fundamental Law more particularly for the members of the Judiciary.

In Legal Ethics, judges should be as impartial as possible in deciding cases before them.

While justices,technically decide as a body and not as an individual ( one could validly observed that in every decisions promulgated by the tribunal there you find the ponente , the concurrences and to some extent the dissents), it is also an accepted view that such cold impartiality should extend to these justices specifically in deciding and writing their ponencias.

Leo also correctly stressed that the doctrine of the separation of the church and the state should be followed at all times but in reality,if I may add, it is not only trampled upon once or twice but it is also abused with impunity.

Often times, it gave birth to comical situation where you find the members of the religious citing the Fundamental Law in their homilies, whereas the members of the Judiciary cites the Bible in their decisions.

I know some lawyers who opt to give up their practice and happily answer the call for priesthood while a few priest-friends of mine, choose to hang their sutanas to pursue their childhood dream of becoming a lawyer and in the process, making me their accidental personal tutor —- to which I felt very privileged for I interpret such as a case of Divine Intervention :)


lokalokang matino

December 31st, 2005 at 9:07 pm

No comment for now, am waiting for his stand on the EO 464 and CPR. Dito natin malalaman ang pagiging independent nya or pagiging tuta nya ni gloria-THE CHEAT EXECUTIVE. Although para sa akin illegal and appointment nya dahil illegal ang nag-appoint sa kanya. But am willing to give him a chance to prove his worth.

P.S. to fellow bloggers & readers, if you’re wondering why I always use small letters everytime I mention gloria is because, ganyan kaliit ang tingin ko sa kanya, at paliit ng paliit yan habang patuloy siyang nanloloko at nagsisinungaling sa atin!!!



January 1st, 2006 at 10:46 pm

Agree ako kay LEO nakuha ko ang logic niya Ang Saligang Batas paghinatulan ang ginagamit ang salita( Sa pamamagitan ng kapangyarihang ipinagkaloob sa akin ng Republika ng Pilipinas )hindi ang Diyos.Pero kung batas natin sinusunod ay BIBLIA ay ngalan ng diyos.
Dapat separate ang church and state.Kaya huwuag natin idawit ang Diyos sa batas na ginawa ng tao ay hindi perfecto sa pinapatupad para sa interest ng Bayan hindi Interest ng Diyos.

Mabuti hindi ako naging abogado kasi maramin kang chance na magsala ,instead engineer are taught in school the exact science.

bye ka blog



January 13th, 2006 at 4:10 pm

GMA need to be removed by hook or by crook including all her cronies in the government and let them all rot in jail or any place they can be annihilated.


INSIDE PCIJ » Groups urge public interview of Chief Justice candidates

November 17th, 2006 at 4:17 pm

[…] THE Supreme Court and Appointment Watch is urging the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) to keep its promise to conduct public interviews of candidates for the post of chief justice. (Download the JBC announcement of the official list of candidates here) Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban will reach the mandatory retirement age of 70 on December 7. He was appointed Chief Justice by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo last December. […]


INSIDE PCIJ » The JBC under scrutiny

February 5th, 2007 at 6:39 pm

[…] The tradition of seniority has been broken only five times, most recently with the appointment of Artemio Panganiban as Chief Justice. This bypassed Reynato Puno, who was then the most senior Associate Justice. Puno was appointed Chief Justice last year. […]

Comment Form