Hopeless Present Justice System

Hopeless Present Justice System


Hello my revered sirs and ma'ams,

How I wish I have the moral magic power to calm the nerves so that all those who advocate the system of MAKING THE PEOPLE AS THE JUDGES may find unity.

I just want to inform that all courts in the Philippines today are required to start all hearings with the COURT ECUMENICAL PRAYER. However, no matter the prayer, as if the judges, the lawyers and the prosecutors forget it when the cases are called one by one.

We still end up with judges who decide on issues in a manner that are wrong on the point of the application of law WHEN THE LAW IS ELEMENTARY TO UNDERSTAND.  We still find lawyers doing some fooling on their clients or their opponents.  We still find prosecutors playing with the accused.

Senator Saguisag is right. There is no more delicadeza that can be sensed in and out of the courts today.  I agree with him: there is no need for jury if the judges are upright.

However, the problem now is that to look for an upright judge is like sifting a needle in a heap of sand.

Their salaries and allowances have been increased closed to a hundred thousand pesos a month but no substantial change can be observed.

As if it has become alright now to do some fixes and if you do otherwise you will get ostracized by fellow lawyers.

There are even lawyers who have the gall to whisper to an opposing lawyer on how to prolong the case without their clients knowing.  There are also lawyers who would send text messages to opposing lawyers to file more cases so that he can keep their respective clients for a "more permanent" employment from clients.

It seems gone are the days when lawyers tried their best to prepare for every case to be able to speak with eloquence and full of dignity in court.  Many are often absent, without minding the cost of the hearings gone for nothing.

You can observe there are a few lawyers now conducting cross examinations as assiduous as the old times.  A few lawyers now pose objections during the direct, cross, re-direct and re-cross examinations of witnesses.  It is not that they do not know, but it is more of a silent code of respect for each other.  All these lead to a sacrifice of truth.

The Supreme Court has tried so many steps but not one has proven effective.  Their judges in the provinces feel like kings.

Aside from the newest tool that is the Ecumenical Prayer, it has put into action the "Small Claims Court" having authority to conduct one-day trial for cases of claims of P100,000 or lesser so long as the claims are proven with receipts.  Lawyers are prohibited from appearing as counsels in small claims cases.  However, it turns out now that only credit card companies benefit from this instead of the intention to benefit the poor to be shelved from expensive long litigation: and the defendants in card companies cases are the poor and ordinary workers.

One evil of the justice system today in courts is that still very many trial judges are easily fixed by the moneyed.

The Court's Ecumenical Prayer is as follows:

"Almighty God, we stand in Your Holy Presence as our Supreme Judge. We humbly beseech You to bless and inspire us so that what we think, say and do will be in accordance with Your will.

Enlighten our minds, strengthen our spirit and fill our hearts with fraternal love, wisdom and understanding, so that we can become effective channels of truth, justice and peace.

In our proceedings today, guide us in the path of righteousness for the fulfillment of Your greater glory.

Amen."

This prayer is mandatory.  But there seems no solution in sight for the Supreme Court despite the auditing of cases system.  Many judges are still sitting on cases. Many are selling cases without hearings by just telling the litigants to sign minutes of hearings as if hearings were conducted and this has been rampant in "annulment of marriage" cases.

So what else will the Supreme Court try as a solution?

For example, I have this case about a DPWH expropriation.

The law on expropriation, Rep. Act 8974, is very clear in saying that a writ of possession can be issued only when the DPWH pays directly to the land owner 100% of the BIR Zonal Value equivalent of the land to be expropriated. 

But this RTC judge in San Fernando, Pampanga approved the writ of possession when the money was only deposited in court and not paid directly to the land owners.  I filed a motion for reconsideration pointing out the command of the law.  The judge did not budge. 

We read that the judge wants to give a hard time to the land owners so that the landowners would come to her and make some deals to release the funds.

I have also a case before Las Piñas RTC that is another classic example of mediocrity of the present system. 

I filed a complaint for declaration of nullity of the titles of a very rich defendant corporation on the ground that its certificate of title is the last derivative of the first certificate whose decree of registration and Original Certificate of Title were issued on the day when the parcel of land was not yet released by the government for private ownership acquisition. 

To protect the rights of my clients, I filed a "Notice of Lis Pendens" to be annotated at the back of the certificate of title of the opponent to warn buyers not to buy the lot as it is under litigation in court.

Then the rich defendant filed a motion to dismiss on the ground that the summons was not served on any of the right officers of the corporation but it filed--at the same time before the same court--a petition for cancellation of the notice of lis pendens upon the claim that our case was only for molestation

The RTC of Las Piñas granted the cancellation ruling that we only molested the defendant corporation.

Will there be molestation on our part while we have already completed presenting the DENR official who stood pat before the court that the parcel of land cannot as yet be titled to any person on the day when the decree of registration was issued and on the day the first certificate of title (OCT) was released?

Can it be molestation when we already proved by certifications from the DENR and presentation of DENR officials attesting to the veracity of the certificate?  

What made it more illogical, the RTC of Las Piñas correctly denied the motion to dismiss because the act of filing a petition for cancellation of lis pendens was an act of voluntarily submitting the person of the defendant to the jurisdiction of the court.  So that if the RTC upheld our complaint, it means it is not for molestation.

BUT WHAT IS MORE FUN HERE, the RTC of Las Piñas granted the petition to cancel lis pendens when it was not supported by a verification, a certificate of non-forum shopping, and a company board resolution authorizing the filing of the petition to cancel lis pendens.

There are so many other experiences I have had. But to tell them all here will eat up a kilometer of internet space.

With these, we believe that the call for us to try jury system has become more compelling.

Jury system is a system where the judges are the people themselves, through a group chosen from them by raffle and some screening processes to know who are qualified to be judge. 


If this happens, nobody would complain about political harassment or manipulations by the moneyed.

Patriotically,


Berteni "Toto" Cataluña Causing
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