Following her oust as Supreme Court (SC) chief justice, Maria Lourdes Sereno also allegedly lied on her PDS (Personal Data Sheet) or biodata as candidate for being a chief justice in the High Court. This is according to SC Associate Justice Teresita Leonardo-de Castro in her concurring opinion on the quo warranto petition against Sereno.
“Respondent further made spurious claims in her 2010 PDS and 2012 PDS when she declared that she was a lecturer at Murdoch University in 2001-2002 and at University of Western Australia (UWA) in 2003-2007, teaching International Business Law.” De Castro, who was one of the 8 SC justices who granted the quo warranto petition, wrote.
“A reading of her entries in both PDS gives the impression that she was actually a faculty member at the said universities, which are based in Perth, Western Australia, Australia. In actuality, however, respondent was a lecturer at The Esteban School, now Australian International School, based in Taguig City, Metro Manila, Philippines.” She added.
“Respondent’s falsehoods in her sworn PDS when she applied to vacant posts in the Supreme Court foretold the deception she perpetrated regarding her SALNs [Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth) to ensure her inclusion in the shortlist of nominees for the vacant post of Supreme Court Chief Justice.” De Castro wrote further.
De Castro also accused Sereno of falsifying a court resolution to make it appear that the en banc ratified the operation of the Judiciary Decentralized Office (JDO) under the pretext of reviving the Regional Court Administration Office (RCAO) in Central Visayas. The ousted chief magistrate allegedly created JBO without the approval of the en banc.
Sereno, 57, was appointed on August 24, 2012 by then-President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, after Renato Corona was removed from office in May 2012 via impeachment trial. De Castro, three years ahead of Sereno in the Supreme Court, was bypassed. Nevertheless, Sereno is the first chief justice to be removed via quo warranto.