Calida vows to look into Justice Leonen’s alleged SALN violations

Solicitor General Jose Calida has vowed to look into allegations that Supreme Court (SC) Associate Justice Marvic Leonen skipped in the submissions of statements of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN).

Solicitor General Jose Calida

Calida made this assurance in his Sept. 14 letter to lawyer Lorenzo “Larry” Gadon who received it on Thursday, Sept. 24.

“The OSG (Office of the Solicitor General) takes serious note of the allegations in your letter and undertakes to study and uncover the truth behind such allegations,” read Calida’s letter which was sent in response Gadon’s Sept. 7 letter which pushed for the filing of a quo warranto petition against Leonen.

“Should it be found that the allegations against AJ Leonen are true, the OSG will not hesitate to discharge its mandate to uphold the Constitution and question before the Supreme Court the qualifications of AJ Leonen via Quo Warranto,” said Calida.

Gadon had told Calida that Leonen failed to file SALNs in 2003, 2008 and 2009 when he was still teaching at the University of the Philippines (UP).

It can be recalled that Calida had filed a quo warranto petiton before the SC back in March 2018 which sought to void the appointment at the high tribunal of then Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno for her failure to submit her SALNs when she was still teaching in UP.

In May that same year, the SC voted 8-6 which granted the quo warranto petition and removed Sereno from her post.

Meanwhile, Gadon announced on Thursday he will file a motion for reconsideration on the SC’s Sept. 15 ruling which denied his and the OSG’s requests for copies of Leonen’s SALNs.

“The Supreme Court has no legal basis in denying my request,” Gadon said in a statement adding that he has also complied with all the requirements in connection with his request.

The lawyer also reminded the SC that it has provided him the SALNs of Sereno prior to her ouster.

“It is the right of every citizen to secure copies of SALNs, that is provided under the law. More so from the Supreme Court from where on record has a precedent of releasing the same to me in the case of Sereno,” he stated.

Gadon cited the right to secure SALNs from public officials is also provided for under Republic Act 6713, the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.