MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte has appointed Court of Appeals (CA) Associate Justice Rosmari Carandang to the Supreme Court (SC), a member of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) said Wednesday.
The office of Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea has released Carandang's appointment papers and that of Associate Justice Lucas Bersamin, who was appointed Chief Justice, said JBC ex-officio member Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra.
Carandang, 66, the third most senior justice of the appellate court, fills the associate justice post left vacant when Teresita Leonardo-De Castro was appointed Chief Justice in August.
Another vacancy was left upon her retirement in October, and newly appointed Chief Justice Bersamin will be taking this post.
Carandang is the second unmarried female to be appointed to the Supreme Court, the first one being the late Associate Justice Irene Cortes, who was appointed by President Corazon Aquino.
The new SC magistrate had told the JBC during her interview last September 26 that being single would allow her to give all her time to the judiciary.
She is not in favor of same-sex marriage because of her Catholic faith, but supports medical abortion, she told the panel mandated to screen applicants for appointment to the judiciary and the Office of the Ombudsman.
Carandang is Duterte's eighth appointee to the 15-member Supreme Court since assuming the presidency in 2016. She will serve in the high court until her retirement on January 9, 2022.
A native of Taal, Batangas, Carandang graduated cum laude and class salutatorian from the UP College of Law in 1975.
According to her 2014 personal data sheet submitted to the SC, she briefly worked as technical assistant at the Commission on Audit in 1976 before working for private banks and a finance company for 17 years.
She was appointed presiding judge at the Manila Regional Trial Court in 1994 before joining the CA in 2003.
She has taught civil procedure at the Manuel L. Quezon School of Law in 1999, and corporate law and land registration at the Philippine Christian University School of Law since 2010.
- reports from Dexter Ganibe and Mike Navallo, ABS-CBN News