Retired Judge Manuel DJ Siayngco Jr Grilled by JBC
By Perfecto T. Raymundo
The personal life of a nominee for the post of Chief Justice of the Supreme Court (SC) was unearthed on Wednesday during the panel interview by the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC).
This was when retired Judge Manuel DJ Siayngco, Jr. was asked by the JBC about the annulment case, which he admitted before the panel.
In 2004, the SC dismissed the petition filed by Siayngco seeking to annul his marriage with Juanita Carating despite the fact that he admitted he had an extra-marital affair because his wife did not bear a child.
At the middle of the interview, Siayngco said that he takes offense to the stereotyping that judges are “hoodlums in robe” because he has been consistent and has done his best in the performance of his duties.
“I am not an outsider in the judiciary. And as a trial court judge I know the problems of the courts better than many SC Justices,” Siayngco said.
Siayngco was not extensively grilled by the JBC because he was already interviewed by the council for six times when he was nominated as an associate justice of the Court of Appeals and the Sandiganbayan.
“The fact that I’m here out of 70 in the long list, it’s an honor for me to be included to the 20 candidates,” Siayngco said.
“When I retired, I just wanted to enjoy the fruits of my labor. But it’s been 7 months, I haven’t received any benefits yet,” he added.
The interview on Siayngco lasted for only less than an hour.
He opted for an early retirement as a judge at the age of 62 in 2011.
He taught constitutional law in the Bulacan State University (BSU) from 2002 to 2012.
He also entered the Divine Word Seminary in Tagaytay City in 1969.