Supreme Court Leads Int'l Conference on Judicial Reforms

Article excerpt

Byline: REY G. PANALIGAN

Acting Chief Justice Artemio V. Panganiban announced yesterday the holding in November of an "International Conference and Showcase on Judicial Reforms" sponsored by the Philippine Supreme Court.

In a press briefing, Panganiban said that of the 96 countries invited, 33 of them have confirmed participation in the conference slated from Nov. 28-30 in Makati City.

Panganiban is acting Chief Justice in view of the official leave of absence of Chief Justice Hilario G. Davide Jr. and Senior Justice Reynato S. Puno.

Expected to participate in the three-day conference are chief justices, members of the judiciary, and non-judiciary personnel involved in judicial reforms.

Panganiban said among those who have confirmed their participation are the Chief Justices of Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan, the Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands, the Czech Republic, Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, Kirabati, Maldives, Myanmar, The Netherlands, Pakistan, the Russian Federation, the Slovak Republic, South Africa, and Vanuatu.

Funds for the conference will come from various international agencies like the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, United States Agency for International Development, and the Asia Foundation, Panganiban said.

He said that countries like Australia, Canada, Japan, Great Britain, United States, the Netherlands, and the European Union have also provided funding support.

"Delegates won't even have to pay registration fees, and that their hotel and meals would be sponsored. Travel grants for participants may also be available from the development partner upon request," he said.

But the Acting Chief Justice stressed that "to preserve the independence of the judiciary, all the funding support and grants are coursed through the Philippine government, which in turn, would give them to the court. …