Cancio Is Acting Appeals Court Presiding Justice

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Byline: REY G. PANALIGAN

Associate Justice Cancio C. Garcia, now the most senior member of the Court of Appeals, is acting presiding justice of the appellate court with the elevation to the Supreme Court of Presiding Justice Ma. Alicia Austria Martinez.

Martinez and former presidential chief of staff Renato Corona took their oaths of office before President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo yesterday as the 14th and 15th members of the Supreme Court, respectively.

By operation of law, the most senior member of the CA assumes the post of acting presiding justice in case of vacancy until a permanent presiding justice is appointed by the President.

At the Supreme Court, Senior Associate Justice Josue N. Bellosillo is acting Chief Justice and acting chairman of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) with the official travel abroad of Chief Justice Hilario G. Davide Jr.

Davide, together with Associate Justices Jose A.R. Melo and Santiago M. Kapunan left yesterday for Madrid, Spain, to attend a conference on international terrorism sponsored by the World Jurists Association (WJA).

The three High Court justices are expected to be back before the end of the month.

A product of public schools, Garcia, 64, has been in government service for 40 years, starting as a legal assistant in the Office of the President in 1962 after passing the 1961 bar examinations. …