Friday, January 22, 2016

Ashary M. Alauya vs. Judge Casan Ali Limbona [A.M. No. SCC-98-4, March 22, 2011]

FACTS: Alauya reported that numerous verbal complaints had been received against Judge Casan Ali Limbona for: (a) not reporting to his station at the SCC in Tamparan, Lanao del Sur; (b) having filed a certificate of candidacy as a party-list candidate of the Development Foundation of the Philippines (DFP) while serving in the judiciary and while receiving his salary as a judge; and (c) obtaining from the post office, without sufficient authority, checks representing benefits for court employees.

ISSUE: Whether or not Judge Limbona is guilty of Gross Misconduct and Dishonesty

RULING: Yes. Judge Limbona committed grave offenses which rendered him unfit to continue as a member of the Judiciary. When he was appointed as a judge, he took an oath to uphold the law, yet in filing a certificate of candidacy as a party-list representative in the May 1998 elections without giving up his judicial post, Judge Limbona violated not only the law, but the constitutional mandate that “no officer or employee in the civil service shall engage directly or indirectly, in any electioneering or partisan political campaign.” For his continued performance of his judicial activities despite his candidacy for a political post, Judge Limbona is guilty of grave misconduct in office. While the Court cannot interfere with Judge Limbona's political aspirations, it cannot allow him to pursue his political goals while still on the bench.

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