No more oral arguments on BOL, says the Supreme Court

Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao— The Supreme Court (SC) will no longer hold oral arguments on petitions questioning the constitutionality of the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL), Philstar online report said.

The SC justices had planned to hear in oral arguments the petitions filed by the Sulu provincial for the ratification of BOL government led by Gov. Abdusakur Tan II and the Philippine Constitutional Association (Philconsa) seeking to stop the implementation of the BOL under Republic Act 11054, but decided not to pursue it anymore following the ratification of the law in the plebiscite conducted by the Commission on Elections (C), an insider told The STAR.

Instead, the justices opted to deliberate and decide on the case next month, source who requested anonymity told Philstar. He also revealed to Philstar that the member in charge will submit the draft decision in March.”

In the said plebiscite conducted by COMELEC last January 21st, and February 6 for the ratification of BOL, the yes vote won in ARMM, Cotabato City, and in 63 villages in North Cotabato. But unfortunately, Lanao del Norte, and Isabela City in Basilan voted No.

According to the report, the Court earlier deferred ruling on the plea of petitioners for issuance of a temporary restraining order (TRO) on implementation of the BOL, allowing the plebiscite to proceed as scheduled.

It opted to first seek comments from the respondents in the case – Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, members of the Senate and the House of Representatives headed by Senate President Vicente Sotto III and Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, respectively – before deciding on the plea for issuance of a TRO as well as on the merits of the case.

The two petitions by Gov. Tan and PhilConsa have the same arguments against the BOL, said the report.

Solicitor General Jose Calida has filed a comment on the petition of Tan and is expected to file another this week on Philconsa’s petition.