Monday, December 01, 2014

JUSTICE DELAYED IS INJUSTICE



Considering that not a few knowledgeable people consider that the Philippines has the distinction of having the slowest Court procedure in the world for the administration of justice, it is not altogether an exaggeration to remind those concerned – particularly in the Judicial Branch of government – that more than maxim commonly invoked that Justice delayed is justice denied”, the truth of the matter is that unreasonable delay in the administration of justice is nothing less than downright injustice.

How long will a victim have to suffer in order to eventually receive what is his/her due? How long will the culprit enjoy life before the same gets the punishment he or she deserves? This is not only about the altogether unpunished murderers in the infamous Mendiola Massacre – most of the victims were unarmed and helpless farmers. Neither is this merely about the infamous Maguindanao Massacre – a good number of those nonchalantly brought to their death were media persons simply doing their job. Yes, this is about the heartbreaking sight in a good number of Trial Courts, a part of which is readily and customarily turned into bodegas of undecided Civil as well as Criminal Cases. To say that undecided Cases long since therein piled one after another and gathering more and more dust in the course of time is certainly not an overstatement.

So is it that some questions come to mind: How come so many cases have to be handled and resolved by so few Trial Courts in the land? Why not revisit and revise the Procedural Law to shorten trials without sacrificing truth plus the matter of the appeal – all solid evidences of the truth notwithstanding? Why is it that litigation about but really minor matters have to be resolved by Trial Courts proper? Why not give the relevant Barangay officials the authority not merely to undertake reconciliation moves but also proceed with the resolution of many truly minor cases sans appeals – considering that Filipinos are apparently litigation prone? And so on.

As of now – and long since even – the Legislative Department has been spending a lot of time, money and effort at practically subjecting to Trial these and those issues with apparently political color instead of honest to goodness “in aid of legislation”. For a change, would the Honorable Senators in particular want to review instead the rules governing the administration of justice in the Country in order to make it more functional, more reasonable, more fast and just?

It can be readily assumed that those duly accused and personally know their misdeed and accordingly undergoing trial are rejoicing for the very slow movement of justice – which at times is not even moving but actually parked somewhere, somehow. It can even be said that the so-called and often heard “Motion” is precisely meant to prevent the trial of a Case from moving on. So is it that individuals accused of having fooled around with public funds are in fact still being benefited with even more public funds in their practically unending trials. This is unconscionable – to say the least!