Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno
Only Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno travelled business class in her trips, at least according to the recollection of a Supreme Court (SC) finance official processing the expenses of the high court.
This was contrary to earlier claims that Sereno brings in her staff and security with her in business class using taxpayers’ money.
In the hearing last Monday, Court Administrator Midas Marquez confirmed reports that Sereno’s staff and security traveled on business class. Lawyer Larry Gadon accused Sereno of corruption in his impeachment complaint due to her alleged excessive spending of public money.
“As far as we know, only the Chief Justice travels business class. All the staff by economy class,” Corazon Flores, chief of SC’s fiscal management and budget office, told the House justice committee.
“Wala na kasing supporting documents sa amin but as far as finance remembers, lahat economy class, otherwise, their attention would be called,” Flores said.
Leyte 3rd district Rep. and former appellate justice Vicente Veloso then clarified to Flores that if any of the court staff, except the Chief Justice, would travel business class, they would be reprimanded since the act was prohibited within the judiciary.
Flores answered, “Yes, your honor.”
Meanwhile, Ma. Carina Cunanan, procurement head and assistant chief of SC’s administrative services, was also asked to answer, and she said court staff were not authorized to travel business class./ac
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