SC to open 7 new courts in GenSan, SouthCot
GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/03 October) — The Supreme Court (SC) is set to open seven more court branches here and in nearby South Cotabato province as it moves to unclog court dockets and speed up the dispensation of justice in the area.
Court Administrator Jose Midas Marquez said the preparations are ongoing for the opening within the next few months of three additional Regional Trial Court (RTC) salas in Polomolok town in South Cotabato.
The three new courts are on top of the four salas that have been approved for opening in this city as disclosed earlier by RTC Branch 35 Executive Judge Oscar Noel.
“We’re just waiting for the necessary funding from the DBM (Department of Budget and Management) for these new courts,” Marquez told a local radio station.
The official was referring to the allotment for the operations as well as the salaries of the judges and personnel who will be appointed for the new courts.
Marquez said his office will immediately organize the additional court salas once the DBM approves their budget.
This city and nearby South Cotabato province, which are under the 11th Judicial Region, presently hosts 20 court salas composed of 13 RTCs, four municipal trial court in cities (MTCC) and three municipal trial courts (MTC).
This city has five RTCs and three MTCCs while Koronadal City, which is the capital and component city of South Cotabato, has three RTCs and one MTCC.
Surallah town in South Cotabao has three RTCs while Polomolok town has one RTC.
The MTCs are located in the towns of Polomolok, Tampakan and Tupi.
Meantime, Marquez said they are planning to also pilot test in the coming months the “Judgment Day” component of its Enhanced Justice on Wheels (EJOW) program.
“Judgment Day” refers to the expedited hearings and the granting of decisions on a number of cases in one day through the EJOW’s mobile courts.
The SC launched the EJOW and “Judgment Day” in this city and in Polomolok on Thursday and Friday last week, respectively.
“We’re considering bringing them also to other municipalities in South Cotabato,” Marquez said.
EJOW is a special mobile court program of the SC that allows court hearings to be held outside the courtrooms.
The program is mainly aimed at decongesting jails in the country through the release of “overstaying” detainees and resolve the clogging of pending cases in local courts. (MindaNews)