Cebu City courts to remain open for ‘urgent’ matters

By: Rosalie Abatayo - CDN Digital | March 17,2020 - 01:16 PM

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Courts in Cebu City will continue to be open to “act on urgent matters” despite the suspension of all hearings from March 16 to April 15, 2020.

Cebu City Regional Trial Court Executive Judge Macaundas Hadjirasul, in a Facebook post this Tuesday, March 17, said only two judges and their skeletal staff will remain on duty in the Cebu City Hall of Justice at the Qimonda IT Center in the North Reclamation Area here.

The judges on duty, Hadjirasul said, would notify concerned presiding judges if there will be issues in their respective branches that needs to be resolved immediately.

“But all the other branches are on call. We are not on holiday or vacation. We are trying to defeat the COVID 19 by avoiding exposure. Should urgent matter/s come up concerning the other branches, the judge/s on duty shall call the attention of the branch/es concerned,” Hadjirasul said.

The Supreme Court (SC) announced on Monday, March 16, that all court hearings will be suspended on until April 15 in view of the threat posed by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

The “urgent matters” that are excepted from the court hearings suspension include “bail and habeas corpus petitions, promulgation of judgments of acquittals, reliefs for those who may be arrested and detained, and other actions that may be filed related to the measures imposed at the local and national level to address the COVID-19 health emergency,” said an Inquirer report.

READ: All court hearings suspended during quarantine

The skeletal forces in court shall only work from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., according to a circular issued by the SC.

“Urgent matters and pleadings pertaining to the branches of the judges on duty shall be entertained by or filed in said branches. The rest shall be entertained by or filed in the OCC (Office of the Clerk of Court), which the latter shall refer to the judge/s on duty for determination if it is urgent enough to be brought to the attention of the branch/es concerned,” Hadjirasul said. /bmjo

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TAGS: Cebu City Regional Trial Court Executive Judge Macaundas Hadjirasul, coronavirus, court hearing, courts in cebu city, covid updates, covid19, suspended
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