New SC justice from Cebu ‘rose from the ranks’

COURT of Appeals (CA) Visayas Station Executive Justice Edgardo L. delos Santos has been appointed to the Supreme Court.

With the appointment, the 67-year-old justice said he feels rewarded for his 41 years of service in the judiciary.

“I literally rose from the ranks,” said delos Santos, who started as a legal researcher for a court in Manila in the late 1970s.

Delos Santos and CA Justice Mario Lopez were appointed by President Rodrigo Duterte as Supreme Court justices, replacing Associate Justice Francis Jardeleza and Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio, who retired on Sept. 26 and Oct. 26, respectively.

In an email sent to SunStar Cebu, delos Santos said he feels that his new post is a reward for all the years he spent working in government.

“Indeed, hard work and perseverance will pay off, and the virtues of humility, sincerity, patience will define a person’s character,” he said.

Delos Santos is the executive justice of the Court of Appeals’ Visayas Station and the chairperson of its Eighteenth (18th) Division.

He drew praises from environmentalists and some Cebu City officials in 2016 when he issued the Writ of Kalikasan and ordered the closure of the Inayawan sanitary landfill.

Delos Santos earned his Bachelor’s Degree Major in Political Science and Bachelor of Laws at the University of San Carlos in Cebu City.

After passing the Bar in 1977, he worked as a court legal researcher in the Court of First Instance of Manila.

He later transferred to the Supreme Court as a technical assistant and later on as a court confidential attorney.

He was appointed as a Municipal Trial Court judge at the age of 30, the youngest at that time, and was later appointed as a Municipal Trial Court in Cities presiding judge in Dumaguete City. He eventually became the executive judge there.

After serving the first-level courts for 10 years, he was promoted to Regional Trial Court Presiding Judge in Bacolod City and served the station for 16 years before being elevated to the second highest court of the land in May 2008.

He became the Executive Justice of the Court of Appeals Visayas on Oct. 2, 2018.

Lawyer Karen Mae Eltanal, delos Santos’ court attorney, said the new Justice will take his oath of office before the Supreme Court on Friday afternoon, Dec. 6. (WBS)