92 new DILG lawyers urged 'to serve the people well'

By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan

April 25, 2023, 2:53 pm

MANILA – Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Benjamin "Benhur" Abalos Jr. urged the 92 newly minted lawyers of the agency to conduct themselves professionally at all times and serve the people well.

Abalos, who is a lawyer himself, commended the 15 new lawyers from the DILG Regional Offices and 77 from its attached agencies such as the Philippine National Police (PNP), Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP), Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), National Police Commission (Napolcom), and National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) for successfully passing the 2022 Bar examination and encouraged them to use their aptitude in law to serve the people and deliver justice to the public without fear.

Bilang mga abogado, marapat lamang na ating tiyakin na ang hustisya ay ating maihatid nang walang takot at buong karangalan para sa kapakanan ng mga mamamayan (As lawyers, it is our duty to ensure that justice is delivered without fear and with honor for the benefit of the people). Your success is the success of the whole country. May this achievement be an inspiration and hope for our fellow Filipinos and ignite your hearts to serve others, especially those who are marginalized,” Abalos said in a statement on Tuesday.

“Congratulations to the new lawyers! This only marks the beginning of your long but meaningful journey in the legal profession. I encourage all of you to display impeccable practice of your profession with the hopes of inspiring profound trust in our justice system in the country,” he added..

He said that among the 15 DILG regional office employees who passed the Bar examination are Gerald A. Gallardo from Region 1; DILG Quirino Provincial Director Salvacion Z. Baccay, Gmelina T. Manaligod and Judy Mar S. Dela Cruz from Region 2; Maria Fatima L. Cruz from Region 3; Francisco Deocareza from Region 5; Drib Laurence B. Ingles, Jeffrey A, Lopez, Karen Ann Beniga and Tereza Ruby N. Leprozo from Region 7; Begie T. Lucenecio and Duchess Christile Marie M. Cobacha from Region 8; Louie B. Limbraro from Region 11; Ernie Y. Gultiao from Region 13; and, Jeremiah T. Salamero from the National Capital Region.

Meanwhile, Abalos said the PNP takes pride in their 43 Bar passers -- Michelle Sardane Olaivar, Erving Dominguez Chan, Alvin Laborte Villalon, Caesar Ian Cordero Binucal, Alvin Delos Santos Lepiten, Leonard Agwiking Danasen, Jericho Partido Rapiz, Marlo Yee Gabato, James O Bad-e, Jenyvie Butalid Nagtalon, Cherry Madriñan Ricafort, Christian Philip Mariñas Reduca and Febelyn Digap Tebes, Alex Correa Becerra, Roland Gliocam Molino, Joy Pingad Dayag, Rogelio Gutierrez Marcelo, Ailyn Don Delos Angeles, Jazal Dela Cruz Andrada, Joan Collado Mecono and Lorena Castillo Ripalda.

Other PNP passers include Marifel Otap, Sabandal, Roderick Isong, Marifer Araneta Miguel, Loi Dominic Tan Arancon, Naif Abubacar Malawani, Elmond Ordoñez Monteron, Rose Anna Opalla Abuhan, Jose Marie Quilinguin Whiteside, Lovely May Bernal Janguin, Mamauag Rey Vincent Panganiban, Jerusalem Bungalan Dulnuan, Marie Rannelle Villaluz Dulnuan, Desiree Chaclag Pasong, Dizzy Dominong Buyuccan, Jefferson Balay-odao Cadap, Tetchie Paclay Assudo, John Bryan Latawan Cong-o, Sherwin Mendez Balagat, Faidzal Ganion Sendad, Joey Alcantara-Gumera, Joel Bacsal Purog Jr. and Melody Bedey Mamilig.

BJMP, he said, has produced 17 lawyers, among them are Joy Anne C. Pascual, Midzfar H. Omar, Richard O. Banaldia, Orlando V. Montalban, Arrianne A. Obias, Raquel S. Madrigal, Michael F. Rodeles, Hannief A. Ampatuan, Maria Fe Alconaba-Bonggat, Allan Christian C. Benitez, Roxanne P. Calabon, Gretchel C. Cartujano, Russel C. Lucaney, Myna Zosette Mesias, Marlon M. Olavides, Sheena L. Guarin and Gene Dee E. Tañedo.

The DILG chief likewise mentioned that BFP has gained 14 new lawyers -- Marie Jada Dolloso, Jonah Gale Apo, Jaiza Abasolo, Joseph Bello, Vianney Joy Tiwaken, Rizza Laurio, Marlou Suralta, Ma. Cyril Sugbo, Billy Abasolo, Benrae Valmonte, Dhea-amor Cabug, Frank Paul Cuevas, John Michael Valmores and Abdul Azis Macabanding.

Napolcom also has two new lawyers -- Katrina Andrea L. Bringas and Evelyn Antonnete B. Lumbis; while NCMF has one Bar passer, Ashraf Hashemie Mastura Muhammad.

Sa ating mga kasama sa PNP, BJMP, BFP, Napolcom at NCMF, taos-puso ko po kayong binabati. Patuloy po tayong magkaisa at magtulungan sa pagtupad ng ating mga tungkulin sa bansa sa pamamagitan ng abogasiya (To our colleagues in PNP, BJMP, BFP, Napolcom and NCMF, I sincerely congratulate you. Let's continue to unite and work together in the fulfillment of our duties to the country through law),” said Abalos.

Abalos also urged both existing and new lawyers in the Department to remain dignified in their legal practice both in the physical and online space, as stipulated in the updated “Code of Professional Responsibility and Accountability (CPRA),” which was recently launched by the Supreme Court (SC).

The CPRA is part of SC’s plan to revise the 34-year-old “Code of Professional Responsibility” by making it more responsive and relevant.

The Supreme Court said a total of 3,992 out of 9,183 examinees or 43.47 percent, passed the 2022 Bar examination.

The oath-taking of the successful examinees will be at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City on May 2.

For the second time, the Bar went digital using laptops with an exclusive program, instead of the traditional pen and paper, and administered the exams in multiple testing sites nationwide. (PNA)