The Members of the Supreme Court held a Special En Banc Session at the Supreme Court Session Hall on Friday, May 13, to honor Senior Associate Justice Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe, who mandatorily retired from public service.
A Special Award for exemplary service was created to honor the retiring Senior Associate Justice.
The Chief Justice disclosed that in recognition of Senior Associate Justice Perlas-Bernabe’s exemplary service to the Judiciary, the Supreme Court has resolved to create an award in her honor— The Senior Associate Justice Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe Exemplary Career Jurist Award.
“This is the first of its kind in the history of the Philippine Judiciary,” said the Chief Justice.
The Chief Justice explained:
“This award shall be henceforth conferred only to the distinct set of Justices of the Supreme Court who have served the Judiciary in all court levels, particularly from a trial court, a lower collegiate court, and finally, up to the Supreme Court, and have achieved a zero-backlog or zero docket upon every promotion to the next level court, until their retirement from the Supreme Court, as what Justice Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe exceptionally accomplished during the course of her 26-year judicial career.”
The Chief Justice said that by conferring this award, “the Court hopes that future career jurists will aspire to receive this honor upon their own retirement, and traverse the same path of unwavering dedication to judicial service the Justice Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe paved for them.”
Senior Associate Justice Perlas-Bernabe, who served as magistrate in all levels of court without leaving any case pending for resolution upon her promotion to a higher court, also received from her colleagues the Judicial Medal of Distinction.
The said Medal “is especially awarded to retiring Justices of the Supreme Court who excelled in the quintessential duty of efficient case disposition, particularly by leaving no case in her docket, or no case pending for resolution upon her retirement from the Court”.