First Quarter 2018
The year 2018 opened with a number of activities beginning with Training Programs and Activities held in the PHILJA Training Center (PTC) in Tagaytay City: The 80th Orientation Seminar-Workshop for Newly Appointed Judges (Family Court judges from Regions III and IV as well as MTCC judges from Region VI); the 37th Orientation Seminar-Workshop for Newly Appointed Clerks of Court (RTC clerks of court from the NCJR, Regions I, III–V, and VIII–XII; MeTC clerks of court from the NCJR; MTCC clerks of court from Regions II, Regions IV–VII, X–XI; MTC clerks of court from Regions I, IV, VI, VIII, XI–XII and MCTC clerks of court from Regions I, II, VIII, X and XII); the First and Second Orientation Seminar-Workshop for Newly Appointed Court Stenographers (RTC and MeTC court stenographers from the NCJR); and the 13th Orientation Seminar-Workshop for Newly Appointed Sheriffs and Process Servers (sheriffs from the NCJR, Regions I–IV, VI–VII, IX–XII and process servers from the NCJR and Regions I–XII). Career Enhancement Programs (CEP) for both RTC and MeTC Court Interpreters of the National Capital Judicial Region (Batch 3) and the Regional Trial Court Sheriffs of the Second and Eighth Judicial Regions, respectively, rounded up these activities.
Special focus programs were delivered by the Academy to participants around the country: the Advanced Competency Enhancement Training for Judges, Prosecutors, Legal Researchers, Social Workers and Law Enforcement Investigators Handling Trafficking in Persons cases (ACET-TIP) in Tagaytay City; the Competency Enhancement Training for Family Court Judges, Prosecutors, Social Workers, and Law Enforcement Investigators on the Management of Online Sexual Exploitation of Children Cases (CET-OSEC) in Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga; the Sandiganbayan Strategic Planning Pre-Work Activities (Phase 1) in Makati City; a Training on Republic Act No. 9184 and its Revised Implementing Rules and Regulations for Court of Appeals Justices, Court Attorneys and Court Personnel in Manila; a Training on the Interim Guidelines on the Direct Release and Administration of the Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses Budget for Lower Courts (MOOE) in Davao City. A total of six Training Seminars on the Revised Guidelines for Continuous Trial of Criminal Cases was delivered in the following cities: Laoag, Tuguegarao, Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Dipolog and Naga.
Two Validation Workshops for the Initial Draft of the Revised Handbook for Sheriffs were held during this period: one in Tagaytay (Region IV and Shari’a Courts) and another in Angeles, Pampanga (Region III). A Round Table Discussion on Courts, Competition Law, and Competition Culture was held at the Asian Development Bank Headquarters in Mandaluyong City.
The Academy assisted in the conduct of the following conventions by the different court employees’ associations: the 23rd National Convention and Seminar of the Philippine Women Judges Association (PWJA) dubbed as “Fabulous @ 30” at the Manila Hotel; the 13th National Convention and Seminar of the Regional Trial Court-Clerks of Court Association of the Philippines, with the theme “In Celebration of 25 Years of Commitment, Integrity and Excellence” also held in Manila; the 10th National Convention and Seminar of the Philippine Association of Court Interpreters, Inc., (PhilACI) titled “Court Interpreters: Embracing Changes in Modern Technology” in Boracay; the 11th National Convention and Seminar of the Philippine Association of Court Social Workers, Inc., (PACSWI) called “Judicial Social Workers: Facing Millennial Challenges” in Bacolod City; and the 11th National Convention and Seminar of the Judicial Court Clerks Association of the Philippines themed as “The Judiciary Clerks Embracing the Challenge of Modern Technology” in Cebu City.
PHILJA continued to support the Court’s Enhanced Justice on Wheels (E-JOW) Program with the conduct of the Information Dissemination through a Dialogue among Barangay Officials and Court Officials and the Mobile Court-Annexed Mediation in Mandaluyong City and Tanay, Rizal.
The Academy, through the Philippine Mediation Center Office (PMCO), conducted a number of activities in support of Alternative Dispute Resolution such as two Orientation Conferences with Stakeholders on Court-Annexed Mediation and two Orientation and Screening activities for Prospective Mediators and PMC Unit Staff for the Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur Mediation Programs, respectively. In Tuguegarao City, the PMCO conducted an Orientation for Clerks of Court and Branch Clerks of Court on Judicial Dispute Resolution and an Orientation for Law Practitioners on Judicial Dispute Resolution.
We continued taking note of new rulings of the Supreme Court and kept up with the doctrinal reminders, as well as with newly issued Court orders, resolutions, and circulars. New OCA circulars were likewise noted.
In closing, I thank our officials and staff, our corps of professors and lecturers, and our program partners for giving their best to the Academy. Special thanks, too, to the Honorable Supreme Court, including the various committees of the Court that partner with PHILJA in training judges and court personnel, for supporting of all our programs and activities. Finally, thanks to God Almighty for making all these possible.
(Sgd.) ADOLFO S. AZCUNA