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Philippine Supreme Court unseats chief justice who opposed Duterte

Ousted top judge Sereno blasts colleagues for violating constitution

Maria Lourdes Sereno waves to supporters before being as ousted as chief justice of the Philippine Supreme Court.   © Reuters

MANILA -- The Philippine Supreme Court on Friday ousted its chief justice who often tangled with President Rodrigo Duterte, an unprecedented move that raises questions about the independence of the country's judicial branch.

In a 8-6 vote, the high court granted the petition of chief government lawyer Jose Calida, who sought to invalidate Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno's appointment as head of the judiciary. Calida accused Sereno of lack of integrity for failing to comply with disclosure requirements of her wealth when she applied for the position. 

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