President-elect Noynoy Aquino's early stubbornness and arrogance of not wanting to take his oath before a sitting Chief Justice whose appointment he questions smells worse than his cigarette smoke. But I'm glad he's flip-flopping on this.
He should be reminded though that in 1990, his mother President Corazon Aquino's inherited stubbornness drove some 29 Court of Appeals justices to write a letter to her excellency questioning the appointment to the Supreme Court of Flerida Ruth Romero, Cory's speechwriter and personal friend.
When told that the justices were threatening to go on mass leave to protest Romero's appointment, the President reportedly instructed her aides to tell the justices to drop their objections or else she would throw the book at them. She could accuse them of dereliction of duty and on this basis cause them to lose their jobs.
Many Supreme Court justices had expressed reservations about the qualifications of Romero, who has never been a judge and has not distinguished herself in private practice. Romero herself, gracious as she has always been, kept silent throughout the controversy. The criticisms against her, however, were bound to make people scrutinize very closely whatever decisions she would be making in the Supreme Court. Similarly, lawyers were waiting to see whether the criticisms directed against Romero's appointment made President Cory act differently when she filled the remaining vacancy in the SC. It was widely believed then that she would pick another person close to her, either Deputy Executive Secretary Magdangal Elma or Adolf Azcuna, her former legal adviser.
In doing so, President Cory didn't give a hoot about traditions governing appointments to the Supreme Court and preferred to use personal loyalty as her main criterion.
(Image from http://en.wikinews.org/)