Who Is Lucas P. Bersamin, Bongbong Marcos' New Executive Secretary?
President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. officially swore in former Supreme Court Chief Lucas P. Bersamin as his new Executive Secretary on Tuesday, September 27.
Press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles said that the President chose Bersamin on a "trust basis."
“Sinasabi ng ating Pangulo, he is well-qualified to be the Executive Secretary having put in so many years in the Judiciary," she said in a Palace press briefing. "He has the necessary legal background and the ability to deal with paperwork, plus he is trusted and well-qualified for this.”
Bersamin, who has been known to side with the President's past decisions, turns 73 next month. He replaces Vic Rodriguez, who left the post last week amidst the sugar import fiasco. Like Rodriguez, Bersamin is no stranger to controversy.
Let's go through his credentials real quick. After graduating with a Political Science degree from the University of the Philippines-Diliman in 1986, Bersamin entered the University of the East College of Law and passed the bar examinations in 1973.
Bersamin started out in private practice and taught as a professor at the Ateneo Law School, the University of the East College of Law, and the University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Civil Law, among others.
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Today we administered the oath of Former Chief Justice Lucas Purugganan Bersamin as the acting Executive Secretary of our administration. https://t.co/wxnRfxhuru— Bongbong Marcos (@bongbongmarcos) September 27, 2022
Before his tenure with the Supreme Court, Bersamin was a judge with the Quezon City Regional Trial Court. Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo appointed him to the Court of Appeals in 2003. Six years later, she would elevate him to associate justice of the Supreme Court of the Philippines. This came during a time when GMA was plagued by corruption cases.
He would later favor the acquittal of GMA and grant bail to plunder defendant Juan Ponce Enrile, who he now joins in the new Marcos Cabinet. Bersamin also wrote the landmark decision that confirmed the appointment of then-Associate Justice Renato Corona as Chief Justice.
During former President Rodrigo Duterte's administration, Bersamin voted in favor of the quo warranto petition against Maria Lourdes Sereno. He also voted to allow a hero's burial for former President Ferdinand Marcos Sr. in 2016. Duterte later appointed Bersamin Chief Justice in 2018.
Bersamin retired less than a year later but would again get called up by Duterte in 2020, when he was appointed chairperson of the Government Service Insurance System.
The Bersamins are a powerful clan in Abra. Lucas Bersamin is the brother of former Abra Congressman Luis "Chito" P. Bersamin, Jr., who was killed in a shooting incident during a wedding ceremony in 2006, and former Abra Governor Eustaquio P. Bersamin.