Philippine chief justice appeals ouster from Supreme Court

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The ousted Philippine chief justice has appealed for the reversal of her unprecedented expulsion by fellow judges on the Supreme Court and warned it could lead to the destruction of judicial independence.

Maria Lourdes Sereno said Wednesday that the 8-6 vote that ousted her from the Supreme Court on May 11 should be reversed, citing a constitutional principle that top judiciary officials can only be removed by congressional impeachment.

The vote was on a petition filed by the government's solicitor-general that accused Sereno of failing to file her asset disclosures as a state university professor years ago, a charge she denies. It pre-empted ongoing impeachment proceedings against Sereno in Congress.

Sereno is a critic of the country's authoritarian president, who called for her ouster from the 15-member tribunal.