The Supreme Court-administered Bar examinations kicked off smoothly yesterday at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila.
Seven thousand, two-hundred twenty seven law graduates all over the country were admitted to take the examinations at two subjects each for four Sundays until Nov. 26.
The examinations yesterday covered Political Law and Labor Law. Civil Law and Taxation will be taken up on Nov. 12; Mercantile Law and Criminal Law on Nov. 19; and Remedial Law and Legal Judicial Ethics on Nov. 26.
SC Justice Lucas P. Bersamin, chairperson of the 2017 Bar examinations committee, said there was no untoward incident inside and around the vicinity of UST where 700 policemen were deployed by the Manila Police District.
Bersamin said that the conduct of Bar examinations is an official function of the SC and thus, “any act that undermines the safe and orderly conduct of the Bar examinations or disturbs the due decorum therefore shall be punished with direct contempt of court, and shall be dealt with summarily.”
Thus, a “Justice on Wheels” bus of the SC was deployed to serve as a special trial court where anyone arrested by the police in connection with the Bar examinations could be heard and meted out a penalty immediately.
A metropolitan trial court judge manned the special court and was authorized to impose on-the-spot punishment of fines and imprisonment of up to 10 days or both for offenders on charges of direct contempt of court.
The Manila city government has imposed a liquor ban within the 100-meter radius of UST and a “no parking” policy was implemented on España and Dapitan Sts. during the conduct of the examinations.
Medical personnel were also deployed for emergency situations.
SC records showed that 7,270 law graduates initially applied to take the Bar examinations but 13 applications were denied while 30 others have withdrawn their applications.
This year’s number of examinees is higher than those in 2015 and 2016 with 6,605 and 6,344 examinees, respectively. (Rey G. Panaligan)