Chief Justice Diosdado M. Peralta, who will bow out of service on March 27, one year ahead of his mandatory retirement age of 70, will be attending his “last flag ceremony” today (Monday) at the Supreme Court’s compound along Padre Faura Street in Manila.
In an advisory, the SC Public Information Office said Chief Justice Peralta’s last flag raising ceremony will be broadcast live online on its social media accounts on March 22 at 8 am.
Staging the “last flag ceremony” for retiring SC magistrates has been part of its tradition.
However, due to the corona virus disease 2019 pandemic, the high court stressed that the physical attendance during the flag ceremony would be limited to incumbent justices, heads of offices, and officers of the lawyers’ and employees’ organizations.
“Due to strict health protocols, no media will be allowed inside the SC compound. Coverage will be virtual,” the SC said,
All other members of the judiciary and court employees may attend the ceremony online, the SC said.
Last December, Peralta announced his early retirement on March 27, 2021 or one year ahead of his compulsory retirement at the age of 70 on March 27, 2022.
Peralta did not disclose the reason for the early retirement which was approved by the SC as a full court last January.
Peralta was appointed chief justice on Oct. 23, 2019 by President Duterte. He took over the post from retired Chief Justice Lucas P. Bersamin.
Before his promotion, Peralta was the head of the SC’s third division, head of the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET), and chairman of the SC’s committee on the revision of rules.
As Chief Justice, Peralta is the chairman of the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) and head of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC).
He has been with the judiciary for almost 27 years and more than 34 years in government service. He started as a judge of the regional trial court (RTC) in Quezon City in 1994. As a trial court judge, his court was designated a special criminal court for heinous crimes and, later, for drugs cases. In 2002, he was promoted to the Sandiganbayan. After six years in the anti-graft court, he was promoted as its presiding justice in 2008.
On Jan. 23, 2009, Peralta was named SC associate justice, a post he held until his promotion as chief justice in 2019.
Peralta is a native of Laoag City in Ilocos Norte. His career in government service started in 1987 with his appointment as assistant city prosecutor of Laoag City.
In 1988, he was transferred to the prosecutor’s office in Manila where he later became the assistant chief of the investigation division.
Peralta finished his law degree at the University of Santo Tomas in 1979 as a working student. He obtained his undergraduate degree in Economics from the Colegio de San Juan de Letran in 1974.
He is married to Court of Appeals Senior Associate Justice Fernanda C. Lampas Peralta with whom he has four children – Dorothy who is a lawyer, John Christopher, Timothy John, and John Isaac.