The Supreme Court mourns the passing of retired Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonio Eduardo B. Nachura, the 158th Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. He passed away today at the age of 80.
“The Supreme Court and the entire Judiciary join the loved ones of the late Hon. Justice Antonio Eduardo B. Nachura in mourning his death. We offer our sincere and deep condolences and prayers. Justice Nachura will always be remembered as one of those few who served in the highest levels of all three branches of the government,” Chief Justice Alexander G. Gesmundo said.
Justice Nachura served as an Associate Justice of the High Court from 2007 to 2011.
A native of Catbalogan, Samar, Justice Nachura was already an achiever early in life, having been an honor student in elementary school, valedictorian in high school, and a scholar in college. He went on to take up Law at San Beda College where he graduated with first honorable mention. He placed seventh in the 1967 Bar exams.
“Before I was anything, I was first a teacher,” Justice Nachura often said. He was a revered law professor at his alma mater and at Arellano Law School, where he eventually served as dean. He was a Bar reviewer in over 10 schools and institutions, and his book, Outline Reviewer in Political Law, has been a staple in every Bar reviewee’s reading list.
Justice Nachura’s career in the public service was also geared towards education. After stints at the Government Service Insurance System, Grains Insurance Agency Corporation, and the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board, he was appointed Undersecretary of the Department of Education, Culture and Sports (now Department of Education or DepEd) by then President Fidel V. Ramos.
At the House of Representatives, where Justice Nachura served for two terms, he was Chairperson of the Committee on Higher and Technical Education. Among the numerous laws and resolutions he authored was Republic Act (R.A.) No. 9163, the National Service Training Program Act. Likewise, Justice Nachura’s expertise in constitutional law was recognized by his peers in Congress when he was chosen to head the Committee on Constitutional Amendments, where he pushed for nationwide grassroots consultations on amendments to the fundamental law.
In 2006, Justice Nachura was appointed Solicitor General. He pushed for the passage of a law to strengthen the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG). The law, R.A. No. 9417 or An Act to Strengthen the Office of the Solicitor General, is often referred to as the Nachura Law because it was Justice Nachura’s zeal, dedication, and commitment as Solicitor General that got the bill— that many of his predecessors had been pushing for over 20 years—passed into law in a record nine months.
As Solicitor General, he argued eight cases before the Supreme Court in his 10 months in office.
In 2007, he was appointed to the High Court by then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
As Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the Philippines, Justice Nachura showed the same zeal and enthusiasm that he had always been known for. In a little over four years in the Judiciary, he disposed of about 1690 cases and penned 640 full-length decisions and resolutions. Justice Nachura also served as Chairperson of the Committee on Legal Education and Bar Matters, the Sub-Committee on the Revision of the Rules on Special Proceedings, and the Sub-Committee on the Internal Rules of the Supreme Court. He was Chairperson of the 2009 Bar Examinations Committee. His experience in the other two branches was also put into good use as a member of the Legislative-Executive Committee. ###