CA junks Sulpicio Lines appeal to restore license to ferry people
MANILA, Philippines – The Court of Appeals has denied the appeal of Sulpicio Lines Incorporated (SLI) to reinstate its license to ferry passengers.
In its decision, the CA's Eleventh Division said that Sulpicio Lines – renamed Philippine Span Asia Carrier Corporation – should have exhausted all administrative remedies before running to the appellate court.
Sulpicio ran to the CA after the Maritime Industry Authority (Marina) cancelled its certificate of public convenience (CPC) for the carriage of persons in 2015, in connection with the 2008 M/V Princess of the Stars tragedy that killed at least 200 people and left hundreds still unaccounted for.
In its decision on the administrative case filed by the victims' relatives, Marina ruled that Sulpicio vessels can only carry cargoes. It junked Sulpicio's motion for reconsideration in 2016.
The CA said that under the rules, Sulpicio should have first filed an appeal before the Office of the President, and not the appellate court. (READ: SC affirms acquittal of Sulpicio exec over sunken ferry)
“SLI’s failure to appeal to the Office of the President before filing
the instant petition before this Court is a premature invocation of
the Court’s intervention, thus denies SLI a cause of action for
judicial relief. Direct recourse to this Court, when administrative
remedies are still available for Sulpicio, is a ground for the dismissal of
the petition,” the CA ruled. – Rappler.com