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Digested Cases ; Admin Law.

Mark Nino De Asis

US vs Barrias 11 Phil 327

FACTS: Defendant Aniceto Barrias was charged in CFI with violations of par. 70 and 83 of Circular no. 397.

Paragraph 70 of Circular No. 397 reads as follows: No heavily loaded casco, lighter, or
other similar craft shall be permitted to move in the Pasig River without being towed by
steam or moved by other adequate power.Paragraph 83 reads, in part, as follows:For the
violation of any part of the foregoing regulations, the persons offending shall be liable to
a fine of not less than P5 and not more than P500, in the discretion of the court.

Counsel for the appellant attacked the validity of paragraph 70 on two grounds: First
that it is unauthorized by section 19 of Act No. 355; and, second, that if the acts of the
Philippine Commission bear the interpretation of authorizing the Collector to
promulgate such a law, they are void, as constituting an illegal delegation of legislative

The complaint in this instance was framed with reference to sections 311 and 319 [19 and
311] at No. 355 of the Philippine Customs Administrative Acts, as amended by Act Nos.
1235 and 1480. Under Act No. 1235, the Collector is not only empowered to make
suitable regulations, but also to "fix penalties for violation thereof," not
exceeding a fine of P500.

ISSUE: WON Collector of Customs can fix the penalty of a law?

HELD: The answer is in the Negative. Although the Collector of Customs can make and publish rules and
regulations but it cannot make the duty of the legislature to fix the penalty of a certain law. It is in this case that it
will be an illegal delegation of power.

One of the settled maxims in constitutional law is, that the power conferred upon the legislature to make laws can
not be delegated by that department to any body or authority. Where the sovereign power of the State has located
the authority, there it must remain; only by the constitutional agency alone the laws must be made until the
constitution itself is changed.

This doctrine is based on the ethical principle that such a delegated power constitutes not only a right but a duty to
be performed by the delegate by the instrumentality of his own judgment acting immediately upon the matter of
legislation and not through the intervening mind of another.

Villegas VS. Subido 30 SCRA 498

Respondent –appelant Subido directed the Mayor of Manila, Villegas, to replace the other petitioner police ,
Barbers, Paralejas and Lazaro as station commanders of 3 precints in Manila.
Respondent Commissioner would dispute their designation as such on the ground of lack for each of them of "an
Inspector First Class (Police Detective Major)" eligibility. Petitioners prevailed, the lower court being
unable to locate any legal provision to warrant such an exercise of power on the part of respondent

ISSUE: WON the Respondent Commissioner of Civil Service has the capacity to act and power of control over
local officials ?
HELD: SC said no. If the President himself exercises only ‘general supervision” as may be provided by law over
local officials, the Commissioner cannot be deemed to possess a greater prerogative, being himself an agent or
official of a lower category in the executive branch.
Nothing is better settled in the law than that a public official exercises power, not rights. The government itself is
merely an agency through which the will of the state is expressed and enforced. Its officers therefore are likewise
agents entrusted with the responsibility of discharging its functions. As such there is no presumption that they are
empowered to act. There must be a delegation of such authority, either express or implied. In the absence of a valid
grant, they are devoid of power.


FACTS : On 6 July 1990, AMA filed with the RTC of Manila, Branch 18, a petition for
prohibition, certiorari and mandamus against the Hon. Isidro Carino, DEC's Secretary
and Atty. Venancio R. Nava, Regional Director, Department of Education, Culture and
Sports, Region IX to annul and set aside the closure order and to enjoin the respondents
from closing or padlocking AMACC, Davao City.

On 26 July 1990, the trial court dismissed the petition for lack of merit.

Thereafter, AMA filed with the Court of Appeals a petition for certiorari in assailing the
26 July order of the court a quo, but, again,

the Court of Appeals peremptorily dismissed the petition and also denied its motion for

Under the cloak of an organization of parents of students styling themselves as AMACC-

PARENTS Organization,

AMA filed another petition for prohibition and/or mandamus with preliminary
injunction with the RTC of Davao City, Branch 8, entitled "Freddie Retotal, Ricardo
Fuentes, Calixta Holazo, Ursula Reyes, in their own behalf and in behalf of the other
members of AMACC Parents' Organization vs. Venancio Nava, in his capacity as
Regional Director, Department of Education, Culture and Sports."

On 7 August 1990, the court dismissed the petition.

AMA, however, in order to thwart the closure or padlocking of its school in Davao City,
filed with the RTC of Makati, Branch 134, presided over by respondent Judge, another
petition for mandamus, with damages, preliminary injunction and/or restraining order
against Hon. Isidro Carino, Secretary and Director, Department of Education, Culture
and Sports, Region IX to compel the respondents to approve petitioners' application for
permit to operate retroactive to the commencement of school year 1990-1991, and to
enjoin the closure and/or padlocking of AMA-Davao school.

Petitioners, through the Office of the Solicitor General, moved to dismiss AMA's petition
on the ground that

(1) AMA is not entitled to the writ of mandamus as petitioners' authority to grant or
deny the permit to operate is discretionary and not ministerial;

(2) AMA failed to comply with the provisions of the Education Act;

(3) AMA is blatantly engaging in forum shopping;

(4) AMA failed to exhaust available administrative remedies before resorting to court;

and (5) lack of territorial jurisdiction over petitioner Regional Director and AMA-Davao.
On 15 November 1990, the respondent Judge issued an order directing the issuance of a
writ of preliminary injunction, the dispositive portion of which reads as follows:

WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing reasons, let a writ of preliminary

injunction be issued, upon filing of petitioners of a bond in the amount of
P500,000.00, duly approved by this Court, enjoining and restraining the
respondent Hon. Isidro Carino, his agents, representatives and any
person acting for and his behalf, from implementing the closing and/or
padlocking AMA Computer College, Inc. - Davao City Branch, until
further orders from this Court.

and on the following day, on 16 November 1990, issued the writ of preliminary

ISSUE: WON the authority to grant permit by DECS to applicant educational institution is a ministerial duty or
discretionary duty?

HELD : The SC ruled that

As a rule, mandamus will lie only to compel an officer to perform a ministerial duty but not a discretionary
function. A ministerial duty is one which is so clear and specific as to leave no room for the exercise of discretion in
its performance. On the other hand, a discretionary duty is that which by nature requires the exercise of judgment.

As explained in the case of Symaco vs. Aquino, —

A purely ministerial act or duty to a discretional act, is one which an

officer or tribunal performs in a given state of facts, in a prescribed
manner, in obedience to the mandate of legal authority, without regard to
or the exercise of his own judgment, upon the propriety of the act done. If
the law imposes a duty upon a public officer, and gives him the right to
decide how or when the duty shall be performed, such duty is ministerial
only when the discharge of the same requires neither the exercise of
official discretion nor judgment.

In the present case, the issuance of the permit in question is not a ministerial duty of the
petitioners. It is a discretionary duty or function on the part of the petitioners because it
had to be exercised in accordance with — and not in violation of — the law and its
Implementing Rules and Regulations. Thus, as aptly observed by the Solicitor General in
his Motion to Dismiss the petition —

Establishment or recognition of private schools through government

grant of permits is governed by law, specifically Batas Pambansa Blg. 232.
The authority to grant permit is vested upon the judgment of the
Department of Education, Culture and Sports, which prescribes the rules
and regulations governing the recognition on private schools (Section 27,
Batas Pambansa Blg. 232).

Whether to grant or not a permit is not a ministerial duty of the

Department of Education, Culture and Sports. Rather it is a discretionary
duty to be exercised in accordance with the rules and regulations

In the case at bar, petitioner has been operating a school without a permit
in blatant violation of law. Public respondent has no ministerial duty to
issue to petitioner a permit to operate a school in Davao City before
petitioner has even filed an application or before his application has been
first processed in accordance with the rules and regulations on the matter.
Certainly, public respondent is not enjoined by any law to grant such
permit or to allow such operation without a permit, without first
processing an application. To do so is violation of the Educational Act. 38

ACCORDINGLY, the petition is GRANTED and the order dated 15 November 1990 and
the writ of preliminary injunction dated 16 November 1990 are hereby ANNULLED and

The petition for mandamus before the respondent court is DISMISSED.

The Temporary Restraining Order heretofore issued by this Court is hereby made

2 CASES I’m working now,, maya pa po mga 7 pm danke.