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CASE

DOCTRINE HELD




Benjamin
Co vs
Republic,
G.R. No. L-
12150, May
26, 1960

"naturalization laws should be rigidly
enforced and strictly construed in favor
of the government and against the
applicant"


Decision of the lower court to grant naturalization is reversed. The petitioner failed to
comply with some of the requirements prescribed by law in order to qualify him to
become a Filipino citizen. In answer to the question whether he believed in the
principles underlying the constitution, the petitioner answered that he believed in the
laws of the Philippines, and when asked what those laws he believed in were, he gave an
answer which conveyed the meaning that he believed in democracy or in a democratic
form of government. In so stating that he believed merely in the laws of the
Philippines, he did not necessarily refer to those principles embodied in the
constitution which are referred to in the law. Our law also requires that petitioner
must have conducted himself in a proper and irreproachable manner during the entire
period of his residence in the Philippines in his relation with the constituted government
as well as with the community in which he is living. The petitioner failed to show that
he has complied with his obligation to register his wife and child with the Bureau of
Immigration as required by the Alien Registration Act, hence he failed to conduct
himself in a proper and irreproachable manner in his relation with our
government. Lastly, the failure of the petitioner to file an income tax return although
the total amount of his earnings is more than what is required by law for one to file an
income tax return, is an indication that he has not conducted himself properly in his
relation with the government.

Velasco vs
Republic,
G.R. No. L-
14214, May
25, 1960

"naturalization laws should be rigidly
enforced and strictly construed in favor
of the government and against the
applicant"

Petition for naturalization was denied for failure of petitioner to meet the requirements
of the law. The trial court found that there are three names mentioned in the petition
and in the documentary evidence submitted in support thereof, namely, Richard Velasco,
Richard C. Velasco, and Richard Chua Velasco. While testifying that he has no alias and
his full name is Richard Velasco, the court found that the joint affidavit of said witnesses
states that the affiants personally know and are acquainted with Richard Velasco while
the documentary evidence shows that his name is Richard Chua Velasco. His
qualifications as to moral character were attested by Santiago Mariano, a sergeant of the
Manila Police Department, and Mrs. Paz J. Eugenio, a housekeeper, who admitted that
she is the prospective mother-in-law of petitioner. The trial court likewise found that
Mrs. Paz J. Eugenio, a character witness, is the prospective mother-in-law of
petitioner, and such as her testimony is biased. His companion witness Santiago
Mariano were also the character witnesses of brother of petitioner in his petition
for naturalization, a circumstance which in its opinion indicates that petitioner has
a limited circle of Filipino friends. The court finally found that the present income of
petitioner is only P150.00 a month which, considering the present high cost of living
and the low purchasing power of our peso, is neither lucrative now substantial to meet
the requirement of the law, moreover, his mother owns 1/5 of the store where he works
for, so this leads one to believe that petitioner and family perfectly planned this out to
show that he is eligible for naturalization.

Co Y Quing
Reyes Vs.
Republic,
G.R. No. L-
10761,
November
29, 1958
For this reason, it is well settled that the
procedure prescribed by law for the
naturalization of an alien "should be
strictly followed. In the language of
Corpus Juris Secundum, naturalization
laws "should be rigidly enforced and
strictly construed in favor of the
government and against applicant for
citizenship"
The decision appealed from is hereby reversed, with costs against petitioner-appellee.
The lower court erred in not finding that the petitioner appellee has failed to comply
with all the requisites prescribed by the law to acquire Philippine citizenship. Court of
First Instance of Manila erred in hearing this case and granting the petition in the case at
bar, despite the undisputed fact that said petition was publish in the Official Gazette only
once, instead of three (3) times, as required in section 9 of Commonwealth Act 473.
Petitioner may contend, however, that the law provides that the publication of the notice
of hearing should be made for three consecutive weeks and as the Official Gazette is
now being published monthly, and not weekly as it was before, petitioner cannot
actually comply with law. While it is true that the notice of hearing in question cannot
actually be published for three consecutive weeks in the Official Gazette, it is no less
true that said notice may be published three times consecutively, although not weekly, in
the Official Gazette, and because the true intent of the law is that the said notice be
published 3 times, it is our considered opinion that in the instant case the single
publication of the notice of hearing in question is not a sufficient compliance with law."

The grant of citizenship is only a mere privilege, and a strict compliance with law on the
part of the applicant is essential.'


Heirs of
Jugalbot vs
Court of
Appeals,
G.R. No.
170346,
March 12,
2007


Statutes expropriating or authorizing the
expropriation of property are strictly
construed against the expropriating
authority and liberally in favor of
property owners

In the instant case, no proper notice was given to Virginia A. Roa by the DAR. Neither
did the DAR conduct an ocular inspection and investigation. Hence, any act committed
by the DAR or any of its agencies that results from its failure to comply with the proper
procedure for expropriation of land is a violation of constitutional due process and
should be deemed arbitrary, capricious, whimsical and tainted with grave abuse of
discretion. Secondly, there is no concrete evidence on record sufficient to establish that
Nicolas Jugalbot or the petitioners personally cultivated the property under question or
that there was sharing of harvests, except for their self-serving statements. Without the
essential elements of consent and sharing, no tenancy relationship can exist between the
petitioner and the private respondents.


Tampoy vs
Alberastine,
G.R. No. L-
14322.
February 25,
1960

Statutes prescribing the formalities in
the execution of wills are very strictly
construed. A will must be executed in
accordance with the statutory
requirements; otherwise it is entirely
void.
The trial court denied the petition on the ground that the first page of the will does not
bear the thumbmark of the testatrix. Petitioner now prays that this ruling be set aside for
the reason that, although the first page of the will does not bear the thumbmark of the
testatrix, the same however expresses her true intention to give the property to her
whose claims remains undisputed. She wishes to emphasize that no one has filed any
opposition to the probate of the will and that while the first page does not bear the
thumbmark of the testatrix, the second however bears her thumbmark and both pages
were signed by the three testimonial witnesses. Moreover, despite the fact that the
petition for probate is unopposed, the three testimonial witnesses testified and
manifested to the court that the document expresses the true and voluntary will of the
deceased.

This contention cannot be sustained as it runs counter to the express provision of the
law. Thus, Section 618 of Act 190, as amended, requires that the testator sign the
will and each and every page thereof in the presence of the witnesses, and that the
latter sign the will and each and every page thereof in the presence of the testator
and of each other, which requirement should be expressed in the attestation clause.


Rodriguez
vs Alcala,
G.R. No.
32672,
November
5, 1930

Statutes prescribing the formalities in
the execution of wills are very strictly
construed. A will must be executed in
accordance with the statutory
requirements; otherwise it is entirely
void.
A will otherwise properly executed in accordance with the requirements of existing law
is not rendered invalid by the fact that the paginal signatures of the testator and
attesting witnesses appear in the right margin instead of the left.
The fatal defect consists in the failure of the attestation clause to the specifically state
that the testatrix signed each and every page of the will in the presence of the witnesses
and that the witnesses signed each and every page thereof in the presence of the testatrix
and of each other. The attestation clause simply recites that the testatrix and the
witnesses signed all the pages of the will. In the presence of whom they signed each and
every page of the will, the attestation fails to state in violation of the express
requirements of section 618 of Act No. 160 that the attestation clause shall state...that
the testator signed the will and every page therof,...in the presence of three witnesses,
and the latter witnessed and signed the will and all pages thereof in the presence of the
testator and of each other. This defect of the attestation clause is fatal to the validity of
the will.

Anama vs
Court of
appeals,
G.R. No.
187021,
January 25,
2012

A liberal construction of the procedural
rules is proper where the lapse in the
literal observance of a rule of procedure
has not prejudiced the adverse party and
has not deprived the court of its
authority.
The Court has consistently held that a motion that fails to comply with the requirements
is considered a worthless piece of paper which should not be acted upon. The rule,
however, is not absolute. There are motions that can be acted upon by the court ex
parte if these would not cause prejudice to the other party. They are not strictly
covered by the rigid requirement of the rules on notice and hearing of motions.
The motion for execution of the Spouses Co is such kind of motion. It cannot be denied
that the judgment sought to be executed in this case had already become final and
executory. As such, the Spouses Co have every right to the issuance of a writ of
execution and the RTC has the ministerial duty to enforce the same as provided in
Section 1 and Section 2 of Rule 39 of the 1997 Revised Rules of Civil Procedure.
Section 6, Rule 1 of the Rules of Court provides that the Rules should be liberally
construed in order to promote their objective of securing a just, speedy and inexpensive
disposition of every action and proceeding. Rules of procedure are tools designed to
facilitate the attainment of justice, and courts must avoid their strict and rigid
application which would result in technicalities that tend to frustrate rather than
promote substantial justice. Through such notice, the adverse party is given time to
study and answer the arguments in the motion. The notice requirement is not a ritual to
be followed blindly. Procedural due process is not based solely on a mechanical and
literal application that renders any deviation inexorably fatal. Instead, procedural rules
are liberally construed to promote their objective and to assist in obtaining a just, speedy
and inexpensive determination of any action and proceeding.
Thus, in the absence of a statutory requirement as in the case at bar, it is not essential
that he be given notice before the issuance of an execution against his tangible property;
after the rendition of the judgment he must take "notice of what will follow," no further
notice being "necessary to advance justice."


Victoria vs.
COMELEC,
G.R.
109005,
January 10,
1994

From the words of a statute there should
be no departure.
The law is clear that the ranking in the Sanggunian shall be determined on the basis of
the proportion of the votes obtained by each winning candidate to the total number of
registered voters of each district. It does not mention anything about factoring the
numbers of voters who actually voted. In such a case, the Court has no recourse but to
merely apply the law. The courts may not speculate as to the probable intent of the
legislature apart from the words (Pascual v. Pascual-Bautista, 207 SCRA 561 [1992]).

Philippine
Amusement
and Gaming
Corporation
(PAGCOR)
vs
Philippine
Gaming
From the words of a statute there should
be no departure.
No. Public respondent Zamboanga Economic Zone Authority is DIRECTED to CEASE
and DESIST from exercising jurisdiction to operate, license, or otherwise authorize and
regulate the operation of any games of chance.

The words "game" and "amusement" have definite and unambiguous meanings in law
which are clearly different from "game of chance" or "gambling." In its ordinary sense, a
"game" is a sport, pastime, or contest; while an "amusement" is a pleasurable occupation
of the senses, diversion, or enjoyment. On the other hand, a "game of chance" is "a game
in which chance rather than skill determines the outcome," while "gambling" is defined
as "making a bet" or "a play for value against an uncertain event in hope of gaining
something of value."
Jurisdiction
Inc. (PEJI),
G.R. No.
177333,
April 24,
2009


The plain meaning rule or verba legis, derived from the maxim index animi sermo est
(speech is the index of intention), rests on the valid presumption that the words
employed by the legislature in a statute correctly express its intention or will, and
preclude the court from construing it differently. For the legislature is presumed to know
the meaning of the words, to have used them advisedly, and to have expressed the intent
by use of such words as are found in the statute. Verba legis non est recedendum.

The spirit and reason of the statute may be passed upon where a literal meaning
would lead to absurdity, contradiction, injustice, or defeat the clear purpose of the
lawmakers. Using the literal meanings of "games" and "amusement" to exclude" games
of chance" and "gambling" does not lead to absurdity, contradiction, or injustice. Neither
does it defeat the intent of the legislators. The lawmakers could have easily employed
the words "games of chance" and "gambling" or even "casinos" if they had intended to
grant the power to operate the same to the ZAMBOECOZONE Authority.
Matabuena
vs
Cervantes,
G.R. No. L-
28771,
March 31,
1971


Ratio Legis Est Anima Legis (The reason
of the law is the soul of the law)


It is a principle of statutory construction that what is within the spirit of the law is as
much a part of it as what is written. If there is ever any occasion where the principle of
statutory construction that what is within the spirit of the law is as much a part of it as
what is written, then such would be it. Otherwise the basic purpose discernible in such
codal provision would not be attained. A 1954 Court of Appeals decision Buenaventura
v. Bautista, interpreting a similar provision of the old Civil Code says clearly that if the
policy of the law is (in the language of the opinion of the then Justice J.B.L. Reyes of
that Court) "to prohibit donations in favor of the other consort and his descendants
because of fear of undue and improper pressure and influence upon the donor, a
prejudice deeply rooted in our ancient law then there is every reason to apply the same
prohibitive policy to persons living together as husband and wife without benefit of
nuptials.

Ysidoro vs.
People of
the
Dura lex sed lex The law is harsh but it
is the law

The power of the purse is vested in the local legislative body. By requiring an ordinance,
the law gives the Sanggunian the power to determine whether savings have accrued and
to authorize the augmentation of other items on the budget with those savings.
Philippines,
G.R. No.
192330,
November
14, 2012

Ysidoro insists that he acted in good faith since, first, the idea of using the SFP goods for
the CSAP beneficiaries came, not from him, but from Garcia and Polinio; and, second,
he consulted the accounting department if the goods could be distributed to those
beneficiaries. Having no criminal intent, he argues that he cannot be convicted of the
crime.
But criminal intent is not an element of technical malversation. The law punishes the act
of diverting public property earmarked by law or ordinance for a particular public
purpose to another public purpose. The offense is mala prohibita, meaning that the
prohibited act is not inherently immoral but becomes a criminal offense because positive
law forbids its commission based on considerations of public policy, order, and
convenience. It is the commission of an act as defined by the law, and not the character
or effect thereof, that determines whether or not the provision has been violated. Hence,
malice or criminal intent is completely irrelevant.
Dura lex sed lex. Ysidoros act, no matter how noble or miniscule the amount
diverted, constitutes the crime of technical malversation. The law and this Court,
however, recognize that his offense is not grave, warranting a mere fine

Duncan vs.
CFI of
Rizal, G.R.
No. L-
30576,
February 10,
1976

The law is not, and should not be made,
an instrument to impede the achievement
of a salutary humane policy. As often as is
legally and lawfully possible, their texts
and intendments should be construed so
as to give all the chances for human life to
exist with a modicum promise of a
useful and constructive existence.

Sometime in May of 1967, the child subject of this adoption petition, undisputedly
declared as only three days old then, was turned over by its mother to witness Atty.
Corazon de Leon Velasquez. The question now is whether or not Atty. Corazon de Leon
Velasquez, the undisputed custodian of the abandoned waif may be considered as the
guardian under Art. 340 or the person standing in loco parentis of said infant
contemplated in Art. 349 of the Civil Code.

The helpless infant was in dire need of someone who could give it protection and sustain
its delicate and fragile life. Atty. Velasquez was under no legal compulsion to accept the
child and to extend to it the protection and care it badly needed.

Dura lex sed lex should be softened so as to apply the law with less severity and
with compassion and humane understanding, for adoption is more for the benefit
of unfortunate children, particularly those born out of wedlock, than for those born
with a silver spoon in their mouths.

The herein petitioners, the spouses Robin Francis Radley Duncan and Maria Lucy
Christensen, appear to be qualified to adopt the child.

Alonzo vs.
Intermediate
Appellate
Court, G.R.
No. L-
72873, May
28, 1987


The law should never be interpreted in
such a way as to cause injustice as this is
never within the legislative intent. An
indispensable part of that intent, in fact,
for we presume the good motives of the
legislature, is to render justice.

Was there a valid notice? Granting that the law requires the notice to be written, would
such notice be necessary in this case? Assuming there was a valid notice although it was
not in writing. would there be any question that the 30-day period for redemption had
expired long before the complaint was filed in 1977?
In the face of the established facts, we cannot accept the private respondents' pretense
that they were unaware of the sales made by their brother and sister in 1963 and 1964.
By requiring written proof of such notice, we would be closing our eyes to the obvious
truth in favor of their palpably false claim of ignorance, thus exalting the letter of the
law over its purpose. The purpose is clear enough: to make sure that the redemptioners
are duly notified. We are satisfied that in this case the other brothers and sisters were
actually informed, although not in writing, of the sales made in 1963 and 1964, and that
such notice was sufficient.
Now, when did the 30-day period of redemption begin?
While we do not here declare that this period started from the dates of such sales in 1963
and 1964, we do say that sometime between those years and 1976, when the first
complaint for redemption was filed, the other co-heirs were actually informed of the sale
and that thereafter the 30-day period started running and ultimately expired. This could
have happened any time during the interval of thirteen years, when none of the co-heirs
made a move to redeem the properties sold. By 1977, in other words, when Tecla Padua
filed her complaint, the right of redemption had already been extinguished because the
period for its exercise had already expired.
We are deviating from the strict letter of the law, which the respondent court
understandably applied pursuant to existing jurisprudence. The co-heirs in this case were



undeniably informed of the sales although no notice in writing was given them. And
there is no doubt either that the 30-day period began and ended during the 14 years
between the sales in question and the filing of the complaint for redemption in 1977,
without the co-heirs exercising their right of redemption. These are the justifications for
this exception.