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THE CONSTITUTION

De Leon vs. Esguerra

Facts: On May 17, 1982, petitioner Alfredo M. De Leon was elected Barangay Captain
together with the other petitioners as Barangay Councilmen of Barangay Dolores,
Muncipality of Taytay, Province of Rizal in a Barangay election held under Batas Pambansa
Blg. 222, otherwise known as Barangay Election Act of 1982.

On February 9, 1987, De Leon received a Memorandum antedated December 1, 1986 but


signed by respondent OIC Governor Benjamin Esguerra on February 8, 1987 designating
respondent Florentino G. Magno as Barangay Captain of Barangay Dolores and the other
respondents as members of Barangay Council of the same Barangay and Municipality.

Petitioners prayed that the subject Memoranda of February 8, 1987 be declared null and
void and that respondents be prohibited by taking over their positions.

Petitioners maintain that pursuant to Section 3 of the Barangay Election Act of 1982 (BP
Blg. 222), their terms of office shall be six years which shall commence on June 7, 1982
and shall continue until their successors shall have elected and shall have qualified," or up
to June 7, 1988. It was also their position that with the ratification of the 1987 Philippine
Constitution, respondent OIC Governor no longer has the authority to replace them and to
designate their successors.

On the other hand, respondents contend that the terms of office of elective and appointive
officials were abolished and that petitioners continued in office by virtue of Sec. 2, Art. III
of the Provisional Constitution and not because their term of six years had not yet expired;
and that the provision in the Barangay Election Act fixing the term of office of Barangay
officials to six years must be deemed to have been repealed for being inconsistent with
Sec. 2, Art. 3 of the Provisional Constitution, which provides:

SECTION 2. All elective and appointive officials and employees under the 1973
Constitution shall continue in office until otherwise provided by proclamation or
executive order or upon the designation or appointment and qualification of their
successors, if such appointment is made within a period of one year from February
25,1986.

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Issue: Whether or not the designation of respondents to replace petitioners was validly
made during the one-year period which ended on Feb 25, 1987.

Ruling: The Memoranda issued by respondent OIC Gov on Feb 8, 1987 designating
respondents as Barangay Captain and Barangay Councilmen of Barangay Dolores, Taytay,
Rizal has no legal force and effect.

But while February 8, 1987 is ostensibly still within the one-year deadline, the
aforequoted provision in the Provisional Constitution must be deemed to have been
overtaken by Section 27, Article XVIII of the 1987 Constitution reading.

SECTION 27. This Constitution shall take effect immediately upon its ratification by a
majority of the votes cast in a plebiscite held for the purpose and shall supersede all
previous Constitutions.

The 1987 Constitution was ratified in a plebiscite on Feb 2, 1987, therefore, the
Provisional Constitution must be deemed to have superseded. Having become inoperative,
respondent OIC Gov could no longer rely on Sec 2, Art 3, thereof to designate respondents
to the elective positions occupied by petitioners.

Petitioners must now be held to have acquired security of tenure specially considering
that the Barangay Election Act of 1982 declares it "a policy of the State to guarantee and
promote the autonomy of the barangays to ensure their fullest development as self-reliant
communities. Similarly, the 1987 Constitution ensures the autonomy of local governments
and of political subdivisions of which the barangays form a part, and limits the President's
power to "general supervision" over local governments. Relevantly, Sec 8, Art X of the 1987
Constitution further provides in part:

"Sec. 8. The term of office of elective local officials, except barangay officials, which shall be
determined by law, shall be three years x x x."

Until the term of office of barangay officials has been determined by law, therefore, the
term of office of 6 years provided for in the Barangay Election Act of 1982 should still
govern.
Nothing is inconsistent between the term of six (6) years for elective Barangay officials
and the 1987 Constitution, and the same should, therefore, be considered as still operative,
pursuant to Section 3, Article XVIII of the 1987 Constitution, reading:

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Sec. 3. All existing laws, decrees, executive orders, proclamations letters of instructions,
and other executive issuances not inconsistent, with this Constitution shall remain
operative until amended, repealed or revoked.

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2. Gonzales vs COMELEC
21 SCRA 774 G.R. No. L-28196 November 9, 1967

FACTS:

On March 16, 1967, the Senate and the House of Representatives passed the following
resolutions:

1. R.B.H No. 1: Proposes that Sec 5, Art VI of Constitution be amended so as to increase the
membership of the House of Representatives from 120 to 180, to be apportioned among
several provinces with each province having at least one (1) member.

2. R.B.H. No. 2: Calls for a convention to propose amendments to the Constitution, which
will be composed of 2 elective delegates from each representative district, to be "elected in
the general elections to be held on the second Tuesday of November 1971.

3. R.B.H. No. 3: Proposes that Sec 16, Art VI of the Constitution be amended so as to
authorize Senators and Members of the House of Representatives to become delegates to
the convention, without the need to forfeit their respective seats in Congress.

Subsequently, Congress passed a bill, which became RA No. 4913, providing that the
amendments to the Constitution proposed in the Resolutions No. 1 and 3 be submitted, for
approval by the people at the general elections on Nov. 14, 1967. This act fixes the date
and manner of election for the proposed amendments to be voted upon by the people

Petitioners assail the validity/constitutionality of RA No. 4913 and for the prohibition with
preliminary injunction to restrain COMELEC from implementing or complying with the
said law. PHILCONSA also assails R.B.H No. 1 and 3.

ISSUE:
1. Is the issue whether or not a resolution of the Congress acting as a constituent
assembly violates the Constitution is a political question?
2. Whether or not a plebiscite may be held simultaneously with a general election.
3. Would the submission of the contested amendments to the people violate the spirit of
the constitution?
HELD:

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1. No. The issue is a justiciable question , hence, subject to judicial review. The power to
amend the Constitution or to propose amendments thereto is not included in the
general grant of legislative powers to Congress. It is part of the inherent powers of the
people as the repository of sovereignty in a republican state, such as ours to make,
and, hence, to amend their own Fundamental Law. Congress may propose amendments
to the Constitution merely because the same explicitly grants such power. Hence, when
exercising the same, it is said that Senators and Members of the House of
Representatives act, not as members of Congress, but as component elements of
a constituent assembly. When acting as such, they derive their authority from the
Constitution, unlike the people, when performing the same function for their authority
does not emanate from the Constitution they are the very source of all powers of
government, including the Constitution itself . It follows, necessarily, that they do not
have the final say on whether or not their acts are within or beyond constitutional
limits. The Constitution expressly confers upon the Supreme Court the power to declare
a treaty unconstitutional.

2. Yes. There is nothing in the [1935] Constitution to indicate that the election therein
referred to is a special, not a general election. The circumstance that the previous
amendment to the Constitution had been submitted to the people for ratification in
special elections merely shows that Congress deemed it best to do so under the
circumstances then obtaining. It does not negate its authority to submit proposed
amendments for ratification in general elections.

3. Referring particularly to the contested proposals for amendment, the sufficiency or


insufficiency, from a constitutional angle, of the submission thereof for ratification to
the people on November 14, 1967, depends in the view of those who concur in this
opinion, and who, insofar as the phase of the case, constitute the minority upon
whether the provisions of R.A. No. 4913 are such as to fairly apprise the people of the
gist, the main idea or the substance of said proposals, which is under R. B. H. No. 1
the increase of the maximum number of seats in the House of Representatives, from
120 to 180, and under R. B. H. No. 3 the authority given to the members of
Congress to run for delegates to the Constitutional Convention and, if elected thereto, to
discharge the duties of such delegates, without forfeiting their seats in Congress. The
Court who constitute the minority believed that R.A. No. 4913 satisfies such
requirement and that said Act is, accordingly, constitutional.
The determination of the conditions under which the proposed amendments shall be
submitted to the people is concededly a matter which falls within the legislative sphere.

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The Court did not believe it has been satisfactorily shown that Congress has exceeded the
limits thereof in enacting Republic Act No. 4913.
Inasmuch as there are less than eight (8) votes in favor of declaring R.A. 4913 and R. B. H.
Nos. 1 and 3 unconstitutional and invalid, the petitions were in dismissed and the writs
therein prayed for were denied.

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Imbong VS COMELEC
G.R. No. L-32432; G.R. No. L-32443; September 11, 1970

Facts:
These two separate but related petitions for declaratory relief were filed pursuant to Sec.
19 of R.A. No. 6132 by petitioners Imbong and Gonzales, both members of the Bar,
taxpayers and interested in running as candidates for delegates to the Constitutional
Convention. Both impugn the constitutionality of R.A. No. 6132, claiming that it prejudices
their rights as such candidates.
On March 16, 1967, Congress, acting as a Constituent Assembly pursuant to Art. XV of the
Constitution, passed Resolution No. 2 which among others called for a Constitutional
Convention to propose constitutional amendments to be composed of two delegates from
each representative district who shall have the same qualifications as those of
Congressmen, to be elected on the second Tuesday of November, 1970 in accordance with
the Revised Election Code.
On June 17, 1969, Congress, also acting as a Constituent Assembly, passed Res. No. 4
amending Res. No. 2 of 1967 by providing that the convention shall be composed of 320
delegates apportioned among the existing representative districts according to the
number of their respective inhabitants: Provided, that a representative district shall be
entitled to at least two delegates, who shall have the same qualifications as those required
of members of the House of Representatives, and that any other details relating to the
specific apportionment of delegates, election of delegates to, and the holding of, the
Constitutional Convention shall be embodied in an implementing legislation: Provided,
that it shall not be inconsistent with the provisions of this Resolution.
On August 24, 1970, Congress, acting as a legislative body, enacted R.A 6132,
implementing Res. Nos. 2 and 4.
Gonzales assails the validity of the entire law as well as Sec. 2, 4, 5, and par. 1 of 8(a) while
Imbong impugns the constitutionality of only par. I of Sec. 8(a) of R.A. No. 6132 practically
on the same grounds advanced by Gonzales.
Issues:
1. Whether the Congress has a right to call for Constitutional Convention;
2. Whether the parameters set by such a call is constitutional.
Decision:
Yes to both. After Congress had exercised its constituent power by adopting RBH 2 and RBH
4, with the requisite % vote as required by the 1935 Constitution, it may, by simply
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exercising legislative power, pass a law providing for the details for the implementation of
the resolutions passed in the exercise of its constituent power.
Congress, when acting as a Constituent Assembly pursuant to Art. XV of the Constitution,
has full and plenary authority to propose Constitutional amendments or to call a
convention for the purpose, by a 3/4 of each House in joint session assembled but voting
separately. Res. Nos. 2 and 4 calling for a constitutional convention were passed by the
required three-fourths vote.
The grant to Congress as a Constituent Assembly of such plenary authority to call a
constitutional convention includes, by virtue of the doctrine of necessary implication, all
other powers essential to the effective exercise of the principal power granted, such as the
power to fix the qualifications, number, apportionment, compensation of the delegates and
appropriation of funds to meet the expenses for the election of delegates and for the
operation of the Constitutional Convention itself, and other implementing details
indispensable to a fruitful convention. Res. Nos. 2 and 4 already embody said details,
except the appropriation of funds.
While the authority to call a constitutional convention is vested by the present
Constitution solely and exclusively in Congress acting as a Constituent Assembly, the
power to enact the implementing details, which are now contained in Res. Nos. 2 and 4 as
well as in R.A. No. 6132, does not exclusively pertain to Congress acting as a Constituent
Assembly. Such implementing details are matters within the competence of Congress in
the exercise of its comprehensive legislative power, which power encompasses all matters
not expressly or by necessary implication withdrawn or removed by the Constitution from
the ambit of legislative action. And as long as such statutory details do not clash with any
specific provision of the constitution, they are valid.
Consequently, when Congress, acting as a Constituent Assembly, omits to provide for such
implementing details after calling a constitutional convention, Congress, acting as a
legislative body, can enact the necessary implementing legislation to fill in the gaps, which
authority is expressly recognized in Sec. 8 of Res No. 2 as amended by Res. No. 4.
Sec 4 of RA 6132 is simply an application of Sec 2 Art 12 of Constitution. Congress acting
as Constituent Assembly, has full authority to propose amendments, or call for convention
for the purpose by votes and these votes were attained by Res. 2 and 4.
Sec 2 of RA 6132 is a mere implementation of Res. 4 and is enough that the basis employed
for such apportions is reasonable.

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As to Sec 5, the State has the right to create office and parameters to qualify/disqualify
members thereof. Furthermore, this disqualification is only temporary. This is a safety
mechanism to prevent political figures from controlling elections and to allow them to
devote more time to the Constitutional Convention.
Par 1 Sec 8 is to avoid debasement of electoral process and also to assure candidates equal
opportunity since candidates must now depend on their individual merits, and not the
support of political parties. This provision does not create discrimination towards any
particular party/group, it applies to all organizations.

Occena VS. COMELEC


G.R. NO. L-34150 APRIL 2, 1981

Facts:

The petitioners, members of the Philippine BAR and delegates to the 1971 Constitutional
Convention are suing as taxpayers. In the prohibition proceedings, they challenged the
validity of three(3) Batasang Pambansa Resolution, which consists of the following: (a)
Proposing an amendment allowing a natural-born citizen of the Philippines naturalized in
a foreign country to own a limited area of land for residential purposes; (b) dealing with
the Presidency, the Prime Minister and the Cabinet, and the National Assembly; (c)
amendment to the article on the COMELEC

Issues:
1. Whether or not the 1973 constitution is a fundamental law.
2. Does the Interim Batasang Pambansa have the power to propose amendments?
3. Whether the amendments proposed are so extensive in character that they go far
beyond the limits of the authority conferred on the Interim Batasang Pambansa as
Successor of the Interim National Assembly.
4. What is the vote necessary to propose amendments as well as a standard for proper
submission?

Held:

The choice of method of proposal, i.e., whether made directly by Congress or through a
Constitutional Convention, is within the full discretion of the legislature.

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1. Yes. Citing the case of Javellana v. The Executive Secretary where they dismissed the
petitions for prohibition and mandamus to declare invalid its ratification with a vote of
six(6) to four(4), This being the vote of majority, there is no further judicial obstacle to
the new constitution being considered in force and effect (in force and effect on January
17, 1973). With such the pronouncement of the Supreme Court, and with the recognition
of the cardinal postulate that what the Supreme Court says is not only entitled to respect
but must also be obeyed, a factor for instability was removed. Thereafter, as a matter of
law, all doubts are resolved. The 1973 constitution is a fundamental law.

2. Yes. The existence of the power of the Interim Batasang Pambansa is indubitable as
explicitly provided in the 1976 amendment: The Interim Batasang Pambansa shall have
the same powers and its Members shall have the same functions, responsibilities, rights,
privileges, and disqualifications as the interim National Assembly and the regular National
Assembly and the Members thereof."
The 1973 Constitution in its Transitory Provisions vested the Interim National Assembly
with the power to propose amendments upon special call by the Prime Minister by a vote
of the majority of its members to be ratified in accordance with the Article on
Amendments.

3. No. Whether the Constitutional Convention will only propose amendments to the
Constitution or entirely overhaul the present Constitution and propose an entirely new
Constitution based on an Ideology foreign to the democratic system, is of no moment;
because the same will be submitted to the people for ratification. Once ratified by the
sovereign people, there can be no debate about the validity of the new Constitution. The
fact that the present Constitution may be revised and replaced with a new one is no
argument against the validity of the law because 'amendment' includes the 'revision' or
total overhaul of the entire Constitution. At any rate, whether the Constitution is merely
amended in part or revised or totally changed would become immaterial the moment the
same is ratified by the sovereign people." There is here the adoption of the principle so
well-known in American decisions as well as legal texts that a constituent body can
propose anything but conclude nothing.

4. The Interim Batasang Pambansa, sitting as a constituent body, can propose


amendments. In that capacity, only a majority vote is needed. It would be an indefensible
proposition to assert that the three-fourth votes required when it sits as a legislative body
applies as well when it has been convened as the agency through which amendments
could be proposed. That is not a requirement as far as a constitutional convention is
concerned. It is not a requirement either when, as in this case, the Interim Batasang
Pambansa exercises its constituent power to propose amendments. Moreover, even on the
assumption that the requirement of three- fourth votes applies, such extraordinary

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majority was obtained. Resolution 1 was approved by a vote of 122 to 5; Resolution 2 was
approved with a vote 147 to 5 with 1 abstention, and; Resolution 3 was approved with a
vote of 148 to 2 with 1 abstention.

As to the requisite standard for a proper submission, the question may be viewed not only
from the standpoint of the period that must elapse before the holding of the plebiscite but
also from the standpoint of such amendments having been called to the
attention of the people so that it could not plausibly be maintained that they were
properly informed as to the proposed changes. As to the period, the Constitution indicates
the way the matter should be resolved. There is no ambiguity to the applicable
provision: "Any amendment to, or revision of, this Constitution shall be valid when ratified
by a majority of the votes cast in a plebiscite which shall be held not later than three
months after the approval of such amendment or revision." The three resolutions were
approved by the InterimBatasang Pambansa sitting as a constituent assembly on February
5 and 27, 1981. In the Batasang Pambansa Blg. 22, the date of the plebiscite is set for April
7, 1981. It is thus within the 90-day period provided by the Constitution. Thus any
argument to the contrary is unavailing.

The petitions were dismissed.

Tolentino vs COMELEC

41 SCRA 702

Facts

The case is a petition for prohibition to restrain respondent Commission on Elections


"from undertaking to hold a plebiscite on November 8, 1971," at which the proposed
constitutional amendment "reducing the voting age" in Section 1 of Article V of the
Constitution of the Philippines to eighteen years "shall be, submitted" for ratification by
the people pursuant to Organic Resolution No. 1 of the Constitutional Convention of 1971,
and the subsequent implementing resolutions, by declaring said resolutions to be without
the force and effect of law for being violative of the Constitution of the Philippines. The
Constitutional Convention of 1971 came into being by virtue of two resolutions of the
Congress of the Philippines approved in its capacity as a constituent assembly convened
for the purpose of calling a convention to propose amendments to the Constitution namely,
Resolutions 2 and 4 of the joint sessions of Congress held on March 16, 1967 and June 17,
1969 respectively. The delegates to the said Convention were all elected under and by
virtue of said resolutions and the implementing legislation thereof, Republic Act 6132.
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Issue:

Is it within the powers of the Constitutional Convention of 1971 to order the holding of a
plebiscite for the ratification of the proposed amendment/s?

Decision:

The Court holds that all amendments to be proposed must be submitted to the people in a
single "election" or plebiscite. We hold that the plebiscite being called for the purpose of
submitting the same for ratification of the people on November 8, 1971 is not authorized
by Section 1 of Article XV of the Constitution, hence all acts of the Convention and the
respondent Comelec in that direction are null and void. lt says distinctly that either
Congress sitting as a constituent assembly or a convention called for the purpose "may
propose amendments to this Constitution,". The same provision also as definitely provides
that "such amendments shall be valid as part of this Constitution when approved by a
majority of the votes cast at an election at which the amendments are submitted to the
people for their ratification," thus leaving no room for doubt as to how many "elections" or
plebiscites may be held to ratify any amendment or amendments proposed by the same
constituent assembly of Congress or convention, and the provision unequivocably says "an
election" which means only one.

The petition herein is granted. Organic Resolution No. 1 of the Constitutional Convention
of 1971 and the implementing acts and resolutions of the Convention, insofar as they
provide for the holding of a plebiscite on November 8, 1971, as well as the resolution of
the respondent Comelec complying therewith (RR Resolution No. 695) are hereby
declared null and void. The respondents Comelec, Disbursing Officer, Chief Accountant and
Auditor of the Constitutional Convention are hereby enjoined from taking any action in
compliance with the said organic resolution. In view of the peculiar circumstances of this
case, the Court declares this decision immediately executory.

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Sanidad vs COMELEC

73 SCRA 333; October 12, 1976

FACTS:

On September 27, 1976, Pablo Sanidad and Pablito Sanidad petitioned for prohibition with
preliminary injunction to enjoin COMELEC from holding and conducting the Referendum
Plebiscite on October 16; to declare without force and effect PD Nos. 991 and 1033, as well
as PD. 1031. Petitioners contend that the president has no power to propose amendments
to the new constitution, as such, the referendum plebiscite has no legal basis.

ISSUE:

1. Whether the issue of whether the President can assume the power of a constituent
assembly is a justiciable question.
2. Does the president have authority to propose amendments to the Constitution?
3. Is the submission to the people of the proposed amendments within the time frame
allowed sufficient and proper submission?

HELD:

1. Yes. The issue of whether the President can assume the power of a constituent assembly
is a justiciable question since it is not the wisdom but the constitutional authority of the
president to perform such act is in question.

2. Yes. The president has the authority to propose amendments as the governmental
powers are generally concentrated to the president in times of crisis.

3. Yes. The time for deliberation of the referendum-plebiscite questions, 3 weeks, is not too
short especially since the questions are issues of the day and the people have been living
with them since the proclamation of martial law.

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Santiago vs. COMELEC

G.R No. 127325 March 19, 1997

FACTS:
Private respondent filed with public respondent Commission on Elections (COMELEC) a
Petition to Amend the Constitution, to Lift Term Limits of Elective Officials, by Peoples
Initiative (Delfin Petition) wherein Delfin asked the COMELEC for an order (1) Fixing the
time and dates for signature gathering all over the country; (2) Causing the necessary
publications of said Order and the attached Petition for Initiative on the 1987
Constitution, in newspapers of general and local circulation; and (3) Instructing Municipal
Election Registrars in all Regions of the Philippines, to assist Petitioners and volunteers, in
establishing signing stations at the time and on the dates designated for the purpose.
Delfin asserted that R.A. No. 6735 governs the conduct of initiative to amend the
Constitution and COMELEC Resolution No. 2300 is a valid exercise of delegated powers.
Petitioners contend that R.A. No. 6375 failed to be an enabling law because of its
deficiency and inadequacy, and COMELEC Resolution No. 2300 is void.
ISSUE:
Whether or not (1) the absence of subtitle for such initiative is not fatal, (2) R.A. No. 6735
is adequate to cover the system of initiative on amendment to the Constitution, and (3)
COMELEC Resolution No. 2300 is valid. .
HELD:
NO. Petition (for prohibition) was granted. The conspicuous silence in subtitles simply
means that the main thrust of the Act is initiative and referendum on national and local
laws. R.A. No. 6735 failed to provide sufficient standard for subordinate legislation.
Provisions COMELEC Resolution No. 2300 prescribing rules and regulations on the
conduct of initiative or amendments to the Constitution are declared void.
Subtitles are intrinsic aids for construction and interpretation. R.A. No. 6735 failed to
provide any subtitle on initiative on the Constitution, unlike in the other modes of
initiative, which are specifically provided for in Subtitle II and Subtitle III. This deliberate
omission indicates that the matter of peoples initiative to amend the Constitution was left
to some future law.
The COMELEC acquires jurisdiction over a petition for initiative only after its filing. The
petition then is the initiatory pleading. Nothing before its filing is cognizable by the
COMELEC, sitting en banc. The only participation of the COMELEC or its personnel before
the filing of such petition are (1) to prescribe the form of the petition; (2) to issue through
its Election Records and Statistics Office a certificate on the total number of registered
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voters in each legislative district; (3) to assist, through its election registrars, in the
establishment of signature stations; and (4) to verify, through its election registrars, the
signatures on the basis of the registry list of voters, voters affidavits, and voters
identification cards used in the immediately preceding election.
Since the Delfin Petition is not the initiatory petition under R.A. No. 6735 and COMELEC
Resolution No. 2300, it cannot be entertained or given cognizance of by the COMELEC. The
respondent Commission must have known that the petition does not fall under any of the
actions or proceedings under the COMELEC Rules of Procedure or under Resolution No.
2300, for which reason it did not assign to the petition a docket number. Hence, the said
petition was merely entered as UND, meaning, undocketed. That petition was nothing more
than a mere scrap of paper, which should not have been dignified by the Order of 6
December 1996, the hearing on 12 December 1996, and the order directing Delfin and the
oppositors to file their memoranda or oppositions. In so dignifying it, the COMELEC acted
without jurisdiction or with grave abuse of discretion and merely wasted its time, energy,
and resources.
Under the said law, initiative on the Constitution is confined only to proposals to AMEND.
The people are not accorded the power to "directly propose, enact, approve, or reject, in
whole or in part, the Constitution" through the system of initiative. They can only do so
with respect to "laws, ordinances, or resolutions." The use of the clause "proposed laws
sought to be enacted, approved or rejected, amended or repealed" denotes that R.A. No.
6735 excludes initiative on amendments to the Constitution.

Also, while the law provides subtitles for National Initiative and Referendum and for Local
Initiative and Referendum, no subtitle is provided for initiative on the Constitution. This
means that the main thrust of the law is initiative and referendum on national and local
laws. If R.A. No. 6735 were intended to fully provide for the implementation of the
initiative on amendments to the Constitution, it could have provided for a subtitle therefor,
considering that in the order of things, the primacy of interest, or hierarchy of values, the
right of the people to directly propose amendments to the Constitution is far more
important than the initiative on national and local laws.

While R.A. No. 6735 specially detailed the process in implementing initiative and
referendum on national and local laws, it intentionally did not do so on the system of
initiative on amendments to the Constitution.

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THE CONCEPT OF STATE

1. Bacani VS. NACOCO

100 Phil. 468 (1956)

FACTS:

Plaintiffs herein are court stenographers assigned in Branch VI of the Court of First
Instance of Manila. During the pendency of Civil Case No. 2293 of said court, entitled
Francisco Sycip vs. National Coconut Corporation, Assistant Corporate Counsel Federico
Alikpala, counsel for Defendant, requested said stenographers for copies of the transcript
of the stenographic notes taken by them during the hearing. Plaintiffs complied with the
request by delivering to Counsel Alikpala the needed transcript containing 714 pages and
thereafter submitted to him their bills for the payment of their fees. The National Coconut
Corporation paid the amount of P564 to Leopoldo T. Bacani and P150 to Mateo A. Matoto
for said transcript at the rate of P1 per page. However, the Auditor General disallowed the
payment of these fees and ordered that it shall be reimbursed for the reason that NACOCO,
being a public corporation, is exempted from the fees. For reimbursement to take place, it
was further ordered that the amount of P25 per payday be deducted from the salary of
Bacani and P10 from the salary of Matoto. Hence, this petition

ISSUE:

Whether or not NACOCO is a government entity

RULING:

NO. There are functions which our government is required to exercise to promote its
objectives as expressed in our Constitution and which are exercised by it as an attribute of
sovereignty (constituent), and those which it may exercise to promote merely the welfare,
progress and prosperity of the people (ministrant). To this latter class belongs the
organization of those corporations owned or controlled by the government t o promote
certain aspects of the economic life of our people such as the National. These are what we
call government-owned or controlled corporations which may take on the form of a
private enterprise or one organized with powers and formal characteristics of private
corporations under the Corporation Law. They do not acquire the status of a government
entity for the simple reason that they do not come under the classification of municipal or
public corporation. NACOCO is a GOCC. Thus, not part of the government.

President Wilson enumerates the constituent functions as follows:


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1. The keeping of order and providing for the protection of persons and property from
violence and robbery
2. The fixing of the legal relations between man and wife and between parents and
children.
3. The regulation of the holding, transmission, and interchange of property, and the
determination of its liabilities for debt or for crime.
4. The determination of contract rights between individuals.
5. The definition and punishment of crime
6. The administration of justice in civil cases.
7. The determination of the political duties, privileges, and relations of citizens.
8. Dealings of the state with foreign powers: the preservation of the state from external
danger or encroachment and the advancement of its international interests. The most
important of the ministrant functions are: public works, public education, public
charity, health and safety regulations, and regulations of trade and industry. The
principles determining whether or not a government shall exercise certain of these
optional functions are: (1) that a government should do for the public welfare those
things which private capital would not naturally undertake and (2) that a government
should do these things which by its very nature it is better equipped to administer for
the public welfare than is any private individual or group of individuals that a
government should do these things which by its very nature it is better equipped to
administer for the public welfare than is any private individual or group of individuals.

17
3. PVTA vs CIR 65 SCRA 416

G.R. No. L-32052 July 25, 1975

Facts:

This case involves the expanded role of the


government necessitated by the increased responsibility to
provide for the general welfare.

1. In 1966 private respondents filed a petition seeking relief for their alleged overtime
services and the petitioners failure to pay for said compensation in accordance with
CA No. 444.

2. Petitioner denied the allegations for lack of a cause of cause of action and lack of
jurisdiction. Judge Martinez issued an order, directing petitioner to pay. Hence, this
petition for certiorari on grounds that the corporation is exercising governmental
functions and is therefore exempt from Commonwealth Act No. 444.

3. PVTA contended it is beyond the jurisdiction of respondent Court as it is exercising


governmental functions and that it is exempt from the operation of Commonwealth
Act No. 444.

Issue:

Whether or not PVTA discharges governmental and not proprietary functions.

Held:

YES. But the distinction between the constituent and ministrant functions of the
government has become obsolete. The government has to provide for the welfare of its
people. RA No. 2265 providing for a distinction between constituent and the
ministrant functions is irrelevant considering the needs of the present time: The growing
complexities of modern society have rendered this traditional classification of the
functions of government obsolete.

The contention of petitioner that the Labor Code does not apply to them deserve scant
consideration.

There is no question based on RA 4155, that petitioner is a governmental agency. As such,


the petitioner can rightfully invoke the doctrine announced in the leading ACCFA case. The
18
objection of private respondents with its overtones of the distinction between constituent
and ministrant functions of governments as set forth in Bacani v. Nacoco, is futile. It does
not necessarily follow, that just because petitioner is engaged in governmental rather than
proprietary functions, that the labor controversy was beyond the jurisdiction of the now
defunct respondent Court. Nor is the objection raised that petitioner does not come within
the coverage of the Eight-Hour Labor Law persuasive.

A reference to the pertinent sections of both Republic Acts 2265 and 2155 renders clear
the differentiation that exists. If as a result of the appealed order, financial burden would
have to be borne by petitioner, it has only itself to blame. It need not have required private
respondents to render overtime service. It can hardly be surmised that one of its chief
problems is paucity of personnel. That would indeed be a cause for astonishment. It would
appear, therefore, that such an objection based on this ground certainly cannot suffice for a
reversal. To repeat, respondent Court must be sustained.

19
3. Government of the Philippine Islands vs Monte de Piedad

G.R. No. 9959 35 PH 728, 751-753 December 13, 1916

FACTS:

On June 3, 1863, a devastating earthquake in the Philippines took place. The Spanish
dominions provided $400,000 aid as received by the National Treasury as relief of the
victims of the earthquake. The government used the money as such but $80,000 was left
untouched and was thus invested to Monte de Piedad bank, which was in turn invested as
jewelries, equivalent to the same amount.

In June 1983, the Department of Finance called upon the same bank to return the $80,000
deposited from before. The Monte de Piedad declined to comply with this order on the
ground that the Governor-General of the Philippine Islands and not the Department of
Finance had the right to order the reimbursement because the Philippine government is
not the affected party. On account of various petitions of the persons, the Philippine
Islands brought a suit against Monte de Piedad for a recovery of the $80,000 together with
interest, for the benefit of those persons and their heirs. Respondent refuse to provide the
money, hence, this appeal.

ISSUE:

Whether or not the Philippine government is authorized to file a reimbursement of the


money of the people deposited in respondent bank.

HELD:

The Court held that the Philippine government is competent to file a


complaint/reimbursement against respondent bank in accordance to the Doctrine of
Parens Patriae. The government is the sole protector of the rights of the people thus, it
holds an inherent supreme power to enforce laws which promote public interest. The
government has the right to "take back" the money intended fro people. The government
has the right to enforce all charities of public nature, by virtue of its general
superintending authority over the public interests, where no other person is entrusted
with it.

Appellate court decision was affirmed. Petition was thereby GRANTED. The Court ordered
that respondent bank return the amount to the rightful heirs with interest in gold or coin
in Philippine peso.

20
21
4. Co Kim Chan v Valdez Tan Keh

Facts:
Co Kim Chan had a pending civil case, initiated during the Japanese occupation, with the
Court of First Instance of Manila. After the Liberation of the Manila and the American
occupation, Judge Arsenio Dizon refused to continue hearings on the case, saying that a
proclamation issued by General Douglas MacArthur had invalidated and nullified all
judicial proceedings and judgments of the courts of the Philippines and, without an
enabling law, lower courts have no jurisdiction to take cognizance of and continue judicial
proceedings pending in the courts of the defunct Republic of the Philippines (the
Philippine government under the Japanese).

Issues:
1. Whether or not judicial proceedings and decisions made during the Japanese
occupation were valid and remained valid even after the American occupation;
2. Whether or not the October 23, 1944 proclamation MacArthur issued in which he
declared that all laws, regulations and processes of any other government in the
Philippines than that of the said Commonwealth are null and void and without legal effect
in areas of the Philippines free of enemy occupation and control invalidated all judgments
and judicial acts and proceedings of the courts;
3. And whether or not if they were not invalidated by MacArthurs proclamation, those
courts could continue hearing the cases pending before them.

Ratio:
Political and international law recognizes that all acts and proceedings of a de facto
government are good and valid. The Philippine Executive Commission and the Republic of
the Philippines under the Japanese occupation may be considered de facto governments,
supported by the military force and deriving their authority from the laws of war.
Municipal laws and private laws, however, usually remain in force unless suspended or
changed by the conqueror. Civil obedience is expected even during war, for the existence
of a state of insurrection and war did not loosen the bonds of society, or do away with civil
government or the regular administration of the laws. And if they were not valid, then it
would not have been necessary for MacArthur to come out with a proclamation abrogating
them.
The second question, the court said, hinges on the interpretation of the phrase processes
of any other government and whether or not he intended it to annul all other judgments
and judicial proceedings of courts during the Japanese military occupation.
IF, according to international law, non-political judgments and judicial proceedings of de
facto governments are valid and remain valid even after the occupied territory has been
liberated, then it could not have been MacArthurs intention to refer to judicial processes,
22
which would be in violation of international law.
A well-known rule of statutory construction is: A statute ought never to be construed to
violate the law of nations if any other possible construction remains.
Another is that where great inconvenience will result from a particular construction, or
great mischief done, such construction is to be avoided, or the court ought to presume that
such construction was not intended by the makers of the law, unless required by clear and
unequivocal words.
Annulling judgments of courts made during the Japanese occupation would clog the
dockets and violate international law, therefore what MacArthur said should not be
construed to mean that judicial proceedings are included in the phrase processes of any
other governments.
In the case of US vs Reiter, the court said that if such laws and institutions are continued in
use by the occupant, they become his and derive their force from him. The laws and courts
of the Philippines did not become, by being continued as required by the law of nations,
laws and courts of Japan.
It is a legal maxim that, excepting of a political nature, law once established continues
until changed by some competent legislative power. IT IS NOT CHANGED MERELY BY
CHANGE OF SOVEREIGNTY. Until, of course, the new sovereign by legislative act creates a
change.
Therefore, even assuming that Japan legally acquired sovereignty over the Philippines, and
the laws and courts of the Philippines had become courts of Japan, as the said courts and
laws creating and conferring jurisdiction upon them have continued in force until now, it
follows that the same courts may continue exercising the same jurisdiction over cases
pending therein before the restoration of the Commonwealth Government, until abolished
or the laws creating and conferring jurisdiction upon them are repealed by the said
government.
DECISION: Writ of mandamus issued to the judge of the Court of First Instance of Manila,
ordering him to take cognizance of and continue to final judgment the proceedings in civil
case no. 3012.

Summary of ratio:
1. International law says the acts of a de facto government are valid and civil laws continue
even during occupation unless repealed.
2. MacArthur annulled proceedings of other governments, but this cannot be applied on
judicial proceedings because such a construction would violate the law of nations.
3. Since the laws remain valid, the court must continue hearing the case pending before it.
***3 kinds of de facto government: one established through rebellion (govt gets possession
and control through force or the voice of the majority and maintains itself against the will
of the rightful government)
through occupation (established and maintained by military forces who invade and occupy
a territory of the enemy in the course of war; denoted as a government of paramount
23
force)
through insurrection (established as an independent government by the inhabitants of a
country who rise in insurrection against the parent state)

5. People v Gozo, 53 SCRA 476

Facts:

Appellant seeks to set aside a judgment of the Court of First Instance of Zambales,
convicting her of a violation of an ordinance of Olongapo, Zambales, requiring a permit
from the municipal mayor for the construction or erection of a building, as well as any
modification, alteration, repair or demolition thereof. She questions its validity on the
pretext that her house was constructed within the naval base leased to the American
armed forces. While yielding to the well-settled doctrine that it does not thereby cease to
be Philippine territory, she in effect seek to emasculate the State's sovereign rights by the
assertion that the latter cannot exercise therein administrative jurisdiction.

Issue/s:

Whether or not the State can exercise administrative jurisdiction within the naval base
leased by the Philippines to the American armed forces.

Held:

The Philippine Government has not abdicated its sovereignty over the bases as part of the
Philippine territory or divested itself completely of jurisdiction over offenses committed
therein. Under the terms of the treaty, the United States Government has prior or
preferential but not exclusive jurisdiction of such offenses. The Philippine Government
retains not only jurisdictional lights not granted, but also all such ceded rights as the
United States Military authorities for reasons of their own decline to make use of. The first
proposition is implied from the fact of Philippine sovereignty over the bases; the second
from the express provisions of the treaty." There was a reiteration of such a view in
Reagan. Thus: "Nothing is better settled than that the Philippines being independent and
sovereign, its authority may be exercised over its entire domain. There is no portion
thereof that is beyond its power. Within its limits, its decrees are supreme, its commands
paramount. Its laws govern therein, and everyone to whom it applies must submit to its
terms. That is the extent of its jurisdiction, both territorial and personal. Necessarily,
likewise, it has to be exclusive. If it were not thus, there is a diminution of it sovereignty."
Then came this paragraph dealing with the principle of auto-limitation: "It is to be
24
admitted that any state may, by its consent, express or implied, submit to a restriction of
its sovereign rights. There may thus be a curtailment of what otherwise is a power plenary
in character. That is the concept of sovereignty as auto-limitation, which, in the succinct
language of Jellinek, 'is the property of a state-force due to which it has the exclusive
capacity of legal self-determination and self-restriction.' A state then, if it chooses to, may
refrain from the exercise of what otherwise is illimitable competence." The opinion was at
pains to point out though that even then, there is at the most diminution of jurisdictional
rights, not it appearance. The words employed follow: "Its laws may as to some persons
found within its territory no longer control. Nor does the matter end there. It is not
precluded from allowing another power to participate in the exercise of jurisdictional right
over certain portions of its territory. If it does so, it by no means follows that such areas
become impressed with an alien character. They retain their status as native soil. They are
still subject to its authority. Its jurisdiction may be diminished, but it does not disappear.
So it is with the bases under lease to the American armed forces by virtue of the military
bases agreement of 1947. They are not and cannot be foreign territory."

25
6. Laurel vs. Misa

FACTS:
The accused was charged with treason. During the Japanese occupation, the accused
adhered to the enemy by giving the latter aid and comfort. He claims that he cannot be
tried for treason since his allegiance to the Philippines was suspended at that time. Also,
he claims that he cannot be tried under a change of sovereignty over the country since his
acts were against the Commonwealth which was replaced already by the Republic.

HELD/RATIO:
The accused was found guilty. A citizen owes absolute and permanent allegiance to his
government or sovereign. No transfer of sovereignty was made; hence, it is presumed that
the Philippine government still had the power. Moreover, sovereignty cannot be
suspended; it is either subsisting or eliminated and replaced. Sovereignty per se wasnt
suspended; rather, it was the exercise of sovereignty that was suspended. Thus, there is no
suspended allegiance. Regarding the change of government, there is no such change since
the sovereign the Filipino people is still the same. What happened was a mere change
of name of government, from Commonwealth to the Republic of the Philippines.

26
7. Ruffy vs Chief of Staff
G.R. No. L-533 75 Phil 875 August 20, 1956

FACTS:
Ramon Ruffy was the provincial commander stationed in Mindoro at the outbreak of war
on December 8, 1941. When the Japanese forces landed in Mindoro on February 27, 1942,
Mayor Ruffy retreated to the mountains and organized and led a guerrilla outfit known as
the Bolo Combat team of Bolo Area. The case at bar is a petition for prohibition praying
that respondents be commanded to desist from further proceedings in the trial of the
petitioners on the ground that petitioners were not subject to military law at the time of
offense.

ISSUE:
1. Are the petitioners subject to military law at the time of war and Japanese occupation?
2. Is 93d Article of War constitutional?

HELD:
Petitioners were subject to military jurisdiction as provided for in Article of War (2d). The
Bolo Area was a contingent of the 6th military district which had been recognized by the
United States army. The petitioners assailed the constitutionality of 93d Article of War on
the ground that it violates Article VIII Section 2 par. 4 of the Constitution which provides
that National Assembly may not deprive the Supreme Court of its original jurisdiction
over all criminal cases in which the penalty imposed is death or life imprisonment. The
petitioners are in error for courts martial are agencies of executive character and are not a
portion of the judiciary. The petition thus has no merits and is di

27
PEOPLE
8. Mo Ya Lim Yao vs. Commissioner of Immigration,GR L-21289, 4 October 1971

Facts:
On 8 February 1961, Lau Yuen Yeung applied for a passport visa to enter the Philippines as
a non-immigrant, for a temporary visitor's visa to enter the Philippines. She was permitted
to come into the Philippines on 13 March 1961. On the date of her arrival, Asher Y, Cheng
filed a bond in the amount of P1,000.00 to undertake, among others, that said Lau Yuen
Yeung would actually depart from the Philippines on or before the expiration of her
authorized period of stay in this country or within the period as in his discretion the
Commissioner of Immigration. After repeated extensions, she was allowed to stay in the
Philippines up to 13 February 1962. On 25 January 1962, she contracted marriage with
Moy Ya Lim Yao alias Edilberto Aguinaldo Lim an alleged Filipino citizen. Because of the
contemplated action of the Commissioner of Immigration to confiscate her bond and order
her arrest and immediate deportation, after the expiration of her authorized stay, she
brought an action for injunction with preliminary injunction. The Court of First Instance of
Manila (Civil Case 49705) denied the prayer for preliminary injunction. Moya Lim Yao and
Lau Yuen Yeung appealed.

Issue:
Whether Lau Yuen Yeung ipso facto became a Filipino citizen upon her marriage to a
Filipino citizen.

Held:
Under Section 15 of Commonwealth Act 473, an alien woman marrying a Filipino, native
born or naturalized, becomes ipso facto a Filipina provided she is not disqualified to be a
citizen of the Philippines under Section 4 of the same law. Likewise, an alien woman
married to an alien who is subsequently naturalized here follows the Philippine
citizenship of her husband the moment he takes his oath as Filipino citizen, provided that
she does not suffer from any of the disqualifications under said Section 4. Whether the
alien woman requires to undergo the naturalization proceedings, Section 15 is a parallel
provision to Section 16. Thus, if the widow of an applicant for naturalization as Filipino,
who dies during the proceedings, is not required to go through a naturalization
proceedings, in order to be considered as a Filipino citizen hereof, it should follow that the
wife of a living Filipino cannot be denied the same privilege. Everytime the citizenship of a
person is material or indispensible in a judicial or administrative case, Whatever the
28
corresponding court or administrative authority decides therein as to such citizenship is
generally not considered as res adjudicata, hence it has to be threshed out again and again
as the occasion may demand. Lau Yuen Yeung, was declared to have become a Filipino
citizen from and by virtue of her marriage to Moy Ya Lim Yao al as Edilberto Aguinaldo
Lim, a Filipino citizen of 25 January 1962.

29
9. PO YO BI vs. REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES
Facts:
On 9 February 1957, petitioner filed a petition for naturalization, attaching thereto, among
other documents, the joint affidavit of two (2) of his character witnesses, Atty. Pablo Oro
and Dr. Rafael Jarantilla, and the joint affidavit of his other character witnesses, Dr. Antonio
San Agustin and Uy Chong. 4
On 5 March 1959, the trial court, through the Deputy Clerk of Court, issued a Notice of
Petition for Philippine Citizenship setting the hearing of the petition to 18 January 1960 5
and ordering the publication and posting of the notice.
Petitioner filed a motion to amend his petition 6 on 15 January 1960, citing as among the
reasons therefor the fact that important allegations had been overlooked in the original
petition. Attached to the motion was the Amended Petition. 7
On 18 January 1960, the trial court, through the Deputy Clerk of Court, issued an Amended
Notice of Petition 8 setting the hearing of the petition to 12 October 1960 and ordering
the publication of the said notice once a week for three (3) consecutive weeks in the
Official Gazette and in the YUHUM, a newspaper of general circulation in the province/city
of Iloilo, and its posting in a public and conspicuous place in the Office of the Clerk of Court
of the trial court.
Subsequently, on 19 June 1961, petitioner once again moved 9 to amend his petition. A
copy of the Amended Petition, 10 which is in reality the Second amended petition, was
attached to the motion.
In none of the above petitions did petitioner state that he is a person of good moral
character.
On 26 June 1961, the trial court, through the Deputy Clerk of Court, issued an Amended
Notice of Petition for Philippine Citizenship setting the hearing of the petition to 26
February 1962 11 and directing the publication of the order in the Official Gazette and in
the GUARDIAN, a newspaper of general circulation in the province/city of Iloilo. This
amended notice of petition was published in the 10, 17 and 24 July 1961 (nos. 28, 29 and
30, vol. 57) 12 issues of the Official Gazette and in the 1, 8 and 15 July 1961 issues of the
GUARDIAN. 13
The second Amended Petition itself was not published in the Official Gazette or in a
newspaper of general circulation in the province and city of Iloilo. There is, as well, no
evidence of its posting in a public and conspicuous place in the Office of the Clerk of Court
or in the building where such office is located.
The Record on Appeal fails to disclose any order of the trial court granting the first and the
second motions to amend or directing the publication of the second amended petition.
30
After trial, the court a quo, per Judge F. Imperial Reyes, handed down on 15 October 1963
its decision 14 granting the petition, the dispositive portion of which reads as follows:
On 30 October 1963, the Assistant City Fiscal of Iloilo, Vicente P. Gengos, on behalf of the
Solicitor General, filed a motion to reconsider the above decision 16 contending therein
that petitioner is not exempt from filing his declaration of intention, has not complied with
Section 4 of the Revised Naturalization Law and that his witnesses are not competent and
credible persons within the contemplation of law.
However, on 11 December 1963, Assistant City Fiscal Gengos, on behalf of the Solicitor
General, filed a Motion to Withdraw 17 the motion for reconsideration alleging therein
that after a deliberate study of the grounds alleged, he believes that he cannot
substantially establish the same.
The Record on Appeal again fails to indicate what action the trial court took on this motion
to withdraw.
Petitioner filed a motion on 1 December 1965 alleging therein that more than two (2)
years had elapsed since the rendition of the decision and that he has complied with all the
conditions and requisites imposed by Republic Act No 530; he then prays that after
hearing, the decision be executed and he be allowed to take his oath as a Filipino citizen.
On 5 January 1966, Assistant City Fiscal Gengos filed an opposition to this motion, 18
reiterating therein the grounds he earlier alleged in the motion to reconsider the decision.
On 8 January 1966, the trial court handed down the order quoted earlier, now challenged
in this appeal.
For reasons known only to him, petitioner did not file his Brief and, in the resolution of 12
October 1972, this Court considered the case submitted for decision without such Brief.
19
On 27 January 1988, the parties were required to move in the premises and were informed
that should they fail to make the proper manifestation within a period of thirty (30) days
from notice, the case shall be considered terminated and closed and entry of judgment
shall accordingly be made. 20 Only the Republic filed such a manifestation, praying therein
that the case be decided in accordance with the prayer contained in its Brief 21 and
informing the court that on 10 June 1975, petitioner, pursuant to the provisions of Letter
of Instruction No. 270, filed with the special Committee on Naturalization of the Office of
the Solicitor General a petition for naturalization, docketed as SCN No. 011317, which is
pending consideration before the committee.

1. CONSTITUTIONAL LAW; CITIZENSHIP; NATURALIZATION LAW; PETITION ITSELF


MUST BE PUBLISHED; REQUIREMENTS RELATIVE TO THE PUBLICATION. Section 9 of
31
the Revised Naturalization Law requires that the petition itself must be published. As early
as 29 November 1958, or four (4) years, eight (8) months and sixteen (16) days before the
trial court handed down its challenged decision, this Court, in Co y Quing Reyes vs.
Republic, ruled that the above-quoted Section 9 requires that the petition for
naturalization be published "once a week, for three (3) consecutive weeks, in the Official
Gazette." This provision demands compliance with the following requirements, namely:
(1) the publication must be weekly; (2) it must be made three (3) times; (3) and these
must be "consecutive." The Court further ruled that the publication is a jurisdictional
requirement.
2. ID.; ID.; ID.; ID.; PUBLICATION OF NOTICE OF PETITION, NOT A SUBSTANTIAL
COMPLIANCE; REQUIREMENT IS JURISDICTIONAL. That there was in fact, in the
instant case, a notice of petition which was published once a week for three (3)
consecutive weeks end that the same made references to some date in the petition and
stated the date and place of hearing, did not save the day for both the petitioner and the
trial court. The publication of the notice did not constitute substantial compliance with the
cited section. In Sy vs. Republic, supra., this Court held that the requirement of Section 9 of
C.A. No. 473, as amended, that a copy of the petition to be posted and published should be
a textual or verbatim restatement of the petition as filed, is jurisdictional. Non-compliance
therewith nullifies the proceedings in the case, including the decision rendered in favor of
the applicant.
3. ID.; ID.; ID.; QUALIFICATIONS; PETITIONER IN CASE AT BAR DID NOT ALLEGE THAT
HE IS OF GOOD MORAL CHARACTER. For reasons also known only to him and his
counsel, and despite two (2) amendments to the original petition, petitioner did not allege
in any of his petitions that he is of good moral character. The third of the six (6)
qualifications to become a citizen of the Philippines, as provided for in Section 2 of the
Revised naturalization Law, is: "Third. He must be of good moral character and believes in
the principles underlying the Philippine Constitution, and 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; . . ."
4. ID.; ID.; ID.; PRESENT AND FORMER PLACES OF RESIDENCE MUST BE ALLEGED.
In both the original and amended petitions, however, he did not reveal the specific place in
Manila where he resided during that time. In his second amended petition, he declares
that he stayed in Manila from June 1939 to 1942, giving his address as "(Salazar Street)".
This is not sufficient compliance with the requirement of Section 7 of the Revised
Naturalization Law that the petitioner must allege therein his present and former places of
residence. The purpose of the requirement is to facilitate the checking up on the activities
of the petitioner which are material to the proceedings. "(Salazar Street)" is vague and
uncertain. Since neither the given name of Salazar nor its initial is mentioned, considering
32
that Manila is a big and thickly populated metropolis, and that there is no proof that only
one (1) street in Manila is named after a Salazar, it is obvious that petitioner deliberately
suppressed vital information to make it extremely difficult for the government authorities
to locate his place of residence and check on his activities therein during such time.
Besides, a careful reading of the transcripts of the testimony of petitioner on direct
examination reveals that petitioner did not mention Salazar Street at all. Thus, on this
ground alone, his petition should fail.
5. ID.; ID.; ID.; EXEMPTION FROM FILING A DECLARATION OF INTENTION; STUDYING
IN SCHOOLS NOT LIMITED TO ANY RACE OR NATIONALITY; CASE AT BAR. His claim
for exemption is anchored on his having been born in the Philippines; his having
completed his primary and secondary education in schools recognized by the Philippine
government wherein enrollment is not limited to any race or nationality and where
Philippine Civics, Philippine History and Philippine Government are prescribed and taught
as part of the school curriculum; and that his children, except the youngest who is not of
school age, are all enrolled in the schools contemplated by law. He testified that he
completed his primary education at the Chinese Commercial School in Iloilo City and his
secondary education at the Chiang Kai Shek High School in Manila. Unfortunately, only his
self-serving declaration supports his claim that these schools are not limited to any race or
nationality. The certification of one James King, Director of the Iloilo Chinese Commercial
High School dated 14 August 1963 and merely identified by petitioner, does not make any
categorical statement that during the time that petitioner studied in said school until 1939
when he allegedly finished his elementary course, the school was not limited to any race or
nationality.
6. ID.; ID.; ID.; ID.; PROOF OF COMPLETION OF A FULL SECONDARY COURSE. In
respect to petitioner's high school education, the certification of the Director-Principal of
the Chiang Kai Shek High School, dated 12 January 1962, merely states that petitioner
"was enrolled in the Third year, Senior High School in Chinese Instruction in this school
during the school year 1941-1942. He was graduated from the Chinese Senior High School
before the closing of that school year as a result of the outbreak of World War II." It was
petitioner himself who identified this certification. The Director-Principal was not even
presented as a witness to be cross-examined. Clearly, this certification does not prove that
petitioner did in fact finish his senior year. The "senior high school" stated therein refers to
Chinese Instruction, and not to a general secondary education. Petitioner never attempted
to explain the term "Third Year" and this only casts serious doubts as to his educational
attainment at that time. There is then no proof of completion of a full secondary education.
Furthermore, the certification does not state that in 1941-1942, the school was not limited
to a particular race or nationality. Accordingly, he cannot claim exemption from filing the
declaration of intention.

33
7. ID.; ID.; ID.; GOOD MORAL CHARACTER AND GOOD REPUTE; MORAL
IRREPROACHABILITY MEANS CHARACTER OF THE HIGHEST ORDER. Petitioner's
reputation and moral character witness' answer was never amplified to enlighten the trial
court as to its factual basis. Moreover, it can be easily noted that the yes answer (" Yes,
because among the young people in the Chinese community he is one of the best in moral
conduct and also he is one of the brightest young man (sic) I have encountered) is actually
a qualified one and is not fully responsive. It is limited to good moral conduct, which is but
a part of moral irreproachability. A part is not the whole. The latter means character of the
highest order excellent character.
8. ID.; ID.; ID.; ID.; WORD "COMMUNITY" REFERS NOT ONLY TO CHINESE COMMUNITY
BUT ALSO TO THE COMMUNITY IN GENERAL. Moreover, there is an apparent attempt
to emphasize such conduct within the Chinese community. The third paragraph of Section
2 of the Revised Naturalization Law explicitly provides that the applicant must have such
qualifications 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. That
community is not confined to the Chinese community; it applies to the community in
general for the reason that he is required to mingle socially with the Filipinos. One who
fails to do so is disqualified to be naturalized under Section 4 (f) of the law. This witness
did not likewise categorically answer the "good repute" aspect of the question; instead, he
mentioned the intellectual qualities of the petitioner. Not all "bright" persons are of good
repute, and not all persons of good repute are bright.
9. ID.; ID.; ID.; ID.; CHARACTER WITNESS' TESTIMONY MUST REFER TO THE ENTIRE
PERIOD OF APPLICANT'S STAY IN THE PHILIPPINES. It has been held that to establish
the qualifications that the applicant must be of good moral character and must have
conducted himself in a proper and irreproachable manner during the entire period of his
residence, the character witnesses must be in a position to testify on the character and
good moral conduct of the applicant during the entire period of the latter's stay in the
Philippines as provided by law.
10. ID.; ID.; ID.; A CHINESE NATIONAL CANNOT BE NATURALIZED UNLESS HE HAS
SHOWN THAT HE HAS OBTAINED PERMISSION FOR THE RENUNCIATION OF HIS
NATIONALITY. Section 12 of the Revised Naturalization Law requires that before a
certificate of naturalization is issued, the petitioner shall renounce "absolutely and forever
all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty." It is settled
that a Chinese national cannot be naturalized as a citizen of the Philippines unless he has
complied with the laws of Nationalist China requiring previous permission of its Minister
of Interior for the renunciation of his nationality. In the instant case, petitioner did not
offer any evidence to prove that he obtained such permission. The sixth assigned error
then is well-taken.

34
Judgment is hereby rendered REVERSING the decision of the court below of 15 October
1963 and SETTING ASIDE its Order of 8 February 1966 in Naturalization Case No. 85.

35
TERRITORY
14. MAGALLONA v. ERMITA, G.R. 187167, August 16, 2011
Facts:
In 1961, Congress passed R.A. 3046 demarcating the maritime baselines of the Philippines
as an Archepelagic State pursuant to UNCLOS I of 9158, codifying the sovereignty of State
parties over their territorial sea. Then in 1968, it was amended by R.A. 5446, correcting
some errors in R.A. 3046 reserving the drawing of baselines around Sabah.
In 2009, it was again amended by R.A. 9522, to be compliant with the UNCLOS III of 1984.
The requirements complied with are: to shorten one baseline, to optimize the location of
some basepoints and classify KIG and Scarborough Shoal as regime of islands.
Petitioner now assails the constitutionality of the law for three main reasons:
1. it reduces the Philippine maritime territory under Article 1;
2. it opens the countrys waters to innocent and sea lanes passages hence undermining our
sovereignty and security; and
3. treating KIG and Scarborough as regime of islands would weaken our claim over those
territories.

Issue:
Whether R.A. 9522 is constitutional?

Ruling:
1. UNCLOS III has nothing to do with acquisition or loss of territory. it is just a codified
norm that regulates conduct of States. On the other hand, RA 9522 is a baseline law to
mark out basepoints along coasts, serving as geographic starting points to measure. it
merely notices the international community of the scope of our maritime space.
2. If passages is the issue, domestically, the legislature can enact legislation designating
routes within the archipelagic waters to regulate innocent and sea lanes passages. but in
the absence of such, international law norms operate.
the fact that for archipelagic states, their waters are subject to both passages does not
place them in lesser footing vis a vis continental coastal states. Moreover, RIOP is a
customary international law, no modern state can invoke its sovereignty to forbid such
passage.

36
3. On the KIG issue, RA 9522 merely followed the basepoints mapped by RA 3046 and in
fact, it increased the Phils. total maritime space. Moreover, the itself commits the Phils.
continues claim of sovereignty and jurisdiction over KIG.
If not, it would be a breach to 2 provisions of the UNCLOS III:
Art. 47 (3): drawing of basepoints shall not depart to any appreciable extent from the
general configuration of the archipelago.
Art 47 (2): the length of baselines shall not exceed 100 mm.
KIG and SS are far from our baselines, if we draw to include them, well breach the rules:
that it should follow the natural configuration of the archipelago.

37
GOVERNMENT
15. Co Kim Chan vs. Valdez Tan Keh
75 PHIL 131

FACTS:
Petitioner filed a motion for mandamus which prays that the respondent judge be ordered
to continue the proceeding which was initiated under the regime of the so-called Republic
of the Philippines established during the Japanese military occupation. It is based on the
proclamation issued by Gen. Douglas McArthur which had the effect of invalidating and
nullifying all judicial proceedings and judgments of the courts of the Philippines.
Furthermore, it was contended that the lower courts have no jurisdiction to take
cognizance of and continue judicial proceedings pending the court of the defunct republic
in the absence of enabling law.

ISSUES:
Whether the government established in the said Japanese occupation is in fact a de facto
government.

Whether the judicial acts and proceedings of the courts existing in the Philippines under
the Philippine Executive Commission were good and valid even after the liberation or
reoccupation of the Philippines by the US Forces.

HELD:
In political and international law, all acts and proceedings of the legislative, executive and
judicial department of a de facto government is valid. Being a de facto government, judicial
acts done under its control, when they are not political in nature, to the extent that they
effect during the continuance and control of said government remain good.

All judgment and judicial proceedings which are not of political complexion were good and
valid before and remained as such even after the occupied territory had come again into
the power of true and original sovereign.

Wherefore, the respondent judge is directed to take cognizance of the civil case (3012) and
continue the proceedings.

38
16. Lawyers League For A Better Philippines Vs. Aquino
(G.R. No. 73748 - May 22, 1986)

Facts:
On February 25, 1986, President Corazon Aquino issued Proclamation No. 1 announcing
that she and Vice President Laurel were taking power.2.On March 25, 1986, proclamation
No.3 was issued providing the basis of the Aquino government assumption of power by
stating that the "new government was installed through a direct exercise of the power of
the Filipino people assisted by units of the New Armed Forces of the Philippines."
ISSUE:
Whether or not the government of Corazon Aquino is legitimate.

HELD:
Yes. The legitimacy of the Aquino government is not a justiciable matter but belongs to the
realm of politics where only the people are the judge.
1.The people have accepted the Aquino government which is in effective control of the
entire country;
2. It is not merely a de facto government but in fact and law a de jure government; and
3. The community of nations has recognized the legitimacy of the new government

39
17. ZACARIAS VILLAVICENCIO, ET AL., vs. JUSTO LUKBAN, ET AL
March 25, 1919
Facts
Justo Lukban, who was then the Mayor of the City of Manila, ordered the deportation of
170 prostitutes to Davao. His reason for doing so was to preserve the morals of the people
of Manila. He claimed that the prostitutes were sent to Davao, purportedly, to work for an
haciendero Feliciano Ynigo. The prostitutes were confined in houses from October 16 to 18
of that year before being boarded, at the dead of night, in two boats bound for Davao. The
women were under the assumption that they were being transported to another police
station while Ynigo, the haciendero from Davao, had no idea that the women being sent to
work for him were actually prostitutes.
The families of the prostitutes came forward to file charges against Lukban, Anton
Hohmann, the Chief of Police, and Francisco Sales, the Governor of Davao. They prayed for
a writ of habeas corpus to be issued against the respondents to compel them to bring back
the 170 women who were deported to Mindanao against their will.
During the trial, it came out that, indeed, the women were deported without their consent.
In effect, Lukban forcibly assigned them a new domicile. Most of all, there was no law or
order authorizing Lukban's deportation of the 170 prostitutes.
Issue
Whether we are a government of laws or a government of men.
Held
We are clearly a government of laws. Lukban committed a grave abuse of discretion by
deporting the prostitutes to a new domicile against their will. There is no law expressly
authorizing his action. On the contrary, there is a law punishing public officials, not
expressly authorized by law or regulation, who compels any person to change his
residence.
Furthermore, the prostitutes are still, as citizens of the Philippines, entitled to the same
rights, as stipulated in the Bill of Rights, as every other citizen. Their choice of profession
should not be a cause for discrimination. It may make some, like Lukban, quite
uncomfortable but it does not authorize anyone to compel said prostitutes to isolate
themselves from the rest of the human race. These women have been deprived of their
liberty by being exiled to Davao without even being given the opportunity to collect their
belongings or, worse, without even consenting to being transported to Mindanao. For this,
Lukban et al must be severely punished.

40
41
SOVEREIGNTY
19. Laurel vs. Misa
FACTS:
The accused was charged with treason. During the Japanese occupation, the accused
adhered to the enemy by giving the latter aid and comfort. He claims that he cannot be
tried for treason since his allegiance to the Philippines was suspended at that time. Also,
he claims that he cannot be tried under a change of sovereignty over the country since his
acts were against the Commonwealth which was replaced already by the Republic.

HELD/RATIO:
The accused was found guilty. A citizen owes absolute and permanent allegiance to his
government or sovereign. No transfer of sovereignty was made; hence, it is presumed that
the Philippine government still had the power. Moreover, sovereignty cannot be
suspended; it is either subsisting or eliminated and replaced. Sovereignty per se wasnt
suspended; rather, it was the exercise of sovereignty that was suspended. Thus, there is no
suspended allegiance. Regarding the change of government, there is no such change since
the sovereign the Filipino people is still the same. What happened was a mere change
of name of government, from Commonwealth to the Republic of the Philippines.

DISSENT:
During the long period of Japanese occupation, all the political laws of the Philippines
were suspended. Thus, treason under the Revised Penal Code cannot be punishable where
the laws of the land are momentarily halted. Regarding the change of sovereignty, it is true
that the Philippines wasnt sovereign at the time of the Commonwealth since it was under
the United States. Hence, the acts of treason done cannot carry over to the new Republic
where the Philippines is now indeed sovereign.

42
20. PERALTA v. DIRECTOR OF PRISONS

75 PHIL 285

FACTS:
William Peralta was prosecuted for the crime of robbery and was sentenced to life
imprisonment as defined and penalized by Act No. 65 of the National Assembly of the
Republic of the Philippines. The petition for habeas corpus is based on the contention that
the Court of Special and Exclusive Criminal Jurisdiction created by Ordinance No. 7 was a
political instrumentality of the military forces of Japan and which is repugnant to the aims
of the Commonwealth of the Philippines for it does not afford fair trial and impairs the
constitutional rights of the accused.

ISSUE:
1. Is the creation of court by Ordinance No. 7 valid?
2. Is the sentence of life imprisonment valid?
3. By principle of postliminy, did the punitive sentence cease to be valid from the time of
the restoration of the Commonwealth?

HELD:
There is no room for doubt to the validity of Ordinance No. 7 since the criminal
jurisdiction established by the invader is drawn entirely from the law martial as defined in
the usages of nations. It is merely a governmental agency. The sentence rendered, likewise,
is good and valid since it was within the power and competence of the belligerent
occupant to promulgate Act No. 65. All judgments of political complexion of the courts
during Japanese regime ceased to be valid upon reoccupation of the Islands, as such, the
sentence which convicted the petitioner of a crime of a political complexion must be
considered as having ceased to be valid.

43
21. Ruffy vs Chief of Staff
G.R. No. L-533 75 Phil 875 August 20, 1956

FACTS:
Ramon Ruffy was the provincial commander stationed in Mindoro at the outbreak of war
on December 8, 1941. When the Japanese forces landed in Mindoro on February 27, 1942,
Mayor Ruffy retreated to the mountains and organized and led a guerrilla outfit known as
the Bolo Combat team of Bolo Area. The case at bar is a petition for prohibition praying
that respondents be commanded to desist from further proceedings in the trial of the
petitioners on the ground that petitioners were not subject to military law at the time of
offense.

ISSUE:
1. Are the petitioners subject to military law at the time of war and Japanese occupation?
2. Is 93d Article of War constitutional?

HELD:
Petitioners were subject to military jurisdiction as provided for in Article of War (2d). The
Bolo Area was a contingent of the 6th military district which had been recognized by the
United States army. The petitioners assailed the constitutionality of 93d Article of War on
the ground that it violates Article VIII Section 2 par. 4 of the Constitution which provides
that National Assembly may not deprive the Supreme Court of its original jurisdiction
over all criminal cases in which the penalty imposed is death or life imprisonment. The
petitioners are in error for courts martial are agencies of executive character and are not a
portion of the judiciary. The petition thus has no merits and is di

44
22. Reagan v CIR, 30 SCRA 968
Facts: A question novel in character, the answer to which has far-reaching implications, is
raised by petitioner William C. Reagan, at one time a civilian employee of an American
corporation providing technical assistance to the United States Air Force in the
Philippines. He would dispute the payment of the income tax assessed on him by
respondent Commissioner of Internal Revenue on an amount realized by him on a sale of
his automobile to a member of the United States Marine Corps, the transaction having
taken place at the Clark Field Air Base at Pampanga. It is his contention, seriously and
earnestly pressed, that in legal contemplation the sale was made outside Philippine
territory and therefore beyond our jurisdictional power to tax.

Issue: Whether or not the sale was made outside the Philippine territory and therefore
beyond our jurisdictional function to tax.

Held: The Court held that nothing is better settled than that the Philippines being
independent and sovereign, its authority may be exercised over its entire domain. There is
no portion there of that is beyond its power. Within its limits, its decrees are supreme, its
commands paramount. Its laws govern therein, and everyone to whom it applies must
submit to its terms. That is the extent of its jurisdiction, both territorial and personal.
Necessarily, likewise, it has to be exclusive. If it were not thus, there is a diminution of its
sovereignty.

It is to be admitted that any state may, by its consent, express or implied, submit to a
restriction of its sovereign rights. There may thus be a curtailment of what otherwise is a
power plenary in character. That is the concept of sovereignty as auto-limitation, which, in
the succinct language of Jellinek, "is the property of a state-force due to which it has the
exclusive capacity of legal self-determination and self-restriction." 7 A state then, if it
chooses to, may refrain from the exercise of what otherwise is illimitable competence.

Its laws may as to some persons found within its territory no longer control. Nor does the
matter end there. It is not precluded from allowing another power to participate in the
exercise of jurisdictional right over certain portions of its territory. If it does so, it by no
means follows that such areas become impressed with an alien character. They retain their
status as native soil. They are still subject to its authority. Its jurisdiction may be
diminished, but it does not disappear. So it is with the bases under lease to the American
armed forces by virtue of the military bases agreement of 1947. They are not and cannot
be foreign territory.
REAGAN VS COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE, 30 SCRA 968, 1969 December 27

45
46
23. Province of North Cotabato vs. Government of the Republic of the Philippines
Province of North Cotabato vs Government of the Republic of the Philippines
FACTS:
On August 5, 2008, the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the Moro
Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) were scheduled to sign a Memorandum of Agreement of
the Ancestral Domain Aspect of the GRP - MILF Tripoli Agreement on Peace of 2001 in
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Invoking the right to information on matters of public concern, the petitioners seek to
compel respondents to disclose and furnish them the complete and official copies of the
MA-AD and to prohibit the slated signing of the MOA-AD and the holding of public
consultation thereon. They also pray that the MOA-AD be declared unconstitutional. The
Court issued a TRO enjoining the GRP from signing the same.
Issues/Held
1. Whether the petitions have become moot and academic
NO In David v. Macapagal-Arroyo, the Court held that it will decide cases, otherwise
moot and academic, if it finds that (a) there is a grave violation of the Constitution;
(b) the situation is of exceptional character and paramount public interest is
involved; (c) the constitutional issue raised requires formulation of controlling
principles to guide the bench, the bar, and the public; and (d) the case is capable of
repetition yet evading review.

2. Whether the constitutionality and the legality of the MOA is ripe for adjudication

YES That the law or act in question is not yet effective does not negate ripeness. The
failure of the respondents to consult with the local government units or
communities affected constitutes a departure by the respondents from their
mandate under Executive Order No. 3. the respondents exceeded their authority by
guaranteeing amendments to the Constitution, it is deemed a matter for judicial
review.

3. Whether the respondent Government of the Republic of the Philippines committed


grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction

YES The failure to carry out pertinent consultation with the involved parties and the
secretive process used to design and craft the MOA-AD runs contrary to and in
excess of legal authority.
47
Whether there is a violation of the peoples right to information on matters of public
concern (Article III, Sec. 7) under a state policy of full disclosure of all its transactions
involving public interest (Article II, Sec. 28) including public consultation under RA 7160
(Local Government Code of 1991)

YES The contents of the MOA-AD is a matter of paramount concern, and therefore
when the pertinent consultation processes (elaborated below) were not observed,
there was a violation of the right to information.
Executive Order No. 3 established the petitioners right to be consulted on the peace
agenda, as a corollary to the constitutional right to information and disclosure.
Republic Act No. 7160 required all national offices to conduct consultations before
any project or program that is critical to the environment and human ecology
including those that may call for the eviction of a particular group of people residing
in such locality. This is pertinent to the MOA-AD since if implemented it would have
vested ownership of a large territory to only the Bangsamoro people, which could
have resulted to the displacement of many previous inhabitants of said territory.
Republic Act No. 8371 or the Indigenous Peoples Rights Act of 1997 provided clear-
cut procedures to recognize and delineate ancestral domain.

Whether the contents of the MOA-AD violate the Constitution


YES The MOA-AD is irreconcilable with the Constitution and laws, not only in its
specific provisions but also in the underlying concept animating these provisions,
namely the concept of association.
Association implies that the associative entity is a state, and also implies that it is in the
position to become independent. This violates the Constitution, especially in Article X
and Article II Sec. 22.
It is also inconsistent with prevailing statutory law, among which are RA No. 9054
(Organic Act of the ARMM) and the IPRA.
Though there is a suspensive clause in the MOA-AD stating that provisions in the MOA-
AD that are inconsistent with the current legal framework will not be effective until the
said framework is amended, it is still problematic.
While the President does not possess constituent powers, she may submit proposals for
constitutional change to Congress. She may also submit her recommendations to the
people for their independent consideration.
Therefore, the suspensive clause in the MOA-AD is not really suspensive it almost
guarantees amendments to the Constitution once the Comprehensive Compact is
signed.This again violates the Constitution, since it is inconsistent with the limits of the
Presidents authority to propose constitutional amendments.

48
The MOA-AD is declared contrary to law and unconstitutional.

STSTATE IMMUNITY FROM SUIT

1. Republic v. Villasor, 54 SCRA 83

G.R. No. L-30671 November 28, 1973

Facts:

On July 7, 1969, a decision was rendered in Special Proceedings No. 2156-R infavor
of respondents P.J. Kiener Co., Ltd., Gavino Unchuan, and International Construction
Corporation and against petitioner confirming the arbitration award in the amount of
P1,712,396.40. The award is for the satisfaction of a judgment against the Phlippine
Government. On June 24, 1969, respondent Honorable Guillermo Villasor issued an Order
declaring the decision final and executory. Villasor directed the Sheriffs of Rizal Province,
Quezon City as well as Manila to execute said decision. The Provincial Sheriff of Rizal
served Notices of Garnishment with several Banks, especially on Philippine Veterans Bank
and PNB. The funds of the Armed Forces of the Philippines on deposit with Philippine
Veterans Bank and PNB are public funds duly appropriated and allocated for the payment
of pensions of retirees, pay and allowances of military and civilian personnel and for
maintenance and operations of the AFP. Petitioner, on certiorari, filed prohibition
proceedings against respondent Judge Villasor for acting in excess of jurisdiction with
grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack of jurisdiction in granting the issuance of a
Writ of Execution against the properties of the AFP, hence the notices and garnishment are
null and void.
Issue:

Whether or not the Writ of Execution issued by Judge Villasor valid?

Decision:

No.

49
What was done by respondent Judge is not in conformity with the dictates of the
Constitution. It is a fundamental postulate of constitutionalism flowing from the juristic
concept of sovereignty that the stateas well as its government is immune from suit unless
it gives its consent. A sovereign is exempt from suit, not because of any forma conception
or obsolete theory, but on the logical and practical ground that there can be no legal right
as against the authority that makes the law on which the right depends. The State may not
be sued without its consent. A corollary, both dictated by logic and sound sense from a
basic concept is that public funds cannot be the object of a garnishment proceeding even if
the consent to be sued had been previously granted and the state liability adjudged. The
universal rule that where the State gives its consent to be sued by private parties either by
general or special law, it may limit claimants action only up to the completion of
proceedings anterior to the stage of execution and that the power of the Courts ends when
the judgment is rendered, since the government funds and properties may not be seized
under writs of execution or garnishment to satisfy such judgments, is based on obvious
considerations of public policy. Disbursements of public funds must be covered by the
corresponding appropriation as required by law. The functions and public services
rendered by the State cannot be allowed to be paralyzed or disrupted by the diversion of
public funds from their legitimate and specific objects, as appropriated by law.

2. Lasco vs. UNRFNRE

G.R. Nos. 109095-109107 February 23, 1995

FACTS:

50
Petitioners filed a complaint for illegal dismissal and damages after being dismissed
from their employment with the United Nations Revolving Fund for Natural Resources
Exploration (UNRFNRE) which was involved in a joint project of the Philippine
Government and the United Nations for exploration work in Dinagat Island. The UNRFNRE
filed a Motion to Dismiss and alleged that respondent Labor Arbiter had no jurisdiction
over its personality since the UNRFNRE enjoyed diplomatic immunity pursuant to the
1946 Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the United Nations. The respondent
attached a letter from the Department of Foreign Affairs acknowledging its immunity from
suit, prompting the Labor Arbiter to issue an order dismissing the complaints. Petitioners
filed a motion for reconsideration which was denied.
ISSUE:
Did the private respondent waive its diplomatic immunity when it engaged in
exploration work and entered into a contract of employment with the petitioners?
HELD:
No.
The Supreme Court dismissed the petition, stating that the presence of the private
respondent in the Philippines was not because of a commercial venture but because of a
joint project entered into by the Philippine Government and the United Nations for
mineral exploration in Dinagat Island. The mission of the UNRFNRE was not to exploit our
natural resources and gain monetarily but to help improve the quality of life of the people
which included that of the petitioners.

However, this is not to say that petitioner have no recourse. Section 31 of the
Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the Specialized Agencies of the United
Nations states that "each specialized agency shall make a provision for appropriate modes
of settlement of: (a) disputes arising out of contracts or other disputes of private character
to which the specialized agency is a party."

51
3. SEAFDEC v. NLRC, 241 SCRA 580

FACTS: SEAFDEC-AQD is a department of an international organization, the Southeast


Asian Fisheries Development Center, organized through an agreement in 1967 by the
governments of Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines
with Japan as the sponsoring country.

Juvenal Lazaga was employed as a Research Associate on a probationary basis by


SEAFDEC-AQD. Lacanilao in his capacity as Chief of SEAFDEC-AQD sent a notice of
termination to Lazaga informing him that due to the financial constraints being
experienced by the department, his services shall be terminated. SEAFDEC-AQD's failure
to pay Lazaga his separation pay forced him to file a case with the NLRC. The Labor
Arbiter and NLRC ruled in favor of Lazaga. Thus SEAFDEC-AQD appealed, claiming that the
NLRC has no jurisdiction over the case since it is immune from suit owing to its
international character and the complaint is in effect a suit against the State which cannot
be maintained without its consent.

ISSUES:

1. Does the NLRC have jurisdiction over SEAFDEC-AQD?

52
2. Is SEAFDEC-AQD estopped for its failure to raise the issue of jurisdiction at the first
instance?

HELD:

1. SEAFDEC-AQD is an international agency beyond the jurisdiction of public respondent


NLRC. Being an intergovernmental organization, SEAFDEC including its Departments
(AQD), enjoys functional independence and freedom from control of the state in whose
territory its office is located.

Permanent international commissions and administrative bodies have been created by the
agreement of a considerable number of States for a variety of international purposes,
economic or social and mainly non-political. In so far as they are autonomous and beyond
the control of any one State, they have a distinct juridical personality independent of the
municipal law of the State where they are situated. As such, according to one leading
authority "they must be deemed to possess a species of international personality of their
own."

One of the basic immunities of an international organization is immunity from local


jurisdiction, i.e., that it is immune from the legal writs and processes issued by the
tribunals of the country where it is found. The obvious reason for this is that the
subjection of such an organization to the authority of the local courts would afford a
convenient medium thru which the host government may interfere in their operations or
even influence or control its policies and decisions of the organization; besides, such
subjection to local jurisdiction would impair the capacity of such body to discharge its
responsibilities impartially on behalf of its member-states.

2. Respondent Lazaga's invocation of estoppel with respect to the issue of jurisdiction is


unavailing because estoppel does not apply to confer jurisdiction to a tribunal that has
none over a cause of action. Jurisdiction is conferred by law. Where there is none, no
agreement of the parties can provide one. Settled is the rule that the decision of a tribunal
not vested with appropriate jurisdiction is null and void.

53
4. ERNESTO CALLADO vs. INTERNATIONAL RICE RESEARCH INSTITUTE (IRRI)

G.R. No. 106483 May 22, 1995

Facts:

Ernesto Callado, petitioner, was employed as a driver at the IRRI. One day while
driving an IRRI vehicle on an official trip to the NAIA and back to the IRRI, petitioner
figured in an accident.

Petitioner was informed of the findings of a preliminary investigation conducted by


the IRRI's Human Resource Development Department Manager. In view of the findings, he
was charged with: (1) Driving an institute vehicle while on official duty under the
influence of liquor; (2) Serious misconduct consisting of failure to report to supervisors
the failure of the vehicle to start because of a problem with the car battery, and (3) Gross
and habitual neglect of duties.

Petitioner submitted his answer and defenses to the charges against


him. However, IRRI issued a Notice of Termination to petitioner. Thereafter, he filed a
complaint before the Labor Arbiter for illegal dismissal, illegal suspension and indemnity
pay with moral and exemplary damages and attorney's fees.

IRRI wrote the Labor Arbiter to inform him that the Institute enjoys immunity from legal
process by virtue of Article 3 of Presidential Decree No. 1620, 5 and that it invokes such
diplomatic immunity and privileges as an international organization in the instant case
filed by petitioner, not having waived the same. While admitting IRRI's defense of
immunity, the Labor Arbiter, nonetheless, cited an Order issued by the Institute to the
effect that "in all cases of termination, respondent IRRI waives its immunity," and,
accordingly, considered the defense of immunity no longer a legal obstacle in resolving the
case. The NLRC found merit in private respondent's appeal and, finding that IRRI did not
54
waive its immunity, ordered the aforesaid decision of the Labor Arbiter set aside and the
complaint dismissed.

In this petition petitioner contends that the immunity of the IRRI as an international
organization granted by Article 3 of Presidential Decree No. 1620 may not be invoked in
the case at bench inasmuch as it waived the same by virtue of its Memorandum on
"Guidelines on the handling of dismissed employees in relation to P.D. 1620."

Issue: whether or not (IRRI) waive its immunity from suit in this dispute which arose from
an employer-employee relationship?

Held: No.

P.D. No. 1620, Article 3 provides: Art. 3. Immunity from Legal Process. The Institute shall
enjoy immunity from any penal, civil and administrative proceedings, except insofar as that
immunity has been expressly waived by the Director-General of the Institute or his
authorized representatives.

The SC upholds the constitutionality of the aforequoted law. There is in this case "a
categorical recognition by the Executive Branch of the Government that IRRI enjoys
immunities accorded to international organizations, which determination has been held to
be a political question conclusive upon the Courts in order not to embarass a political
department of Government.

It is a recognized principle of international law and under our system of separation


of powers that diplomatic immunity is essentially a political question and courts should
refuse to look beyond a determination by the executive branch of the government, and
where the plea of diplomatic immunity is recognized and affirmed by the executive branch
of the government as in the case at bar, it is then the duty of the courts to accept the claim
of immunity upon appropriate suggestion by the principal law officer of the government
or other officer acting under his direction.

The raison d'etre for these immunities is the assurance of unimpeded performance
of their functions by the agencies concerned. The grant of immunity to IRRI is clear and
unequivocal and an express waiver by its Director-General is the only way by which it may
relinquish or abandon this immunity. In cases involving dismissed employees, the Institute
may waive its immunity, signifying that such waiver is discretionary on its part.

55
5. Begosa v. PVA

G.R. No. L-25916. April 30, 1970

Facts:

Plaintiff sought the aid of the judiciary to obtain the benefits to which he believed he
was entitled under the Veterans Bill of Rights. He filed his
claim for disability pension on March 4, 1955 but was erroneously disapproved on June
21, 1955 due to his dishonorable discharge from the army.

The Board of Administrators of PVA finally approved his claim on September 2, 1964,
entitling him with a pension of P30 a month, to take effect on October 5 of that year.
Believing that his pension should have taken effect back in 1955 when his claim was
disapproved, and that he is entitled to a higher pension of P50 (RA No. 1362 amending
Section 9 of RA No. 65) as a permanently incapacitated person, which was increased
toP100 a month when RP 1362 was amended by RA No. 1920 on June 22, 1957,
Begosa filed a case against PVA in the Court of First Instance.

CFI ruled in favor plaintiff. Defendants claim that the plaintiff has not
exhausted all administrative remedies before resorting to court action and that the
plaintiffs claim is in reality a suit against
t h e G ove r n m e n t wh i c h cannot be entertained by the Court for lack of jurisdiction
because the Government has not given its consent.

Issue:

WON the SC can entertain the suit against PVA.

Held:

56
Yes.

Where a litigation may have adverse consequences on the public treasury, whether
in the disbursements of funds or loss of property, the public official proceeded against not
being liable in his personal capacity, then the doctrine of non-suitability may
appropriately be invoked.

However, it has no application where the suit against such a functionary had to b e
i n s t i t u te d b e c a u s e o f h i s fa i l u re to c o m p ly w i t h t h e d u t y i m p o s e d by
statute appropriating public funds for the benefit of plaintiff. Also, where there is a
stipulation of facts, the question before the lower court being s o l e ly o n e o f l aw a n d
o n t h e fa c e o f t h e d ec i s i o n , t h e a c t u a t i o n o f a p p e l l a n t s b e i n g patently
illegal, the doctrine of exhaustion of administrative remedies certainly does not come into
play.

6. Del Mar v. PVA

G.R. L-27299 June 27, 1973

Facts:

Del Mar, the petitioner, was was relieved with honorable discharge with permanent
total physical disability. Philippine Veterans administration granted him pension but was
soon discontinued because he received the same pension under the United States Veterans
Administration.

Issue:
57
The PVA decided that:

(1) Petitioner is barred from receiving any pension from the Philippine Veterans
Administration.

The PVA reiterated its contention that del Mars receipt of a similar pension from the United
States Government effectively barred him from claiming and receiving from the Philippine
Government the monthly life pension granted him as well as the monthly allowances he
claimed for his five living unmarried minor children below eighteen years of age.

(2) The filing of the case is premature.

the action of del Mar was premature because of his failure to exhaust administrative
remedies before invoking judicial intervention

(3) The case is a suit against the state.

the court a quo was without jurisdiction to try the case as del Mar demand partakes of a
money claim against the PVA a mere agency of the Philippine Government and, in
effect, of a suit against the Government which is not suitable without its consent.

(4) It was discretionary on the part of PVA to discontinue pension.

Held: (1) When a case is a suit against the state:

As a general proposition, the rule well-settled in this jurisdiction on the immunity of


the Government from suit without its consent holds true in all actions resulting in adverse
consequences on the public treasury, whether in the disbursements of funds or loss of
property.

(2) Suits against the state must be dismissed

(3) When a case is not a suit against the state:

where a claimant institutes an action against a functionary who fails to comply with his
statutory duty to release the amount claimed from the public funds already appropriated by
statute for the benefit of the said claimant.

(4) The case is not premature. Administrative liability is not required.

58
Suffice it to state that where a case as in the present controversy involves a question
solely of a legal nature, there arises no need for the litigant to resort to all administrative
remedies available to him before seeking judicial relief.

(5) The act committed by the PVA, in suspending a provision of law, is against the
constitution.

the Constitution limits the authority of the President, in whom all executive power
resides, to take care that the laws be faithfully executed. No lesser administrative executive
office or agency then can, contrary to the express language of the Constitution, assert for
itself a more extensive prerogative. Necessarily, it is bound to observe the constitutional
mandate. There must be strict compliance with the legislative enactment. Its terms must
be followed. The statute requires adherence to, not departure from, its provisions. No
deviation is allowable.

7. Veterans Manpower v. CA

G.R. No. 91359, September 25, 1992

FACTS:
Veterans Manpower and Protective Services, Inc. (VMPSI) alleges that the provisions
under Section 4 and 17 of Republic Act No. 5487 or the Private Security Agency Law
violate the 1987 Constitution against monopolies, unfair competition and combinations in
restraint of trade, and tend to favor and institutionalize the Philippine Association of
Detective and Protective Agency Operators, Inc. (PADPAO) which is monopolistic because
it has an interest in more than one security agency.

Respondent VMPSI likewise questions the validity of paragraph 3, subparagraph (g)


of the Modifying Regulations on the Issuance of License to Operate and Private Security
Licenses and Specifying Regulations for the Operation of PADPAO issued by then PC Chief
Lt. Gen. Fidel V. Ramos, through Col. Sabas V. Edades, requiring that all private security
agencies/company security forces must register as members of any PADPAO Chapter
organized within the Region where their main offices are located.... As
such membership requirement in PADPAO is compulsory in nature, it allegedly violates
legal and constitutional provisions against monopolies, unfair competition and
combinations in restraint of trade.

59
A Memorandum of Agreement was executed by PADPAO and the PC Chief, which
fixed the minimum monthly contract rate per guard for eight (8) hours of security service
per day at P2,255.00 within Metro Manila and P2,215.00 outside of Metro Manila.

Odin Security Agency (Odin) filed a complaint with PADPAO accusing VMPSI of cut-
throat competition by undercutting its contract rate for security services rendered to the
Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS), charging said customer lower
than the standard minimum rates provided in the Memorandum of Agreement dated May
12, 1986.

PADPAO found VMPSI guilty of cut-throat competition, hence, the PADPAO


Committee on Discipline recommended the expulsion of VMPSI from PADPAO and
the cancellation of its license to operate a security agency. The PC-SUSIA affirmed the
findings and likewise recommended the cancellation of VMPSIs license. As a result,
PADPAO refused to issue a clearance/certificate of membership to VMPSI.

VMPSI made a request letter to the PC Chief to set aside or disregard the findings of
PADPAO and consider VMPSIs application for renewal of its license, even without a
certificate of membership from PADPAO.

ISSUE:
Whether or not VMPSIs complaint against the PC Chief and PC-SUSIA is a suit
against the State without its consent.

HELD:

Yes.

A public official may sometimes be held liable in his personal or private capacity if
he acts in bad faith, or beyond the scope of his authority or jurisdiction, however, since the
acts for which the PC Chief and PC-SUSIA are being called to account in this case, were
performed as part of their official duties, without malice, gross negligence, or bad faith, no
recovery may be had against them in their private capacities. Furthermore, the Supreme
Court agrees with the Court of Appeals that the Memorandum of Agreement dated May 12,
60
1986 does not constitute an implied consent by the State to be sued. The consent of the
State to be sued must emanate from statutory authority, hence, a legislative act, not from a
mere memorandum. Without such consent, the trial court did not acquired jurisdiction
over the public respondents. Petition for review is denied and the judgment appealed from
is affirmed in toto.

8. PNB v. CIR
81 SCRA 314

Facts:
Petitioners motion to quash a notice of garnishment was denied for lack of merit. What
was sought to be garnished was the money of the People's Homesite and Housing
Corporation deposited at petitioner's branch in Quezon City, to satisfy a decision of
respondent Court which had become final and executory. A writ of execution in favor of
private respondent Gabriel V. Manansala had previously been issued. He was the
counsel of the prevailing party, the United Homesite Employees and Laborers Association.
The validity of the order assailed is challenged on two grounds: (1) that the appointment
of respondent Gilbert P. Lorenzo as authorized deputy sheriff to serve the writ of execution
was contrary to law and (2) that the funds subject of the garnishment "may be public
in character. "The order of August 26, 1970 of respondent Court denying the motion
to quash, subject of this certiorari proceeding, reads as follows: "The Philippine National
Bank moves to quash the notice of garnishment served upon its branch in Quezon City by
61
the authorized deputy sheriff of this Court. It contends that the service of the notice by the
authorized deputy sheriff of the court contravenes Section11 of Commonwealth Act
No. 105, as amended which reads:" 'All writs and processes issued by the Court shall
be served and executed free of charge by provincial or city sheriffs, or by any person
authorized by this Court, in the same manner as writs and processes of Courts of First
Instance.' Following the law, the Bank argues that it is the Sheriff of Quezon City, and not
the Clerk of this Court who is its Ex-Officio Sheriff, that has the authority to serve the
notice of garnishment, and that the actual service by the latter officer of said notice is
therefore not in order. The Court finds no merit in this argument. Republic Act No. 4201
has, since June 19, 1965, already repealed Commonwealth Act No. 103, and under this law,
it is now the Clerk of this Court that is at the same time the Ex-Officio Sheriff. As such Ex-
Officio Sheriff, the Clerk of this Court has therefore the authority to issue writs of
execution and notices of garnishment in an area encompassing the whole of the country,
including Quezon City, since his area of authority is coterminous with that of the Court
itself, which is national in nature. ... At this stage, the Court notes from the record that the
appeal to the Supreme Court by individual employees of PHHC which questions the award
of attorney's fees to Atty. Gabriel V. Manansala, has already been dismissed and that the
same became final and executory on August 9, 1970. There is no longer any reason,
therefore, for withholding action in this case. [Wherefore], the motion to quash filed by the
Philippine National Bank is denied for lack of merit. The said Bank is therefore ordered to
comply within five days from receipt with the 'notice of Garnishment' dated May 6, 1970."

There was a motion for reconsideration filed by petitioner, but in a resolution dated
September 22, 1970, it was denied. Hence, this certiorari petition.

Issue:
WON the funds mentioned may be garnished

Held:
No.
The SC decided in the case of National Shipyard and Steel Corporation v. court of Industrial Relations
explicitly stated in the opinion of the then Justice, later Chief Justice, Concepcion: "The
allegation to the effect that the funds of the NASSCO are public funds of the government,

62
and that, as such, the same may not be garnished, attached or levied upon, is untenable for,
as a government owned and controlled corporation. The NASSCO has a personality of its
own, distinct and separate from that of the Government. It has pursuant to Section 2 of
Executive Order No. 356, dated October 23, 1950 ..., pursuant to which the NASSCO has
been established 'all the powers of a corporation under the Corporation Law ...'
Accordingly, it may sue and be sued and may be subjected to court processes just like any
other corporation (Section 13, Act No. 1459), as amended.
"In a 1941 decision,Manila Hotel Employees Association v. Manila Hotel Company the
SC also, held: "On the other hand, it is well settled that when the government enters into
commercial business, it abandons its sovereign capacity and is to be treated like any other
corporation. By engaging in a particular rbusiness thru the instrumentality of a
corporation, the government divests itself pro hac vice of its sovereign character, so as
to render the corporation subject to the rules of law governing private corporations. "Both
the Palacio and the Commissioner of Public Highways decisions, insofar as they reiterate
the doctrine that one of the coronaries of the fundamental concept of non-suability is that
governmental funds are immune from garnishment. It is an entirely different matter if,
according to Justice Sanchez in Ramos v. Court of Industrial Relations, the office or entity is
"possessed of a separate and distinct corporate existence." Then it can sue and be sued.
Thereafter, its funds may be levied upon or garnished.

9. SSS v. CA 120 SCRA 707

FACTS:

Spouses David and Socorro Cruz, applied and granted a real estate loan by the SSS
with residential lot located at Pateros, Rizal as collateral. The spouses Cruz complied with
their monthly payments. When delayed were incurred in their monthly payments SSS filed
a petition for foreclosure of their real estate mortgage executed by the spouses Cruz on the
ground that the spouses Cruz defaulted in payment, Pursuant for these application for
foreclosure notices were published on the second notice the counsel for spouses Cruz sent
a letter to SSS informing the latter that his clients are up to date in their payment of the
63
monthly amortization and the SSS should discontinued the publication of the notices of
foreclosure. This request remain unheaded, this spouses Cruz filed an action for damages
against SSS before RTC in Rizal. SSS invoking its immunity from suit being an agency of the
government performing government function. The trial court and court of appeal
nevertheless awarded damages in favor of spouses Cruz which was affirmed by court of
appeal, Hence this petition.

ISSUE: Whether or not SSS is immune from suit.

HELD:

No.

The SSS has a distinct legal personality and it can be sued for damages. The SSS does
not enjoy immunity from suit by express statutory consent. It has corporate power
separate and distinct from the government. SSS own organic act specifically provides that
it can sue and be sued in court. These words sue and be sued embrace all civil process
incident to a legal action. So that even assuming that the SSS, as it claims, enjoys immunity
from suit as an entity performing governmental function, by virtue of the explicit provision
of the aforecited enabling law, the government must be deemed to have waived immunity
in respect of the SSS, although it does not thereby concede its liability that statutory law
has given to the private citizen a remedy for the enforcement and protection of his rights.
The SSS thereby has been required to submit to the jurisdiction of the court; subject to its
right to interpose any lawful defense.

64
65
10. Rayo v. CFI of Bulacan

G.R. No. L-55273-83 December 19, 1981

FACTS:
At the height of the infamous typhoon "Kading", the respondent opened
simultaneously all the three floodgates of the Angat Dam which resulted in a sudden,
precipitate and simultaneous opening of said floodgates several towns in Bulacan were
inundated. The petitioners filed for damages against the respondent corporation.

Petitioners opposed the prayer of the respondents forn dismissal of the case and
contended that the respondent corporation is merely performing a propriety functions
and that under its own organic act, it can sue and be sued in court.

ISSUE:
W/N the respondent performs governmental functions with respect to the
management and operation of the Angat Dam.

W/N the power of the respondent to sue and be sued under its organic charter includes
the power to be sued for tort.

HELD:
The government has organized a private corporation, put money in it and has
allowed it to sue and be sued in any court under its charter.

As a government owned and controlled corporation, it has a personality of its own, distinct
and separate from that of the government. Moreover, the charter provision that it can sue
and be sued in any court.

66
67
11. and 26. Malong v. PNR

Facts:
The Petitioners, Malong spouses alleged in their complaint that on October 30, 1977 their
son, Jaime Aquino, a paying passenger, was killed when he fell from a PNR train while it
was between Tarlac City and Capas. The said train was overloaded with passengers and
baggage in view of the proximity of All Saints Day. The Malong spouses prayed that the
PNR be ordered to pay them damages totalling P136,370.
The trial court dismissed the complaint, ruling that it had no jurisdiction because the PNR,
being a government instrumentality, the action was a suit against the State. The petitioners
appealed to SC pursuant to RA No. 5440.

Issue:
W/N the PNR is immune from suit?

Held:
NO.
68
Although the PNR is a government instrumentality under Republic Act No. 4156, as
amended by Republic Act No. 6366 and Presidential Decree No. 741, it was held that the
State divested itself of its sovereign capacity when it organized the PNR which is no
different from its predecessor, the Manila Railroad Company. The PNR did not become
immune from suit. It did not remove itself from the operation of articles 1732 to 1766 of
the Civil Code on common carriers.
However, as held in precedents, the correct rule is that "not all government entities,
whether corporate or non-corporate, are immune from suits. Immunity from suit is
determined by the character of the objectives for which the entity was organized.
The Manila Hotel case also relied on the following rulings: By engaging in a
particular business through the instrumentality of a corporation, the government divests
itself pro hac vice of its sovereign character, so as to render the corporation subject to the
rules of law governing private corporations.

Furthermore, it would be unjust if the heirs of the victim of an alleged negligence of


the PNR employees could not sue the PNR for damages. Like any private common carrier,
the PNR is subject to the obligations of persons engaged in that private enterprise. It is not
performing any governmental function.

69
12. Jesus P. Disini v. The Hon. Sandiganbayan, et. al.,
G.R. No. 180564; June 22, 2010

Facts:

On 16 February 1989, the Republic of the Philippines (Republic) and Jesus P. Disini
(Disini) entered into an Immunity Agreement (the Immunity Agreement) under which
Disini undertook to testify for the Republic and provide its lawyers with the information,
affidavits, and documents they needed in its case against Westinghouse Electric
Corporation before the United States District Court of New Jersey and in the arbitration
case that Westinghouse International Projects Company and others filed against the
Republic before the International Chamber of Commerce Court of Arbitration. Disini
worked for his second cousin, Herminio T. Disini (Herminio), as an executive in the latters
companies from 1971 to 1984. The Republic believed that the Westinghouse contract for
the construction of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, brokered by one of Herminios
companies, had been attended by anomalies.

In the Immunity Agreement, the Republic guaranteed that, apart from the two
Westinghouse cases, it would not compel Disini to testify in any other domestic or foreign
proceeding brought by the Republic against Herminio.

Disini complied with his undertaking but 18 years later, upon the Republics
application, the Sandiganbayan issued a subpoena against Disini, commanding him to
testify and produce documents before that court in an action that the Republic filed
against Herminio. Disini moved to quash the subpoena, invoking the Immunity Agreement.
The Sandiganbayan ignored the motion and issued a new subpoena directing him to testify
before it.

Subsequently, the PCGG revoked and nullified the Immunity Agreement insofar as it
prohibited the Republic from requiring Disini to testify against Herminio. Later on, the
Sandiganbayan denied Disinis motion to quash the subpoena. Disini, thus, brought the
matter to the Supreme Court.

70
The Republic maintained that the PCGGs power to grant immunity under Section 5
of Executive Order 14 covered only immunity from civil or criminal prosecution and did
not cover immunity from providing evidence in court. The Republic argued that Disinis
immunity from testifying against Herminio contravened the states policy to recover ill-
gotten wealth acquired under the regime of former President Marcos.

The Republic further argued that under the last sentence of paragraph 3 of the
Immunity Agreement which reads: Nothing herein shall affect Jesus P. Disinis obligation
to provide truthful information or testimony, Disini, despite the immunity given him
against being compelled to testify in other cases, was to provide truthful information or
testimony in such other cases.

For his part, Disini argued that the Republic, through the PCGG, was estopped from
revoking the questioned immunity as it had made him believe that it had the authority to
provide such guarantee. The Republic countered by invoking Section 15, Article XI of the
1987 Constitution which provides that (t)he right of the State to recover properties
unlawfully acquired by public officials or employees from them or from their nominees, or
transferees, shall not be barred by prescription, laches or estoppel.

Issues: (as defined by the Supreme Court):

(1) Whether or not the PCGG acted within its authority when it revoked and nullified the
Immunity Agreement; and

(2) Whether or not the Sandiganbayan gravely abused its discretion when it denied
Disinis motion to quash the subpoena.

Held:

The language of Section 5, Executive Order 14 affords latitude to the PCGG in


determining the extent of the criminal immunity it may grant. It has discretion to grant
appropriate levels of criminal immunity depending on the situation of the witness and his
relative importance to the prosecution of ill-gotten wealth cases. It can even agree, as in
this case, to conditions expressed by the witness as sufficient to induce cooperation.
Trusting in the Governments honesty and fidelity, Disini agreed and fulfilled his part of the
bargain. Surely, the principle of fair play, which is the essence of due process, should hold
the Republic on to its promise. If Disini refuses to testify in those other cases as ordered by
Sandiganbayan, it was certain to result in prosecution for criminal contempt (a conduct
directed against the authority and dignity of the court or a judge acting judicially; an act
71
obstructing the administration of justice which tends to bring the court into disrepute or
disrespect), punishable by a fine or imprisonment or both. In criminal contempt, the
proceedings are regarded as criminal and the rules of criminal procedure apply. The grant,
therefore, of immunity to Disini against being compelled to testify was ultimately a grant
of immunity from criminal prosecution, something that fell within the express coverage of
the immunity given him. The questioned immunity did not contravene the states public
policy respecting the recovery of illegally acquired wealth under the regime of former
President Marcos. The authority that adopted such policy, former President Corazon C.
Aquino, was the same authority that gave the PCGG the power to grant immunity to
witnesses whom it might use to recover illegally acquired wealth during that regime. In
the case of Tanchanco vs. Sandiganbayan, the Court regarded as valid and binding on the
government the immunity it gave former National Food Authority Administrator, Jesus
Tanchanco, for all culpable acts of his during his service in the Marcos government,
which would include possible prosecution for any illegal wealth that he might himself have
acquired during that service. The Court did not regard such immunity in contravention of
the state policy on recovery of ill-gotten wealth under the auspices of the Marcos regime.
The last sentence in paragraph 3 of the Immunity Agreement that enjoined Disini to
provide truthful information or testimony, despite the guarantee not to be compelled to
testify against Herminio, merely emphasized the fact that such concessions did not affect
his obligation to provide truthful information or testimony in the two Westinghouse
cases. The grant of immunity to Disini against being compelled to testify in other cases
against Herminio was quite clear and did not need any interpretation. The estoppel Disini
invoked did not have the effect, if recognized, of denying the state its right to recover
whatever ill-gotten wealth Herminio may have acquired under the Marcos regime. The
action against Herminio could continue, hampered only by the exclusion of Disinis
testimony. And there are other ways of proving the existence of ill-gotten wealth. Although
the government cannot be barred by estoppel based on unauthorized acts of public
officers, such principle cannot apply to this case since PCGG acted within its authority
when it provided Disini with a guarantee against having to testify in other cases. A
contract is the law between the parties; it cannot be withdrawn except by their mutual
consent. This applies with more reason in this case where Disini already complied with the
terms of the Immunity Agreement. To allow the Republic to revoke the Immunity
Agreement at this late stage would run afoul of the rule that a party to a compromise
cannot ask for a rescission after it had enjoyed its benefits. The Court should not allow the
Republic, to put it bluntly, to double cross Disini. The Immunity Agreement was the result
of a long drawn out process of negotiations with each party trying to get the best
concessions out of it. The Republic did not have to enter into that agreement; it was free
not to. But when it did, it needed to fulfill its obligations honorably as Disini did. More than
72
any one, the government should be fair. PCGGs revocation of the questioned immunity and
Sandiganbayans denial of Disinis motion to quash the subpoena were both annulled.

13. and 22. Department of Agriculture vs. NLRC


G.R. No. 104269, November 11, 1993

Facts:

Petitioner Department of Agriculture (DA) and Sultan Security Agency entered into a
contract for security services to be provided by the latter to the said governmental entity.
Pursuant to their arrangements,guards were deployed by Sultan Security Agency in the
various premises of the DA. Thereafter, several guards filed a complaint for underpayment
of wages, nonpayment of 13th month pay, uniform allowances, night shift differential pay,
holiday pay, and overtime pay, as well as for damages against the DA and the security
agency.
73
The Labor Arbiter rendered a decision finding the DA jointly and severally liable
with the security agency for the payment of money claims of the complainant
security guards. The DA and the security agency did not appeal the decision. Thus, the
decision became final and executory. The Labor Arbiter issued a writ of execution to
enforce and execute the judgment against the property of the DA and the security agency.
Thereafter, the City Sheriff levied on execution the motor vehicles of the DA.

Issue:

Whether or not the doctrine of non-suability of the State applies in the case

Held:

The basic postulate enshrined in the Constitution that the State may not be sued
without its consent reflects nothing less than a recognition of the sovereign character of
the State and an express affirmation of the unwritten rule effectively insulating it from the
jurisdiction of courts. It is based on the very essence of sovereignty. A sovereign is exempt
from suit based on the logical and practical ground that there can be no legal right as
against the authority that makes the law on which the right depends.

The rule is not really absolute for it does not say that the State may not be sued under any
circumstances. The State may at times be sued. The States consent may be given expressly
or impliedly. Express consent may be made through a general law or a special law. Implied
consent, on the other hand, is conceded when the State itself commences litigation, thus
opening itself to a counterclaim, or when it enters into a contract. In this situation, the
government is deemed to have descended to the level of the other contracting party and to
have divested itself of its sovereign immunity.

But not all contracts entered into by the government operate as a waiver of its non-
suability; distinction must still be made between one which is executed in the exercise of
its sovereign function and another which is done in its proprietary capacity. A State may be
said to have descended to the level of an individual and can this be deemed to have
actually given its consent to be sued only when it enters into business contracts. It does

74
not apply where the contract relates to the exercise of its sovereign functions.

In the case, the DA has not pretended to have assumed a capacity apart from its
being a governmental entity when it entered into the questioned contract; nor that it could
have, in fact, performed any act proprietary in character.

But, be that as it may, the claims of the complainant security guards clearly
constitute money claims. Act No. 3083 gives the consent of the State to be sued upon any
moneyed claim involving liability arising from contract, express or implied. Pursuant,
however, to Commonwealth Act 327, as amended by PD 1145, the money claim must first
be brought to the Commission on Audit.

14. Veterans Manpower and Protective Services, Inc. v. CA


G.R. No. 91359, September 25, 1992

FACTS:

75
Veterans Manpower and Protective Services, Inc. (VMPSI) alleges that the provisions
under Section 4 and 17 of Republic Act No. 5487 or the Private Security Agency Law
violate the 1987 Constitution against monopolies, unfair competition and combinations in
restraint of trade, and tend to favor and institutionalize the Philippine Association of
Detective and Protective Agency Operators, Inc. (PADPAO) which is monopolistic because
it has an interest in more than one security agency.

Respondent VMPSI likewise questions the validity of paragraph 3, subparagraph (g)


of the Modifying Regulations on the Issuance of License to Operate and Private Security
Licenses and Specifying Regulations for the Operation of PADPAO issued by then PC Chief
Lt. Gen. Fidel V. Ramos, through Col. Sabas V. Edades, requiring that all private security
agencies/company security forces must register as members of any PADPAO Chapter
organized within the Region where their main offices are located.... As
such membership requirement in PADPAO is compulsory in nature, it allegedly violates
legal and constitutional provisions against monopolies, unfair competition and
combinations in restraint of trade.

A Memorandum of Agreement was executed by PADPAO and the PC Chief, which


fixed the minimum monthly contract rate per guard for eight (8) hours of security service
per day at P2,255.00 within Metro Manila and P2,215.00 outside of Metro Manila.

Odin Security Agency (Odin) filed a complaint with PADPAO accusing VMPSI of cut-
throat competition by undercutting its contract rate for security services rendered to the
Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS), charging said customer lower
than the standard minimum rates provided in the Memorandum of Agreement dated May
12, 1986.

PADPAO found VMPSI guilty of cut-throat competition, hence, the PADPAO


Committee on Discipline recommended the expulsion of VMPSI from PADPAO and
the cancellation of its license to operate a security agency. The PC-SUSIA affirmed the
findings and likewise recommended the cancellation of VMPSIs license. As a result,
PADPAO refused to issue a clearance/certificate of membership to VMPSI.

VMPSI made a request letter to the PC Chief to set aside or disregard the findings of
PADPAO and consider VMPSIs application for renewal of its license, even without a
certificate of membership from PADPAO.
76
ISSUE:
Whether or not VMPSIs complaint against the PC Chief and PC-SUSIA is a suit against the
State without its consent.

HELD:
Yes.
A public official may sometimes be held liable in his personal or private capacity if
he acts in bad faith, or beyond the scope of his authority or jurisdiction, however, since the
acts for which the PC Chief and PC-SUSIA are being called to account in this case, were
performed as part of their official duties, without malice, gross negligence, or bad faith, no
recovery may be had against them in their private capacities. Furthermore, the Supreme
Court agrees with the Court of Appeals that the Memorandum of Agreement dated May 12,
1986 does not constitute an implied consent by the State to be sued. The consent of the
State to be sued must emanate from statutory authority, hence, a legislative act, not from a
mere memorandum. Without such consent, the trial court did not acquired jurisdiction
over the public respondents. Petition for review is denied and the judgment appealed from
is affirmed in toto.

15. LARKINS VS. NLRC


16.
Facts:
On August 12, 1988, private respondents filed a complaint with the Regional
Arbitration Branch No. III of the NLRC, San Fernando, Pampanga, against
petitioner Larkins, a member of the United States Air Force (USAF) assigned to oversee
the dormitories of the Third Aircraft Generation Squadron (3 AGS) at Clark Air Base,
Pampanga., Lt. Col.Frankhauser, and Cunanan (the new contractor ) for illegal dismissal
and underpaymentof wages. Petitioner and Lt. Col. Frankhauser failed to answer the
77
complaint and to appear at the hearings. They, likewise, failed to submit their position
paper, which the Labor Arbiter deemed a waiver on their part to do so.On the basis of
private respondents' position paper and supporting documents, the Labor Arbiter
rendered a decision granting all the claims of private respondents. He found both Lt. Col.
Frankhauser and petitioner "guilty of illegal dismissal" and ordered them to reinstate
private respondents with full back wages, or if that is no longer possible, to pay private
respondents' separation pay.
Petitioner appealed to the NLRC claiming that the Labor Arbiter never acquired jurisdictio
n over her person because no summons or copies of the complaints, bothoriginal and
amended, were ever served on her. In her "Supplemental Memorandum to Memorandum
of Appeal," petitioner argued that the attempts to serve her with notices of hearing were
not in accordance with the provisions of the RP-US Military Bases Agreement of 1947.

Issue:
WON the questioned resolutions are null and void.

Held:

No, jurisdiction was never acquired by the Labor Arbiter over the case and the
person of petitioner and the judgment rendered is null and void.
Summons and other processes issued by Philippine courts and administrativeagencies for
United States
Armed Forces personnel within any U.S. base in the Philippines could be served therein
only with the permission of the Base Commander. If he withholds giving his permission, he
should instead designate another person to serve the process, and obtain the server's
affidavit for filing with the appropriate court. Respondent Labor Arbiter did not follow
said procedure. He instead, addressed the summons to Lt. Col. Frankhauser and not the
Base Commander. Respondents do not dispute petitioner's claim that no summons was
ever issued and served on her. They contend, however, that they sent notices of the
hearings to herNotices of hearing are not summonses. The provisions and prevailing
jurisprudence in Civil Procedure may be applied by analogy to NLRC proceedings (Revised
Rules of the NLRC, Rule I, Sec. 3). It is basic that the Labor Arbiter cannot acquire
jurisdiction over the person of the respondent without the latter being served with
summons. In the absence of service of summons or a valid waiver thereof, the hearings
78
and judgment rendered by the Labor Arbiter are null and void. Petitioner, in the case at
bench, appealed to the NLRC and participated in the oral argument before the said body.
This, however, does not constitute a waiver of the lackof summons and a voluntary
submission of her person to the jurisdiction of the Labor Arbiter. She may have raised in
her pleadings grounds other than lack of jurisdiction, but these grounds were discussed in
relation to and as a result of the issue of the lackof jurisdiction. In effect, petitioner set
forth only one issue and that is the absence
of jurisdiction over her person. If an appearance before the NLRC is precisely to questionth
e jurisdiction of the said agency over the person of the defendant, then thisappearance is
not equivalent to service of summons. Be that as it may, on the assumption that petitioner
validly waived service of summons on her, still the case could not prosper. There is no
allegation from the pleadings filed that Lt. Col. Frankhauser and petitioner were being
sued in their personal capacities for tortious acts. However, private respondents named
3 AGS as one of the respondents in their complaint. Private respondents were dismissed
from their employment by Lt. Col. Frankhauser acting for and in behalf of the U.S.
Government. The employer of private respondents was neither Lt. Col. Frankhauser nor
petitioner. The employer of private respondents, as found by NLRC, was the U.S.
Government which, by right of sovereign power, operated and maintained the dormitories
at Clark Air Base for members of the USAF. Indeed, assuming that jurisdiction was
acquired over the United States Government
andthe monetary claims of private respondents proved, such awards will have to besatisfie
d not by Lt. Col. Frankhauser and petitioner in their personal capacities, but by the United
States government.

16.Shauf v. CA

79
FACTS:

Petitioner, Loida Shauf, a Filipino by origin and married to an American who is a


member of the US Air Force, was rejected for a position of Guidance Counselor in the
Base Education Office at Clark Air Base. She boasts of related working experience and
being a qualified dependent locally available. By reason of her non-selection, she filed a
complaint for damages and an equal employment opportunity complaint against
private respondents, Don Detwiler (civillian personnel officer) and Anthony Persi
(Education Director), for alleged discrimination by reason of her sex (female), color
(brown) and national origin (Filipino by birth). Shauf was offered a temporary position
as a temporary Assistant Education Adviser for a 180-day period with the condition
that if a vacancy occurs, she will be automatically selected to fill the vacancy. But if no
vacancy occurs after 180 days, she will be released but will be selected to fill a future
vacancy if shes available. Shauf accepted the offer. During that time, Mrs. Mary
Abalateos was about to vacate her position. But Mrs. Abalateos appointment was
extended thus, Shauf was never appointed to said position. She claims that the
Abalateos stay was extended indefinitely to deny her the appointment as retaliation for
the complaint that she filed against Persi. Persi denies this allegation. He claims it was a
joint decision of the management & it was in accordance of with the applicable
regulation.
Shauf filed for damages and other relief in different venues such as the Civil Service
Commission, Appeals Review Board, Philippine Regional Trial Court, etc. RTC ruled in
favor of Shauf . Both parties appealed to the CA. Shauf prayed for the increase of the
damages to be collected from defendants. Defendants on the other hand, continued
using the defense that they are immune from suit for acts done/statements made by
them in performance of their official governmental functions pursuant to RP-US
Military Bases Agreement of 1947. They claim that the Philippines does not have
jurisdiction over the case because it was under the exclusive jurisdiction of a US District
Court. They likewise claim that petitioner failed to exhaust all administrative remedies
thus case should be dismissed. CA reversed RTC decision. According to the CA,
defendants are immune from suit. Shauf claims that the respondents are being sued in
their private capacity thus this is not a suit against the US government w/c would
require consent. Respondents still maintain their immunity from suit. They further
claim that the rule allowing suits against public officers & employees for criminal &
unauthorized acts is applicable only in the Philippines & is not part of international
law.

80
ISSUE: WON private respondents are immune from suit being officers of the US Armed
Forces

HELD:

No, the respondents cannot rely on the US blanket of diplomatic immunity for all its
acts or the acts of its agents in the Phils. Private respondents are personally liable in
indemnifying petitioner Shauf.

While the doctrine of immunity is also applicable to complaints filed against state
officials, it only contemplates acts done in their official capacity. This does not cover
acts contrary to law & injurious to the rights of the plaintiff. When an official acts in a
manner that invades or violates the personal & property rights of another, the
aggrieved party may sue the official & such suit will not be a suit against the state.
(Director of the Bureau of Telecommunications vs. Aligaen) The doctrine of immunity
from suit will not apply where the public official is being sued in his private & personal
capacity as an ordinary citizen.

The discrimination is very evident. Shauf was not considered for the position even if
she was previously employed as a Guidance Counselor at the Clark Airbase. She was not
granted an interview. The person appointed was not even qualified for that position
and that person kept the position despite orders from the US Civil Service Commission
for his removal. Extension of Abalateos services is another proof. She was not
appointed even if US officials found her highly qualified for the position (letters from
the Director of the US Civil Service Commission, Staff Judge Advocate of the Department
of Air Force). Shauf has proven that discrimination did occur whereas respondents
merely denied allegations.

The US Constitution assures everyone of equality in employment & work


opportunities regardless of sex, race, or creed. The Philippine Constitution has a similar
provision. Persi & Detwiler violated Shaufs constitutional right to earn a living, an
integral aspect of her right to life. Thus, they should be accountable. Though Shauf is
entitled to damages, she should not be paid for the supposedly unearned income had
she been hired as a Guidance Counselor. She never acquired rights over that amount
because she was never appointed. Shauf followed the proper procedure in seeking
relief for the defendants discriminatory acts. The Department of Air Force in
Washington told her that one of her appeal rights would be to file a civil action if a final
decision has not been rendered after 180 days from the dated of the initial appeal to the
81
Commission. The appeal was lodged on Sept. 30, 1978 and it has not been decided up to
the time SC has decided. Shauf is entitled to choose the remedy, not otherwise
prohibited, which will best advance & protect her interests.

17. Republic v. Hon. Edilberto Sandoval

Facts:
Farmer-rallyists marched to Malacanang calling for a genuine land reform program.
There was a marchers-police confrontation which resulted in the death of 12 rallyists and
scores were wounded. As a result, thenPres. Aquino issued AO 11 creating the
Citizens Mendiola Commission for the purpose of conducting an investigation. The most
significant recommendation of the Commission was for the heirs of the deceased and
wounded victims to be compensated by the government. Based on such recommendation,
the victims of Mendiola massacre filed an action for damages against the Republic and the
military/police officers involved in the incident.

Issues:
(1) Whether or not there is a valid waiver of immunity
(2) Whether or not the State is liable for damages

Held:
The Court held that there was no valid waiver of immunity as claimed by the petitioners.
The recommendation made by the Commission to indemnify the heirs of the deceased and
the victims does not in any way mean that liability attaches to the State. AO 11 merely
states the purpose of the creation of the Commission and, therefore, whatever is the
finding of the Commission only serves as the basis for a cause of action in the eventany
party decides to litigate the same. Thus, the recommendation of the Commission does not
in any way bind the State.

The State cannot be made liable because the military/police officers who allegedly
were responsible for the death and injuries suffered by the marchers acted beyond the
scope of their authority. It is a settled rule that the State as a person can commit no wrong.
The military and police officers who were responsible for the atrocities can be held

82
personally liable for damages as they exceeded their authority, hence, the acts cannot be
considered official.

18. COMMONWEALTH ACT NO. 327

COMMONWEALTH ACT NO. 327 - AN ACT FIXING THE TIME WITHIN WHICH THE
AUDITOR GENERAL SHALL RENDER HIS DECISIONS AND PRESCRIBING THE MANNER
OF APPEAL THEREFROM
83
Section 1. In all cases involving the settlement of accounts or claims, other than those of
accountable officers, the Auditor General shall act and decide the same within sixty days,
exclusive of Sundays and holidays, after their presentation. If said accounts or claims need
reference to other persons, office or offices, or to a party interested, the period aforesaid
shall be counted from the time the last comment necessary to a proper decision is
received by him. With respect to the accounts of accountable officers, the Auditor General
shall act on the same within one hundred days after their submission, Sundays and
holidays excepted.

In case of accounts or claims already submitted to but still pending decision by the
Auditor General on or before the approval of this Act, the periods provided in this section
shall commence from the date of such approval.

Section2. The party aggrieved by the final decision of the Auditor General in the
settlement of an account for claim may, within thirty days from receipt of the decision,
take an appeal in writing:

(a) To the President of the United States, pending the final and complete withdrawal of
her sovereignty over the Philippines, or

(b) To the President of the Philippines, or

(c) To the Supreme Court of the Philippines if the appellant is a private person or entity.

If there are more than one appellant, all appeals shall be taken to the same authority
resorted to by the first appellant.

From a decision adversely affecting the interests of the Government, the appeal may be
taken by the proper head of the department or in case of local governments by the head of
the office or branch of the Government immediately concerned.

The appeal shall specifically set forth the particular action of the Auditor General to which
exception is taken with the reasons and authorities relied on for reversing such decision.

Section3. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

84
Approved: June 18. 1938.

19. REPUBLIC ACT NO. 3083

REPUBLIC ACT NO. 3083 - AN ACT TO REGULATE THE FILING, PROCESSING AND
SETTLEMENT OF DAMAGE CLAIMS RESULTING FROM NUCLEAR INCIDENTS, TO
APPROPRIATE FUNDS THEREFOR, AND TO HOLD HARMLESS, INDEMNIFY, AND
DEFEND THE DESIGNER, MANUFACTURER, CONTRACTOR AND/OR SUPPLIER THAT
SHALL UNDERTAKE TO DESIGN, MANUFACTURE, FURNISH AND/OR SUPPLY THE
REACTOR FACILITY AND EQUIPMENT FOR THE PHILIPPINE NUCLEAR RESEARCH
REACTOR PROJECT AND OTHER SIMILAR PROJECTS FROM LIABILITY ARISING FROM
NUCLEAR INCIDENTS, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES

Section 1. In order to protect the inhabitants of the Philippines and to promote the
peaceful uses of atomic energy, in the interest of the general welfare of the Philippines, the
85
Government of the Republic of the Philippines shall indemnify and hold harmless and
defend at its expense the designer, manufacturer, contractor and/or supplier that shall
undertake to design, manufacture for, or otherwise furnish equipment or services to the
Philippine Government, its instrumentality or agency, for the reactor facility or other
equipment for the Philippine Nuclear Research Reactor Project, from any and all liability
for personal injury or property damage arising out of or resulting from a nuclear incident,
and the National Science Development Board is hereby empowered to provide by contract
with the designer, manufacturer, contractor and/or supplier of nuclear equipment, that
such designer, manufacturer, contractor and/or supplier shall be indemnified, held
harmless and defended at the expense of the Philippine Government from any and all
liability arising out of or resulting from a nuclear incident: Provided, however, That the
Government shall retain whatever rights it may otherwise have under existing laws against
said manufacturer, contractor, or supplier if the nuclear incident is the proximate result of
willful misconduct, or bad faith, on the part of any corporate officer, director, or responsible
officers of the designer, manufacturer, contractor and/or supplier, as the case may be:
Provided, further, That the total liability of the designer, manufacturer, contractor and/or
supplier shall not exceed the total value of the contract price: Provided, finally, That the
total liability of said designer, manufacturer, contractor and/or supplier shall be over and
above the liabilities, obligations and warranties assumed by it on the services, equipment,
and materials furnished under its contract with the National Science Development Board
for the furnishing of the equipment and services for the reactor facility or other equipment
of the Philippine Nuclear Research Reactor Project.

Responsible officers as used in this section shall be determined in the indemnity agreement
to be executed between the National Science Development Board and said designer,
manufacturer, contractor and/or supplier.

Sec. 2. For the purposes of this Act:

(a) The term "Nuclear Research Reactor Project" is meant the reactor project established
or to be established under the Agreement for Cooperation between the Government of the
Republic of the Philippines and the Government of the United States of America signed on
July 27, 1955, including its amendments.
(b) The term "liability" means any liability for personal injury or property damage
arising out of or resulting from a nuclear incident.
(c) The term "personal injury" means bodily injury, sickness, or disease, including death
resulting therefrom.

86
(d) The term "property damage" or "damage to property" means physical injury to or
destruction or radioactive contamination of property, or loss of use of property so injured,
destroyed or contaminated.
(e) The term "nuclear incident" means any occurrence causing personal injury or
property damage arising out of or resulting from the radioactive, toxic, explosive, or other
hazardous properties of radioactive material.

Sec. 3. In order to carry out the purpose of this Act and to adjudicate claims for
compensation for personal injury or property damage arising out of or resulting from a
nuclear incident, there is hereby created a Nuclear Indemnity Board to be composed of the
Vice-Chairman of the National Science Development Board as Chairman, the Commissioner
of the Philippine Atomic Energy Commission and one other member to be appointed by the
President of the Philippines, with the consent of the Commission on Appointments, who
must be a diplomate in radiology or medical radio-therapy with at least five years of clinical
practice, as members. The Vice-Chairman of the National Science Development Board and
the Commissioner of the Philippine Atomic Energy Commission shall serve ex officio
without extra compensation and the third member shall receive a per diem of fifty pesos
for each meeting actually attended: Provided, That the monthly total of such per diem shall
not exceed two hundred pesos. The operating expenses of the Nuclear Indemnity Board
shall be borne out of the regular appropriation of the National Science Development Board.

No action, suit or proceeding for compensation for personal injury or property damage
arising out of or resulting from a nuclear incident may be instituted against the designer,
manufacturer, contractor and/or supplier of nuclear equipment, and all such claims for
compensation shall be filed with the Nuclear Indemnity Board which is hereby exclusively
empowered to settle the above-mentioned claims on a fair and reasonable basis taking into
due account the purposes of this Act: Provided, however, That any provision of law to the
contrary notwithstanding, any such claim shall be barred unless brought within ten years
from the date of the event causing injury or damage and within two years from time to time
the injury or damage, or a subsequent aggravation thereof, came to the knowledge of, or
could have been ascertained by the exercise of ordinary care by the aggrieved party:
Provided, further, That the proper courts of the Republic of the Philippines shall have
exclusive jurisdiction in the case of a nuclear incident occurring in the course of carriage of
fuel elements or other radioactive materials capable of causing a nuclear incident
belonging to or in the charge of the Philippine Government, or any of its agencies or
instrumentalities, where such nuclear incident occurs outside Philippine territory: And

87
provided, finally, That the aggregate liability of the Philippine Government under this Act
shall not exceed the amount of five million pesos which is hereby appropriated out of any
funds in the National Treasury not otherwise appropriated.

Sec. 4. For the purpose of carrying out its functions under this Act the Nuclear Indemnity
Board shall have the following powers:

(a) To promulgate such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the
purposes of this Act including rules or procedure governing the filing, processing and
settlement of claims: Provided, however, That the concurrence of at least two members
shall be required in order for the Board to make an award, order or decision: Provided,
further, That in the hearing, investigation and determination of any question or
controversy, and in exercising any duties and powers under this Act, the Nuclear Indemnity
Board shall act according to justice and equity and substantial merits of the case, and shall
use every and all reasonable means to ascertain the facts in each case speedily and
objectively and without regard to technicalities of law or procedure;
(b) To issue subpoena and subpoena duces tecum;
(c) To administer oaths;
(d) To grant reasonable compensation in an amount not more than twenty-five pesos for
each day of attendance, but in no case to exceed more than one hundred pesos a month, to
an expert witness or resource person who is not a government official or employee, whose
services may be availed of by the Nuclear Indemnity Board as provided herein; and
(e) Such other powers as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of this Act.

Sec. 5. Upon a showing that the government's liability in any one incident will probably
exceed the limit of liability imposed by the preceding section, the Board may, in its sound
discretion, for the purpose of ensuring the equitable and just distribution of damages,
either issue orders apportioning the payments and permitting partial payments to be made
to claimants or issue an order setting aside a part of the funds available for possible latent
injuries not discovered until a later time, or both.

Sec. 6. When a nuclear incident occurs, the Board shall investigate or cause to be
investigated the cause or extent of the damage and may for that purpose compel all persons
exposed to radiation to report to the Board for examination not later than three months
from the date of the order requiring their appearance. In determining the amount of
damages the Board may, in its sound discretion, take into account the inexcusable violation

88
of the foregoing obligation to report to the Board for examination.

Sec. 7. The Nuclear Indemnity Board is hereby authorized to call upon the National
Science Development Board, the Philippine Atomic Energy Commission and other
government agencies and instrumentalities for assistance and cooperation in the discharge
of its powers, duties and functions under this Act.

Sec. 8. Any aggrieved claimant may appeal from any final order, award or decision of the
Board to the Supreme Court in accordance with the provisions of Rule forty-five of the
Rules of Court. Findings of fact by the Board shall be conclusive in the absence of fraud,
collusion or evident mistake.

Sec. 9. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

Approved: June 17, 1961

23. and 34. Meritt v. Govt. of the Phil. Islands

G.R. No. L-11154, March 21 1916, 34 Phil. 311

FACTS:
E. Merritt was a constructor who was excellent at his work. One day, while he was
riding his motorcycle along Calle Padre Faura, he was bumped by a government
ambulance. The driver of the ambulance was proven to have been negligent. Because of
the incident, Merritt was hospitalized and he was severely injured beyond rehabilitation
so much so that he could never perform his job the way he used to and that he cannot even
earn at least half of what he used to earn.
In order for Merritt to recover damages, he sought to sue the government which later
authorized Merritt to sue the government by virtue of Act 2457 enacted by the legislature

89
(An Act authorizing E. Merritt to bring suit against the Government of the Philippine
Islands and authorizing the Attorney-General of said Islands to appear in said suit). The
lower court then determined the amount of damages and ordered the government to pay
the same.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the government is liable for the negligent act of the driver of the
ambulance.
HELD:
No.
By consenting to be sued a state simply waives its immunity from suit. It does not
thereby concede its liability to plaintiff, or create any cause of action in his favor, or extend
its liability to any cause not previously recognized. It merely gives a remedy to enforce a
preexisting liability and submits itself to the jurisdiction of the court, subject to its right to
interpose any lawful defense. It follows therefrom that the state, by virtue of such
provisions of law, is not responsible for the damages suffered by private individuals in
consequence of acts performed by its employees in the discharge of the functions
pertaining to their office, because neither fault nor even negligence can be presumed on
the part of the state in the organization of branches of public service and in the
appointment of its agents. The State can only be liable if it acts through a special agent
(and a special agent, in the sense in which these words are employed, is one who receives
a definite and fixed order or commission, foreign to the exercise of the duties of his office if
he is a special official) so that in representation of the state and being bound to act as an
agent thereof, he executes the trust confided to him.
In the case at bar, the ambulance driver was not a special agent nor was a
government officer acting as a special agent hence, there can be no liability from the
government. The Government does not undertake to guarantee to any person the fidelity
of the officers or agents whom it employs, since that would involve it in all its operations in
endless embarrassments, difficulties and losses, which would be subversive of the public
interest.

90
24. Republic v. Purisima 78
SCRA 470

Facts:
A motion to dismiss was filed on September 7, 1972 by defendant Rice and Corn
Administration in a pending civil suit inthe sala of respondent Judge for the collection of a
money claim arising from an alleged breach of contract, the plaintiff being private
respondent Yellow Ball Freight Lines, Inc. At that time, the leading case of Mobil
Philippines Exploration,Inc. v. Customs Arrastre Service, where Justice Bengzon stressed the
lack of jurisdiction of a court to pass on the meritsof a claim against any office or entity
acting as part of the machinery of the national government unless consent beshown, had
been applied in 53 other decisions. Respondent Judge Amante P. Purisima of the Court of
First Instance of Manila denied the motion to dismiss dated October 4, 1972. Hence, the
petition for certiorari and prohibition.

Issue:
WON the respondents decision is valid.
91
Held:
No.

The position of the Republic has been fortified with the explicit affirmation found in this
provision of the present Constitution: "The State may not be sued without its consent.
"The doctrine of non-suability recognized in this jurisdiction even prior to the effectivity of
the [1935] Constitution is a logical corollary of the positivist concept of law which, to para-
phrase Holmes, negates the assertion of any legal right as against the state, in itself the
source of the law on which such a right may be predicated. Nor is this all, even if such a
principle does give rise to problems, considering the vastly expanded role of government
enabling it to engage in business pursuits to promote the general welfare, it is not
obeisance to the analytical school of thought alone that calls for its continued applicability.
Nor is injustice thereby cause private parties. They could still proceed to seek collection
of their money claims by pursuing the statutory remedy of having the Auditor General
pass upon them subject to appeal to judicial tribunals for final adjudication. We could thus
correctly conclude as we did in the cited Providence Washington Insurance decision:
"Thus the doctrine of non-suability of the government without its consent, as it has
operated in practice, hardly lends itself to the charge that it could be the fruitful parent of
injustice, considering the vast and ever-widening scope of state activities at present being
undertaken. Whatever difficulties for private claimants may still exist, is, from an objective
appraisal of all factors, minimal. In the balancing of interests, so unavoidable in the
determination of what principles must prevail if government is to satisfy the public weal,
the verdict must be, as it has been these so many years, for its continuing recognition as a
fundamental postulate of constitutional law." [Switzerland General Insurance Co.,Ltd. v. Republic of
the Philippines]

***The consent, to be effective, must come from the State acting through a duly enacted
statute as pointed out by Justice Bengzon in Mobil. Thus, whatever counsel for defendant
Rice and Corn Administration agreed to had no binding force on the government.

92
25. U.S. v. Ruiz
136 SCRA 487

GR No. L-35645; May 22, 1985

FACTS:
Sometime in May 1972, the United States invited the submission of bids for certain
naval projects. Eligio de Guzman & Co. Inc. responded to the invitation and submitted bids.
Subsequently, the company received two telegrams requesting it to confirm its price. In
June 1972, the copany received a letter which said that the company did not qualify to
receive an award for the projects. The company then sued the United States of America
and individual petitioners demanding that the company perform the work on the projects,
or for the petitioners to pay damages and to issue a writ of preliminary injunction to
restrain the petitioners from entering into contracts with third parties concerning the
project.

ISSUE:
1) Do the petitioners exercise governmental or proprietary functions?
93
2) Does the Court have jurisdiction over the case?

HELD:

The rule of State immunity exempts a State from being sued in the courts of another
state without its consent or waiver. This is a necessary consequence of the principles of
independence and equality of states. However, state immunity now extends only to
governmental acts of the state. The restrictive application of State immunity is proper only
when the proceedings arise out of commercial transactions of the foreign sovereign. In this
case, the projects are integral part of the naval base which is devoted to the defense of the
USA and Philippines which is, indisputably, a function of the government. As such, by
virtue of state immunity, the courts of the Philippines have no jurisdiction over the case for
the US government has not given consent to the filing of this suit.

94
27. THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH vs.PHIL. PHARMAWEALTH, INC.
G.R. No. 169304 March13, 2007

FACTS:
Respondent Phil. Pharmawealth, Inc. is
a domestic corporation engaged in thebusiness of manufacturing and supplyingpharmace
utical products to governmenthospitals in the Philippines. Then Secretary
of Health Alberto G. Romualdez, Jr. issued Administrative
Order (A.O.) No. 27 outliningthe guidelines and procedures on theaccreditation of govern
ment suppliers for pharmaceutical products. A.O. No. 27 was later
amended by providing for additional guidelines for accreditation of drug suppliers aimed
95
at ensuring that only qualified bidders can transact business with petitioner.
Respondent submitted to petitioner DOH a request for the inclusion of additional
items in its list of accredited drug products, including the antibiotic "Penicillin G
Benzathine." DOH issued an Invitation for Bidsfor the procurement of 1.2 million units
vials
0f Penicillin G Benzathine. Despite the lack of response from petitioner DOH regardingresp
ondents request for inclusion of additional items in its list of accredited products,
respondent submitted its bid for the Penicillin GBenzathine contract. Only two companies
participated, the respondent being the lower bidder. In view, however, of the non-
accreditation of respondents Penicillin G Benzathine product, the contract was awarded
to the other company. Hence, respondent filed a complaint injunction, mandamus and
damages against DOH.

ISSUE:
WON DOH can invoke immunity from suit.

HELD:
NO.
The suability of a government officialdepends on whether the official concerned was
acting within his official or jurisdictional capacity, and whether the acts done in the
performance of official functions will result in a charge or financial liability against the
government. In the first case, the Constitution itself assures the availability of judicial
review, and it is the official concerned who should be impleaded as the proper party. As
regards petitioner DOH, the defense of immunity from suit will not avail despite it
being an unincorporated agency of thegovernment, for the only causes of action
directed against it are preliminary injunction and mandamus.

96
28. JUSMAG Phil. V. NLRC
239 SCRA 224

Facts:
Florento Sacramento (private respondent) was one of the 74 security assistance support
personnel (SASP) working at the Joint United States Military Assistance Group to the
Philippines (JUSMAG- Phils.). He had been with JUSMAG from 1969- 1992. When
dismissed, he held the position of illustrator 2 and incumbent Pres. of JUSMAG Phils.-
Filipino Civilian Employees Association, a labor org. duly registered with DOLE. His
services were terminated allegedly due to the abolition of his position.

97
Sacramento filed a complaint with DOLE on the ground that he was illegally suspended
and dismissed from service by JUSMAG. He asked for reinstatement. JUSMAG filed a
Motion to Dismiss invoking immunity from suit. The Labor Arbiter in an Order, dismissed
the complaint for want of jurisdiction. Sacramento appealed to the NLRC which reversed
the decision of the Labor Arbiter and held that the petitioner had lost his right not to be
sued because (1) the principle of estoppel- JUSMAG failed to refute the existence of
employer- employee relationship (2) Jusmag has waived its right to immunity from suit
when it hired the services to private respondent. Hence, this petition.

Issue:
Whether or not JUSMAG has immunity from suit.

Held:
Yes.
When JUSMAG took the services of the private respondent, it was performing a
governmental function in behalf of the United States pursuant to the Military Assistance
Agreement between the Phils. and the US. JUSMAG consists of Air, Naval and Army group
and its primary task was to advise and assist the Phils. on air force, army and naval
matters. A suit against JUSMAG is one against the United States government, and in the
absence of any waiver or consent of the latter to the suit, the complaint against JUSMAG
cannot prosper.
Immunity of State from suit is one of these universally recognized principles. In
international law, "immunity" is commonly understood as an exemption of the state and
its organs from the judicial jurisdiction of another state. This is anchored on the principle
of the sovereign equality of states under which one state cannot assert jurisdiction over
another in violation of the maxim par in parem non habet imperium (an equal has no
power over an equal).
As it stands now, the application of the doctrine of immunity from suit has been
restricted to sovereign or governmental activities and does not extend to commercial,
private and proprietary acts.

98
29. Santiago v. Republic
99
87 SCRA 284

Facts:
On August 9, 1976, Ildefonso Santiago through his counsel filed an action for
revocation of a Deed of Donation executed by him and his spouse in January of 1971, with
the Bureau of Plant Industry as the Donee, in the Court of First Instance of Zamboanga
City. Mr. Santiago alleged that the Bureau, contrary to the terms of donation, failed to
install lighting facilities and water system on the property and to build an office building
and parking lot thereon which should have been constructed and ready for occupancy on
before December7, 1974. That because of the circumstances, Mr. Santiago concluded that
he was exempt from compliance with an explicit constitutional command, as invoked in
the Santos v Santos case, a 1952 decision which is similar. The Court of First Instance
dismissed the action in favor of the respondent on the ground that the state cannot be
sued without its consent, and Santos v Santos case is discernible. The Solicitor General,
Estelito P. Mendoza affirmed the dismissal on ground of constitutional mandate. Ildefonso
Santiago filed a petition for certiorari to the Supreme Court.

Issue:
Whether or not the state can be sued without its consent.

Held:
The Supreme Court rules, that the constitutional provision shows a waiver. Where
there is consent, a suit may be filed. Consent need not to be express. It can be implied. In
this case it must be emphasized, goes no further than a rule that a donor, with the Republic
or any of its agency being a Donee, is entitle to go to court in case of an alleged breach of
the conditions of such donation.

100
101
30. FROILAN VS PAN ORIENTAL SHIPPING
G.R. No. L-6060 September 30, 1954
Facts:
Plaintiff, Fernando Froilan filed a complaint against the defendant-appellant, Pan
Oriental Shipping Co., alleging that he purchased from the Shipping Commission the vessel
for P200,000, paying P50,000 down and agreeing to pay the balance in instalments. To
secure the payment of the balance of the purchase price, he executed a chattel mortgage of
said vessel in favor of the Shipping Commission. For various reasons, among them the non-
payment of the installments, the Shipping Commission tool possession of said vessel and
considered the contract of sale cancelled. The Shipping Commission chartered and
delivered said vessel to the defendant-appellant Pan Oriental Shipping Co. subject to the
approval of the President of the Philippines. Plaintiff appealed the action of the Shipping
Commission to the President of the Philippines and, in its meeting the Cabinet restored
him to all his rights under his original contract with the Shipping Commission. Plaintiff
had repeatedly demanded from the Pan Oriental Shipping Co. the possession of the vessel
in question but the latter refused to do so.
Plaintiff, prayed that, upon the approval of the bond accompanying his complaint, a writ of
replevin be issued for the seizure of said vessel with all its equipment and appurtenances,
and that after hearing, he be adjudged to have the rightful possession thereof . The lower
court issued the writ of replevin prayed for by Froilan and by virtue thereof the Pan
Oriental Shipping Co. was divested of its possession of said vessel.
Pan Oriental protested to this restoration of Plaintiff s rights under the contract of sale, for
the reason that when the vessel was delivered to it, the Shipping Administration had
authority to dispose of said authority to the property, Plaintiff having already relinquished
whatever rights he may have thereon. Plaintiff paid the required cash of P10,000.00 and as
Pan Oriental refused to surrender possession of the vessel, he filed an action to recover
possession thereof and have him declared the rightful owner of said property. The
Republic of the Philippines was allowed to intervene in said civil case praying for the
possession of the in order that the chattel mortgage constituted thereon may be
foreclosed.
Issue:
Whether or not the Court has jurisdiction over the intervenor with regard to the
counterclaim.
102
Held:
When the government enters into a contract, for the State is then deem to have
divested itself of the mantle of sovereign immunity and descended to the level of the
ordinary individual. Having done so, it becomes subject to judicial action and processes.
Yes. The Supreme Court held that the government impliedly allowed itself to be sued
when it filed a complaint in intervention for the purpose of asserting claim for affirmative
relief against the plaintiff to the recovery of the vessel. The immunity of the state from
suits does not deprive it of the right to sue private parties in its own courts. The state as
plaintiff may avail itself of the different forms of actions open to private litigants. In short,
by taking the initiative in an action against a private party, the state surrenders its
privileged position and comes down to the level of the defendant. The latter automatically
acquires, within certain limits, the right to set up whatever claims and other defenses he
might have against the state.

31. RCBC v. De Castro,


168 SCRA 49
Facts:
103
On January 26,1970, BADOC filed an Urgent Ex-Parte Motion for a Writ of Execution
of the said Partial Judgment which was granted on the same day by the herein respondent
judge who acted in place of the Hon. Judge San Diego who had just been elevated as a
Justice of the Court of Appeals. Accordingly, the Branch Clerk of Court on the very same
day, issued a Writ of Execution addressed to Special Sheriff Faustino Rigor, who then
issued a Notice of Garnishment addressed to the General Manager and/or Cashier of Rizal
Commercial Banking Corporation (hereinafter referred to as RCBC) requesting a reply
within five (5) days to said garnishment as to any property which the Philippine Virginia
Tobacco Administration.
Upon receipt of such Notice, RCBC notified PVTA thereof to enable the PVTA to take
the necessary steps for the protection of its own interest. Upon an Urgent Ex-Parte Motion
dated January 27, 1970 filed by BADOC, the respondent Judge issued an Order granting the
Ex-Parte Motion and directing the herein petitioner "to deliver in check the amount
garnished to Sheriff Faustino Rigor and Sheriff Rigor in turn is ordered to cash the check
and deliver the amount to the plaintiff's representative and/or counsel on record.
In compliance with said Order, petitioner delivered to Sheriff Rigor a certified check
in the sum of P 206,916.76.
Respondent PVTA filed a Motion for Reconsideration dated February 26,1970 which
was granted in an Order dated April 6,1970, setting aside the Orders of Execution and of
Payment and the Writ of Execution and ordering petitioner and BADOC "to restore, jointly
and severally, the account of PVTA with the said bank in the same condition and state it
was before the issuance of the aforesaid Orders by reimbursing the PVTA of the amount of
P 206, 916.76 with interests at the legal rate from January 27, 1970 until fully paid to the
account of the PVTA.
The Motion for Reconsideration of the said Order of April 6, 1970 filed by herein
petitioner was denied in the Order of respondent judge dated June 10, 1970 and on June
19, 1970.

Issue:
1. Whether or not PVTA funds are public funds not subject to garnishment; and
2. Whether or not the respondent Judge correctly ordered the herein petitioner to
reimburse the amount paid to the Special Sheriff by virtue of the execution issued
pursuant to the Order/Partial Judgment dated January 15, 1970.
Held:

104
It must be noted that the Order of respondent Judge dated April 6, 1970 directing the
plaintiff to reimburse PVTA t e amount of P206,916.76 with interests became final it
should be pointed out that RCBC did not deliver the amount on the strength solely of a
Notice of Garnishment; rather, the release of the funds was made pursuant to the aforesaid
Order of January 27, 1970. The bank had already filed a reply to the Notice of Garnishment
stating that it had in its custody funds belonging to the PVTA, which, in fact was the basis
of the plaintiff in filing a motion to secure delivery of the garnished amount to the sheriff.
The bank, upon the receipt of the Notice of Garnishment, duly informed PVTA thereof to
enable the latter to take the necessary steps for the protection of its own interest. That the
sheriff, upon delivery of the check to him by RCBC encashed it and turned over the
proceeds thereof to the plaintiff was no longer the concern of RCBC as the responsibility
over the garnished funds passed to the court. Thus, no breach of trust or dereliction of duty
can be attributed to RCBC in delivering its depositor's funds pursuant to a court order which
was merely in the exercise of its power of control over such funds.
As stated earlier, the order directing the bank to deliver the amount to the sheriff
was distinct and separate from the order directing the sheriff to encash the said check. The
bank had no choice but to comply with the order demanding delivery of the garnished
amount in check. The very tenor of the order called for immediate compliance therewith.
On the other hand, the bank cannot be held liable for the subsequent encashment of the
check as this was upon order of the court. To expose garnishees to risks for obeying court
orders and processes would only undermine the administration of justice.
WHEREFORE, the petition is hereby granted and the petitioner is ABSOLVED from
any liability to respondent PVTA for reimbursement of the funds garnished. The
questioned Order of the respondent Judge ordering the petitioner, jointly and severally
with BADOC, to restore the account of PVTA are modified accordingly.

105
32. Mun. of San Miguel, Bulacan v. Fernandez
130 SCRA 556
In Civil Case No. 604-B, entitled "Margarita D. Vda. de Imperio, et al. vs. Municipal
Government of San Miguel, Bulacan, et al.", the then Court of First Instance of Bulacan, on
April 28, 1978, rendered judgment holding herein petitioner municipality liable to private
respondents, as follows:
WHEREFORE, premises considered, judgment is hereby rendered in favor of the
plaintiffs and against the defendant
Municipal Government of San Miguel Bulacan, represented by Mayor Mar Marcelo G. Aure
and its Municipal Treasurer:
1. ordering the partial revocation of the Deed of Donation signed by the deceased Carlos
Imperio in favor of the
Municipality of San Miguel Bulacan, dated October 27, 1947 insofar as Lots Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4
and 5, Block 11 of Subdivision Plan Psd-20831 are concerned, with an aggregate total area
of 4,646 square meters, which lots are among those covered and described under TCT No.
T-1831 of the Register of Deeds of Bulacan in the name of the Municipal Government of
San Miguel Bulacan,
2. ordering the defendant to execute the corresponding Deed of Reconveyance over the
aforementioned five lots in favor of the plaintiffs in the proportion of the undivided one-
half () share in the name of plaintiffs Margarita D. Vda. de Imperio,Adoracion, Rodolfo,
Conrado, Ernesto, Alfredo, Carlos, Jr. and Juan, all surnamed Imperio, and the remaining
undivided one-half () share in favor of plaintiffs uses Marcelo E. Pineda and Lucila
Pongco;
3. ordering the defendant municipality to pay to the plaintiffs in the proportion mentioned
in the immediately preceding paragraph the sum of P64,440.00 corresponding to the
rentals it has collected from the occupants for their use and occupation of the premises
from 1970 up to and including 1975, plus interest thereon at the legal rate from January
1970 until fully paid;
4. ordering the restoration of ownership and possession over the five lots in question in
favor of the plaintiffs in the same proportion aforementioned;
5. ordering the defendant to pay the plaintiffs the sum of P3,000.00 for attomey's fees; and
to pay the cost of suit.

106
The counterclaim of the defendant is hereby ordered dismissed for lack of evidence
presented to substantiate the same.
SO ORDERED. (pp. 11-12, Rollo)
The foregoing judgment became final when herein petitioner's appeal was dismissed due
to its failure to file the record on appeal on time. The dismissal was affirmed by the then
Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. No. SP-12118 and by this Court in G.R. No. 59938. Thereafter,
herein private respondents moved for issuance of a writ of execution for the satisfaction of
the judgment. Respondent judge, on July 27, 1982, issued an order, to wit: Considering that
an entry of judgment had already been made on June 14, 1982 in G. R. No. L-59938 and;
Considering further that there is no opposition to plaintiffs' motion for execution dated
July 23, 1983; Let a writ of execution be so issued, as prayed for in the aforestated motion.
(p. 10, Rollo)

Petitioner, on July 30, 1982, filed a Motion to Quash the writ of execution on the
ground that the municipality's property or funds are all public funds exempt from
execution. The said motion to quash was, however, denied by the respondent judge in an
order dated August 23, 1982 and the alias writ of execution stands in full force and effect.
On September 13, 1982, respondent judge issued an order which in part, states: It is
clear and evident from the foregoing that defendant has more than enough funds to meet
its judgment obligation. Municipal Treasurer Miguel C, Roura of San Miguel, Bulacan and
Provincial Treasurer of Bulacan Agustin O. Talavera are
therefore hereby ordered to comply with the money judgment rendered by Judge Agustin
C. Bagasao against said
municipality. In like manner, the municipal authorities of San Miguel, Bulacan are likewise
ordered to desist from plaintiffs' legal possession of the property already returned to
plaintiffs by virtue of the alias writ of execution.
Finally, defendants are hereby given an inextendible period of ten (10) days from receipt of
a copy of this order by the Office of the Provincial Fiscal of Bulacan within which to submit
their written compliance, (p. 24, Rollo)
When the treasurers (provincial and municipal) failed to comply with the order of
September 13, 1982, respondent judge issued an order for their arrest and that they will
be release only upon compliance thereof.Hence, the present petition on the issue whether
the funds of the Municipality of San Miguel, Bulacan, in the hands of the

107
provincial and municipal treasurers of Bulacan and San Miguel, respectively, are public
funds which are exempt from execution for the satisfaction of the money judgment in Civil
Case No. 604-B.Well settled is the rule that public funds are not subject to levy and
execution. The reason for this was explained in the case of Municipality of Paoay vs.
Manaois, 86 Phil. 629 "that they are held in trust for the people, intended and used for the
accomplishment of the purposes for which municipal corporations are created, and that to
subject said properties and public funds to execution would materially impede, even
defeat and in some instances destroy said purpose." And, in Tantoco vs. Municipal Council
of Iloilo, 49 Phil. 52, it was held that "it is the settled doctrine of the law that not only the
public property but also the taxes and public revenues of such corporations Cannot be
seized under execution against them, either in the treasury or when in transit to it.
Judgments rendered for taxes, and the proceeds of such judgments in the hands of officers
of the law, are not subject to execution unless so declared by statute." Thus, it is clear that
all the funds of petitioner municipality in the possession of the Municipal Treasurer of San
Miguel, as well as those in the possession of the Provincial Treasurer of Bulacan, are also
public funds and as such they are exempt from execution.Besides, Presidential Decree No.
477, known as "The Decree on Local Fiscal Administration", Section 2 (a), provides:

SEC. 2. Fundamental Principles. Local government financial affairs, transactions, and


operations shall be governed by the fundamental principles set forth hereunder:
(a) No money shall be paid out of the treasury except in pursuance of a lawful
appropriation or other specific statutory authority.
xxx xxx xxx
Otherwise stated, there must be a corresponding appropriation in the form of an
ordinance duly passed by the Sangguniang Bayan before any money of the municipality
may be paid out. In the case at bar, it has not been shown that the Sangguniang Bayan has
passed an ordinance to this effect.Furthermore, Section 15, Rule 39 of the New Rules of
Court, outlines the procedure for the enforcement of money judgment:
(a) By levying on all the property of the debtor, whether real or personal, not otherwise
exempt from execution, or only on such part of the property as is sufficient to satisfy the
judgment and accruing cost, if he has more than sufficient property for the purpose;
(b) By selling the property levied upon;
(c) By paying the judgment-creditor so much of the proceeds as will satisfy the judgment
and accruing costs; and
108
(d) By delivering to the judgment-debtor the excess, if any, unless otherwise, directed by
judgment or order of the court.
The foregoing has not been followed in the case at bar.
ACCORDINGLY, the petition is granted and the order of respondent judge, dated July 27,
1982, granting issuance of a writ of execution; the alias writ of execution, dated July 27,
1982; and the order of respondent judge, dated September 13, 1982, directing the
Provincial Treasurer of Bulacan and the Municipal Treasurer of San Miguel, Bulacan to
comply with themoney judgments, are SET ASIDE; and respondents are hereby enjoined
from implementing the writ of execution.

109
33. Municipality of Makati vs. Court of Appeals
G.R. Nos. 89898-99 October 1, 1990

Facts:

Petitioner Municipality of Makati expropriated a portion of land owned by private


respondents, Admiral Finance Creditors Consortium, Inc. After proceedings, the RTC of
Makati determined the cost of the said land which the petitioner must pay to the private
respondents amounting to P5,291,666.00 minus the advanced payment of P338,160.00. It
issued the corresponding writ of execution accompanied with a writ of garnishment of
funds of the petitioner which was deposited in PNB. However, such order was opposed by
petitioner through a motion for reconsideration, contending that its funds at the PNB
could neither be garnished nor levied upon execution, for to do so would result in the
disbursement of public funds without the proper appropriation required under the law,
110
citing the case of Republic of the Philippines v. Palacio.The RTC dismissed such motion,
which was appealed to the Court of Appeals; the latter affirmed said dismissal and
petitioner now filed this petition for review.
Issue: Whether or not funds of the Municipality of Makati are exempt from garnishment
and levy upon execution.

Held:
It is petitioner's main contention that the orders of respondent RTC judge involved
the net amount of P4,965,506.45, wherein the funds garnished by respondent sheriff are
in excess of P99,743.94, which are public fund and thereby are exempted from execution
without the proper appropriation required under the law. There is merit in this
contention. In this jurisdiction, well-settled is the rule that public funds are not subject to
levy and execution, unless otherwise provided for by statute. Municipal revenues derived
from taxes, licenses and market fees, and which are intended primarily and exclusively for
the purpose of financing the governmental activities and functions of the municipality, are
exempt from execution. Absent a showing that the municipal council of Makati has passed
an ordinance appropriating the said amount from its public funds deposited in their PNB
account, no levy under execution may be validly effected. However, this court orders
petitioner to pay for the said land which has been in their use already. This Court will not
condone petitioner's blatant refusal to settle its legal obligation arising from expropriation
of land they are already enjoying. The State's power of eminent domain should be
exercised within the bounds of fair play and justice.

Principles and State Policies

SECTION 1

1. G.R. No. L-14639 March 25, 1919ZACARIAS VILLAVICENCIO, ET AL. vs. JUSTO
LUKBAN, ET AL.

111
Facts:

Justo Lukban as Manila City's Mayor together with Anton Hohmann, the city's Chief of
Police, took custody of about 170 women at the night of October 25 beyond the latters
consent and knowledge and thereafter were shipped to Mindanao specifically in Davao
where they were signed as laborers. Said women are inmates of the houses of prostitution
situated in Gardenia Street, in the district of Sampaloc.

That when the petitioner filed for habeas corpus, the respondent moved to dismiss the
case saying that those women were already out of their jurisdiction and that , it should be
filed in the city of Davao instead.

The court ruled in favor of the petitioner with the instructions;

For the respondents to have fulfilled the court's order, three optional courses were open:
(1) They could have produced the bodies of the persons according to the command of the
writ; or (2) they could have shown by affidavit that on account of sickness or infirmity
those persons could not safely be brought before the court; or (3) they could have
presented affidavits to show that the parties in question or their attorney waived the right
to be present.

Issue:

The writ of Habeas Corpus was filed by the petitioner, with the prayer that the respondent
produce around 170 women whom Justo Lukban et, al deported to Davao. Liberty of abode
was also raised versus the power of the executive of the Municipality in deporting the
women without their knowledge in his capacity as Mayor.

Held:

The court concluded the case by granting the parties aggrieved the sum of 400 pesos each,
plus 100 pesos for nominal damage due to contempt of court. Reasoning further that if the
chief executive of any municipality in the Philippines could forcibly and illegally take a
private citizen and place him beyond the boundaries of the municipality, and then, when
called upon to defend his official action, could calmly fold his hands and claim that the
person was under no restraint and that he, the official, had no jurisdiction over this other
municipality.
We believe the true principle should be that, if the respondent is within the jurisdiction of
the court and has it in his power to obey the order of the court and thus to undo the wrong

112
that he has inflicted, he should be compelled to do so. Even if the party to whom the writ is
addressed has illegally parted with the custody of a person before the application for the
writ is no reason why the writ should not issue. If the mayor and the chief of police, acting
under no authority of law, could deport these women from the city of Manila to Davao, the
same officials must necessarily have the same means to return them from Davao to Manila.
The respondents, within the reach of process, may not be permitted to restrain a fellow
citizen of her liberty by forcing her to change her domicile and to avow the act with
impunity in the courts, while the person who has lost her birthright of liberty has no
effective recourse. The great writ of liberty may not thus be easily evaded.

SECTION 2

2. Kuroda v. Jalandoni, G.R. No. L-2662, March 26, 1949

DECISION
(En Banc)

MORAN, C.J.:

I. THE FACTS

Petitioner Shigenori Kuroda, the Commanding General of the Japanese Imperial Forces in
the Philippines during the Japanese occupation, was charged before the Philippine Military
Commission of war crimes. He questioned the constitutionality of E.O. No. 68 that created
the National War Crimes Office and prescribed rules on the trial of accused war criminals.
He contended the Philippines is not a signatory to the Hague Convention on Rules and
Regulations covering Land Warfare and therefore he is charged of crimes not based on law,
national and international.

II. THE ISSUES

113
Was E.O. No. 68 valid and constitutional?

III. THE RULING

[The Court DENIED the petition and upheld the validity and constitutionality of E.O. No.
68.]

YES, E.O. No. 68 valid and constitutional.

Article 2 of our Constitution provides in its section 3, that


The Philippines renounces war as an instrument of national policy and adopts the
generally accepted principles of international law as part of the law of the nation.

In accordance with the generally accepted principle of international law of the present day
including the Hague Convention the Geneva Convention and significant precedents of
international jurisprudence established by the United Nation all those person military or
civilian who have been guilty of planning preparing or waging a war of aggression and of
the commission of crimes and offenses consequential and incidental thereto in violation of
the laws and customs of war, of humanity and civilization are held accountable therefor.
Consequently in the promulgation and enforcement of Execution Order No. 68 the
President of the Philippines has acted in conformity with the generally accepted and
policies of international law which are part of the our Constitution.

xxx xxx xxx

Petitioner argues that respondent Military Commission has no jurisdiction to try


petitioner for acts committed in violation of the Hague Convention and the Geneva
Convention because the Philippines is not a signatory to the first and signed the second
only in 1947. It cannot be denied that the rules and regulation of the Hague and Geneva
conventions form, part of and are wholly based on the generally accepted principals of
international law. In facts these rules and principles were accepted by the two belligerent
nations the United State and Japan who were signatories to the two Convention. Such rule
and principles therefore form part of the law of our nation even if the Philippines was not
a signatory to the conventions embodying them for our Constitution has been deliberately
general and extensive in its scope and is not confined to the recognition of rule and
principle of international law as contained in treaties to which our government may have
been or shall be a signatory.

114
3. Agustin vs Edu (1979) 88 SCRA 195

FACTS:

Agustin is the owner of a Volkswagen Beetle Car. He is assailing the validity of Letter of
Instruction No 229 which requires all motor vehicles to have early warning devices
particularly to equip them with a pair of reflectorized triangular early warning devices.
Agustin is arguing that this order is unconstitutional, harsh, cruel and unconscionable to
the motoring public. Cars are already equipped with blinking lights which is already
enough to provide warning to other motorists. And that the mandate to compel motorists
to buy a set of reflectorized early warning devices is redundant and would only make
manufacturers and dealers instant millionaires.

ISSUE: Whether or not the said is EO is valid.

HELD: Such early warning device requirement is not an expensive redundancy, nor
oppressive, for car owners whose cars are already equipped with 1) blinking-lights in the
fore and aft of said motor vehicles, 2) battery-powered blinking lights inside motor
vehicles, 3) built-in reflectorized tapes on front and rear bumpers of motor vehicles, or 4)
well-lighted two (2) petroleum lamps (the Kinke) . . . because: Being universal among the
signatory countries to the said 1968 Vienna Conventions, and visible even under adverse
conditions at a distance of at least 400 meters, any motorist from this country or from any
part of the world, who sees a reflectorized rectangular early warning device installed on
the roads, highways or expressways, will conclude, without thinking, that somewhere
along the travelled portion of that road, highway, or expressway, there is a motor vehicle
which is stationary, stalled or disabled which obstructs or endangers passing traffic. On
the other hand, a motorist who sees any of the aforementioned other built-in warning
devices or the petroleum lamps will not immediately get adequate advance warning
because he will still think what that blinking light is all about. Is it an emergency vehicle?
Is it a law enforcement car? Is it an ambulance? Such confusion or uncertainty in the mind
of the motorist will thus increase, rather than decrease, the danger of collision.

On Police Power

The Letter of Instruction in question was issued in the exercise of the police power. That is
conceded by petitioner and is the main reliance of respondents. It is the submission of the
former, however, that while embraced in such a category, it has offended against the due
process and equal protection safeguards of the Constitution, although the latter point was
mentioned only in passing. The broad and expansive scope of the police power which was

115
originally identified by Chief Justice Taney of the American Supreme Court in an 1847
decision, as nothing more or less than the powers of government inherent in every
sovereignty was stressed in the aforementioned case of Edu v. Ericta thus: Justice
Laurel, in the first leading decision after the Constitution came into force, Calalang v.
Williams, identified police power with state authority to enact legislation that may
interfere with personal liberty or property in order to promote the general welfare.
Persons and property could thus be subjected to all kinds of restraints and burdens in
order to secure the general comfort, health and prosperity of the state. Shortly after
independence in 1948, Primicias v. Fugoso reiterated the doctrine, such a competence
being referred to as the power to prescribe regulations to promote the health, morals,
peace, education, good order or safety, and general welfare of the people. The concept was
set forth in negative terms by Justice Malcolm in a pre-Commonwealth decision as that
inherent and plenary power in the State which enables it to prohibit all things hurtful to
the comfort, safety and welfare of society. In that sense it could be hardly distinguishable
as noted by this Court in Morfe v. Mutuc with the totality of legislative power. It is in the
above sense the greatest and most powerful attribute of government. It is, to quote Justice
Malcolm anew, the most essential, insistent, and at least illimitable powers, extending as
Justice Holmes aptly pointed out to all the great public needs. Its scope, ever expanding to
meet the exigencies of the times, even to anticipate the future where it could be done,
provides enough room for an efficient and flexible response to conditions and
circumstances thus assuring the greatest benefits. In the language of Justice Cardozo:
Needs that were narrow or parochial in the past may be interwoven in the present with
the well-being of the nation. What is critical or urgent changes with the time. The police
power is thus a dynamic agency, suitably vague and far from precisely defined, rooted in
the conception that men in organizing the state and imposing upon its government
limitations to safeguard constitutional rights did not intend thereby to enable an
individual citizen or a group of citizens to obstruct unreasonably the enactment of such
salutary measures calculated to insure communal peace, safety, good order, and welfare.

It was thus a heavy burden to be shouldered by Agustin, compounded by the fact that the
particular police power measure challenged was clearly intended to promote public safety.
It would be a rare occurrence indeed for this Court to invalidate a legislative or executive
act of that character. None has been called to our attention, an indication of its being non-
existent. The latest decision in point, Edu v. Ericta, sustained the validity of the Reflector
Law, an enactment conceived with the same end in view. Calalang v. Williams found
nothing objectionable in a statute, the purpose of which was: To promote safe transit
upon, and avoid obstruction on roads and streets designated as national roads . . . As a
matter of fact, the first law sought to be nullified after the effectivity of the 1935
Constitution, the National Defense Act, with petitioner failing in his quest, was likewise
prompted by the imperative demands of public safety.

116
4. Ichong vs Hernandez

FACTS:
The Legislature passed R.A. 1180 (An Act to Regulate the Retail Business). Its purpose was
to prevent persons who are not citizens of the Phil. from having a stranglehold upon the
peoples economic life.
a prohibition against aliens and against associations, partnerships, or corporations the
capital of which are not wholly owned by Filipinos, from engaging directly or indirectly in
the retail trade
aliens actually engaged in the retail business on May 15, 1954 are allowed to continue
their business, unless their licenses are forfeited in accordance with law, until their death
or voluntary retirement. In case of juridical persons, ten years after the approval of the Act
or until the expiration of term.
Citizens and juridical entities of the United States were exempted from this Act.
provision for the forfeiture of licenses to engage in the retail business for violation of the
laws on nationalization, economic control weights and measures and labor and other laws
relating to trade, commerce and industry.
provision against the establishment or opening by aliens actually engaged in the retail
business of additional stores or branches of retail business
Lao Ichong, in his own behalf and behalf of other alien residents, corporations and
partnerships affected by the Act, filed an action to declare it unconstitutional for the ff:
reasons:
it denies to alien residents the equal protection of the laws and deprives them of their
liberty and property without due process
the subject of the Act is not expressed in the title
the Act violates international and treaty obligations
the provisions of the Act against the transmission by aliens of their retail business thru
hereditary succession

ISSUE: WON the Act deprives the aliens of the equal protection of the laws.

HELD:
The law is a valid exercise of police power and it does not deny the aliens the equal
protection of the laws. There are real and actual, positive and fundamental differences
between an alien and a citizen, which fully justify the legislative classification adopted.

117
RATIO:
The equal protection clause does not demand absolute equality among residents. It merely
requires that all persons shall be treated alike, under like circumstances and conditions
both as to privileges conferred and liabilities enforced.

The classification is actual, real and reasonable, and all persons of one class are treated
alike.

The difference in status between citizens and aliens constitutes a basis for reasonable
classification in the exercise of police power.

Official statistics point out to the ever-increasing dominance and control by alien of the
retail trade. It is this domination and control that is the legislatures target in the
enactment of the Act.

The mere fact of alienage is the root cause of the distinction between the alien and the
national as a trader. The alien is naturally lacking in that spirit of loyalty and enthusiasm
for the Phil. where he temporarily stays and makes his living. The alien owes no allegiance
or loyalty to the State, and the State cannot rely on him/her in times of crisis or
emergency.

While the citizen holds his life, his person and his property subject to the needs of the
country, the alien may become the potential enemy of the State.

The alien retailer has shown such utter disregard for his customers and the people on
whom he makes his profit. Through the illegitimate use of pernicious designs and
practices, the alien now enjoys a monopolistic control on the nations economy
endangering the national security in times of crisis and emergency.

5. Gonzales vs. Hechanova 9 SCRA 230

FACTS:
During the term of President Diosdado Macapagal, he entered into two executive
agreements with Vietnam and Burma for the importation of rice without complying with
the requisite of securing a certification from the National Economic Council showing that
there is a shortage in cereals or rice. Hence, the then Executive Secretary, Rufino

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Hechanova, authorized the importation of 67,000 tons of rice from abroad to the
detriment of our local planters. Ramon Gonzales, then president of the Iloilo Palay and
Corn Planters Association assailed the executive agreements. Gonzales averred that
Hechanova is without jurisdiction or in excess of jurisdiction, because Republic Act 3452
prohibits the importation of rice and corn by the Rice and Corn Administration or any
other government agency.

ISSUE: Whether or not RA 3452 prevails over the 2 executive agreements entered into by
Macapagal.

HELD:
Yes. Under the Constitution, the main function of the Executive is to enforce laws enacted
by Congress. The former may not interfere in the performance of the legislative powers of
the latter, except in the exercise of his veto power. He may not defeat legislative
enactments that have acquired the status of laws, by indirectly repealing the same through
an executive agreement providing for the performance of the very act prohibited by said
laws. In the event of conflict between a treaty and a statute, the one which is latest in point
of time shall prevail, is not applicable to the case at bar, Hechanova not only admits, but,
also, insists that the contracts adverted to are not treaties. No such justification can be
given as regards executive agreements not authorized by previous legislation, without
completely upsetting the principle of separation of powers and the system of checks and
balances which are fundamental in our constitutional set up.

As regards the question whether an executive or an international agreement may be


invalidated by our courts, suffice it to say that the Constitution of the Philippines has
clearly settled it in the affirmative, by providing that the SC may not be deprived of its
jurisdiction to review, revise, reverse, modify, or affirm on appeal, certiorari, or writ of
error, as the law or the rules of court may provide, final judgments and decrees of inferior
courts in All cases in which the constitutionality or validity of any treaty, law, ordinance,
or executive order or regulation is in question. In other words, our Constitution
authorizes the nullification of a treaty, not only when it conflicts with the fundamental law,
but, also, when it runs counter to an act of Congress.

6. In re Garcia, G.R. No. _____, August 15, 1961

RESOLUTION
(En Banc)

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BARRERA, J.:

THE FACTS

Arturo E. Garcia, a Filipino citizen, studied law, became a lawyer and practiced law in
Spain. Later, he applied for admission to the practice of law in the Philippines without
taking the Philippine bar examinations. He cited the provision of the Treaty of Academic
Degrees and the Exercise of Professions between the Philippines and Spain and argued
that he is entitled to practice the law profession in the Philippines even without
submitting to the required bar examinations.

THE ISSUE
Can the petitioner validly invoke the subject treaty to justify his petition to be admitted to
the practice law in the Philippines without taking the Philippine bar examinations?

THE RULING
[The Court DENIED the petition.]

NO, the petitioner CANNOT validly invoke the subject treaty to justify his petition to be
admitted to the practice law in the Philippines without taking the Philippine bar
examinations.

[T]he provisions of the Treaty on Academic Degrees and the Exercise of Professions
between the Republic of the Philippines and the Spanish State cannot be invoked by
applicant. Under Article 11 thereof:

The Nationals of each of the two countries who shall have obtained recognition of the
validity of their academic degrees by virtue of the stipulations of this Treaty, can practice
their professions within the territory of the Other, . . . (Emphasis supplied). from which it
could clearly be discerned that said Treaty was intended to govern Filipino citizens
desiring to practice their profession in Spain, and the citizens of Spain desiring to practice
their professions in the Philippines. Applicant is a Filipino citizen desiring to practice the
legal profession in the Philippines. He is therefore subject to the laws of his own country
and is not entitled to the privileges extended to Spanish nationals desiring to practice in
the Philippines.

Article I of the Treaty, in its pertinent part, provides

The nationals of both countries who shall have obtained degree or diplomas to practice
the liberal professions in either of the Contracting States, issued by competent national

120
authorities, shall be deemed competent to exercise said professions in the territory of the
Other, subject to the laws and regulations of the latter. . .

It is clear, therefore, that the privileges provided in the Treaty invoked by the applicant are
made expressly subject to the laws and regulations of the contracting State in whose
territory it is desired to exercise the legal profession; and Section 1 of Rule 127, in
connection with Sections 2, 9, and 16 thereof, which have the force of law, require that
before anyone can practice the legal profession in the Philippine he must first successfully
pass the required bar examinations.
The aforementioned Treaty, concluded between the Republic of the Philippines and the
Spanish State could not have been intended to modify the laws and regulations governing
admission to the practice of law in the Philippines, for the reason that the Executive
Department may not encroach upon the constitutional prerogative of the Supreme Court
to promulgate rules for admission to the practice of law in the Philippines, the lower to
repeal, alter or supplement such rules being reserved only to the Congress of the
Philippines. [NOTE (in relation to the incorporation clause): Pacta sunt servanda, a
generally accepted principle of international law, cannot be invoked in this case since the
treaty cited as justification for Garcia's petition was not even applicable in the first place.]

SECTION 4

7. People of the Philippines vs Tranquilino Lagman 66 Phil. 13 Political Law


Defense of State

FACTS:
In 1936, Tranquilino Lagman reached the age of 20. He is being compelled by Section 60 of
Commonwealth Act 1 (National Defense Law) to join the military service. Lagman refused
to do so because he has a father to support, has no military leanings and he does not wish
to kill or be killed. Lagman further assailed the constitutionality of the said law.

ISSUE: Whether or not the National Defense Law is constitutional.

HELD:
Yes. The duty of the Government to defend the State cannot be performed except through
an army. To leave the organization of an army to the will of the citizens would be to make
this duty of the Government excusable should there be no sufficient men who volunteer to
enlist therein. Hence, the National Defense Law, in so far as it establishes compulsory
military service, does not go against this constitutional provision but is, on the contrary, in
faithful compliance therewith. The defense of the State is a prime duty of government,

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and in the fulfillment of this duty all citizens may be required by law to render personal
military or civil service.

SECTION 6

8. Aglipay v. Ruiz G.R. No. L-45459 March 13, 1937

Facts:
In May 1936, the Director of Posts announced in the dailies of Manila that he would
order the issuance of postage stamps commemorating the celebration in the City of Manila
of the 33rd International Eucharistic Congress, organized by the Roman Catholic Church.

The petitioner, Mons. Gregorio Aglipay, Supreme Head of the Philippine Independent
Church, in the fulfilment of what he considers to be a civic duty, requested Vicente Sotto, a
member of the Philippine Bar, to denounce the matter to the President. In spite of the
protest of the petitioners attorney, the Director of Posts publicly announced having sent to
the United States the designs of the postage for printing. The said stamps were actually
issued and sold though the greater part remained unsold.

The further sale was sought to be prevented by the petitioner. He alleged that the
provisions of Section 23, Subsection 3, Article VI, of the Constitution were violated in the
issuance and selling of the commemorative postage stamps. It was provided therein that,
No public money or property shall ever be appropriated, applied, or used, directly or
indirectly, for the use, benefit, or support of any sect, church, denomination, sectarian,
institution, or system of religion, or for the use, benefit, or support of any priest, preacher,
minister, or other religious teacher or dignitary as such, except when such priest, preacher,
minister, or dignitary is assigned to the armed forces or to any penal institution,
orphanage, or leprosarium.

Issue: Whether or not the issuance of stamps was in violation of the principle of
separation of church and state

Ruling:
NO. Religious freedom, as a constitutional mandate, is not inhibition of profound
reverence for religion and is not denial of its influence in human affairs. Religion as a

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profession of faith to an active power that binds and elevates man to his Creator is
recognized. In so far as it instils into the minds the purest principles of morality, its
influence is deeply felt and highly appreciated.

When the Filipino people, in the preamble of the Constitution, implored "the aid of
Divine Providence, in order to establish a government that shall embody their ideals,
conserve and develop the patrimony of the nation, promote the general welfare, and
secure to themselves and their posterity the blessings of independence under a regime of
justice, liberty and democracy," they thereby manifested reliance upon Him who guides the
destinies of men and nations. The elevating influence of religion in human society is
recognized here as elsewhere. In fact, certain general concessions are indiscriminately
accorded to religious sects and denominations.

There has been no constitutional infraction in this case. Act No. 4052 granted the
Director of Posts, with the approval of the Sec. of Public Works and Communications,
discretion to issue postage stamps with new designs. Even if we were to assume that these
officials made use of a poor judgment in issuing and selling the postage stamps in
question, still, the case of the petitioner would fail to take in weight. Between the exercise
of a poor judgment and the unconstitutionality of the step taken, a gap exists which is yet
to be filled to justify the court in setting aside the official act assailed as coming within a
constitutional inhibition. The court resolved to deny the petition for a writ of prohibition.

SECTION 10 & 11 RELATE TO ARTICLE XIII

9. MAXIMO CALALANG vs A. D. WILLIAMS, ET AL., G.R. No. 47800 December 2, 1940

Doctrine: Social Justice

LAUREL, J.:

Facts:
The National Traffic Commission, in its resolution of July 17, 1940, resolved to recommend
to the Director of the Public Works and to the Secretary of Public Works and
Communications that animal-drawn vehicles be prohibited from passing along the

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following for a period of one year from the date of the opening of the Colgante Bridge to
traffic:

1) Rosario Street extending from Plaza Calderon de la Barca to Dasmarin as

Street from 7:30Am to 12:30 pm and from 1:30 pm to 530 pm; and

2) along Rizal Avenue extending from the railroad crossing at Antipolo Street to

Echague Street from 7 am to 11pm

The Chairman of the National Traffic Commission on July 18, 1940 recommended to the
Director of Public Works with the approval of the Secretary of Public Works the adoption
of thethemeasure proposed in the resolution aforementioned in pursuance of the
provisions of theCommonwealth Act No. 548 which authorizes said Director with the
approval from the Secretary of the Public Works and Communication to promulgate rules
and regulations to regulate and control the use of and traffic on national roads.

On August 2, 1940, the Director recommended to the Secretary the approval of the
recommendations made by the Chairman of the National Traffic Commission with
modifications. The Secretary of Public Works approved the recommendations on August
10,1940. The Mayor of Manila and the Acting Chief of Police of Manila have enforced and
caused to be enforced the rules and regulation. As a consequence, all animal-drawn
vehicles are not allowed to pass and pick up passengers in the places above mentioned to
the detriment not only of their owners but of the riding public as well.

Issues:

1) Whether the rules and regulations promulgated by the respondents pursuant to the
provisions of Commonwealth Act NO. 548 constitute an unlawful inference with legitimate
business or trade and abridged the right to personal liberty and freedom of locomotion?

2) Whether the rules and regulations complained of infringe upon the constitutional
precept regarding the promotion of social justice to insure the well-being and economic
security of all the people?

Held:

1) No. The promulgation of the Act aims to promote safe transit upon and avoid
obstructions on national roads in the interest and convenience of the public. In enacting

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said law, the National Assembly was prompted by considerations of public convenience
and welfare. It was inspired by the desire to relieve congestion of traffic, which is a menace
to the public safety. Public welfare lies at the bottom of the promulgation of the said law
and the state in order to promote the general welfare may interfere with personal liberty,
with property, and with business and occupations. Persons and property may be subject to
all kinds of restraints and burdens in order to secure the general comfort, health, and
prosperity of the State. To this fundamental aims of the government, the rights of the
individual are subordinated. Liberty is a blessing which should not be made to prevail over
authority because society will fall into anarchy. Neither should authority be made to
prevail over liberty because then the individual will fall into slavery. The paradox lies in
the fact that the apparent curtailment of liberty is precisely the very means of insuring its
preserving.

2) No. Social justice is neither communism, nor despotism, nor atomism, nor anarchy, but
the humanization of laws and the equalization of social and economic forces by the State
so that justice in its rational and objectively secular conception may at least be
approximated. Social justice means the promotion of the welfare of all the people, the
adoption by the Government of measures calculated to insure economic stability of all the
competent elements of society, through the maintenance of a proper economic and social
equilibrium in the interrelations of the members of the community, constitutionally,
through the adoption of measures legally justifiable, or extra-constitutionally, through the
exercise of powers underlying the existence of all governments on the time-honored
principles of salus populi estsuprema lex.

Social justice must be founded on the recognition of the necessity of interdependence


among divers and diverse units of a society and of the protection that should be equally
and evenly extended to all groups as a combined force in our social and economic life,
consistent with the fundamental and paramount objective of the state of promoting health,
comfort and quiet of all persons, and of bringing about the greatest good to the greatest
number.

10. G.R. No. L-43800 July 29, 1977LEONILA LAUREL ALMEDA and VENANCIO
ALMEDA, Petitioners, vs.THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS and EULOGIO
GONZALES, respondents.

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FACTS:
Respondent Eulogio Gonzales is an agricultural share tenant of Glicerio, Sinfroso, Susana,
Maria, Sebastian, Rufina, Bienvenido, Besmark and Cesar, all surnamed Angeles, on their
46,529-square land situated in Tanauan, Batangas, and devoted to sugar cane and
coconuts.

September 30, 1968 - the landowners sold the property to petitioners-spouses Leonila
Laurel Almeda and Venancio Almeda without notifying respondent-tenant in writing of
the sale. The document of sale was registered with the Register of Deeds of Tanauan,
Batangas

March 27, 1969 - The document of sale was registered with the Register of Deeds of
Tanauan,Batangas

March 27, 1971 - Respondent-tenant seeks the redemption of the land in a complaint
filed, pursuant to the provisions of Sections 11 and 12 of the Code of Agrarian Reforms,
with the Court of Agrarian Relations at Lipa City.

May 29, 1973 At the hearing, the parties waived their right to present evidence and,
instead,agreed to file simultaneous memoranda upon which the decision of the court
would be based.

October 10, 1973 - the Agrarian Court rendered judgment authorizing, the respondent-
tenant,Eulogio Gonzales, to redeem the tenanted land for P24,000.00, the said amount to
be deposited by him with the Clerk of Court within fifteen (15) days from receipt of the
decision.

January 30, 1976 - the Appellate Court, however, affirmed the decision of the Agrarian
Court. Denied of their motions for reconsideration, petitioners- spouses instituted the
present petition for review

ISSUES:
1. Is there a tenant's right of redemption in sugar and coconut lands
2. Is prior tender or judicial consignation of the redemption price a condition precedent
for the valid exercise of the right of redemption
3. Does the Court of Agrarian Relations have jurisdiction over complaints for redemption
of sugar and coconut land.

126
RULING:
We find the appeal to be impressed with merits.

1. Prior to the enactment of the Agricultural Land Reform Code RA 3844), no right of
preference in the sale of the land under cultivation was enjoyed by the tenant-farmer.

2. Nevertheless, while the Code secures to the tenant-farmer this right of redemption,
inparticular, the exercise thereof must be in accordance with law in order to be valid. "The
timely exercise of the right of legal redemption," said the Court in Basbas v. Entena.
"requires either tender of the price or valid consignation thereof."

3. Reliance cannot be placed upon the case of Hidalgo v. Hidalgo as excuse for the failure
to make the requisite tender or consignation in court, because the Court did not rule
therein that prior tender or judicial consignation of the redemption price is not required
for the valid exercise of the right of redemption.

4. As a consequence, the Court of Agrarian Relations has jurisdiction over suits for
redemption, like the present case, of sugar and coconut lands. Section 154 of the
Agricultural Land Reform Code, as amended, states: "The Court of Agrarian Relations shall
have original and exclusive jurisdiction over (1) all cases or actions involving matters,
controversies, disputes, or money claims arising from agrarian relations ..." ACCORDINGLY,
the appealed decision of the Court of Appeals is hereby reversed and set aside.
Respondent Eulogio Gonzales is hereby held not to have validly exercised his right of
redemption over his tenanted agricultural land.

It is to be noted that under the new Constitution, property ownership is impressed with
social function. Property use must not only be for the benefit of the owner but of society as
well. The State, in the promotion of social justice, may "regulate the acquisition,
ownership, use, enjoyment and disposition of private property, and equitably diffuse
property ... ownership and profits."

11. Estrella Ondoy vs Virgilio Ignacio

Art II Sec 10 of the Constitution of the Philippines : The State shall promote social justice
in all phases of national development.

Facts:
Jose Ondoy, son of Estrella Ondoy, drowned while in the employ of Virgilio Ignacio.
According to the chief engineer and oiler, Jose Ondoy was aboard the ship as part of the
workforce. He was invited by friends to a drinking spree, left the vessel, and thereafter was

127
found dead. Therefore, Estrella was asking for compensation from the death of her son
while in the respondents employ. However, the statement given by the chief engineer and
oiler was ignored by the hearing officer and therefore dismissed the claim for lack of
merit. Even when a motion for reconsideration was filed, this was also denied by the
Secretary of Labor for the same reason, that is, lack of merit.

Issue:
Whether or not the compensation for the death of Jose Ondoy is constitutional; is social
justice
applicable in this case?

Ruling:
Yes.
Firstly, there was no due diligence in the fact finding of the Department of Labor. It merely
disregarded the statements made by the chief engineer and oiler. Secondly, the principle of
social justice applied in this case is a matter of protection, not equality. The Court
recognized the right of the petitioner to theclaim of compensation because her son was
shown to have died while in the actual performance of his work. To strengthen the
constitutional scheme of social justice and protection to labor, The Court quoted another
case as between a laborer, usually poor and unlettered, and the employer, who has
resources to secure able legal advice, the law has reason to demand from the latter the
stricter compliance.

12. Salonga vs Farrales

FACTS:

Defendant Farrales is the titled owner of a parcel of residential land situated in Sta. Rita,
Olongapo City,
Within the owned parcel of land by the defendant, the plaintiff spouses Salonga are the
lessee of the 156 sq meters of land where the latter erected a house and is paying rentals
to the defendant.
Sometime in 1968, the plaintiff failed to pay rental and as a result the defendant filed an
ejectment case for non-payment of rentals against the plaintiff. The plaintiff then offered
that they will just buy their occupied parcel of land instead of vacating, however despite of

128
the insistence of the plaintiff the titled owner defendant refused to accept the offer , thus
there is no contract of sale or sell in the aforesaid land was realized.
Plaintiff then , filed petition for relief. The case was heard and elevated until the CA ,
praying for ordering for the defendant to sell her parcel of land where their house was
erected and that the plaintiff invoke their right to be subjected under Section 6 (9) Article
II of the New Constitution referring to the application of social justice which they
contended that it delimits and regulated property rights and private gains.

ISSUE:
Was the contention of the plaintiff correct such that by invoking for the promotion of
social justice, provided in Article II of the Constitution, they could gain their contention for
relief and force the defendant to sell her land?

RULING:

NO, the contention of social justice cannot be invoked by the plaintiff just to gain relief and
force the defendant to sell her land. Social justice is said to be for promotion of economic
development and proper equilibrium between the relationship of all units of the society.
However social justice cannot be invoked to trample on the rights of property owners who
under the constitution and laws are also entitled for protection. Social justice is not
intended to take away rights from a person and give them to another who is not entitled
thereto.

In the case at bar, the plaintiff cannot force the defendant to sell her title by invoking
equity and justice rather , the plaintiffs may remove the improvements should the lessor
refuse to reimburse by the lessee do not have the right to buy the land. The right of
property of the defendant over her owned land cannot be simply override by invoking
social justice since the right of property is also protected by the state. Thus, judgment
affirmed in favor of the defendant.

SECTIONS 12 RELATE TO ARTICLE & SECTION 13 RELATE TO XIV, SECTION 19

13. Meyer vs Nebraska 262 US 390 (1923)

129
Facts:
Under Nebraska law, it was a crime for any individual or teacher in any private, parochial,
or public school to teach any subject to any person in any language other than English.
Foreign languages could be taught as languages to students only after completion of the
eighth grade. Meyer (defendant), a teacher in a parochial school in the State of Nebraska
(plaintiff), was convicted of violating the Nebraska statute by teaching German to
Raymond Parpart, a ten-year-old child. The Supreme Court of Nebraska affirmed the
conviction, and the Supreme Court of the United States granted certiorari.

Issue: Under constitutional law, did this law violate the Due Process Clause of the 14th
Amendment?

Ruling:
Yes.
Courts Rationale/Reasoning: Here the states objective was to promote assimilation and
civic development but this objectively was not reasonably related to the regulation.

Education and acquisition of knowledge is a fundamental right, and are matters which
should be diligently promoted. Reasonable regulations for all schools are not at issue
here, including regulating that English be taught in public schools; State regulations are
not at issue here either.
Liberty means more than freedom from bodily restraint.

14. Pierce vs Society of Sisters 268 US 510 (1925)

In 1922 Oregon amended its compulsory attendance statute to require that children
between 8 and 16 years old be sent to public schools in the districts where they lived. Two
organizations operating private schools in Oregon, the Society of Sisters of the Holy Names
of Jesus and Mary and the Hill Military Academy, challenged the constitutionality of the
statute under the Fourteenth Amendment, alleging that it deprived them of property
without due process of law; Walter M. Pierce, the governor of Oregon, was named as a
respondent. A federal district court subsequently entered judgment for the schools,
enjoining the state from enforcing the statute and finding that the right to conduct
schools was property and that the statute not only had taken the schools property
without due process but had also deprived parents of the right to direct the education of
children by selecting reputable teachers and places.

130
On March 1617, 1925, the case was argued before the U.S. Supreme Court. It held that the
two schools, as Oregon corporations and property owners within the state, were entitled
to protection against arbitrary, unreasonable and unlawful interference with their
patrons and the consequent destruction of their business and property. Thus, the court
ruled that the statute violated the due process clause. Furthermore, the court ruled that
the Oregon statute unreasonably interfere[d] with the liberty of parents and guardians to
direct the upbringing and education of children. According to the court, the state could
not force schoolchildren to accept instruction from public teachers only. However, the
court did acknowledge that states have wide-ranging rights in regard to education:

No question is raised concerning the power of the State reasonably to regulate all schools,
to inspect, supervise and examine them, their teachers and pupils; to require that all
children of proper age attend some school, that teachers shall be of good moral character
and patriotic disposition, that certain studies plainly essential to good citizenship must be
taught, and that nothing be taught which is manifestly inimical to the public welfare.

Thus, the court invalidated only state action that prevents parents from making an
educational choice for their children; the court did not prohibit states from exercising
regulatory control over education, including nonpublic schools. Finding that the Oregon
statute was unconstitutional, the Supreme Court upheld the decision of the federal district
court.

15. People vs Ritter

FACTS: On or about October 10, 1986, Ritter brought Jessie Ramirez and Rosario
Baluyot in a hotel room in Olongapo. Ritter masturbated Jessie and fingered Rosario.
Afterwards, he inserted a foreign object to the vagina of Rosario. The next morning,
Ritter gave Jessie 200, and Rosario 300. Rosario told Jessie that Ritter inserted an object
inside her vagina. Sometime the following day, Rosario said that the object has already
been removed from her vagina. On May 14, 1987, Alcantara saw Rosario with bloody
skirt, foul smelling. Rosario was brought and confined to Olongapo City general
Hospital. An OB-Gyne tried to remove the object inside her vagina using forceps but
failed because it was deeply embedded and covered by tissues. She was having
peritonitis. She told the attending physician that a Negro inserted the object to her
vagina 3 months ago. Ritter was made liable for rape with homicide.

ISSUE: W/N Ritter was liable for rape and homicide

131
HELD:
No. The prosecution failed to prove that Rosario was only 12 years old when the
incident with Ritter happened. And that Rosario prostituted herself even at the tender
age. As evidence, she received 300 from Ritter the following morning. A
doctor/specialist also testified that the inserted object in the vagina of Rosario Baluyot
by Ritter was different from that which caused her death. As evidence, Rosario herself
said to Jessie the following day that the object has been removed already. She also told
the doctor that a Negro inserted it to her vagina 3 months ago. Ritter was a Caucasian.
Ritter was also acquitted for the criminal case of rape with homicide. However, it does
not exempt him for the moral and exemplary damages he must award to the victims
heirs. It does not necessarily follow that the appellant is also free from civil liability
which is impliedly instituted with the criminal action. Ritter was deported.

16. Dept of Education vs San Diego 180 SCRA 533 (December 21, 1989)

FACTS:
The respondent failed to pass the National Madical Admission Test (NMAT) 3 times and he
was denied admission to take the test for another time by the petitioner under its rule that
a student is allowed only to take the NMAT 3 times and after 3 consecutive failures a
student shall not be allowed to take the NMAT the 4th time. Respondent invoke his
constitutional rights on academic freedom and quality education in his petition for
mandamus before the court. Respondent judge rendered decision citing the admission
rule of the petitioner as an arbitrary exercise of police power, depriving respondent of his
right to pursue medical education thus this petition for review before the higher court.

Issue:
Whether or not the admission rule implemented by petitioner an arbitrary exercise of
police power.

Held:
The court ruled that police power is valid', exercised if (a. the interests of the public
generally as distinguished from those of a particular class, require the interference of the
State and (b. the means employed are reasonably necessary to the attainment of the object
sought to be accomplished and not unduly oppressive upon individuals. The proper
exercise of the police power requires the concurrence of a lawful subject and a lawful
method. The subject of the challenged regulation is certainly within the ambit of the police
power. It is the right and indeed the responsibility of the State to insure that the medical

132
profession is not infiltrated by incompetents to whom patients may unwarily entrust their
lives and health. The method employed by the challenged regulation is not irrelevant to
the purpose of the law nor is it arbitrary or oppressive. The three- flunk rule is intended to
insuate the medical schools and ultimately the medical profession from the intrusion of
those not qualified to be doctors. The State needs to implement decisive steps to regulate
system of education by directing students to the course where he is best suited through
initial tests and evaluation. The decision of the respondent judge was reversed.

17. Virtuoso v. Municipal Judge, 82 SCRA 191, March 21, 1978

Facts:
On February 23, 1978, petitioner Francisco Virtouso , Jr., who filed an application for the
writ of habeas corpus, premised his plea for liberty primarily on the ground that the
preliminary examination which led to the issuance of a warrant of arrest against him was a
useless formality as respondent Municipal Judge of Mariveles, Bataan, (1) failed to meet
the strict standard required by the Constitution to ascertain whether there was a probable
cause. (2) He likewise alleged that aside from the constitutional infirmity that tainted the
procedure followed in the preliminary examination, the bail imposed was clearly
excessive. (3) It was in the amount of P16,000.00, the alleged robbery of a TV set being
imputed to petitioner. As prayed for, the Court issued a writ of habeas corpus, returnable
to it on Wednesday, March 15, 1978. Respondent Judge, in his return filed on March 8,
1978, justified the issuance of the warrant of arrest, alleging that there was no
impropriety in the way the preliminary examination was conducted. As to the excessive
character of the bail, he asserted that while it was fixed in accordance with the Revised
Bail Bond Guide issued by the Executive Judge in Bataan in 1977, he nevertheless reduced
the amount to P8,000.00.

Issue:
Whether or not the procedure by respondent Judge in ascertaining the existence of
probable cause was constitutionally deficient?

Ruling:
The Supreme Court declared that the petition is granted in accordance with the terms of
the Resolution of this Court of March 15, 1978.The Court issued the following Resolution:
Acting on the verbal petition of counsel for petitioner Francisco Virtouso, Jr., the Court
Resolved pursuant to section 191of Presidential Decree No. 603, petitioner being a 17-
yearold minor, to order the release of the petitioner on the recognizance of his parents
Francisco Virtouso, Sr. and Manuela Virtouso and his Counsel, Atty. Guillermo B.Bandonil,
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who, in open court, agreed to act in such capacity, without prejudice to further
proceedings in a pending case against petitioner being taken in accordance with law. This
Court should, whenever appropriate, give vitality and force to the Youth and Welfare Code.
Where, however, the right to bail exists, it should not be rendered nugatory by requiring a
sum that is excessive.

SECTION 16

18. Oposa vs. Factoran Case Digest (G.R. No. 101083, July 30, 1993)

FACTS:
The plaintiffs in this case are all minors duly represented and joined by their parents. The
first complaint was filed as a taxpayer's class suit at the Branch 66 (Makati, Metro Manila),
of the Regional Trial Court, National capital Judicial Region against defendant
(respondent) Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Reasources
(DENR). Plaintiffs alleged that they are entitled to the full benefit, use and enjoyment of
the natural resource treasure that is the country's virgin tropical forests. They further
asseverate that they represent their generation as well as generations yet unborn and
asserted that continued deforestation have caused a distortion and disturbance of the
ecological balance and have resulted in a host of environmental tragedies.

Plaintiffs prayed that judgement be rendered ordering the respondent, his agents,
representatives and other persons acting in his behalf to cancel all existing Timber License
Agreement (TLA) in the country and to cease and desist from receiving, accepting,
processing, renewing or approving new TLAs.

Defendant, on the other hand, filed a motion to dismiss on the ground that the complaint
had no cause of action against him and that it raises a political question.

The RTC Judge sustained the motion to dismiss, further ruling that granting of the relief
prayed for would result in the impairment of contracts which is prohibited by the
Constitution.

Plaintiffs (petitioners) thus filed the instant special civil action for certiorari and asked the
court to rescind and set aside the dismissal order on the ground that the respondent RTC
Judge gravely abused his discretion in dismissing the action.

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ISSUES:

(1) Whether or not the plaintiffs have a cause of action.


(2) Whether or not the complaint raises a political issue.
(3) Whether or not the original prayer of the plaintiffs result in the impairment of
contracts.

RULING:

First Issue: Cause of Action.

Respondents aver that the petitioners failed to allege in their complaint a specific legal
right violated by the respondent Secretary for which any relief is provided by law. The
Court did not agree with this. The complaint focuses on one fundamental legal right -- the
right to a balanced and healthful ecology which is incorporated in Section 16 Article II of
the Constitution. The said right carries with it the duty to refrain from impairing the
environment and implies, among many other things, the judicious management and
conservation of the country's forests. Section 4 of E.O. 192 expressly mandates the DENR
to be the primary government agency responsible for the governing and supervising the
exploration, utilization, development and conservation of the country's natural resources.
The policy declaration of E.O. 192 is also substantially re-stated in Title XIV Book IV of the
Administrative Code of 1987. Both E.O. 192 and Administrative Code of 1987 have set the
objectives which will serve as the bases for policy formation, and have defined the powers
and functions of the DENR. Thus, right of the petitioners (and all those they represent) to a
balanced and healthful ecology is as clear as DENR's duty to protect and advance the said
right.

A denial or violation of that right by the other who has the correlative duty or obligation to
respect or protect or respect the same gives rise to a cause of action. Petitioners maintain
that the granting of the TLA, which they claim was done with grave abuse of discretion,
violated their right to a balance and healthful ecology. Hence, the full protection thereof
requires that no further TLAs should be renewed or granted.

After careful examination of the petitioners' complaint, the Court finds it to be adequate
enough to show, prima facie, the claimed violation of their rights.

Second Issue: Political Issue.

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Second paragraph, Section 1 of Article VIII of the constitution provides for the expanded
jurisdiction vested upon the Supreme Court. It allows the Court to rule upon even on the
wisdom of the decision of the Executive and Legislature and to declare their acts as invalid
for lack or excess of jurisdiction because it is tainted with grave abuse of discretion.

Third Issue: Violation of the non-impairment clause.

The Court held that the Timber License Agreement is an instrument by which the state
regulates the utilization and disposition of forest resources to the end that public welfare
is promoted. It is not a contract within the purview of the due process clause thus, the
non-impairment clause cannot be invoked. It can be validly withdraw whenever dictated
by public interest or public welfare as in this case. The granting of license does not create
irrevocable rights, neither is it property or property rights.

Moreover, the constitutional guaranty of non-impairment of obligations of contract is limit


by the exercise by the police power of the State, in the interest of public health, safety,
moral and general welfare. In short, the non-impairment clause must yield to the police
power of the State.

The instant petition, being impressed with merit, is hereby GRANTED and the RTC
decision is SET ASIDE.

19. Laguna Lake Development Authority vs CA GR No. 120865-71; Dec. 7 1995

FACTS:
The Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) was created through Republic Act No.
4850. It was granted, inter alia, exclusive jurisdiction to issue permits for the use of all
surface water for any project or activity in or affecting the said region including navigation,
construction, and operation of fishpens, fish enclosures, fish corrals and the like.
Then came RA 7160, the Local Government Code of 1991. The municipalities in the Laguna
Lake region interpreted its provisions to mean that the newly passed law gave municipal
governments the exclusive jurisdiction to issue fishing privileges within their municipal
waters.

ISSUE:

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Who should exercise jurisdiction over the Laguna Lake and its environs insofar as the
issuance of permits for fishing privileges is concerned, the LLDA or the towns and
municipalities comprising the region?

HELD:
LLDA has jurisdiction over such matters because the charter of the LLDA prevails over the
Local Government Code of 1991. The said charter constitutes a special law, while the latter
is a general law. It is basic in statutory construction that the enactment of a later
legislation which is a general law, cannot be construed to have repealed a special law. The
special law is to be taken as an exception to the general law in the absence of special
circumstances forcing a contrary conclusion.
In addition, the charter of the LLDA embodies a valid exercise of police power for the
purpose of protecting and developing the Laguna Lake region, as opposed to the Local
Government Code, which grants powers to municipalities to issue fishing permits for
revenue purposes.

Thus it has to be concluded that the charter of the LLDA should prevail over the Local
Government Code of 1991 on matters affecting Laguna de Bay.

SECTION 19

20. Garcia vs. Board of Investments (BOI) 191 SCRA 288 November 1990

FACTS:

Former Bataan Petrochemical Corporation (BPC), now Luzon Petrochemical Corporation,


formed by a group of Taiwanese investors, was granted by the BOI its have its plant site for
the products naphta cracker and naphta to based in Bataan. In February 1989, one year
after the BPC began its production in Bataan, the corporation applied to the BOI to have its
plant site transferred from Bataan to Batangas. Despite vigorous opposition from
petitioner Cong. Enrique Garcia and others, the BOI granted private respondent BPCs
application, stating that the investors have the final choice as to where to have their plant
site because they are the ones who risk capital for the project.

ISSUE:

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Whether or not the BOI committed a grave abuse of discretion in yielding to the
application of the investors without considering the national interest

COURT RULING:

The Supreme Court found the BOI to have committed grave abuse of discretion in this case,
and ordered the original application of the BPC to have its plant site in Bataan and the
product naphta as feedstock maintained.

The ponente, Justice Gutierrez, Jr., first stated the Courts judicial power to settle actual
controversies as provided for by Section 1 of Article VIII in our 1987 Constitution before
he wrote the reasons as to how the Court arrived to its conclusion. He mentioned that
nothing is shown to justify the BOIs action in letting the investors decide on an issue
which, if handled by our own government, could have been very beneficial to the State, as
he remembered the word of a great Filipino leader, to wit: .. he would not mind having a
government run like hell by Filipinos than one subservient to foreign dictation.

Justice Grin o Aquino, in her dissenting opinion, argued that the petition was not well-
taken because the 1987 Investment Code does not prohibit the registration of a certain
project, as well as any decision of the BOI regarding the amended application. She stated
that the fact that petitioner disagrees with BOI does not make the BOI wrong in its
decision, and that petitioner should have appealed to the President of the country and not
to the Court, as provided for by Section 36 of the 1987 Investment Code.

Justice Melencio-Herrera, in another dissenting opinion, stated that the Constitution does
not vest in the Court the power to enter the realm of policy considerations, such as in this
case.

SECTION 21

21. Association of Small Landowners in the Philippines vs. Honorable Secretary of


Agrarian Reform
G.R. No. 78742 July 14, 1989

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Petitioner: Association of Small Landowners in the Philippines
Respondent: Honorable Secretary of Agrarian Reform

Facts:
These are consolidated cases which involve common legal, including serious challenges to
the constitutionality of the several measures such as P.D. No. 27, E.O. No. 228, Presidential
Proclamation No. 131, E.O. No. 229, and R.A. No. 6657.

G.R. No. 79777


The petitioners are questioning P.D. No. 27 and E.O. Nos. 228 and 229 on grounds inter alia
of separation of powers, due process, equal protection and the constitutional limitation
that no private property shall be taken for public use without just compensation. G.R. No.
79310

G.R. No. 79310


This petition seeks to prohibit the implementation of Proc. No. 131 and E.O. No. 229. They
contend that taking must be simultaneous with payment of just compensation as it is
traditionally understood, i.e., with money and in full, but no such payment is contemplated
in Section 5 of the E.O. No. 229.

G.R. No. 79744


The petitioner argues that E.O. Nos. 228 and 229 are violative of the constitutional
provision that no private property shall be taken without due process or just
compensation.

G.R. No. 78742


Petitioners claim they cannot eject their tenants and so are unable to enjoy their right of
retention because the Department of Agrarian Reform has so far not issued the
implementing rules required under the above-quoted decree.

Issue: Whether agrarian reform is an exercise of police power or eminent domain

Ruling:
There are traditional distinctions between the police power and the power of eminent
domain that logically preclude the application of both powers at the same time on the
same subject. Property condemned under the police power is noxious or intended for a
noxious purpose, such as a building on the verge of collapse, which should be demolished
for the public safety, or obscene materials, which should be destroyed in the interest of
public morals. The confiscation of such property is not compensable, unlike the taking of

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property under the power of expropriation, which requires the payment of just
compensation to the owner.

The cases before us present no knotty complication insofar as the question of


compensable taking is concerned. To the extent that the measures under challenge merely
prescribe retention limits for landowners, there is an exercise of the police power for the
regulation of private property in accordance with the Constitution. But where, to carry out
such regulation, it becomes necessary to deprive such owners of whatever lands they may
own in excess of the maximum area allowed, there is definitely a taking under the power
of eminent domain for which payment of just compensation is imperative. The taking
contemplated is not a mere limitation of the use of the land. What is required is the
surrender of the title to and the physical possession of the said excess and all beneficial
rights accruing to the owner in favor of the farmer-beneficiary. This is definitely an
exercise not of the police power but of the power of eminent domain.

SECTION 22

21. CITY GOVERNMENT OF BAGUIO, HEREIN REPRESENTED BY CITYMAYOR


REINALDO A.BAUTISTA, JR., vs ATTY. BRAIN S. MASWENG,G.R. No. 18891,

Facts:

In pursuance of the final Decision in G.R. No. 180206, petitioner issued the subject
demolition advicesfor the enforcement of Demolition Order No. 33 Series of 2005 against
Alexander Ampaguey, Sr. et.al Demolition Order No. 83, Series of 1999 against Julio
Daluyen, Sr., et.al, all in Busol Watershed, BaguioCity. As it is, the aforesaid individuals filed
a petition for injunction Case No. 31-CAR 09 whileMagdalena Gumangan, et al. filed a
petition for identification, delineation and recognition of ancestral land claims with prayer
for temporary restraining order and writ of preliminary injunction Case No. 29-CAR 09.
Respondent in his capacity as the Regional Hearing Officer of the National Commission on
Indigenous Peoples, Cordillera Administrative Region (NCIP-CAR) issued the following
separate temporary restraining orders and writs of preliminary injunction in both cases
orders:

1.) 72-hour temporary Restraining Order dated July 27, 2009, Order dated July 31, 2009
and writ of Preliminary Injunctions in NCIP Case No. 31- CAR 09 and

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2.) 72 hour Temporary Restraining Order dated July 27, 2009, Order dated July 31, 2009
and writ of Preliminary Injunction in NCIP Case No. 29 CAR-0-.

Hence, this petition asserting that the restraining orders and writs of preliminar
injunction were issued in willful disregard, disobedience, defiance and resistance of this
courts Decision in G.R. No. 180206 which dismissed the previous injunction case.
Petitioner contends that respondents act of enjoining the execution of the demolition
orders and demolition advices is tantamount to allowing forum shopping since the
implementation of the demolition orders offer the structures in the Busol Forest
Reservation had already been adjudicated and affirmed by the court. Respondent claims
that he issued the restraining orders and writs of preliminary injunction in NCIP Case Nos.
31 CAR 09 and 27 CAR 09 because his jurisdiction was called upon to protect and preserve
the rights of the petitioners in those cases who were undoubtedly members of the
indigenous cultural communities indigenous people. In addition, he maintains that the
orders and writs he issued did not disregard the earlier ruling of this court in G.R. No.
180206 because the court has in fact afirmfed the power of the NCIP to issue temporary
restraining orders and writs of injunction without any prohibition against the issuance of
said writs when the main action is for inunction.

Issue:

Whether the respondent should be cited in contempt of court for issuing the subject
temporary restraining orders and writs of preliminary injunction.

Held:

The court ruled in affirmative.

The said orders clearly contravene the courts ruling in G.R. No. 180206 that Elvin
Gumangan, et.al. who are owners of houses and structures covered by the demolition
orders issued by petitioner are not entitled to the injunctive relief previously granted by
respondent. The court finds that petitioners and private respondents present the very
same arguments and counter arguments with respect to the writ of injunction against the
fencing of the Busol Watershed Reservation. The same legal issues are thus being litigated
in G.R. No.180206 and in the case at bar,except that different writs of injunction are being
assailed.

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SECTION 25

23.Basco v. PAGCOR GRN 91649, 14 May 1991)

FACTS:
On July 11, 1983, PAGCOR was created under Presidential Decree 1869, pursuant to the
policy of the government, to regulate and centralize through an appropriate institution
all games of chance authorized by existing franchise or permitted by law. This was
subsequently proven to be beneficial not just to the government but also to the society in
general. It is a reliable source of much needed revenue for the cash-strapped Government.

Petitioners filed an instant petition seeking to annul the PAGCOR because it is allegedly
contrary to morals, public policy and public order, among others.

ISSUES:
Whether PD 1869 is unconstitutional because:
1.) it is contrary to morals, public policy and public order;

2.) it constitutes a waiver of the right of the City of Manila to improve taxes and legal fees;
and that the exemption clause in PD 1869 is violative of constitutional principle of Local
Autonomy;

3.) it violates the equal protection clause of the Constitution in that it legalizes gambling
thru PAGCOR while most other forms are outlawed together with prostitution, drug
trafficking and other vices; and

4.) it is contrary to the avowed trend of the Cory Government, away from monopolistic and
crony economy and toward free enterprise and privatization.

HELD:
1.) Gambling, in all its forms, is generally prohibited, unless allowed by law. But the
prohibition of gambling does not mean that the government can not regulate it in the
exercise of its police power, wherein the state has the authority to enact legislation that
may interfere with personal liberty or property in order to promote the general welfare.

142
2.) The City of Manila, being a mere Municipal Corporation has no inherent right to impose
taxes. Its charter was created by Congress, therefore subject to its control. Also, local
governments have no power to tax instrumentalities of the National Government.

3.) Equal protection clause of the Constitution does not preclude classification of
individuals who may be accorded different treatment under the law, provided it is not
unreasonable or arbitrary. The clause does not prohibit the legislature from establishing
classes of individuals or objects upon which different rules shall operate.

4.) The Judiciary does not settle policy issues which are within the domain of the political
branches of government and the people themselves as the repository of all state power.

Every law has in its favor the presumption of constitutionality, thus, to be nullified, it must
be shown that there is a clear and unequivocal breach of the Constitution. In this case, the
grounds raised by petitioners have failed to overcome the presumption. Therefore, it is
hereby dismissed for lack of merit.

24. Limbona vs. Mangelin GR No. 80391 28 February 1989

Facts:

Petitioner, Sultan Alimbusar Limbona, was elected Speaker of the Regional Legislative
Assembly or Batasang Pampook of Central Mindanao (Assembly). On October 21, 1987
Congressman Datu Guimid Matalam, Chairman of the Committee on Muslim Affairs of the
House of Representatives, invited petitioner in his capacity as Speaker of the Assembly of
Region XII in a consultation/dialogue with local government officials. Petitioner accepted
the invitation and informed the Assembly members through the Assembly Secretary that
there shall be no session in November as his presence was needed in the house committee
hearing of Congress. However, on November 2, 1987, the Assembly held a session in
defiance of the Limbona's advice, where he was unseated from his position. Petitioner
prays that the session's proceedings be declared null and void and be it declared that he
was still the Speaker of the Assembly. Pending further proceedings of the case, the SC

143
received a resolution from the Assembly expressly expelling petitioner's membership
therefrom. Respondents argue that petitioner had "filed a case before the Supreme Court
against some members of the Assembly on a question which should have been resolved
within the confines of the Assembly," for which the respondents now submit that the
petition had become "moot and academic" because its resolution.

Issue:
Whether or not the courts of law have jurisdiction over the autonomous governments or
regions. What is the extent of self-government given to the autonomous governments of
Region XII?

Held:

Autonomy is either decentralization of administration or decentralization of power. There


is decentralization of administration when the central government delegates
administrative powers to political subdivisions in order to broaden the base of
government power and in the process to make local governments "more responsive and
accountable". At the same time, it relieves the central government of the burden of
managing local affairs and enables it to concentrate on national concerns. The President
exercises "general supervision" over them, but only to "ensure that local affairs are
administered according to law." He has no control over their acts in the sense that he can
substitute their judgments with his own. Decentralization of power, on the other hand,
involves an abdication of political power in the favor of local governments units declared
to be autonomous. In that case, the autonomous government is free to chart its own
destiny and shape its future with minimum intervention from central authorities.

An autonomous government that enjoys autonomy of the latter category [CONST. (1987),
Art. X, Sec. 15.] is subject alone to the decree of the organic act creating it and accepted
principles on the effects and limits of "autonomy." On the other hand, an autonomous
government of the former class is, as we noted, under the supervision of the national
government acting through the President (and the Department of Local Government). If
the Sangguniang Pampook (of Region XII), then, is autonomous in the latter sense, its acts
are, debatably beyond the domain of this Court in perhaps the same way that the internal
acts, say, of the Congress of the Philippines are beyond our jurisdiction. But if it is
autonomous in the former category only, it comes unarguably under our jurisdiction. An
examination of the very Presidential Decree creating the autonomous governments of
Mindanao persuades us that they were never meant to exercise autonomy in the second
sense (decentralization of power). PD No. 1618, in the first place, mandates that "[t]he
President shall have the power of general supervision and control over Autonomous
Regions." Hence, we assume jurisdiction. And if we can make an inquiry in the validity of

144
the expulsion in question, with more reason can we review the petitioner's removal as
Speaker.

This case involves the application of a most important constitutional policy and principle,
that of local autonomy. We have to obey the clear mandate on local autonomy.

Where a law is capable of two interpretations, one in favor of centralized power in


Malacan ang and the other beneficial to local autonomy, the scales must be weighed in
favor of autonomy.

Upon the facts presented, we hold that the November 2 and 5, 1987 sessions were invalid.
It is true that under Section 31 of the Region XII Sanggunian Rules, "[s]essions shall not be
suspended or adjourned except by direction of the Sangguniang Pampook". But while this
opinion is in accord with the respondents' own, we still invalidate the twin sessions in
question, since at the time the petitioner called the "recess," it was not a settled matter
whether or not he could do so. In the second place, the invitation tendered by the
Committee on Muslim Affairs of the House of Representatives provided a plausible reason
for the intermission sought. Also, assuming that a valid recess could not be called, it does
not appear that the respondents called his attention to this mistake. What appears is that
instead, they opened the sessions themselves behind his back in an apparent act of mutiny.
Under the circumstances, we find equity on his side. For this reason, we uphold the
"recess" called on the ground of good faith.

SECTION 28

25. Legaspi v CSC 150 SCRA 530 (1987)

Facts:

The petitioner invokes his constitutional right to information on matters of public concern
in a special civil action for mandamus against the CSC pertaining to the information of civil
service eligibilities of certain persons employed as sanitarians in the Health Department of
Cebu City. The standing of the petitioner was challenged by the Solicitor General of being
devoid of legal right to be informed of the civil service eligibilities of government
employees for failure of petitioner to provide actual interest to secure the information
sought.

145
Issue: Whether or not petitioner may invoke his constitutional right to information in the
case at bar.

Held:

The court held that when the question is one of public right and the object of the
mandamus is to procure the enforcement of a public duty, the people are regarded as the
real party in interest and the relator at whose instigation the proceedings are instituted
need not show that he has any legal or special interest in the result, it being sufficient to
show that he is a citizen and as such interested in the execution of the laws. The
Constitution provides the guarantee of adopting policy of full public disclosure subject to
reasonable conditions prescribed by law as in regulation in the manner of examining the
public records by the government agency in custody thereof. But the constitutional
guarantee to information on matters of public concern is not absolute. Under the
Constitution, access to official records, papers, etc., are "subject to limitations as may be
provided by law" (Art. III, Sec. 7, second sentence). The law may therefore exempt certain
types of information from public scrutiny, such as those affecting national security.

The court delves into determining whether the information sought for by the petitioner is
of public interest. All appointments in the Civil Service Commission are made according to
merit and fitness while a public office is a public trust. Public employees therefore are
accountable to the people even as to their eligibilities to their positions in the government.
The court also noted that the information on the result of the CSC eligibility examination is
released to the public therefore the request of petitioner is one that is not unusual or
unreasonable. The public, through any citizen, has the right to verify the civil eligibilities of
any person occupying government positions.

26. Valmonte vs De Villa 170 SCRA 256

THE FACTS:
On 20 January 1987, the National Capital Region District Command (NCRDC) was activated
pursuant to Letter of Instruction 02/87 of the Philippine General Headquarters, AFP, with
the mission of conducting security operations within its area of responsibility and
peripheral areas, for the purpose of establishing an effective territorial defense,

146
maintaining peace and order, and providing an atmosphere conducive to the social,
economic and political development of the National Capital Region. As part of its duty to
maintain peace and order, the NCRDC installed checkpoints in various parts of Valenzuela,
Metro Manila.

Petitioners Atty. Ricardo Valmonte, who is a resident of Valenzuela, Metro Manila, and the
Union of Lawyers and Advocates For Peoples Rights (ULAP) sought the declaration of
checkpoints in Valenzuela, Metro Manila and elsewhere as unconstitutional. In the
alternative, they prayed that respondents Renato De Villa and the National Capital Region
District Command (NCRDC) be directed to formulate guidelines in the implementation of
checkpoints for the protection of the people. Petitioners contended that the checkpoints
gave the respondents blanket authority to make searches and seizures without search
warrant or court order in violation of the Constitution.

THE ISSUE

Do the military and police checkpoints violate the right of the people against unreasonable
search and seizures?

THE RULING

[The Court, voting 13-2, DISMISSED the petition.]

NO, military and police checkpoints DO NOT violate the right of the people against
unreasonable search and seizures.

xxx. Not all searches and seizures are prohibited. Those which are reasonable are not
forbidden. A reasonable search is not to be determined by any fixed formula but is to be
resolved according to the facts of each case.

Where, for example, the officer merely draws aside the curtain of a vacant vehicle which is
parked on the public fair grounds, or simply looks into a vehicle, or flashes a light therein,
these do not constitute unreasonable search.

The setting up of the questioned checkpoints in Valenzuela (and probably in other areas)
may be considered as a security measure to enable the NCRDC to pursue its mission of
establishing effective territorial defense and maintaining peace and order for the benefit of
the public. Checkpoints may also be regarded as measures to thwart plots to destabilize
the government, in the interest of public security. In this connection, the Court may take
judicial notice of the shift to urban centers and their suburbs of the insurgency movement,

147
so clearly reflected in the increased killings in cities of police and military men by NPA
sparrow units, not to mention the abundance of unlicensed firearms and the alarming
rise in lawlessness and violence in such urban centers, not all of which are reported in
media, most likely brought about by deteriorating economic conditions which all sum up
to what one can rightly consider, at the very least, as abnormal times. Between the
inherent right of the state to protect its existence and promote public welfare and an
individual's right against a warrantless search which is however reasonably conducted,
the former should prevail.

True, the manning of checkpoints by the military is susceptible of abuse by the men in
uniform, in the same manner that all governmental power is susceptible of abuse. But, at
the cost of occasional inconvenience, discomfort and even irritation to the citizen, the
checkpoints during these abnormal times, when conducted within reasonable limits, are
part of the price we pay for an orderly society and a peaceful community.

27. MA. CARMEN G. AQUINO-SARMIENTO, petitioner, vs. MANUEL L. MORATO (in his
capacity as Chairman of the MTRCB) and the MOVIE & TELEVISION REVIEW AND
CLASSIFICATION BOARD, respondents.

FACTS :

In February 1989, petitioner, herself a member of respondent Movie and Television


Review and Classification Board (MTRCB), wrote its records officer requesting that she be
allowed to examine the board's records pertaining to the voting slips accomplished by the
individual board members after a review of the movies and television productions. It is on
the basis of said slips that films are either banned, cut or classified accordingly. Petitioner's
request was eventually denied by respondent Morato on the ground that whenever the
members of the board sit in judgment over a film, their decisions as reflected in the
individual voting slips partake the nature of conscience votes and as such, are purely and
completely private and personal On February 27, 1989, respondent Morato called an
executive meeting of the MTRCB to discuss, among others, the issue raised by petitioner. In
said meeting, seventeen (17) members of the board voted to declare their individual
voting records as classified documents which rendered the same inaccessible to the public
without clearance from the chairman. Thereafter, respondent Morato denied petitioner's
request to examine the voting slips. However, it was only much later, i.e., on July 27, 1989,
that respondent Board issued Resolution No. 10-89 which declared as confidential, private

148
and personal, the decision of the reviewing committee and the voting slips of the
members.

ISSUE : WON Resolution No. 10-89 is valid

HELD :

The term private has been defined as "belonging to or concerning, an individual person,
company, or interest"; whereas, public means "pertaining to, or belonging to, or affecting a
nation, state, or community at large. As may be gleaned from the decree (PD 1986)
creating the respondent classification board, there is no doubt that its very existence is
public is character. it is an office created to serve public interest. It being the case,
respondents can lay no valid claim to privacy. The right to privacy belongs to the individual
acting in his private capacity and not to a governmental agency or officers tasked with, and
acting in, the discharge of public duties. the decisions of the Board and the individual
voting slips accomplished by the members concerned are acts made pursuant to their
official functions, and as such, are neither personal nor private in nature but rather public
in character. They are, therefore, public records access to which is guaranteed to the
citizenry by no less than the fundamental law of the land.

28. G.R. No. 183591 October 14 2008


Province of North Cotabato vs Government of the Republic of the Philippines

FACTS:
On August 5, 2008, the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the Moro
Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) were scheduled to sign a Memorandum of Agreement of
the Ancestral Domain Aspect of the GRP - MILF Tripoli Agreement on Peace of 2001 in
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Invoking the right to information on matters of public concern, the petitioners seek to
compel respondents to disclose and furnish them the complete and official copies of the
MA-AD and to prohibit the slated signing of the MOA-AD and the holding of public
consultation thereon. They also pray that the MOA-AD be declared unconstitutional. The
Court issued a TRO enjoining the GRP from signing the same.

ISSUES:

149
1. Whether or not the constitutionality and the legality of the MOA is ripe for adjudication;

2. Whether or not there is a violation of the people's right to information on matters of


public concern (Art 3 Sec. 7) under a state policy of full disclosure of all its transactions
involving public interest (Art 2, Sec 28) including public consultation under RA 7160
(Local Government Code of 1991)

3. Whether or not the signing of the MOA, the Government of the Republic of the
Philippines would be binding itself
a) to create and recognize the Bangsamoro Juridical Entity (BJE) as a separate state, or a
juridical, territorial or political subdivision not recognized by law;
b) to revise or amend the Constitution and existing laws to conform to the MOA;
c) to concede to or recognize the claim of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front for ancestral
domain in violation of Republic Act No. 8371 (THE INDIGENOUS PEOPLES RIGHTS ACT OF
1997),
particularly Section 3(g) & Chapter VII (DELINEATION,
RECOGNITION OF ANCESTRAL DOMAINS)

RULINGS:

1. Yes, the petitions are ripe for adjudication. The failure of the respondents to consult the
local government units or communities affected constitutes a departure by respondents
from their mandate under EO No. 3. Moreover, the respondents exceeded their authority
by the mere act of guaranteeing amendments to the Constitution. Any alleged violation of
the Constitution by any branch of government is a proper matter for judicial review.
As the petitions involve constitutional issues which are of paramount public interest or of
transcendental importance, the Court grants the petitioners, petitioners-in-intervention
and intervening respondents the requisite locus standi in keeping with the liberal stance
adopted in David v. Macapagal- Arroyo.
In Pimentel, Jr. v. Aguirre, this Court held:
x x x [B]y the mere enactment of the questioned law or the approval of the challenged
action, the dispute is said to have ripened into a judicial controversy even without any
other overt act . Indeed, even a singular violation of the Constitution and/or the law is
enough to awaken judicial duty.x x x x
By the same token, when an act of the President, who in our constitutional scheme is a
coequal of Congress, is seriously alleged to have infringed the Constitution and the laws x x
x settling the dispute becomes the duty and the responsibility of the courts.
That the law or act in question is not yet effective does not negate ripeness.

150
2. Yes. The Court finds that there is a grave violation of the Constitution involved in the
matters of public concern (Sec 7 Art III) under a state policy of full disclosure of all its
transactions involving public interest (Art 2, Sec 28) including public consultation under
RA 7160 (Local Government Code of 1991).
(Sec 7 ArtIII) The right to information guarantees the right of the people to demand
information, while Sec 28 recognizes the duty of officialdom to give information even if
nobody demands. The complete and effective exercise of the right to information
necessitates that its complementary provision on public disclosure derive the same self-
executory nature, subject only to reasonable safeguards or limitations as may be provided
by law.
The contents of the MOA-AD is a matter of paramount public concern involving public
interest in the highest order. In declaring that the right to information contemplates steps
and negotiations leading to the consummation of the contract, jurisprudence finds no
distinction as to the executory nature or commercial character of the agreement.
E.O. No. 3 itself is replete with mechanics for continuing consultations on both national
and local levels and for a principal forum for consensus-building. In fact, it is the duty of
the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process to conduct regular dialogues to seek
relevant information, comments, advice, and recommendations from peace partners and
concerned sectors of society.

3.
a) to create and recognize the Bangsamoro Juridical Entity (BJE) as a separate state, or a
juridical, territorial or political subdivision not recognized by law;

Yes. The provisions of the MOA indicate, among other things, that the Parties aimed to vest
in the BJE the status of an associated state or, at any rate, a status closely approximating it.
The concept of association is not recognized under the present Constitution.

No province, city, or municipality, not even the ARMM, is recognized under our laws as
having an associative relationship with the national government. Indeed, the concept
implies powers that go beyond anything ever granted by the Constitution to any local or
regional government. It also implies the recognition of the associated entity as a state. The
Constitution, however, does not contemplate any state in this jurisdiction other than the
Philippine State, much less does it provide for a transitory status that aims to prepare any
part of Philippine territory for independence.

The BJE is a far more powerful entity than the autonomous region recognized in the
Constitution. It is not merely an expanded version of the ARMM, the status of its
relationship with the national government being fundamentally different from that of the
ARMM. Indeed, BJE is a state in all but name as it meets the criteria of a state laid down in

151
the Montevideo Convention, namely, a permanent population, a defined territory, a
government, and a capacity to enter into relations with other states.

Even assuming arguendo that the MOA-AD would not necessarily sever any portion of
Philippine territory, the spirit animating it which has betrayed itself by its use of the
concept of association runs counter to the national sovereignty and territorial integrity
of the Republic.

The defining concept underlying the relationship between the national government and
the BJE being itself contrary to the present Constitution, it is not surprising that many of
the specific provisions of the MOA-AD on the formation and powers of the BJE are in
conflict with the Constitution and the laws. The BJE is more of a state than an autonomous
region. But even assuming that it is covered by the term autonomous region in the
constitutional provision just quoted, the MOA-AD would still be in conflict with it.

b) to revise or amend the Constitution and existing laws to conform to the MOA:

The MOA-AD provides that any provisions of the MOA-AD requiring amendments to the
existing legal framework shall come into force upon the signing of a Comprehensive
Compact and upon effecting the necessary changes to the legal framework, implying an
amendment of the Constitution to accommodate the MOA-AD. This stipulation, in effect,
guaranteed to the MILF the amendment of the Constitution .

It will be observed that the President has authority, as stated in her oath of office, only to
preserve and defend the Constitution. Such presidential power does not, however, extend
to allowing her to change the Constitution, but simply to recommend proposed
amendments or revision. As long as she limits herself to recommending these changes and
submits to the proper procedure for constitutional amendments and revision, her mere
recommendation need not be construed as an unconstitutional act.

The suspensive clause in the MOA-AD viewed in light of the above-discussed standards.

Given the limited nature of the Presidents authority to propose constitutional


amendments, she cannot guarantee to any third party that the required amendments will
eventually be put in place, nor even be submitted to a plebiscite. The most she could do is
submit these proposals as recommendations either to Congress or the people, in whom
constituent powers are vested.

152
c) to concede to or recognize the claim of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front for ancestral
domain in violation of Republic Act No. 8371 (THE INDIGENOUS PEOPLES RIGHTS ACT OF
1997),
particularly Section 3(g) & Chapter VII (DELINEATION,
RECOGNITION OF ANCESTRAL DOMAINS)
This strand begins with the statement that it is the birthright of all Moros and all
Indigenous peoples of Mindanao to identify themselves and be accepted as
Bangsamoros. It defines Bangsamoro people as the natives or original inhabitants of
Mindanao and its adjacent islands including Palawan and the Sulu archipelago at the time
of conquest or colonization, and their descendants whether mixed or of full blood,
including their spouses.

Thus, the concept of Bangsamoro, as defined in this strand of the MOA-AD, includes not
only Moros as traditionally understood even by Muslims, but all indigenous peoples of
Mindanao and its adjacent islands. The MOA-AD adds that the freedom of choice of
indigenous peoples shall be respected. What this freedom of choice consists in has not
been specifically defined. The MOA-AD proceeds to refer to the Bangsamoro homeland,
the ownership of which is vested exclusively in the Bangsamoro people by virtue of their
prior rights of occupation. Both parties to the MOA-AD acknowledge that ancestral domain
does not form part of the public domain.

Republic Act No. 8371 or the Indigenous Peoples Rights Act of 1997 provides for clear-cut
procedure for the recognition and delineation of ancestral domain, which entails, among
other things, the observance of the free and prior informed consent of the Indigenous
Cultural Communities/Indigenous Peoples. Notably, the statute does not grant the
Executive Department or any government agency the power to delineate and recognize an
ancestral domain claim by mere agreement or compromise.

Two, Republic Act No. 7160 or the Local Government Code of 1991 requires all national
offices to conduct consultations beforeany project or program critical to the environment
and human ecology including those that may call for the eviction of a particular group of
people residing in such locality, is implemented therein. The MOA-AD is one peculiar
program that unequivocally and unilaterally vests ownership of a vast territory to the
Bangsamoro people, which could pervasively and drastically result to the diaspora or
displacement of a great number of inhabitants from their total environment.

CONCLUSION:
In sum, the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process committed grave abuse of discretion
when he failed to carry out the pertinent consultation process, as mandated by E.O. No. 3,
Republic Act No. 7160, and Republic Act No. 8371. The furtive process by which the MOA-

153
AD was designed and crafted runs contrary to and in excess of the legal authority, and
amounts to a whimsical, capricious, oppressive, arbitrary and despotic exercise thereof. It
illustrates a gross evasion of positive duty and a virtual refusal to perform the duty
enjoined.

The MOA-AD cannot be reconciled with the present Constitution and laws. Not only its
specific provisions but the very concept underlying them, namely, the associative
relationship envisioned between the GRP and the BJE, are unconstitutional, for the
concept presupposes that the associated entity is a state and implies that the same is on its
way to independenc

SEPARATION OF POWERS

In Re: Manzano 166 SCRA 246 (1988)


Facts
An examination of Executive Order No. 856, as amended, reveals that Provincial/City
Committees on Justice are created to insure the speedy disposition of cases
of detainees. It is evident that such Provincial/City Committees on Justice perform
administrative
f u n c t i o n s . Ad m i n i s t ra t ive f u n c t i o n s a re t h o s e wh i c h i nvo lve t h e re g u l a t i
o n a n d control over the conduct and affairs of individuals for; their own welfare
and the promulgation of rules and regulations to better carry out the policy of the
legislature or such as are devolved upon the administrative agency by the organic
law of its existence.

Furthermore, under Executive Order No. 326 amending Executive Order No. 856, itis
provided thatSection 6.
Supervision
. The Provincial/City Committees on Justice shall be under the
supervision of the Secretary of justice
Quarterlya c c o m p l i s h m e n t re p o r t s s h a l l b e s u b m i t te d to t h e
O f f i c e o f t h e Secretary of Justice.

154
Under the Constitution, the members of the
S u p re m e C o u r t a n d o t h e r c o u r t s established by law shag not be designated to any
agency performing quasi- judicial or administrative functions (Section 12, Art. VIII,
Constitution).

C o n s i d e r i n g t h a t m e m b e r s h i p o f J u d g e M a n z a n o i n t h e I l o c o s N o r te P rov i
n c i a l C o m m i t te e o n J u s t i c e , wh i c h d i s c h a rg e s a n a d m i n i s t ra t ive f u n c t i o n ,
w i l l b e i n violation of the Constitution, the Court is constrained to deny his request.

Former Chief Justice Enrique M. Fernando in his concurring opinion in the case
of Garcia vs. Macaraig (39 SCRA 106) ably sets forth:

2. While the doctrine of separation of powers is a relative theory


nott o b e e n f o r c e d w i t h p e d a n t i c r i g o r , t h e p r a c t i c a l
d e m a n d s o f governmentprecluding its doctrinaire application, it
cannot justify a
member of the judiciary b e i n g re q u i re d to a s s u m e
a position orp e r f o r m a d u t y n o n j u d i c i a l i n c h a r a c t e r . T h a t i s i m p l i c
i t i n t h e principle. Otherwise there is a plain departure from its command. The essence
of the trust reposed in him is to decide. Only a higher court,as was emphasized by Justice
Barredo, can pass on his actuation. He is not a subordinate of an executive or
legislative official, however eminent. It is indispensable that there be no exception to
the rigidity o f s u c h a n o r m i f h e i s , a s ex p e c te d , to b e c o n f i n e d to t h e t a s k
o f a d j u d i c a t i o n . F i d e l i t y to h i s s w o r n re s p o n s i b i l i t y n o l e s s t h a n t h e maint
enance of respect for the judiciary can be satisfied with nothingless.

This declaration does not mean that RTC Judges should adopt an attitude
o f monastic insensibility or unbecoming indifference to Province/City
Committee on Justice. As incumbent RTC Judges, they form part of the structure
of
government. T h e i r i n te g r i t y a n d p e r fo r m a n c e i n t h e a d j u d i c a t i o n o f c a s e s
c o n t r i b u te to t h e solidity of such structure. As public officials, they are trustees of an
orderly society. Even as non-members of Provincial/City Committees on Justice, RTC
155
judges should render assistance to said Committees to help promote the laudable
purposes for which they exist, but only when such assistance may be reasonably
incidental tothe fulfillment of their judicial duties.

ACCORDINGLY, the aforesaid request of Judge Rodolfo U. Manzano is DENIED.

Angara v. Electoral Commission 63 PHIL 139

FACTS:

In the elections of Sept. 17, 1935, petitioner Jose A. Angara and the respondents Pedro
Ynsua, Miguel Castillo, and Dionisio Mayor were candidates for the position of members of
the National Assembly for the first district of Tayabas.

On Oct. 7, 1935, the provincial board of canvassers proclaimed Angara as member-elect of


the National Assembly and on Nov. 15, 1935, he took his oath of office.

On Dec. 3, 1935, the National Assembly passed Resolution No. 8, which in effect, fixed
the last date to file election protests.

On Dec. 8, 1935, Ynsua filed before the Electoral Commission a "Motion of Protest" against
Angara and praying, among other things, that Ynsua be named/declared elected Member
of the National Assembly or that the election of said position be nullified.

On Dec. 9, 1935, the Electoral Commission adopted a resolution (No. 6) stating that last
day for filing of protests is on Dec. 9. Angara contended that the Constitution confers
exclusive jurisdiction upon the Electoral Commission solely as regards the merits of
contested elections to the National Assembly and the Supreme Court therefore has no
jurisdiction to hear the case.

156
ISSUES:

Whether or not the Supreme Court has jurisdiction over the Electoral Commission and the
subject matter of the controversy upon the foregoing related facts, and in the affirmative,

RULING:

In the case at bar, here is then presented an actual controversy involving as it does a
conflict of a grave constitutional nature between the National Assembly on one hand, and
the Electoral Commission on the other. Although the Electoral Commission may not be
interfered with, when and while acting within the limits of its authority, it does not follow
that it is beyond the reach of the constitutional mechanism adopted by the people and that
it is not subject to constitutional restrictions. The Electoral Commission is not a separate
department of the government, and even if it were, conflicting claims of authority under
the fundamental law between departmental powers and agencies of the government are
necessarily determined by the judiciary in justiciable and appropriate cases.

The court has jurisdiction over the Electoral Commission and the subject matter of the
present controversy for the purpose of determining the character, scope, and extent of the
constitutional grant to the Electoral Commission as "the sole judge of all contests relating
to the election, returns, and qualifications of the members of the National Assembly."

The Electoral Commission was created to transfer in its totality all the powers previously
exercised by the legislature in matters pertaining to contested elections of its members, to
an independent and impartial tribunal. The express lodging of that power in
the Electoral Commission is an implied denial in the exercise of that power by the National
Assembly. And thus, it is as effective a restriction upon the legislative power as an express
prohibition in the Constitution.

Therefore, the incidental power to promulgate such rules necessary for the proper
exercise of its exclusive power to judge all contests relating to the election, returns, and
qualifications of members of the National Assembly, must be deemed by necessary
implication to have been lodged also in the Electoral Commission.
157
It appears that on Dec. 9, 1935, the Electoral Commission met for the first time and
approved a resolution fixing said date as the last day for the filing of election protests.
When, therefore, the National Assembly passed its resolution of Dec. 3, 1935, confirming
the election of the petitioner to the National Assembly, the Electoral Commission had not
yet met; neither does it appear that said body had actually been organized.

While there might have been good reason for the legislative practice of confirmation of the
election of members of the legislature at the time the power to decide election contests
was still lodged in the legislature, confirmation alone by the legislature cannot be
construed as depriving the Electoral Commission of the authority incidental to its
constitutional power to be "the sole judge of all contests...", to fix the time for the filing of
said election protests.

The Electoral Commission was acting within the legitimate exercise of its constitutional
prerogative in assuming to take cognizance of the protest filed by the respondent, Pedro
Ynsua against the election of the herein petitioner, Jose A. Angara, and that the resolution
of the National Assembly on Dec. 3, 1935, cannot in any manner toll the time for filing
protest against the election, returns, and qualifications of the members of the National
Assembly, nor prevent the filing of protests within such time as the rules of the Electoral
Commission might prescribe.

The petition for a writ of prohibition against the electoral commission is hereby denied,
with cost against the petitioner.

Eastern Shipping Lines v. POEA 166 SCRA 533

FACTS:
A Chief Officer of a ship was killed in an accident in Japan. The widow filed a complaint for
charges against the Eastern Shipping Lines with POEA, based on a Memorandum Circular
No. 2, issued by the POEA which stipulated death benefits and burial for the family of
overseas workers. ESL questioned the validity of the memorandum circular as violative of
the principle of non-delegation of legislative power. It contends that no authority had been
given the POEA to promulgate the said regulation; and even with such authorization, the
158
regulation represents an exercise of legislative discretion which, under the principle, is not
subject to delegation. Nevertheless, POEA assumed jurisdiction and decided the case.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the Issuance of Memorandum Circular No. 2 is a violation of non-
delegation of powers?

RULING:
No. SC held that there was a valid delegation of powers.
The authority to issue the said regulation is clearly provided in Section 4(a) of Executive
Order No. 797. ... "The governing Board of the Administration (POEA), as hereunder
provided shall promulgate the necessary rules and regulations to govern the exercise of
the adjudicatory functions of the Administration (POEA)."

It is true that legislative discretion as to the substantive contents of the law cannot be
delegated. What can be delegated is the discretion to determine how the law may be
enforced, not what the law shall be. The ascertainment of the latter subject is a prerogative
of the legislature. This prerogative cannot be abdicated or surrendered by the legislature
to the delegate.

The reasons given above for the delegation of legislative powers in general are particularly
applicable to administrative bodies. With the proliferation of specialized activities and
their attendant peculiar problems, the national legislature has found it more and more
necessary to entrust to administrative agencies the authority to issue rules to carry out the
general provisions of the statute. This is called the "power of subordinate legislation."

With this power, administrative bodies may implement the broad policies laid down in a
statute by "filling in' the details which the Congress may not have the opportunity or
competence to provide. This is effected by their promulgation of what are known as
supplementary regulations, such as the implementing rules issued by the Department of
Labor on the new Labor Code. These regulations have the force and effect of law.

There are two accepted tests to determine whether or not there is a valid delegation of
legislative power:

159
1. Completeness test - the law must be complete in all its terms and conditions when
it leaves the legislature such that when it reaches the delegate the only thing he will
have to do is enforce it.
2. Sufficient standard test - there must be adequate guidelines or stations in the law
to map out the boundaries of the delegate's authority and prevent the delegation
from running riot.

Both tests are intended to prevent a total transference of legislative authority to the
delegate, who is not allowed to step into the shoes of the legislature and exercise a power
essentially legislative.

Casibang v. Aquino 92 SCRA 642

Facts:

Respondent Remigio P. Yu was proclaimed on November 9, 1971 as the elected


Mayor of Rosales, Pangasinan in the 1971 local elections, by a plurality of 501 votes over
his only rival, herein petitioner, who seasonably filed a protest against the election of the
former with the Court of First Instance of Pangasinan, on the grounds of (1) anomalies and
irregularities in the appreciation, counting and consideration of votes in specified electoral
precincts; (2) terrorism; (3) rampant vote buying; (4) open voting or balloting; and (5)
excessive campaign expenditures and other violations of the 1971 Election Code.

In the meantime or on September 21, 1972, the incumbent President of the Republic
of the Philippines issued Proclamation No. 1081, placing the entire country under Martial
Law; and two months thereafter, more or less, or specifically on November 29, 1972, the
1971 Constitutional Convention passed and approved a Constitution to supplant the 1935
Constitution; and the same was thereafter overwhelmingly ratified by the sovereign
people of the Republic of the Philippines on January 17, 1973; and on March 31, 1973, the
Supreme Court declared that there is no further judicial obstacle to the new Constitution
being considered in force and effect.

160
Thereafter or on October 10, 1973, at which time petitioner had already completed
presenting his evidence and in fact had rested his case, respondent Yu moved to dismiss
the election protest of petitioner on the ground that the trial court had lost jurisdiction
over the same in view of the effectivity of the 1973 Constitution by reason of which
principally) Section 9 of Article XVII [Transitory Provisions] and Section 2 of Article XI a
political question has intervened in the case. Respondent Yu contended that ... the
provisions in the 1935 Constitution relative to all local governments have been
superseded by the 1973 Constitution. Therefore, all local government should adhere to
our parliamentary form of government. This is clear in the New Constitution under its
Article XI. He further submitted that local elective officials (including mayors) have no
more four-year term of office. They are only in office at the pleasure of the appointing
power embodied in the New Constitution, and under Section 9 of Article XVII.

The thrust of the political question theory of respondent Yu is that the 1973
Constitution, through Section 9 of Article XVII thereof, protected only those incumbents,
like him, at the time of its ratification and effectivity and are the only ones authorized to
continue in office and their term of office as extended now depends on the pleasure of, as
the same has been entrusted or committed to, the incumbent President of the Philippines
or the Legislative Department; and that Section 2 of Article XI thereof entrusted to the
National Assembly the revamp of the entire local government structure by the enactment
of a local government code, thus presenting a question of policy, the necessity and
expediency of which are outside the range of judicial review. In short, for the respondent
Judge to still continue assuming jurisdiction over the pending election protest of petitioner
is for him to take cognizance of a question or policy in regard to which full discretionary
authority has been delegated to the Legislative or Executive branch of the government.

Issue:

whether the issue involves a political question and therefore beyond judicial
ambit

Held:

161
No. Section 9 of Article XVII of the 1973 Constitution did not render moot and
academic pending election protest cases. The constitutional grant of privilege to continue
in office, made by the new Constitution for the benefit of persons who were incumbent
officials or employees of the Government when the new Constitution took effect, cannot be
fairly construed as indiscriminately encompassing every person who at the time happened
to be performing the duties of an elective office, albeit under protest or contest and that
subject to the constraints specifically mentioned in Section 9, Article XVII of the
Transitory Provisions, it neither was, nor could have been the intention of the framers of
our new fundamental law to disregard and shunt aside the statutory right of a candidate
for elective position who, within the time-frame prescribed in the Election Code of 1971,
commenced proceedings beamed mainly at the proper determination in a judicial forum of
a proclaimed candidate-elects right to the contested office.

The right of the private respondents (protestees) to continue in office indefinitely


arose not only by virtue of Section 9 of Article XVII of the New Constitution but principally
from their having been proclaimed elected to their respective positions as a result of the
November 8, 1971 elections. Therefore, if in fact and in law, they were not duly elected to
their respective positions and consequently, have no right to hold the same, perform their
functions, enjoy their privileges and emoluments, then certainly, they should not be
allowed to enjoy the indefinite term of office given to them by said constitutional
provision.

Until a subsequent law or presidential decree provides otherwise, the right of


respondent (protestee) to continue as mayor rests on the legality of his election which has
been protested by herein petitioner. Should the court decide adversely against him the
electoral protest, respondent (protestee) would cease to be mayor even before a law or
presidential decree terminates his tenure of office pursuant to said Section 9 of Article
XVII of the 1973 Constitution.

There is a difference between the term of office and the right to hold an office.
Aterm of office is the period during winch an elected officer or appointee is entitled to
hold office, perform its functions and enjoy its privileges and emoluments. A right to
hold a public office is the just and legal claim to hold and enjoy the powers and
responsibilities of the office. In other words, the term refers to the period, duration of
length of time during which the occupant of an office is .entitled to stay therein whether
162
such period be definite or indefinite. Hence, although Section 9, Article XVII of the New
Constitution made the term of the petitioners indefinite, it did not foreclose any challenge
by the herein petitioners, in an election protest, of the right of the private respondents to
continue holding their respective office. What has been directly affected by said
constitutional provision is the term to the office, although the right of the incumbent to
an office which he is legally holding is co-extensive with the term thereof, and that it is
erroneous to conclude that under Section 9, Article XVII of the New Constitution, the term
of office of the private respondents expired, and that they are now holding their respective
offices under a new term. They hold their respective offices still under the term to which
they have been elected, although the same is now indefinite.

The New Constitution recognized the continuing jurisdiction of courts of first


instance to hear, try and decide election protests: Section 7 of Article XVII of the New
Constitution provides that all existing laws not inconsistent with this Constitution shall
remain operative until amended, modified or repealed by the National Assembly. And
there has been no amendment, modification or repeal of Section 220 of the Election Code
of 1971 which gave the herein petitioners the right to file an election contest against those
proclaimed elected, and according to Section 8, Article XVII of the New Constitution all
courts existing at the time of the ratification of this Constitution shall continue and
exercise their jurisdiction until otherwise provided by law in accordance with this
Constitution, and all cases pending in said courts shall be heard, tried and determined
under the laws then in force. Consequently, the Courts of First Instance presided over by
the respondent-Judges should continue and exercise their jurisdiction to hear, try and
decide the election protests filed by herein petitioners.

While under the New Constitution the Commission on Elections is now the sole
judge of all contests relating to the elections, returns, and qualifications of members of the
National Assembly as well as elective provincial and city officials (par. 2 of Sec. 2, Article
XII-C of the 1973 Constitution), such power does not extend to electoral contests
concerning municipal elective positions.

General Order No. 3, issued by the President of the Philippines merely reiterated his
powers under Section 9 of Article XVII of the New Constitution. The President did not
intend thereby to modify the aforesaid constitutional provision.

163
General Order No. 3, as amended by General Order No. 3-A, does not expressly
include electoral contests of municipal elective positions as among those removed from
the jurisdiction of the courts; for said General Order, after affirming the jurisdiction of the
Judiciary to decide in accordance with the existing laws on criminal and civil cases, simply
removes from the jurisdiction of the Civil Court certain crimes specified therein as well as
the validity, legality or constitutionality of any decree, order or acts issued by the
President or his duly designated representative or by public servants pursuant to his
decrees and orders issued under Proclamation No. 1081.

In the light of the foregoing pronouncements, the electoral protest case herein
involved has remained a justiciable controversy. No political question has ever been
interwoven into this case. Nor is there any act of the incumbent President or the
Legislative Department to be indirectly reviewed or interfered with if the respondent
Judge decides the election protest. The term political question connotes what it means
in ordinary parlance, namely, a question of policy. It refers to those questions which under
the Constitution, are to be decided by the people in their sovereign capacity; or in regard
to which full discretionary authority has been delegated to the legislative or executive
branch of the government. It is concerned with issues dependent upon the wisdom, not
legality, of a particular measure.

The term has been made applicable to controversies clearly non-judicial and
therefore beyond its jurisdiction or to an issue involved in a case appropriately subject to
its cognizance, as to which there has been a prior legislative or executive determination to
which deference must be paid. Political questions should refer to such as would under
the Constitution be decided by the people in their sovereign capacity or in regard to which
full discretionary authority is vested either in the President or Congress. It is thus beyond
the competence of the judiciary to pass upon.

Tanada v. Cuenco 103 PHIL 1051

Facts:

164
After the 1955 national elections, the membership in the Senate was overwhelmingly
occupied by the Nacionalista Party. The lone opposition senator was Lorenzo Tan ada who
belonged to the Citizens Party. Diosdado Macapagal on the other hand was a senatorial
candidate who lost the bid but was contesting it before the Senate Electoral Tribunal
(SET). But prior to a decision the SET would have to choose its members. It is provided
that the SET should be composed of 9 members comprised of the following: 3 justices of
the Supreme Court, 3 senators from the majority party and 3 senators from the minority
party. But since there is only one minority senator the other two SET members supposed
to come from the minority were filled in by the NP. Tan ada assailed this process before the
Supreme Court. So did Macapagal because he deemed that if the SET would be dominated
by NP senators then he, as a member of the Liberalista Party will not have any chance in
his election contest. Senator Mariano Cuenco et al (members of the NP) averred that the
Supreme Court cannot take cognizance of the issue because it is a political question.
Cuenco argued that the power to choose the members of the SET is vested in the Senate
alone and the remedy for Tan ada and Macapagal was not to raise the issue before judicial
courts but rather to leave it before the bar of public opinion.

Issue:

Whether or not the issue is a political question.

Ruling:

No. The SC took cognizance of the case and ruled that the issue is a justiciable question.
The term Political Question connotes what it means in ordinary parlance, namely, a
question of policy. It refers to those questions which, under the Constitution, are to be
decided by the people in their sovereign capacity; or in regard to which full discretionary
authority has been delegated to the legislative or executive branch of the government. It is
concerned with issues dependent upon the wisdom, not legality, of a particular measure.
In this case, the issue at bar is not a political question. The Supreme Court is not being
asked by Tan ada to decide upon the official acts of Senate. The issue being raised by
Tan ada was whether or not the elections of the 5 NP members to the SET are valid which
is a judicial question. Note that the SET is a separate and independent body from the
Senate which does not perform legislative acts.
But how should the gridlock be resolved?
The nomination of the last two members (who would fill in the supposed seat of the
minority members) must not come from the majority party. In this case, the Chairman of
the SET, apparently already appointed members that would fill in the minority seats (even
165
though those will come from the majority party). This is still valid provided the majority
members of the SET (referring to those legally sitting) concurred with the Chairman.
Besides, the SET may set its own rules in situations like this provided such rules comply
with the Constitution.

Sanidad v. Comelec 73 SCRA 333

Facts:
On 2 September 1976, President Ferdinand E. Marcos issued
Presidential Decree 991 calling for a national referendum on 16 October 1976
for the Citizens Assemblies ("barangays") to resolve, among other things, the
issues of martial law, the interim assembly, its replacement, the powers of such
replacement, the period of its existence, the length of the period for the exercise by the
President of his present powers.

20 days after or on 22 September 1976, the President issued another related


decree,
Presidential Decree 1031, a m e n d i n g t h e p rev i o u s P re s i d e n t i a l D e c re e 9 9 1 , b
y d e c l a r i n g t h e p rov i s i o n s o f Presidential Decree 229 providing for the
manner of voting and canvass of votes in "barangays"(Citizens Assemblies)
applicable to the national referendum-plebiscite of 16 October 1976. Quite
relevantly, Presidential Decree 1031 repealed inter alia, Section 4, of Presidential
Decree 991.

On the same date of 22 September 1976, the President issued Presidential Decree 1033,
stating the questions to he submitted to the people in the referendum-plebiscite
on 16 October 1976. The Decree recites in its "whereas" clauses that
the people's continued opposition to the convening of the interim National
Assembly evinces their desire to have such body abolished and replaced thru a
constitutional amendment, providing for a new interim legislative body, which
will be submitted directly to the people in the referendum-plebiscite of October 16.

The Commission on Elections was vested with the exclusive supervision and control of the
October 1976 National Referendum-Plebiscite. On 27 September 1976, Pablo C.
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Sanidad and Pablito V. Sanidad, father and son, commenced L-44640 for Prohibition
with Preliminary Injunction seeking toenjoin the Commission on Elections from
holding and conducting the Referendum Plebiscite on October 16; to declare
without force and effect Presidential Decree Nos. 991 and 1033, insofar as they
propose amendments to the Constitution, as well as Presidential Decree 1031,
insofar as it directs the Commission on Elections to supervise, control, hold,
and conduct the Referendum-Plebiscite scheduled on 16 October 1976. They contend
that under the 1935 and 1973
Constitutionst h e r e i s n o g r a n t t o t h e i n c u m b e n t P r e s i d e n t t o e x e r c i s e
t h e c o n s t i t u e n t p o w e r t o p r o p o s e amendments to the new Constitution.

As a consequence, the Referendum-Plebiscite on October 16 has


no constitutional or legal basis. On 30 September 1976, another action for
Prohibition with Preliminary Injunction, docketed as L-44684, was instituted by
Vicente M. Guzman, a delegate to the 1971 Constitutional
Convention,a s s e r t i n g t h a t t h e p o we r to p ro p o s e a m e n d m e n t s to , o r rev i s i
o n o f t h e C o n s t i t u t i o n d u r i n g t h e transition period is expressly conferred on
the interim National Assembly under action 16, Article XVII of the Constitution. Still
another petition for Prohibition with Preliminary Injunction was filed on 5October 1976
by Raul M. Gonzales, his son Raul Jr., and Alfredo Salapantan, docketed as L-44714,
to restrain the implementation of Presidential Decrees relative to
the forthcoming Referendum-Plebiscite of October 16.

Issue:

Whether the President may call upon a referendum for the amendment of the Constitution.

Ruling:
S e c t i o n 1 o f A r t i c l e XV I of the
1 9 7 3 C o n s t i t u t i o n o n A m e n d m e n t s o rd a i n s t h a t " ( 1 ) A ny amendment to, or
revision of, this Constitution may be proposed by the National Assembly upon a vote of
three-fourths of all its Members, or by a constitutional convention. (2) The National
Assembly may, by a vote of two-thirds of all its Members, call a constitutional convention

167
or, by a majority voteof all its Members, submit the question of calling such a convention to
the electorate in an election.

"Section 2 thereof provides that "Any amendment to, or revision of, this
Constitution shall be valid when ratified by a majority of the votes cast in a
plebiscite which shall be held not later than three months a after the approval of
such amendment or revision." In the present period of transition, the interim National
Assembly instituted in the Transitory Provisions is conferred with that
amending power. Section 15 of the Transitory Provisions reads "The interim National
Assembly, upon special call by the interim Prime Minister, may, by a majority vote of all its
Members, propose amendments to this Constitution. Such amendments shall take
effect when ratified in accordance with Article Sixteen hereof." There are,
therefore, two periods contemplated in the constitutional life of the nation, i.e.,
period of normalcy and period of transition. In times of normalcy, the amending process
may be initiated by the proposals of the (1) regular National Assembly upon a vote of
three-fourths of a l l i t s m e m b e r s ; o r ( 2 ) by a C o n s t i t u t i o n a l C o nve n t i o n
c a l l e d by a vo te o f t wo - t h i rd s o f a l l t h e Members of the National Assembly.
However the calling of a Constitutional Convention may be submitted to the
electorate in an election voted upon by a majority vote of all the members of the
National Assembly. In times of transition, amendments may be proposed by a majority
vote of all the Members of the interim National Assembly upon special call by the interim
Prime Minister. The Court i n Aq u i n o v. C O M E L E C , h a d a l re a dy s e t t l e d t h a t t h e
i n c u m b e n t P re s i d e n t i s ve s te d w i t h t h a t prerogative of discretion as to
when he shall initially convene the interim National Assembly. The Constitutional
Convention intended to leave to the President the determination of the time when he shall
initially convene the interim National Assembly, consistent with the prevailing
conditions of peace and order in the country. When the Delegates to the Constitutional
Convention voted on the Transitory Provisions, they were aware of the fact that under the
same, the incumbent President was given the discretion as to when he could
convene the interim National Assembly. The President's decision to defer the
convening of the interim National Assembly soon found support from the
peoplet h e m s e l v e s . I n t h e p l e b i s c i t e o f J a n u a r y 1 0 - 1 5 , 1 9 7 3 , a t
w h i c h t h e r a t i f i c a t i o n o f t h e 1 9 7 3 C o n s t i t u t i o n wa s s u b m i t te d , t h e p e
o p l e vo te d a ga i n s t t h e c o nve n i n g o f t h e i n te r i m N a t i o n a l Assembly. In the
referendum of 24 July 1973, the Citizens Assemblies ("bagangays") reiterated
their sovereign will to withhold the convening of the interim National Assembly. Again, in
the referendum of 27 February 1975, the proposed question of whether the
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interim National Assembly shall be initially convened was eliminated, because some
of the members of Congress and delegates of the
C o n s t i t u t i o n a l C o nve n t i o n , wh o we re d e e m e d a u to m a t i c a l ly m e m b e r s o f
t h e i n te r i m N a t i o n a l Assembly, were against its inclusion since in that
referendum of January, 1973 the people had alrea dy resolved against it. In sensu
striciore, when the legislative arm of the state undertakes the proposals of
amendment to a Constitution, that body is not in the usual function of lawmaking. It is not
legislating when engaged in the amending process. Rather, it is exercising a
peculiar power bestowed upon it by the fundamental charter itself. In the Philippines,
that power is provided for Article XVI of the 1973 Constitution (for the regular
National Assembly) or in Section 15 of the Transitory Provisions (for the interim
National Assembly). While ordinarily it is the business of the legislating body to
legislate for the nation by virtue of constitutional conferment, amending of
theC o n s t i t u t i o n i s n o t l e g i s l a t ive i n c h a ra c te r. I n p o l i t i c a l s c i e n c e a d i s t i
n c t i o n i s m a d e b e t we e n constitutional content of an organic character and that
of a legislative character. The distinction, however, is one of policy, not of law. Such
being the case, approval of the President of any proposed amendment is a misnomer. The
prerogative of the President to approve or disapprove applies only to the ordinary cases of
legislation. The President has nothing to do with proposition or adoption of amendments
to the Constitution.

Daza v. Singson 180 SCRA 496

Facts:

The House of Representatives. Twenty four members of the Liberal Party formally
resigned from that party and joined the LDP, thereby swelling its number to 159 and
correspondingly reducing their former party to only 17 members.

On the basis of this development, the House of Representatives revised its


representation in the Commission on Appointments by withdrawing the seat occupied by
the petitioner and giving this to the newly-formed LDP. On December 5, 1988, the chamber
elected a new set of representatives consisting of the original members except the

169
petitioner and including therein respondent Luis C. Singson as the additional member
from the LDP.

The petitioner came to the Supreme Court to challenge his removal from the
Commission on Appointments and the assumption of his seat by the respondent. Acting
initially on his petition for prohibition and injunction with preliminary injunction, we
issued a temporary restraining order that same day to prevent both the petitioner and the
respondent from serving in the Commission on Appointments.

Briefly stated, the contention of the petitioner is that he cannot be removed from the
Commission on Appointments because his election thereto is permanent. His claim is that
the reorganization of the House representation in the said body is not based on a
permanent political realignment because the LDP is not a duly registered political party
and has not yet attained political stability.

Issue:

whether the question raised by the petitioner is political in nature and so beyond
the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court

Held:

No. The Court has the competence to act on the matter at bar. The issue involved is
not a discretionary act of the House of Representatives that may not be reviewed by us
because it is political in nature. What is involved here is the legality, not the wisdom, of the
act of that chamber in removing the petitioner from the Commission on Appointments.

The term political question connotes, in legal parlance, what it means in ordinary
parlance, namely, a question of policy. In other words, it refers to those questions which,
under the Constitution, are to be decided by the people in their sovereign capacity, or in
regard to which full discretionary authority has been delegated to the Legislature or
170
executive branch of the Government. It is concerned with issues dependent upon the
wisdom, not legality, of a particular measure.

Even if we were to assume that the issue presented before us was political in
nature, we would still not be precluded from resolving it under the expanded jurisdiction
conferred upon us that now covers, in proper cases, even the political question. Article VII,
Section 1, of the Constitution clearly provides:

Section 1. The judicial power shall be vested in one Supreme Court and in such lower
courts as may be established by law.

Judicial power includes the duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies
involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable, and to determine whether
or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of
jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government.

Abakada Guro Party List v. Hon. Cesar V. Purisima, August 14, 2008

FACTS:
1. This petition for prohibition seeks to prevent respondents from implementing and
enforcing Republic Act (RA) 9335 (Attrition Act of 2005).RA 9335 was enacted to
optimize the revenue-generation capability and collection of the Bureau of Internal
Revenue (BIR) and the Bureau of Customs (BOC). The law intends to encourage BIR
and BOC officials and employees to exceed their revenue targets by providing a
system of rewards and sanctions through the creation of a Rewards and Incentives
Fund (Fund) and a Revenue Performance Evaluation Board (Board). It covers all
officials and employees of the BIR and the BOC with at least six months of service,
regardless of employment status.

2. Petitioners, invoking their right as taxpayers filed this petition challenging the
constitutionality of RA 9335, a tax reform legislation. They contend that, by
establishing a system of rewards and incentives, the law "transform[s] the
officials and employees of the BIR and the BOC into mercenaries and bounty
hunters" as they will do their best only in consideration of such
171
rewards. Petitioners also assail the creation of a congressional oversight
committee on the ground that it violates the doctrine of separation of powers,
for it permits legislative participation in the implementation and enforcement of the
law.

Issue:
Whether or not the joint congressional committee is valid and constitutional

Ruling:
No. It is unconstitutional.
In the case of Macalintal, in the discussion of J. Puno, the power of oversight embraces
all activities undertaken by Congress to enhance its understanding of and influence
over the implementation of legislation it has enacted. Clearly, oversight concerns
post-enactment measures undertaken by Congress: (a) to monitor bureaucratic
compliance with program objectives, (b) to determine whether agencies are
properly administered, (c) to eliminate executive waste and dishonesty, (d) to
prevent executive usurpation of legislative authority, and (d) to assess executive
conformity with the congressional perception of public interest. The power of
oversight has been held to be intrinsic in the grant of legislative power itself and integral
to the checks and balances inherent in a democratic system of government.

With this backdrop, it is clear that congressional oversight is not unconstitutional per se,
meaning, it neither necessarily constitutes anencroachment on the executive power to
implement laws nor undermines the constitutional separation of powers. Rather, it is
integral to the checks and balances inherent in a democratic system of government. It may
in fact even enhance the separation of powers as it prevents the over-accumulation of
power in the executive branch.

However, to forestall the danger of congressional encroachment "beyond the


legislative sphere," the Constitution imposes two basic and related constraints on
Congress. It may not vest itself, any of its committees or its members with either executive
or judicial power. And, when it exercises its legislative power, it must follow the "single,

172
finely wrought and exhaustively considered, procedures" specified under the Constitution
including the procedure for enactment of laws and presentment.

Thus, any post-enactment congressional measure such as this should be limited to


scrutiny and investigation. In particular, congressional oversight must be confined to the
following:
(1) scrutiny based primarily on Congress' power of appropriation and the budget hearings
conducted in connection withit, its power to ask heads of departments to appear before
and be heard by either of its Houses on any matter pertaining to their departments and its
power of confirmation;, and
(2) investigation and monitoring of the implementation of laws pursuant to the power of
Congress to conduct inquiries in aid of legislation.

Any action or step beyond that will undermine the separation of powers guaranteed
by the Constitution. Legislative vetoes fall in this class.

Legislative veto is a statutory provision requiring the President or an administrative


agency to present the proposed implementing rules and regulations of a law to Congress
which, by itself or through a committee formed by it, retains a "right" or "power" to
approve or disapprove such regulations before they take effect. As such, a legislative veto
in the form of a congressional oversight committee is in the form of an inward-turning
delegation designed to attach a congressional leash (other than through scrutiny and
investigation) to an agency to which

Congress has by law initially delegated broad powers. It radically changes the design or
structure of the Constitution's diagram of power as it entrusts to Congress a direct role in
enforcing, applying or implementing its own laws.

DELEGATION OF POWER

173
Garcia v. Executive Secretary 211 SCRA 219

Facts:
The President issued an EO which imposed, across the board, including crude oil and other
oil products, additional duty ad valorem. The Tariff Commission held public
hearings on said EO and submitted a report to the President for consideration
and appropriate action. The President, on the other hand issued an EO which
levied a special duty of P0.95 per liter of imported crude oil and P1.00 per liter of
imported oil products.
Issue:
Whether or not the President may issue an EO which is tantamount to enacting a bill in the
nature of revenue-generating measures?
Ruling:
The Court said that although the enactment of appropriation, revenue and
tariff bills is within the province of the Legislative, it does not follow that EO
in question, assuming they may be characterized as revenue measure are
prohibited to the President, that they must be enacted instead by Congress.
Section 28 of Article VI of the 1987 Constitution provides:
The Congress may, by law authorize the President to fix tariff rates and other duties or
imposts
The relevant Congressional statute is the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines and
Sections 104 and 401, the pertinent provisions thereof.

People v. Vera 65 PHIL 112-125

Eastern Shipping Lines v. POEA supra

FACTS:
A Chief Officer of a ship was killed in an accident in Japan. The widow filed a complaint for
charges against the Eastern Shipping Lines with POEA, based on a Memorandum Circular
No. 2, issued by the POEA which stipulated death benefits and burial for the family of
174
overseas workers. ESL questioned the validity of the memorandum circular as violative of
the principle of non-delegation of legislative power. It contends that no authority had been
given the POEA to promulgate the said regulation; and even with such authorization, the
regulation represents an exercise of legislative discretion which, under the principle, is not
subject to delegation. Nevertheless, POEA assumed jurisdiction and decided the case.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the Issuance of Memorandum Circular No. 2 is a violation of non-
delegation of powers?

RULING:
No. SC held that there was a valid delegation of powers.
The authority to issue the said regulation is clearly provided in Section 4(a) of Executive
Order No. 797. ... "The governing Board of the Administration (POEA), as hereunder
provided shall promulgate the necessary rules and regulations to govern the exercise of
the adjudicatory functions of the Administration (POEA)."

It is true that legislative discretion as to the substantive contents of the law cannot be
delegated. What can be delegated is the discretion to determine how the law may be
enforced, not what the law shall be. The ascertainment of the latter subject is a prerogative
of the legislature. This prerogative cannot be abdicated or surrendered by the legislature
to the delegate.

The reasons given above for the delegation of legislative powers in general are particularly
applicable to administrative bodies. With the proliferation of specialized activities and
their attendant peculiar problems, the national legislature has found it more and more
necessary to entrust to administrative agencies the authority to issue rules to carry out the
general provisions of the statute. This is called the "power of subordinate legislation."

With this power, administrative bodies may implement the broad policies laid down in a
statute by "filling in' the details which the Congress may not have the opportunity or
competence to provide. This is effected by their promulgation of what are known as
supplementary regulations, such as the implementing rules issued by the Department of
Labor on the new Labor Code. These regulations have the force and effect of law.

175
There are two accepted tests to determine whether or not there is a valid delegation of
legislative power:
3. Completeness test - the law must be complete in all its terms and conditions when
it leaves the legislature such that when it reaches the delegate the only thing he will
have to do is enforce it.
4. Sufficient standard test - there must be adequate guidelines or stations in the law
to map out the boundaries of the delegate's authority and prevent the delegation
from running riot.

Both tests are intended to prevent a total transference of legislative authority to the
delegate, who is not allowed to step into the shoes of the legislature and exercise a power
essentially legislative.

Ynot v. IAC 148 SCRA 659

Facts:

Petitioner transported 6 caracbaos from Masbate to Iloilo in 1984 and these were
confiscated by the station commander in Barotac, Iloilo for violating E.O. 626 A which
prohibits transportation of a carabao or carabeef from one province to
another. Confiscation will be a result of this.

The petitioner sued for recovery, and the Regional Trial Court of Iloilo City issued a writ of
replevin upon his filing of a supersedeas bond of P12,000.00. After considering the merits
of the case, the court sustained the confiscation of the carabaos and, since they could no
longer be produced, ordered the confiscation of the bond. The court also declined to rule
on the constitutionality of the executive order, as raise by the petitioner, for lack
of authority and also for its presumed validity.

The same result was decided in the trial court.


In the Supreme Court, he then petitioned against the constitutionality of the E.O. due to the
outright confiscation without giving the owner the right to heard before an impartial court
as guaranteed by due process. He also challenged the improper exercise of legislative
176
power by the former president under Amendment 6 of the 1973 constitution wherein
Marcos was given emergency powers to issue letters of instruction that had the force of
law.

Issue:

Is the E.O. constitutional?

Ruling:

The EO is unconstitutional. Petition granted.

The lower courts are not prevented from examining the constitutionality of a law.
Constitutional grant to the supreme court to review.

Justice Laurel's said, courts should not follow the path of least resistance by simply
presuming the constitutionality of a law when it is questioned. On the contrary, they
should probe the issue more deeply, to relieve the abscess, and so heal the wound or excise
the affliction.

The challenged measure is denominated an executive order but it is really presidential


decree, promulgating a new rule instead of merely implementing an existing law due to
the grant of legislative authority over the president under Amendment number 6.

Provisions of the constitution should be cast in precise language to avoid controvery. In the
due process clause, however, the wording was ambiguous so it would remain resilient.
This was due to the avoidance of an iron rule laying down a stiff command for all
circumstances. There was flexibility to allow it to adapt to every situation with varying
degrees at protection for the changing conditions.

Courts have also refrained to adopt a standard definition for due processlest they be
confined to its interpretation like a straitjacket.
177
There must be requirements of notice and hearing as a safeguard against arbitrariness.

There are exceptions such as conclusive presumption which bars omission of contrary
evidence as long as such presumption is based on human experience or rational
connection between facts proved and fact presumed. An examplesis a passport of a person
with a criminal offense cancelled without hearing.

The protection of the general welfare is the particular function of police power which both
restrains and is restrained bydure process. This power was invoked in 626-A,
in addition to 626 which prohibits slaughter of carabos with an exception. While 626-A
has the same lawful subjectas the original executive order, it cant be said that it complies
with the existence of a lawful method. The transport prohibition and the purpose sought
has a gap.Summary action may be taken in valid admin proceedings as procedural due
process is not juridical only due to the urgency needed to correct it.

There was no reason why the offense in the E.O. would not have been proved in a court of
justice with the accused acquired the rights in the constitution. The challenged measure
was an invalid exercise of police power because the method to confiscate carabos was
oppressive. Due process was violated because the owener was denied the right to be heard
or his defense and punished immediately. This was a clear encroachment on judicial
functions and against the separataion of powers. The policeman wasnt liable
for damages since the law during that time was valid.

Tablarin v. Gutierrez 152 SCRA 730

Facts:

Teresita Tablarin, Ma. Luz Ciriaco, Ma. Nimfa B. Rovira, and Evangelina S. Labao sought
admission into colleges or schools of medicine for the school year 1987-1988. However,
they either did not take or did not successfully take the National Medical Admission Test
(NMAT) required by the Board of Medical Education and administered by the Center for
Educational Measurement (CEM). On 5 March 1987, Tablarin, et. al., in behalf of applicants
for admission into the Medical Colleges who have not taken up or successfully hurdled the
NMAT, filed with the Regional Trial Court (RTC), National Capital Judicial Region, a Petition
178
for Declaratory Judgment and Prohibition with a prayer for Temporary Restraining Order
(TRO) and Preliminary Injunction, to enjoin the Secretary of Education, Culture and
Sports, the Board of Medical Education and the Center for Educational Measurement from
enforcing Section 5 (a) and (f) of Republic Act 2382, as amended, and MECS Order 52
(series of 1985), dated 23 August 1985 [which established a uniform admission test
(NMAT) as an additional requirement for issuance of a certificate of eligibility for
admission into medical schools of the Philippines, beginning with the school year 1986-
1987] and from requiring the taking and passing of the NMAT as a condition for securing
certificates of eligibility for admission, from proceeding with accepting applications for
taking the NMAT and from administering the NMAT as scheduled on 26 April 1987 and in
the future. After hearing on the petition for issuance of preliminary injunction, the trial
court denied said petition on 20 April 1987. The NMAT was conducted and administered
as previously scheduled. Tablarin, et. al. accordingly filed a Special Civil Action for
Certiorari with the Supreme Court to set aside the Order of the RTC judge denying the
petition for issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction.

Issue: Whether NMAT requirement for admission to medical colleges contravenes the
Constitutional guarantee for the accessibility of education to all, and whether such
regulation is invalid and/or unconstitutional.

Ruling: No. Republic Act 2382, as amended by Republic Acts 4224 and 5946, known as the
Medical Act of 1959 defines its basic objectives to govern (a) the standardization and
regulation of medical education; (b) the examination for registration of physicians; and (c)
the supervision, control and regulation of the practice of medicine in the Philippines. The
Statute created a Board of Medical Education and prescribed certain minimum
requirements for applicants to medical schools. The State is not really enjoined to take
appropriate steps to make quality education accessible to all who might for any number
of reasons wish to enroll in a professional school but rather merely to make such
education accessible to all who qualify under fair, reasonable and equitable admission
and academic requirements. The regulation of the practice of medicine in all its branches
has long been recognized as a reasonable method of protecting the health and safety of the
public. The power to regulate and control the practice of medicine includes the power to
regulate admission to the ranks of those authorized to practice medicine. Legislation and
administrative regulations requiring those who wish to practice medicine first to take and
pass medical board examinations have long ago been recognized as valid exercises of
governmental power. Similarly, the establishment of minimum medical educational
requirements for admission to the medical profession, has also been sustained as a
legitimate exercise of the regulatory authority of the state.
179
.
Pelaez v. Auditor General 15 SCRA 569

Facts:

During the period from September 4 to October 29, 1964 the President of the Philippines,
purporting to act pursuant to Section 68 of the Revised Administrative Code, issued
Executive Orders Nos. 93 to 121, 124 and 126 to 129; creating thirty-three (33)
municipalities enumerated in the margin. Soon after the date last mentioned, or on
November 10, 1964 petitioner Emmanuel Pelaez, as Vice President of the Philippines and
as taxpayer, instituted the present special civil action, for a writ of prohibition with
preliminary injunction, against the Auditor General, to restrain him, as well as his
representatives and agents, from passing in audit any expenditure of public funds in
implementation of said executive orders and/or any disbursement by said municipalities.

Petitioner alleges that said executive orders are null and void, upon the ground that said
Section 68 has been impliedly repealed by Republic Act No. 2370 effective January 1, 1960
and constitutes an undue delegation of legislative power. The third paragraph of Section 3
of Republic Act No. 2370, reads:
Barrios shall not be created or their boundaries altered nor their names changed except
under the provisions of this Act or by Act of Congress.
Respondent herein relies upon Municipality of Cardona vs. Municipality of Binan gonan

Issue:

Whether or not the President, who under this new law cannot even create a barrio, can
create a municipality which is
composed of several barrios, since barrios are units of municipalities?

Ruling:

On Cardona vs Municipality of Binangonan, such claim is untenable, for said case involved,
not the creation of a new municipality, but a mere transfer of territory from an already
existing municipality (Cardona) to another municipality (Binan gonan), likewise, existing
at the time of and prior to said transfer. It is obvious, however, that, whereas the power to
fix such common boundary, in order to avoid or settle conflicts of jurisdiction between
adjoining municipalities, may partake of an administrative nature involving, as it does,
180
the adoption of means and ways to carry into effect the law creating said municipalities
the authority to create municipal corporations is essentially legislative in nature. In the
language of other courts, it is strictly a legislative function or solely and exclusively the
exercise of legislative power

Although Congress may delegate to another branch of the Government the power to fill in
the details in the execution, enforcement or administration of a law, it is essential, to
forestall a violation of the principle of separation of powers, that said law: (a) be
complete in itself it must set forth therein the policy to be executed, carried out
or implemented by the delegate2 and (b) fix a standard the limits of which are
sufficiently determinate or determinable to which the delegate must conform in
the performance of his functions. Indeed, without a statutory declaration of policy, the
delegate would in effect, make or formulate such policy, which is the essence of every law;
and, without the aforementioned standard, there would be no means to determine, with
reasonable certainty, whether the delegate has acted within or beyond the scope of his
authority. Hence, he could thereby arrogate upon himself the power, not only to make the
law, but, also and this is worse to unmake it, by adopting measures inconsistent with
the end sought to be attained by the Act of Congress, thus nullifying the principle of
separation of powers and the system of checks and balances, and, consequently,
undermining the very foundation of our Republican system.

Section 68 of the Revised Administrative Code does not meet these well settled
requirements for a valid delegation of the power to fix the details in the enforcement of a
law. It does not enunciate any policy to be carried out or implemented by the President.
Neither does it give a standard sufficiently precise to avoid the evil effects above referred
to.

The power of control under the provision Section 10 (1) of Article VII of the Consti implies
the right of the President to interfere in the exercise of such discretion as may be vested by
law in the officers of the executive departments, bureaus, or offices of the national
government, as well as to act in lieu of such officers. This power is denied by the
Constitution to the Executive, insofar as local governments are concerned. With respect to
the latter, the fundamental law permits him to wield no more authority than that of
checking whether said local governments or the officers thereof perform their duties as
provided by statutory enactments. Hence, the President cannot interfere with local
governments, so long as the same or its officers act Within the scope of their authority. He
may not enact an ordinance which the municipal council has failed or refused to pass, even
if it had thereby violated a duty imposed thereto by law, although he may see to it that the
181
corresponding provincial officials take appropriate disciplinary action therefor. Neither
may he vote, set aside or annul an ordinance passed by said council within the scope of its
jurisdiction, no matter how patently unwise it may be. He may not even suspend an
elective official of a regular municipality or take any disciplinary action against him, except
on appeal from a decision of the corresponding provincial board.
Upon the other hand if the President could create a municipality, he could, in effect,
remove any of its officials, by creating a new municipality and including therein the
barrio in which the official concerned resides, for his office would thereby become
vacant. Thus, by merely brandishing the power to create a new municipality (if he
had it), without actually creating it, he could compel local officials to submit to his
dictation, thereby, in effect, exercising over them the power of control denied to him
by the Constitution.

Pacific Stream Laundry Inc. v. Laguna Lake Devt. Authority, Dec. 18, 2009
Facts:

Petitioner Pacific Steam Laundry, Inc. (petitioner) is a company engaged in the business of laundry
services. On 6 June 2001, the Environmental Management Bureau of the Department of Environment
and Natural Resources (DENR) endorsed to respondent Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA)
the inspection report on the complaint of black smoke emission from petitioners plant located at
114 Roosevelt Avenue, Quezon City. On 22 June 2001, LLDA conducted an investigation and
found that untreated wastewater generated from petitioners laundry washing activities was
discharged directly to the San Francisco Del Monte River. Furthermore, the Investigation
Report stated that petitioners plant was operating without LLDA clearance, AC/PO-ESI, and
Discharge Permit from LLDA. On 5 September 2001,the Environmental Quality Management Division
of LLDA conducted wastewater sampling of petitioners effluent. The result of the laboratory
analysis showed non-compliance with effluent standards particularly Total Suspended Solids (TSS),
Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD), Oil/Grease Concentration and Color Units. Consequently, LLDA
issued to petitioner a Notice of Violation. Petitioner submitted its application for LLDA Clearance and
Discharge Permit and informed LLDA that it would undertake the necessary measures to abate the
water pollution. No compliance followed. It was reported that petitioners wastewater treatment
facility was under construction. Subsequently, another wastewater sampling was conducted but the
results still failed.

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A Pollution Control and Abatement case was filed against petitioner before the LLDA. Petitioner
requested another test. This time, it showed compliance. Respondent prayed that the Notice of
Violation issued on 30 October 2001 and its corresponding daily penalty beset aside and that the
imposable penalty be reckoned from the date of actual hearing and not on 5 September 2001. It is
respondents position that the Notice of Violation and the imposition of the penalty had no
legal and factual basis because it had already installed the necessary wastewater treatment to abate the
water pollution. This Public Hearing Committee finds respondents arguments devoid of
merit. Presidential Decree No. 984 prohibits the discharge of pollutive wastewater and any person
found in violation thereof shall pay a fine not exceeding five thousand pesos (PhP5,000.00) [sic]
forevery day during which such violation continues. The mere discharge of wastewater not conforming
with the effluent standard is the violation referred to in PD No. 984.CA held that LLDA has the power to
impose fines.

Issue:

Whether or not LLDA have the implied power to impose fines as set forth in PD 984?

Ruling:

YES.

Petitioner asserts that LLDA has no power to impose fines since such power to impose penal sanctions,
which was once lodged with the National Pollution Control Commission (NPCC), is now assumed by
the Pollution Adjudication Board pursuant to Executive Order No. 192 (EO 192). SC disagree.
Presidential Decree No. 984 (PD 984) created and established the NPCC under the Office of the
President. EO 192, which reorganized the DENR, created the Pollution Adjudication Board under the
Office of the DENR Secretary which assumed the powers and functions of the NPCC with respect to
adjudication of pollution cases.
Under Executive Order No. 927 (EO 927), LLDA is granted additional powers and functions to
effectively perform its role and to enlarge its prerogatives of monitoring, licensing and enforcement.

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Under Section 4(h) of EO 927, LLDA may "exercise such powers and perform such other functions as
may be necessary to carry out its duties and responsibilities." In Laguna Lake Development Authority v.
Court of Appeals, the Court upheld the power of LLDA to issue an ex-parte cease and desist order
even if such power is not expressly conferred by law, holding that an administrative agency has also
such powers as are necessarily implied in the exercise of its express powers. The Court ruled that LLDA,
in the exercise of its express power sunder its charter, as a regulatory and quasi-judicial body with
respect to pollution cases in the Laguna Lake region, has the implied authority to issue a "cease and
desist order." In the same manner, we hold that the LLDA has the power to impose fines in the exercise
of its function asa regulatory and quasi-judicial body with respect to pollution cases in the Laguna Lake
region.

LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT (Article VI)

Section 1

R.A. No. 6735 (System of Initiative and Referendum)

AN ACT PROVIDING FOR A SYSTEM OF INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM AND


APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR

I. General Provisions

Section 1. Title. This Act shall be known as "The Initiative and Referendum Act."

Section 2. Statement of Policy. The power of the people under a system of initiative
and referendum to directly propose, enact, approve or reject, in whole or in part, the
Constitution, laws, ordinances, or resolutions passed by any legislative body upon
compliance with the requirements of this Act is hereby affirmed, recognized and
guaranteed.

Section 3. Definition of Terms. For purposes of this Act, the following terms shall
mean:

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(a) "Initiative" is the power of the people to propose amendments to the
Constitution or to propose and enact legislations through an election called for the
purpose.
There are three (3) systems of initiative, namely:
a.1 Initiative on the Constitution which refers to a petition proposing
amendments to the Constitution;
a.2. Initiative on statutes which refers to a petition proposing to enact a
national legislation; and
a.3. Initiative on local legislation which refers to a petition proposing to enact
a regional, provincial, city, municipal, or barangay law, resolution or ordinance.
(b) "Indirect initiative" is exercise of initiative by the people through a proposition
sent to Congress or the local legislative body for action.
(c) "Referendum" is the power of the electorate to approve or reject a legislation
through an election called for the purpose. It may be of two classes, namely:
c.1. Referendum on statutes which refers to a petition to approve or reject an
act or law, or part thereof, passed by Congress; and
c.2. Referendum on local law which refers to a petition to approve or reject a
law, resolution or ordinance enacted by regional assemblies and local
legislative bodies.
(d) "Proposition" is the measure proposed by the voters.
(e) "Plebiscite" is the electoral process by which an initiative on the Constitution is
approved or rejected by the people.
(f) "Petition" is the written instrument containing the proposition and the required
number of signatories. It shall be in a form to be determined by and submitted to the
Commission on Elections, hereinafter referred to as the Commission.
(g) "Local government units" refers to provinces, cities, municipalities and
barangays.
(h) "Local legislative bodies" refers to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Sangguniang
Panlungsod, Sangguniang Bayan, and Sangguniang Nayon.
(i) "Local executives" refers to the Provincial Governors, City or Municipal Mayors
and Punong Barangay, as the case may be.

Section 4. Who may exercise. The power of initiative and referendum may be
exercised by all registered voters of the country, autonomous regions, provinces, cities,
municipalities and barangays.

Section 5. Requirements.

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(a) To exercise the power of initiative or referendum, at least ten per centum (10%) of the
total number of the registered voters, of which every legislative district is represented by
at least three per centum (3%) of the registered voters thereof, shall sign a petition for the
purpose and register the same with the Commission.

(b) A petition for an initiative on the 1987 Constitution must have at least twelve per
centum (12%) of the total number of registered voters as signatories, of which every
legislative district must be represented by at least three per centum (3%) of the registered
voters therein. Initiative on the Constitution may be exercised only after five (5) years
from the ratification of the 1987 Constitution and only once every five (5) years thereafter.
(c) The petition shall state the following:
c.1. contents or text of the proposed law sought to be enacted, approved or
rejected, amended or repealed, as the case may be;
c.2. the proposition;
c.3. the reason or reasons therefor;
c.4. that it is not one of the exceptions provided herein;
c.5. signatures of the petitioners or registered voters; and
c.6. an abstract or summary in not more than one hundred (100) words which
shall be legibly written or printed at the top of every page of the petition.

(d) A referendum or initiative affecting a law, resolution or ordinance passed by the


legislative assembly of an autonomous region, province or city is deemed validly initiated
if the petition thereof is signed by at least ten per centum (10%) of the registered voters in
the province or city, of which every legislative district must be represented by at least
three per centum (3%) of the registered voters therein; Provided, however, That if the
province or city is composed only of one (1) legislative district, then at least each
municipality in a province or each barangay in a city should be represented by at least
three per centum (3%) of the registered voters therein.

(e) A referendum of initiative on an ordinance passed in a municipality shall be deemed


validly initiated if the petition therefor is signed by at least ten per centum (10%) of the
registered voters in the municipality, of which every barangay is represented by at least
three per centum (3%) of the registered voters therein.

(f) A referendum or initiative on a barangay resolution or ordinance is deemed validly


initiated if signed by at least ten per centum (10%) of the registered voters in said
barangay.

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Section 6. Special Registration. The Commission on Election shall set a special
registration day at least three (3) weeks before a scheduled initiative or referendum.

Section 7. Verification of Signatures. The Election Registrar shall verify the signatures
on the basis of the registry list of voters, voters' affidavits and voters identification cards
used in the immediately preceding election.

II. National Initiative and Referendum

SECTION 8. Conduct and Date of Initiative or Referendum. The Commission shall call
and supervise the conduct of initiative or referendum.
Within a period of thirty (30) days from receipt of the petition, the Commission shall, upon
determining the sufficiency of the petition, publish the same in Filipino and English at
least twice in newspapers of general and local circulation and set the date of the initiative
or referendum which shall not be earlier than forty-five (45) days but not later than ninety
(90) days from the determination by the Commission of the sufficiency of the petition.

Section 9. Effectivity of Initiative or Referendum Proposition.

(a) The Proposition of the enactment, approval, amendment or rejection of a national law
shall be submitted to and approved by a majority of the votes cast by all the registered
voters of the Philippines.

If, as certified to by the Commission, the proposition is approved by a majority of the votes
cast, the national law proposed for enactment, approval, or amendment shall become
effective fifteen (15) days following completion of its publication in the Official Gazette or
in a newspaper of general circulation in the Philippines. If, as certified by the Commission,
the proposition to reject a national law is approved by a majority of the votes cast, the said
national law shall be deemed repealed and the repeal shall become effective fifteen (15)
days following the completion of publication of the proposition and the certification by the
Commission in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation in the
Philippines.

However, if the majority vote is not obtained, the national law sought to be rejected or
amended shall remain in full force and effect.

(b) The proposition in an initiative on the Constitution approved by a majority of the votes
cast in the plebiscite shall become effective as to the day of the plebiscite.
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(c) A national or local initiative proposition approved by majority of the votes cast in an
election called for the purpose shall become effective fifteen (15) days after certification
and proclamation by the Commission.

Section 10. Prohibited Measures. The following cannot be the subject of an initiative
or referendum petition:

(a) No petition embracing more than one (1) subject shall be submitted to the electorate;
and
(b) Statutes involving emergency measures, the enactment of which are specifically vested
in Congress by the Constitution, cannot be subject to referendum until ninety (90) days
after its effectivity.

Section 11. Indirect Initiative. Any duly accredited people's organization, as defined
by law, may file a petition for indirect initiative with the House of Representatives, and
other legislative bodies. The petition shall contain a summary of the chief purposes and
contents of the bill that the organization proposes to be enacted into law by the legislature.

The procedure to be followed on the initiative bill shall be the same as the enactment of
any legislative measure before the House of Representatives except that the said initiative
bill shall have precedence over the pending legislative measures on the committee.

Section 12. Appeal. The decision of the Commission on the findings of the sufficiency
or insufficiency of the petition for initiative or referendum may be appealed to the
Supreme Court within thirty (30) days from notice thereof.

III. Local Initiative and Referendum

SECTION 13. Procedure in Local Initiative.

(a) Not less than two thousand (2,000) registered voters in case of autonomous regions,
one thousand (1,000) in case of provinces and cities, one hundred (100) in case of
municipalities, and fifty (50) in case of barangays, may file a petition with the Regional
Assembly or local legislative body, respectively, proposing the adoption, enactment, repeal,
or amendment, of any law, ordinance or resolution.

188
(b) If no favorable action thereon is made by local legislative body within (30) days from
its presentation, the proponents through their duly authorized and registered
representative may invoke their power of initiative, giving notice thereof to the local
legislative body concerned.

(c) The proposition shall be numbered serially starting from one (1). The Secretary of
Local Government or his designated representative shall extend assistance in the
formulation of the proposition.

(d) Two or more propositions may be submitted in an initiative.

(e) Proponents shall have one hundred twenty (120) days in case of autonomous regions,
ninety (90) days in case of provinces and cities, sixty (60) days in case of municipalities,
and thirty (30) days in case of barangays, from notice mentioned in subsection (b) hereof
to collect the required number of signatures.

(f) The petition shall be signed before the Election Registrar, or his designated
representative, in the presence of a representative of the proponent, and a representative
of the regional assemblies and local legislative bodies concerned in a public place in the
autonomous region or local government unit, as the case may be. Signature stations may
be established in as many places as may be warranted.

(g) Upon the lapse of the period herein provided, the Commission on Elections, through its
office in the local government unit concerned shall certify as to whether or not the
required number of signatures has been obtained. Failure to obtain the required number is
a defeat of the proposition.

(h) If the required number of the signatures is obtained, the Commission shall then set a
date for the initiative at which the proposition shall be submitted to the registered voters
in the local government unit concerned for their approval within ninety (90) days from the
date of certification by the Commission, as provided in subsection (g) hereof, in case of
autonomous regions, sixty (60) days in case of the provinces and cities, forty-five (45) days
in case of municipalities, and thirty (30) days in case of barangays. The initiative shall then
be held on the date set, after which the results thereof shall be certified and proclaimed by
the Commission on Elections.

Section 14. Effectivity of Local Propositions. If the proposition is approved by a


majority of the votes cast, it shall take effect fifteen (15) days after certification by the
189
Commission as if affirmative action thereon had been made by the local legislative body
and local executive concerned. If it fails to obtain said number of votes, the proposition is
considered defeated.

Section 15. Limitations on Local Initiatives.

(a) The power of local initiative shall not be exercised more than once a year.
(b) Initiative shall extend only to subjects or matters which are within the legal powers of
the local legislative bodies to enact.
(c) If at any time before the initiative is held, the local legislative body shall adopt in toto
the proposition presented, the initiative shall be cancelled. However, those against such
action may, if they so desire, apply for initiative in the manner herein provided.

Section 16. Limitations Upon Local Legislative Bodies. Any proposition or ordinance
or resolution approved through the system of initiative and referendum as herein
provided shall not be repealed, modified or amended, by the local legislative body
concerned within six (6) months from the date therefrom, and may be amended, modified
or repealed by the local legislative body within three (3) years thereafter by a vote of
three-fourths (3/4) of all its members: Provided, however, that in case of barangays, the
period shall be one (1) year after the expiration of the first six (6) months.

Section 17. Local Referendum. Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 4 hereof,


any local legislative body may submit to the registered voters of autonomous region,
provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays for the approval or rejection, any ordinance
or resolution duly enacted or approved.
Said referendum shall be held under the control and direction of the Commission within
sixty (60) days in case of provinces and cities, forty-five (45) days in case of municipalities
and thirty (30) days in case of barangays.
The Commission shall certify and proclaim the results of the said referendum.

Section 18. Authority of Courts. Nothing in this Act shall prevent or preclude the
proper courts from declaring null and void any proposition approved pursuant to this Act
for violation of the Constitution or want of capacity of the local legislative body to enact
the said measure.

IV. Final Provisions

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SECTION 19. Applicability of the Omnibus Election Code. The Omnibus Election Code
and other election laws, not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act, shall apply to all
initiatives and referenda.

Section 20. Rules and Regulations. The Commission is hereby empowered to


promulgate such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of
this Act.

Section 21. Appropriations. The amount necessary to defray the cost of the initial
implementation of this Act shall be charged against the Contingent Fund in the General
Appropriations Act of the current year. Thereafter, such sums as may be necessary for the
full implementation of this Act shall be included in the annual General Appropriations Act.

Section 22. Separability Clause. If any part or provision of this Act is held invalid or
unconstitutional, the other parts or provisions thereof shall remain valid and effective.

Section 23. Effectivity. This Act shall take effect fifteen (15) days after its publication in
a newspaper of general circulation.

Approved: August 4, 1989

Section 5

R.A. No. 7941 (Party-List System)


AN ACT PROVIDING FOR THE ELECTION OF PARTY-LIST REPRESENTATIVES
THROUGH THE PARTY-LIST SYSTEM, AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR
Section 1. Title. This Act shall be known as the "Party-List System Act."

Section 2. Declaration of party. The State shall promote proportional representation in the
election of representatives to the House of Representatives through a party-list system of
registered national, regional and sectoral parties or organizations or coalitions thereof,
which will enable Filipino citizens belonging to marginalized and under-represented
sectors, organizations and parties, and who lack well-defined political constituencies but
who could contribute to the formulation and enactment of appropriate legislation that will
benefit the nation as a whole, to become members of the House of Representatives.
Towards this end, the State shall develop and guarantee a full, free and open party system
191
in order to attain the broadcast possible representation of party, sectoral or group
interests in the House of Representatives by enhancing their chances to compete for and
win seats in the legislature, and shall provide the simplest scheme possible.

Section 3. Definition of Terms.

(a) The party-list system is a mechanism of proportional representation in the election of


representatives to the House of Representatives from national, regional and sectoral
parties or organizations or coalitions thereof registered with the Commission on Elections
(COMELEC). Component parties or organizations of a coalition may participate
independently provided the coalition of which they form part does not participate in the
party-list system.

(b) A party means either a political party or a sectoral party or a coalition of parties.
(c) A political party refers to an organized group of citizens advocating an ideology or
platform, principles and policies for the general conduct of government and which, as the
most immediate means of securing their adoption, regularly nominates and supports
certain of its leaders and members as candidates for public office.

It is a national party when its constituency is spread over the geographical territory of at
least a majority of the regions. It is a regional party when its constituency is spread over
the geographical territory of at least a majority of the cities and provinces comprising the
region.

(d) A sectoral party refers to an organized group of citizens belonging to any of the sectors
enumerated in Section 5 hereof whose principal advocacy pertains to the special interest
and concerns of their sector,

(e) A sectoral organization refers to a group of citizens or a coalition of groups of citizens


who share similar physical attributes or characteristics, employment, interests or
concerns.

(f) A coalition refers to an aggrupation of duly registered national, regional, sectoral


parties or organizations for political and/or election purposes.

Section 4. Manifestation to Participate in the Party-List System. Any party, organization, or


coalition already registered with the Commission need not register anew. However, such

192
party, organization, or coalition shall file with the Commission, not later than ninety (90)
days before the election, a manifestation of its desire to participate in the party-list system.

Section 5. Registration. Any organized group of persons may register as a party,


organization or coalition for purposes of the party-list system by filing with the COMELEC
not later than ninety (90) days before the election a petition verified by its president or
secretary stating its desire to participate in the party-list system as a national, regional or
sectoral party or organization or a coalition of such parties or organizations, attaching
thereto its constitution, by-laws, platform or program of government, list of officers,
coalition agreement and other relevant information as the COMELEC may require:
Provided, That the sectors shall include labor, peasant, fisherfolk, urban poor, indigenous
cultural communities, elderly, handicapped, women, youth, veterans, overseas workers,
and professionals.

The COMELEC shall publish the petition in at least two (2) national newspapers
of general circulation.

The COMELEC shall, after due notice and hearing, resolve the petition within fifteen (15)
days from the date it was submitted for decision but in no case not later than sixty (60)
days before election.

Section 6. Refusal and/or Cancellation of Registration. The COMELEC may, motu propio or
upon verified complaint of any interested party, refuse or cancel, after due notice and
hearing, the registration of any national, regional or sectoral party, organization or
coalition on any of the following grounds:

(1) It is a religious sect or denomination, organization or association, organized for


religious purposes;
(2) It advocates violence or unlawful means to seek its goal;
(3) It is a foreign party or organization;
(4) It is receiving support from any foreign government, foreign political party, foundation,
organization, whether directly or through any of its officers or members or indirectly
through third parties for partisan election purposes;
(5) It violates or fails to comply with laws, rules or regulations relating to elections;
(6) It declares untruthful statements in its petition;
(7) It has ceased to exist for at least one (1) year; or

193
(8) It fails to participate in the last two (2) preceding elections or fails to obtain at least
two per centum (2%) of the votes cast under the party-list system in the two (2) preceding
elections for the constituency in which it has registered.

Section 7. Certified List of Registered Parties. The COMELEC shall, not later than sixty (60)
days before election, prepare a certified list of national, regional, or sectoral parties,
organizations or coalitions which have applied or who have manifested their desire to
participate under the party-list system and distribute copies thereof to all precincts for
posting in the polling places on election day. The names of the part y-list nominees shall
not be shown on the certified list.

Section 8. Nomination of Party-List Representatives. Each registered party, organization or


coalition shall submit to the COMELEC not later than forty-five (45) days before the
election a list of names, not less than five (5), from which party-list representatives shall
be chosen in case it obtains the required number of votes.

A person may be nominated in one (1) list only. Only persons who have given their consent
in writing may be named in the list. The list shall not include any candidate for any elective
office or a person who has lost his bid for an elective office in the immediately preceding
election. No change of names or alteration of the order of nominees shall be allowed after
the same shall have been submitted to the COMELEC except in cases where the nominee
dies, or withdraws in writing his nomination, becomes incapacitated in which case the
name of the substitute nominee shall be placed last in the list. Incumbent sectoral
representatives in the House of Representatives who are nominated in the party-list
system shall not be considered resigned.

Section 9. Qualifications of Party-List Nominees. No person shall be nominated as party-list


representative unless he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, a registered voter, a
resident of the Philippines for a period of not less than one (1)year immediately preceding
the day of the election, able to read and write, a bona fide member of the party or
organization which he seeks to represent for at least ninety (90) days preceding the day of
the election, and is at least twenty-five (25) years of age on the day of the election.

In case of a nominee of the youth sector, he must at least be twenty-five (25) but not more
than thirty (30) years of age on the day of the election. Any youth sectoral representative
who attains the age of thirty (30) during his term shall be allowed to continue in office
until the expiration of his term.

194
Section 10. Manner of Voting. Every voter shall be entitled to two (2) votes: the first is a
vote for candidate for member of the House of Representatives in his legislative district,
and the second, a vote for the party, organizations, or coalition he wants represented in the
house of Representatives: Provided, That a vote cast for a party, sectoral organization, or
coalition not entitled to be voted for shall not be counted: Provided, finally, That the first
election under the party-list system shall be held in May 1998.

The COMELEC shall undertake the necessary information campaign for purposes of
educating the electorate on the matter of the party-list system.

Section 11. Number of Party-List Representatives. The party-list representatives shall


constitute twenty per centum (20%) of the total number of the members of the House of
Representatives including those under the party-list.

For purposes of the May 1998 elections, the first five (5) major political parties on the
basis of party representation in the House of Representatives at the start of the Tenth
Congress of the Philippines shall not be entitled to participate in the party-list system.

In determining the allocation of seats for the second vote, the following procedure shall be
observed:

(a) The parties, organizations, and coalitions shall be ranked from the highest to the
lowest based on the number of votes they garnered during the elections.
(b) The parties, organizations, and coalitions receiving at least two percent (2%) of the
total votes cast for the party-list system shall be entitled to one seat each: Provided, That
those garnering more than two percent (2%) of the votes shall be entitled to additional
seats in proportion to their total number of votes: Provided, finally, That each party,
organization, or coalition shall be entitled to not more than three (3) seats.

Section 12. Procedure in Allocating Seats for Party-List Representatives. The COMELEC
shall tally all the votes for the parties, organizations, or coalitions on a nationwide basis,
rank them according to the number of votes received and allocate party-list
representatives proportionately according to the percentage of votes obtained by each
party, organization, or coalition as against the total nationwide votes cast for the party-list
system.

195
Section 13. How Party-List Representatives are Chosen. Party-list representatives shall be
proclaimed by the COMELEC based on the list of names submitted by the respective
parties, organizations, or coalitions to the COMELEC according to their ranking in said list.

Section 14. Term of Office. Party-list representatives shall be elected for a term of three (3)
years which shall begin, unless otherwise provided by law, at noon on the thirtieth day of
June next following their election. No party-list representatives shall serve for more than
three (3) consecutive terms. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time
shall not be considered as an interruption in the continuity his service for the full term for
which he was elected.

Section 15. Change of Affiliation; Effect. Any elected party-list representative who changes
his political party or sectoral affiliation during his term of office shall forfeit his seat:
Provided, That if he changes his political party or sectoral affiliation within six (6) months
before an election, he shall not be eligible for nomination as party-list representative
under his new party or organization.

Section 16. Vacancy. In case of vacancy in the seats reserved for party-list representatives,
the vacancy shall be automatically filled by the next representative from the list of
nominees in the order submitted to the COMELEC by the same party, organization, or
coalition, who shall serve for the unexpired term. If the list is exhausted, the party,
organization coalition concerned shall submit additional nominees.

Section 17. Rights of Party-List Representatives. Party-List Representatives shall be


entitled to the same salaries and emoluments as regular members of the House of
Representatives.

Section 18. Rules and Regulations. The COMELEC shall promulgate the necessary rules
and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of this Act.

Section 19. Appropriations. The amount necessary for the implementation of this Act shall
be provided in the regular appropriations for the Commission on Elections starting fiscal
year 1996 under the General Appropriations Act.
Starting 1995, the COMELEC is hereby authorized to utilize savings and other available
funds for purposes of its information campaign on the party-list system.

Section 20. Separability Clause. If any part of this Act is held invalid or unconstitutional,
the other parts or provisions thereof shall remain valid and effective.
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Section 21. Repealing Clause. All laws, decrees, executive orders, rules and regulations, or
parts thereof, inconsistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed.

Section 22. Effectivity. This Act shall take effect fifteen (15) days after its publication in a
newspaper of general circulation.

Tobias v. Abalos 239 SCRA 106


Facts:

Petitioners assail the constitutionality of the Republic Act No. 7675, otherwise known as
"An Act Converting the Municipality of Mandaluyong into a Highly Urbanized City to be
known as the City ofMandaluyong. Prior to the enactment of the assailed statute, the
municipalities of Mandaluyong andSan Juan belonged to only one legislative district. The
petitioners contend on the following:

(1) Article VIII, Section 49 of R.A. No. 7675 contravenes from the "one subject-one bill"
rule provided in the Constitution by involving 2 subjects in the bill namely (1) the
conversion of Mandaluyong into a highly urbanized city; and (2) the division of the
congressional district of San Juan/Mandaluyong into two separate districts.

(2) The division of San Juan and Mandaluyong into separate congressional districts under
Section 49 of the assailed law has resulted in an increase in the composition of the House
of Representatives beyond that provided in Article VI, Sec. 5(1) of the Constitution.

(3) The said division was not made pursuant to any census showing that the subject
municipalities have attained the minimum population requirements.

(4) That Section 49 has the effect of preempting the right of Congress to reapportion
legislative districts pursuant to Sec. 5(4) of the Constitution stating that within three
years following the return of every census, the Congress shall make a reapportionment of
legislative districts based on the standard provided in this section
Issue:

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WON the RA No. 7675 is unconstitutional.

Ruling:

The court ruled that RA No. 7675 followed the mandate of the "one city-one
representative" proviso in the Constitution stating that each city with a population of at
least two hundred fifty thousand, or each province, shall have at least one representative"
(Article VI, Section 5(3), Constitution). Contrary to petitioners' assertion, the creation of a
separate congressional district for Mandaluyong is not a subject separate and distinct from
the subject of its conversion into a highly urbanized city but is a natural and logical
consequence of its conversion into a highly urbanized city.

As to the contention that the assailed law violates the present limit on the number of
representatives as set forth in the Constitution, a reading of the applicable provision,
Article VI, Section 5(1), as aforequoted, shows that the present limit of 250 members is not
absolute with the phrase "unless otherwise provided by law."

As to the contention that Section 49 of R.A. No. 7675 in effect preempts the right of
Congress to reapportion legislative districts, it was the Congress itself which drafted,
deliberated upon and enacted the assailed law, including Section 49 thereof. Congress
cannot possibly preempt itself on a right which pertains to itself.

Hence, the court dismissed the petition due to lack of merit.

Veterans Federation Party v. Comelec October 6, 2000


Facts:

Petitioner assailed public respondent COMELEC resolutions ordering the proclamation of


38 additional party-list representatives to complete the 52 seats in the House of
Representatives as provided by Sec 5, Art VI of the 1987 Constitution and RA 7941.

198
On the other hand, Public Respondent, together with the respondent parties, avers that the
filling up of the twenty percent membership of party-list representatives in the House of
Representatives, as provided under the Constitution, was mandatory, wherein the twenty
(20%) percent congressional seats for party-list representatives is filled up at all times.

Issue:

Whether or not the twenty percent allocation for party-list lawmakers is mandatory.

Ruling:

No, it is merely a ceiling for the party-list seats in Congress. The same declared therein a
policy to promote proportional representation in the election of party-list
representatives in order to enable Filipinos belonging to the marginalized and
underrepresented sectors to contribute legislation that would benefit them.

It however deemed it necessary to require parties, organizations and coalitions


participating in the system to obtain at least two percent of the total votes cast for the
party-list system in order to be entitled to a party-list seat. Those garnering more than this
percentage could have additional seats in proportion to their total number of votes.

Furthermore, no winning party, organization or coalition can have more than three seats
in the House of Representatives (sec 11(b) RA 7941).

Ang Bagong Bayani-OFW Labor Party v. Comelec

Facts

Petitioners challenged the Comelecs Omnibus Resolution No. 3785 , which approved the
participation of 154 organizations and parties, including those herein impleaded, in the
2001 party-list elections. Petitioners sought the disqualification of private respondents,
arguing mainly that the party-list system was intended to benefit the marginalized and
underrepresented; not the mainstream political parties, the non-marginalized or
overrepresented. Unsatisfied with the pace by which Comelec acted on their petition,
petitioners elevated the issue to the Supreme Court.

199
Issue:
1. Whether or not petitioners recourse to the Court was proper.
2. Whether or not political parties may participate in the party list elections.
3. Whether or not the Comelec committed grave abuse of discretion in promulgating
Omnibus Resolution No. 3785.

Ruling:
1. The Court may take cognizance of an issue notwithstanding the availability of other
remedies "where the issue raised is one purely of law, where public interest is involved,
and in case of urgency." The facts attendant to the case rendered it justiciable.

2. Political parties even the major ones -- may participate in the party-list elections
subject to the requirements laid down in the Constitution and RA 7941, which is the
statutory law pertinent to the Party List System.

Under the Constitution and RA 7941, private respondents cannot be disqualified from the
party-list elections, merely on the ground that they are political parties. Section 5, Article
VI of the Constitution provides that members of the House of Representatives may "be
elected through a party-list system of registered national, regional, and sectoral parties or
organizations . It is however, incumbent upon the Comelec to determine proportional
representation of the marginalized and underrepresented, the criteria for participation,
in relation to the cause of the party list applicants so as to avoid desecration of the noble
purpose of the party-list system.

3. The Court acknowledged that to determine the propriety of the inclusion of


respondents in the Omnibus Resolution No. 3785, a study of the factual allegations was
necessary which was beyond the pale of the Court. The Court not being a trier of facts.

200
However, seeing that the Comelec failed to appreciate fully the clear policy of the law and
the Constitution, the Court decided to set some guidelines culled from the law and the
Constitution, to assist the Comelec in its work. The Court ordered that the petition be
remanded in the Comelec to determine compliance by the party lists.

BANAT V. COMELEC, G.R. No. 179271, April 21, 2009


Facts:

In July and August 2007, the COMELEC, sitting as the National Board of Canvassers, made a
partial proclamation of the winners in the party-list elections which was held in May 2007.

In proclaiming the winners and apportioning their seats, the COMELEC considered the
following rules:

1. In the lower house, 80% shall comprise the seats for legislative districts, while the
remaining 20% shall come from party-list representatives (Sec. 5, Article VI, 1987
Constitution);
2. Pursuant to Sec. 11b of R.A. 7941 or the Party-List System Act, a party-list which garners
at least 2% of the total votes cast in the party-list elections shall be entitled to one seat;
3. If a party-list garners at least 4%, then it is entitled to 2 seats; if it garners at least 6%,
then it is entitled to 3 seats this is pursuant to the 2-4-6 rule or the Panganiban
Formula from the case of Veterans Federation Party vs COMELEC.
4. In no way shall a party be given more than three seats even if if garners more than 6% of
the votes cast for the party-list election (3 seat cap rule, same case).

The Barangay Association for National Advancement and Transparency (BANAT), a party-
list candidate, questioned the proclamation as well as the formula being used. BANAT
averred that the 2% threshold is invalid; Sec. 11 of RA 7941 is void because its provision
that a party-list, to qualify for a congressional seat, must garner at least 2% of the votes
cast in the party-list election, is not supported by the Constitution. Further, the 2% rule
creates a mathematical impossibility to meet the 20% party-list seat prescribed by the
Constitution.

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BANAT also questions if the 20% rule is a mere ceiling or is it mandatory. If it is
mandatory, then with the 2% qualifying vote, there would be instances when it would be
impossible to fill the prescribed 20% share of party-lists in the lower house. BANAT also
proposes a new computation (which shall be discussed in the HELD portion of this
digest).

On the other hand, BAYAN MUNA, another party-list candidate, questions the validity of
the 3 seat rule (Section 11a of RA 7941). It also raised the issue of whether or not major
political parties are allowed to participate in the party-list elections or is the said elections
limited to sectoral parties.

Issues:

I. How is the 80-20 rule observed in apportioning the seats in the lower house?
II. Whether or not the 20% allocation for party-list representatives mandatory or a
mere ceiling.
III. Whether or not the 2% threshold to qualify for a seat valid
IV. How are party-list seats allocated?
V. Whether or not major political parties are allowed to participate in the party-list
elections.
VI. Whether or not the 3 seat cap rule (3 Seat Limit Rule) is valid.

Ruling:

1. The 80-20 rule is observed in the following manner: for every 5 seats allotted for
legislative districts, there shall be one seat allotted for a party-list representative.
Originally, the 1987 Constitution provides that there shall be not more than 250 members
of the lower house. Using the 80-20 rule, 200 of that will be from legislative districts, and
50 would be from party-list representatives. However, the Constitution also allowed
Congress to fix the number of the membership of the lower house as in fact, it can create
additional legislative districts as it may deem appropriate. As can be seen in the May 2007
elections, there were 220 district representatives, hence applying the 80-20 rule or the 5:1
ratio, there should be 55 seats allotted for party-list representatives.

How did the Supreme Court arrive at 55? This is the formula:
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(Current Number of Legislative DistrictRepresentatives 0.80) x (0.20) =
Number of Seats Available to Party-List Representatives
Hence, (220 0.80) x (0.20) = 55

2. The 20% allocation for party-list representatives is merely a ceiling meaning, the
number of party-list representatives shall not exceed 20% of the total number of the
members of the lower house. However, it is not mandatory that the 20% shall be filled.

3. No. Section 11b of RA 7941 is unconstitutional. There is no constitutional basis to


allow that only party-lists which garnered 2% of the votes cast a requalified for a seat and
those which garnered less than 2% are disqualified. Further, the 2% threshold creates a
mathematical impossibility to attain the ideal 80-20 apportionment. The Supreme Court
explained:
To illustrate: There are 55 available party-list seats. Suppose there are 50 million votes cast
for the 100 participants in the party list elections. A party that has two percent of the votes
cast, or one million votes, gets a guaranteed seat. Let us further assume that the first 50
parties all get one million votes. Only 50 parties get a seat despite the availability of 55 seats.
Because of the operation of the two percent threshold, this situation will repeat itself even if
we increase the available party-list seats to 60 seats and even if we increase the votes cast to
100 million. Thus, even if the maximum number of parties get two percent of the votes for
every party, it is always impossible for the number of occupied party-list seats to exceed 50
seats as long as the two percent threshold is present.
It is therefore clear that the two percent threshold presents an unwarranted obstacle to
the full implementation of Section 5(2), Article VI of the Constitution and prevents the
attainment of the broadest possible representation of party, sectoral or group interests in
the House of Representatives.

4. Instead, the 2% rule should mean that if a party-list garners 2% of the votes cast,
then it is guaranteed a seat, and not qualified. This allows those party-lists garnering less
than 2% to also get a seat.
But how? The Supreme Court laid down the following rules:
RANKING: 1. The parties, organizations, and coalitions shall be ranked from the highest to
the lowest based on the number of votes they garnered during the elections.
2% GUARANTY. 2. The parties, organizations, and coalitions receiving at least two percent
(2%) of the total votes cast for the party-list system shall be entitled to one guaranteed seat
each.
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ADDITIONAL SEATS 3. Those garnering sufficient number of votes, according to the ranking
in paragraph 1, shall be entitled to additional seats in proportion to their total number of
votes until all the additional seats are allocated.
LIMITATION. 4. Each party, organization, or coalition shall be entitled to not more than three
(3) seats.

In computing the additional seats, the guaranteed seats shall no longer be included
because they have already been allocated, at one seat each, to every two-percenter. Thus,
the remaining available seats for allocation as additional seats are the maximum seats
reserved under the Party List System less the guaranteed seats. Fractional seats are
disregarded in the absence of a provision in R.A. No. 7941 allowing for a rounding off of
fractional seats.
In short, there shall be two rounds in determining the allocation of the seats. In the first
round, all party-lists which garnered at least 2% of the votes cast (called the two-
percenters) are given their one seat each. The total number of seats given to these two-
percenters are then deducted from the total available seats for party-lists. In this case, 17
party-lists were able to garner 2% each. There are a total 55 seats available for party-lists
hence, 55 minus 17 = 38 remaining seats. (Please refer to the full text of the case for the
tabulation).
The number of remaining seats, in this case 38, shall be used in the second round,
particularly, in determining, first, the additional seats for the two-percenters, and second,
in determining seats for the party-lists that did not garner at least 2% of the votes cast,
and in the process filling up the 20% allocation for party-list representatives.
How is this done?
Get the total percentage of votes garnered by the party and multiply it against the
remaining number of seats. The product, which shall not be rounded off, will be the
additional number of seats allotted for the party list but the 3 seat limit rule shall still be
observed.
Example:
In this case, the BUHAY party-list garnered the highest total vote of 1,169,234 which is
7.33% of the total votes cast for the party-list elections (15,950,900).
Applying the formula above: (Percentage of vote garnered) x (remaining seats) = number
of additional seat
Hence, 7.33% x 38 = 2.79

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Rounding off to the next higher number is not allowed so 2.79 remains 2. BUHAY is a two-
percenter which means it has a guaranteed one seat PLUS additional 2 seats or a total of 3
seats. Now if it so happens that BUHAY got 20% of the votes cast, it will still get 3 seats
because the 3 seat limit rule prohibits it from having more than 3 seats.
Now after all the tw0-percenters were given their guaranteed and additional seats, and
there are still unoccupied seats, those seats shall be distributed to the remaining party-
lists and those higher in rank in the voting shall be prioritized until all the seats are
occupied.

5. No. By a vote of 8-7, the Supreme Court continued to disallow major political parties
(the likes of UNIDO, LABAN, etc) from participating in the party-list elections.

Although the ponencia (Justice Carpio) did point out that there is no prohibition either
from the Constitution or from RA 7941 against major political parties from participating in
the party-list elections as the word party was not qualified and that even the framers of
the Constitution in their deliberations deliberately allowed major political parties to
participate in the party-list elections provided that they establish a sectoral wing which
represents the marginalized (indirect participation), Justice Puno, in his separate opinion,
concurred by 7 other justices, explained that the will of the people defeats the will of the
framers of the Constitution precisely because it is the people who ultimately ratified the
Constitution and the will of the people is that only the marginalized sections of the
country shall participate in the party-list elections. Hence, major political parties cannot
participate in the party-list elections, directly or indirectly.

6. Yes, the 3 seat limit rule is valid. This is one way to ensure that no one party shall
dominate the party-list system.

Sen. Benigno Aquino v. Commission on Elections


Facts:

Republic Act No. 9176 created an additional legislative district for the province of
Camarines Sur by reconfiguring the existing first and second legislative districts of the
province. The said law originated from House Bill No. 4264 and was signed into law by
President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo on 12 October 2009.

205
To that effect, the first and second districts of Camarines Sur were reconfigured in order to
create an additional legislative district for the province. Hence, the first district
municipalities of Libmanan, Minalabac, Pamplona, Pasacao, and San Fernando were
combined with the second district Municipalities of Milaor and Gainza to form a new
second legislative district.

Petitioners claim that the reapportionment introduced by Republic Act No. 9716 violates
the constitutional standards that requires a minimum population of two hundred fifty
thousand ( 250,000) for the creation of a legislative district. Thus, the proposed first
district will end up with a population of less than 250,000 or only 176,383.

Issue:

Whether or not a population of 250,000 is an indispensable constitutional requirement for


the creation of a new legislative district in a province.

Ruling

NO. The second sentence of Section 5 (3), Article VI of the constitution states that: Each
city with a population of at least two hundred fifty thousand, or each province, shall have
at least one representative.

There is a plain and clear distinction between the entitlement of a city to a district on one
hand, and the entitlement of a province to a district on the other. For a province is entitled
to at least a representative, there is nothing mentioned about the population. Meanwhile, a
city must first meet a population minimum of 250,000 in order to be similarly entitled.

It should be clearly read that Section 5(3) of the constitution requires a 250,000 minimum
population only for a city to be entitled to a representative, but not so for a province.

Bai Sandra Sema v. Commission on Elections, July 16, 2008


206
Facts:

On August 28, 2006, the ARMM Regional Assembly, exercising its power to create
provinces under Sec.19, Art.VI of RA 9054, enacted Muslim Mindanao Autonomy Act No.
201 (MMA Act 201) creating the province of Shariff Kabunsuan in the first district
ofMaguindanao.

The voters of Maguindanao ratified Shariff Kabunsuans creation in a plebiscite held on


October 29, 2006.

On February 6, 2007, the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Cotabato City passed Resolution No.
3999 requesting the COMELEC to clarify the status of Cotabato City in view of the
conversion of the First District of Maguindanao into a regular province under MMA Act
201.

In an answer to Cotabato Citys query, the COMELEC issued Resolution No. 07-0407
maintaining the status quo with Cotabato City as part of Shariff Kabunsuan in the
FirstLegislative District of Maguindanao.

However, in preparation for the May 14, 2007 elections, the COMELEC promulgated
Resolution No. 7845 stating that Maguindanaos first legislative district is composed only
of Cotabato City because of the enactment of MMA Act No. 201. On May 10, 2007, the
COMELEC issued Resolution No. 7902 amending Resolution No. 07-0407 by renaming the
legislative district in question as Shariff Kabunsan Province with Cotabato City.

Sema, who was a candidate for Representative of Shariff Kabunsuan with Cotabato City
prayed for the nullification of Resolution No. 7902 and the exclusion from the canvassing
of votes cast in Cotabato for that office. Sema contended that Shariff Kabunsuan is entitled
to one representative in Congress under Sec. 5(3), Art. VI of the Constitution and Sec.3 of
the Ordinance appended to the Constitution.

Issues:

1. Whether a province created under Sec. 19, Art.VI of RA 9054 is entitled to one
representative in the House of Representatives without need of a national law creating a
legislative district for such province?
207
Ruling:

Legislative Districts are created or reapportioned only by an act of Congress. Under the
Constitution, the power to increase the allowable membership in the House of
Representatives, and to apportion legislative districts, is vested exclusively in Congress.

Sec. 5 (1), Art.VI of the Constitution vests Congress the power to increase the allowable
membership in the House of Representatives. Sec. 5 (4) empowers Congress to
reapportion legislative districts. The power to reapportion legislative districts
necessarily includes the power to create legislative districts out of existing ones.
Congress exercises these powers through a law the Congress itself enacts, not through a
law enacted by regional/local legislative bodies. The power of redistricting xxx is
traditionally regarded as part of the power (of Congress) to make laws, and is thus vested
exclusively in (it) [Montejo v. COMELEC, 242 SCRA 415 (1995)].

An inferior legislative body cannot change the membership of the superior


legislative body which created it. Congress is a national legislature, and any changes in
its membership through the creation of legislative districts must be embodied in national
law.

The power to create or reapportion legislative districts cannot be delegated by


Congress but must be exercised by Congress itself. Even the ARMM Regional Assembly
recognizes this.

The ARMM cannot create a province without a legislative district because the
Constitution mandates that every province shall have a legislative district.

But this can never be legally possible because the creation of legislative districts is vested
solely in Congress.

Moreover, the ARMM Regional Assembly cannot enact a law creating a national office
because Sec. 20, Art.X of the Constitution expressly provides that the legislative powers of
regional assemblies are limited only within its territorial jurisdiction. (Nothing in Sec. 20,
Art.X of the Constitution authorizes autonomous regions to create/apportion legislative
districts for Congress.)

208
It is axiomatic that organic acts of autonomous regions cannot prevail over the
Constitution. Since the ARMM Regional Assembly has no legislative power to enact laws
relating to national elections, it cannot create a legislative district whose representative is
elected in national elections.

At most, what ARMM can create are barangays not cities and provinces.

Thus, MMA Act 201 enacted by the ARMM Regional Assembly, creating the Province of
Shariff Kabunsuan, is void.

COMELEC en banc v. AKB et. al. April 2, 2013

Section 6

Romualdez-Marcos v. Comelec 248 SCRA 300

Facts:

Imelda, a little over 8 years old, in or about 1938, established her domicile in Tacloban,
Leyte where she studied and graduated high school in the Holy Infant Academy from 1938
to 1949. She then pursued her college degree, education, in St. Pauls College now Divine
Word University also in Tacloban. Subsequently, she taught in Leyte Chinese School still in
Tacloban. She went to manila during 1952 to work with her cousin, the late speaker
Daniel Romualdez in his office in the House of Representatives. In 1954, she married late
President Ferdinand Marcos when he was still a Congressman of Ilocos Norte and was
registered there as a voter. When Pres. Marcos was elected as Senator in 1959, they lived
together in San Juan, Rizal where she registered as a voter. In 1965, when Marcos won
presidency, they lived in Malacanang Palace and registered as a voter in San Miguel
Manila. She served as member of the Batasang Pambansa and Governor of Metro Manila
during 1978.

209
Imelda Romualdez-Marcos was running for the position of Representative of the First
District of Leyte for the 1995 Elections. Cirilo Roy Montejo, the incumbent Representative
of the First District of Leyte and also a candidate for the same position, filed a Petition for
Cancellation and Disqualification" with the Commission on Elections alleging that
petitioner did not meet the constitutional requirement for residency. The petitioner, in an
honest misrepresentation, wrote seven months under residency, which she sought to
rectify by adding the words "since childhood" in her Amended/Corrected Certificate of
Candidacy filed on March 29, 1995 and that "she has always maintained Tacloban City as
her domicile or residence. She arrived at the seven months residency due to the fact that
she became a resident of the Municipality of Tolosa in said months.

Issue: Whether or not petitioner has satisfied the 1year residency requirement to be
eligible in running as representative of the First District of Leyte.

Ruling:

Yes.

Residence is used synonymously with domicile for election purposes. The court are in
favor of a conclusion supporting petitoners claim of legal residence or domicile in the
First District of Leyte despite her own declaration of 7 months residency in the district for
the following reasons:

1. A minor follows domicile of her parents. Tacloban became Imeldas domicile of origin
by operation of law when her father brought them to Leyte;

2. Domicile of origin is only lost when there is actual removal or change of domicile, a
bona fide intention of abandoning the former residence and establishing a new one, and
acts which correspond with the purpose. In the absence and concurrence of all these,
domicile of origin should be deemed to continue.

210
3. A wife does not automatically gain the husbands domicile because the term residence
in Civil Law does not mean the same thing in Political Law. When Imelda married late
President Marcos in 1954, she kept her domicile of origin and merely gained a new home
and not domicilium necessarium.

4. Assuming that Imelda gained a new domicile after her marriage and acquired right to
choose a new one only after the death of Pres. Marcos, her actions upon returning to the
country clearly indicated that she chose Tacloban, her domicile of origin, as her domicile of
choice. To add, petitioner even obtained her residence certificate in 1992 in Tacloban,
Leyte while living in her brothers house, an act, which supports the domiciliary intention
clearly manifested. She even kept close ties by establishing residences in Tacloban,
celebrating her birthdays and other important milestones.

WHEREFORE, having determined that petitioner possesses the necessary residence


qualifications to run for a seat in the House of Representatives in the First District of Leyte,
the COMELEC's questioned Resolutions dated April 24, May 7, May 11, and May 25, 1995
are hereby SET ASIDE. Respondent COMELEC is hereby directed to order the Provincial
Board of Canvassers to proclaim petitioner as the duly elected Representative of the First
District of Leyte.

Aquino v. Comelec 248 SCRA 400


Facts:

On 20 March 1995, Agapito A. Aquino, the petitioner, filed his Certificate of Candidacy for
the position of Representative for the new (remember: newly created) Second Legislative
District of Makati City. In his certificate of candidacy, Aquino stated that he was a resident
of the aforementioned district (284 Amapola Cor. Adalla Sts., Palm Village, Makati) for 10
months.

Move Makati, a registered political party, and Mateo Bedon, Chairman of LAKAS-NUCD-
UMDP of Barangay Cembo, Makati City, filed a petition to disqualify Aquino on the ground
that the latter lacked the residence qualification as acandidate for congressman which
under Section 6, Article VI of the 1987 Constitution, should be for a period not less than
one year preceding the (May 8, 1995) day of the election.
211
Faced with a petition for disqualification, Aquino amended the entry on his residency in
his certificate of candidacy to 1 year and 13 days. The Commission on Elections passed a
resolution that dismissed the petition on May 6 and allowed Aquino to run in the election
of 8 May. Aquino, with 38,547 votes, won against Augusto Syjuco with 35,910 votes. Move
Makati filed a motion of reconsideration with the Comelec, to which, on May 15, the latter
acted with an order suspending the proclamation of Aquino until the Commission resolved
the issue. On 2 June, the Commission on Elections found Aquino ineligible and disqualified
for the elective office for lack of constitutional qualification of residence.

Aquino then filed a Petition of Certiorari assailing the May 15 and June 2 orders.

Issue:

1. Whether or not residency in the certificate of candidacy actually connotes domicile


to warrant the disqualification of Aquino from the position in the electoral district.

2. Whether or not it is proven that Aquino has established domicile of choice and not just
residence (not in the sense of the COC)in the district he was running in.

Ruling:

1. Yes, The term residence has always been understood as synonymous with domicile
not only under the previous constitutions but also under the 1987 Constitution. It is the
place where a party actually or constructively has his permanent home, where he, no
matter where he may be found at any given time, eventually intends to return and remain,
i.e., his domicile, is that to which the Constitution refers when it speaks of residence for the
purposes of election law.

The purpose is to exclude strangers or newcomers unfamiliar with the conditions and
needs of the community from taking advantage of favorable circumstances existing in that
community for electoral gain.
While there is nothing wrong with the purpose of establishing residence in a given area for
meeting election lawr equirements, this defeats the essence of representation, which is to

212
place through assent of voters those most cognizant and sensitive to the needs of a
particular district, if a candidate falls short of the period of residency mandated by law for
him to qualify.

2. No, Aquino has not established domicile of choice in the district he was running in.

The SC agreed with the Comelecs contention that Aquino should prove that he established
a domicile of choice and not just residence.

The Constitution requires a person running for a post in the HR one year of residency
prior to the elections in the district in which he seeks election to .
Aquinos certificate of candidacy in a previous (May 11, 1992) election indicates that he
was a resident and a registered voter of San Jose, Concepcion, Tarlac for more than 52
years prior to that election. His birth certificate indicated that Conception as his birthplace
and his COC also showed him to be a registered voter of the same district. Thus his
domicile of origin (obviously, choice as well) up to the filing of his COC was in Conception,
Tarlac.

Aquinos connection to the new Second District of Makati City is an alleged lease
agreement of a condominium unit in the area. The intention not to establish a permanent
home in Makati City is evident in his leasing a condominium unit instead of buying one.
The short length of time he claims to be a resident of Makati (and the fact of his stated
domicile in Tarlac and his claims of other residences in Metro Manila) indicate that his sole
purpose in transferring his physical residence is not to acquire a new, residence or
domicile but only to qualify as a candidate for Representative of the Second District of
Makati City.

Aquinos assertion that he has transferred his domicile from Tarlac to Makati is a bare
assertion which is hardly supported by the facts in the case at bench. To successfully effect
a change of domicile, petitioner must prove an actual removal or an actual change of
domicile, a bona fide intention of abandoning the former place of residence and
establishing a new one and definite acts which correspond with the purpose.

213
Aquino was thus rightfully disqualified by the Commission on Elections due to his lack of
one year residence in the district.

Co v. HRET 199 SCRA 692

Facts:

In the case of Co vs. Electoral Tribunal[1] the major issue was whether Jose Ong, Jr. is a
natural-born Filipino citizen in contemplation of Section 6, Article VI in relation to
Sections 2 and 1(3), Article IV of the 1987 Constitution.

Records show that Ong Te, the grandfather of Jose Ong, Jr., arrived in the Philippines in
1895. He established his residence in Laoang, Samar. As such, he was able to obtain a
certificate of residence from the Spanish colonial administration.

Jose Ong Chuan, Jose Ong Jr.s father, was born in China in 1905. In 1915, he was brought
by Ong Te to Samar where he grew up. He was baptized into Christianity. He married a
natural-born Filipina, Agripina Lao. He also established his residence in Laoang, Samar. In
15 February 1954, he filed with the Court of First Instance of Samar an application for
naturalization. He was declared a Filipino citizen on 28 April 1955; the declaration was
made final and executory on 15 May 1957. He took his Oath of Allegiance and was issued a
corresponding certificate of Naturalization.

Jose Ong, Jr. was then a minor, nine years of age, and still finishing his elementary
education in Samar when his father took his oath. After completing his elementary
education, he went to Manila to complete his higher education and eventually found
employment there. He, however, frequently went home to Samar where he grew up.

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In 1971, his elder brother was elected a delegate of the 1971 Constitutional Convention.
Emils status as a natural-born citizen was challenged. The Convention, however, declared
Emil as a natural-born Filipino.

In 1984 and 1986, Jose Jr. registered and voted in Samar. He ran and won in the 1987
elections for representative in the second district of Northern Samar. His opponents
protested his election to the post on the grounds that he is not a natural-born citizen of
the Philippines. The Court affirmed the decision of the House of Representatives Electoral
Tribunal declaring Jose Ong, Jr. a natural-born Filipino citizen.

Issue:
Whether or not Jose Ong Jr. is a Filipino Citizen?

Ruling:
Yes.

Article IV Section 2 of 1987 constitution defines natural-born citizens as those who are
citizens of the Philippines from birth without having to perform any act to acquire or
perfect their Philippine citizenship, as well as those born before 17 January 1973, of
Filipino mothers, who elect Philippine citizenship upon reaching the age of majority.

Section 1(3) of the 1987 Constitution was interpreted by the Court as applying to those
who elected Filipino citizenship not only after 2 February 1987 but also to those who
elected citizenship before that date. It was intended to correct the anomalous situation
where one born of a Filipino father and an alien mother was automatically granted the
status of natural-born citizen while one born of Filipino mother and an alien father would
still have to elect Philippine citizenship, whereby under earlier laws, he was not a natural-
born citizen.

The Courts based its resolution of the issue by tracing Jose Ong, Jr. citizenship to his
mother who was a natural-born Filipina. What is material to the case is whether he elected
Filipino citizenship when he reached the age of majority as provided for by Section 1 (4)
215
Article IV of the 1935 Constitution which was the operative law when he was born. Under
the 1987 Constitution, natural-born status can only be accorded to individuals who elected
citizenship upon reaching majority. In the opinion of the Court it is not necessary for Ong,
Jr. to formally or in writing elect citizenship when he came of age as he was already a
citizen since he was nine by virtue of his mother being a natural-born citizen and his
father a naturalized Filipino.

Furthermore, election can be both formal and informal. In In Re Mallare (59 SCRA 45
[1974]) it was held that the exercise of the right of suffrage when one comes of age
constitutes a positive act of election of Philippine citizenship. The rule in the Mallare case
was applied whereby Jose Ongs exercise of the right of suffrage and the participation in
election exercises were considered positive acts of electing Philippine citizenship. Entering
a profession open only to Filipinos, serving in public office where citizenship is a
qualification, voting during election, running for public office, and other categorical acts of
similar nature are themselves formal manifestations of choice. These, according to the
court, cannot be less binding than the filing of a sworn statement or formal declaration.

Section 7
Dimaporo v. Mitra 202 SCRA 779

Facts:
Dimaporo was elected as a representative for the second legislative district of Lanao del
Sur during the1987 congressional elections.

Dimaporo filed a certificate of candidacy for the position of governor of ARMM. Secretary
and Speaker of t h e H o u s e exc l u d e d t h e n a m e o f D i m a p o ro f ro m t h e Ro l l o f
M e m b e r s o f H R u n d e r A r t I X o f S e c 6 7 o f t h e Omnibus Election Code. Dimaporo
lost the election wrote a letter intending to resume performing his duties and functions
as an elected member of the Congress. Unfortunately, he was not able to regain
his seat in the Congress.

216
Dimaporo contended that he did not lose his seat as a Congressman because Art. IX Sec. 67
of BP 881 is not operative in the present constitution, and therefore not applicable to the
members of Congress. Grounds may be termed to be shortened:
1. H o l d i n g a n y o f f i c e r o r e m p l o y m e n t i n t h e g o v e r n m e n t o r a n t s
u b d i v i s i o n , a g e n c y, o r instrumentality thereof.
2. Expulsion as a disciplinary action for a disorderly behavior.
3. Disqualification as determined by a resolution of the electoral tribunal in an election
contest
4. Voluntary renunciation of office

Issue:

Whether or not Dimaporo can still be considered as a member of Congress even after he
has filed for another government position?

Ruling:

No.

I n t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n t h e re i s a n e wc h a p te r o n t h e a c c o u n t a b i l i t y o f p u b l i c
o f f i c e r s . I n t h e 1 9 3 5 Constitution, it was provided that public office is a public
trust. Public officers should serve with the highest degree of responsibility and integrity.

If you allow a Batasan or a governor or a mayor who has mandated to serve for 6
years to file for an office other than the one he was elected to, then that clearly shows
that he did not intend to serve the mandate of the people which was placed upon him and
therefore he should be considered ipso facto resigned.

The filling of a certificate shall be considered as an overt act or abandoning or


relinquishing his mandate to the people and he should therefore resign if he want to seek
another position which he feels he could be of better service.

217
Section 11

Jimenez v. Cabangbang 17 SCRA 876


Facts:
This is an ordinary civil action, originally instituted in the Court of First Instance of Rizal,
for the recovery, by plaintiffs Nicanor T. Jimenez, Carlos J. Albert and Jose L. Lukban, of
several sums of money, by way of damages for the publication of an allegedly libelous
letter of defendant Bartolome Cabangbang. Upon being summoned, the latter moved to
dismiss the complaint upon the ground that the letter in question is not libelous, and that,
even if were, said letter is a privileged communication. This motion having been granted
by the lower court, plaintiffs interposed the present appeal from the corresponding order
of dismissal.
Issue:
Whether or not the publication in question is a privileged communication?
Ruling:
No, the publication in question is a not privileged communication.
The Constitution provides that:
The Senators and Members of the House of Representatives shall in all cases except
treason, felony, and breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their
attendance at the sessions of the Congress, and in going to and returning from the
same; and for any speech or debate therein, they shall not be questioned in any
other place. (Article VI, Section 15.)
The determination of the first issue depends on whether or not the aforementioned
publication falls within the purview of the phrase "speech or debate therein" that is to
say, in Congress used in this provision.
Said expression refers to utterances made by Congressmen in the performance of their
official functions, such as speeches delivered, statements made, or votes cast in the halls of
Congress, while the same is in session, as well as bills introduced in Congress, whether the
same is in session or not, and other acts performed by Congressmen, either in Congress or
outside the premises housing its offices, in the official discharge of their duties as
members of Congress and of Congressional Committees duly authorized to perform its
functions as such, at the time of the performance of the acts in question. 1
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The publication involved in this case does not belong to this category. According to the
complaint herein, it was an open letter to the President of the Philippines, dated
November 14, 1958, when Congress presumably was not in session, and defendant caused
said letter to be published in several newspapers of general circulation in the Philippines,
on or about said date. It is obvious that, in thus causing the communication to be so
published, he was not performing his official duty, either as a member of Congress or as
officer or any Committee thereof. Hence, contrary to the finding made by His Honor, the
trial Judge, said communication is not absolutely privileged.

People v. Jalosjos 324 SCRA 689

Facts:

Accused-appellant Romeo G. Jalosjos is a full-fledged member of Congress who is now


confined at the national penitentiary while his conviction for statutory rape on 2 counts
and acts of lasciviousness on 6 counts is pending appeal.
He filed a Motion asking that he be allowed to fully discharge the duties of Congressman,
including attendance at legislative sessions and committee meetings despite his having
been convicted in the first instance of a non-bailable offense.

He argues that the sovereign electorate of the 1st District of Zamboanga del Norte chose
him as their representative in Congress.
Having been re-elected by his constituents, he has the duty to perform the functions of a
Congressman.

Issue:

Does re-election to a public office gives priority to any other right or interest, including the
police power of the State.

Ruling:

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The privileges and rights arising from having been elected may be enlarged or restricted
by law.

True, election is the expression of the sovereign power of the people. In the exercise of
suffrage, a free people expects to achieve the continuity of government and the
perpetuation of its benefits. However, inspite of its importance, the privileges and rights
arising from having been elected may be enlarged or restricted by law. Our first task is to
ascertain the applicable law.

We start with the incontestable proposition that all top officials of Government
executive, legislative, and judicial are subject to the majesty of law. There is an unfortunate
misimpression in the public mind that election or appointment to high government office,
by itself, frees the official from the common restrains of general law. Privilege has to be
granted by law, not inferred from the duties of a position. In fact, the higher the rank, the
greater is the requirement of obedience rather than exemption.

The immunity from arrest or detention of Senators and members of the House of
Representatives, the later customarily addressed as Congressmen, arises from a provision
of the Constitution. The history of the provision shows that the privilege has always been
granted in a restrictive sense. The provision granting an exemption as a special privilege
cannot be extended beyond the ordinary meaning of its terms. It may not be extended by
intendment, implication or equitable considerations.

A Congressman like the accused-appellant, convicted under Title Eleven of the Revised
Penal Code could not claim parliamentary immunity form arrest. He was subject to the
same general laws governing all persons still to be tried or whose convictions were
pending appeal. x x x For offenses punishable by more than six years imprisonment, there
was no immunity from arrest.

The accused-appellant argues that a member of Congress function to attend sessions is


underscored by Section 16 (2) , Article VI of the Constitution. However, the accused-
appellant has not given any reason why he should be exempted from the operation of
Section 11, Article VI of the Constitution. The members of Congress cannot compel absent
members to attend sessions if the reason for the absence is a legitimate one. The

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confinement of a Congressman charged with a crime punishable by imprisonment of more
than six years is not merely authorized by law, it has constitutional foundations.

Antero Pobre v. Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago

Facts

PETITIONER

Petitioner Antero Pobre made aware to the court the contents of Senator Miriam Defensor-
Santiagos speech delivered on the senate floor. The following excerpts are the ones in question:

"x x x I am not angry. I am irate. I am foaming in the mouth. I am homicidal. I am


suicidal. I am humiliated, debased, degraded. And I am not only that, I feel like
throwing up to be living my middle years in a country of this nature. I am nauseated.
I spit on the face of Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban and his cohorts in the Supreme
Court, I am no longer interested in the position [of Chief Justice] if I was to be
surrounded by idiots. I would rather be in another environment but not in the
Supreme Court of idiots x x x."

To Pobre, the foregoing statements reflected a total disrespect on the part of the
speaker towards then Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban and the other members of the
Court and constituted direct contempt of court. Accordingly,
Pobre asked that disbarment proceedings or other disciplinary actions be taken against
the lady senator.

RESPONDENT

Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago argued that the statements she made were
covered by the constitutional provision on parliamentary immunity being part of a
speech she delivered in the d i s c h a rg e o f h e r duty as member
221
o f c o n g re s s o r i t s committee. She claims to have made those comments to expose anomalies
with regard to the selection process of the judicial and bar council for the next
Chief Justice.

The argument of the respondent is based on Article ," Section 11 which states that:

A Senator or Member of the House of Representative shall, in all offenses


punishable by not more than six years imprisonment, be privileged from arrest
while the Congress is in session. No member shall be questioned nor be held liable
in any other place for any speech or debate in the Congress or in any committee
thereof.

Issue:

W h e t h e r o r n o t S e n a to r M i r i a m D e fe n s o r -S a n t i a g o c a n b e c h a rg e d fo r
her comments on the judiciary?

Ru l i n g :

The court ruled in favor of Defensor-Santiago in this case. The plea of Senator Defensor-
Santiago for the dismissal of the complaint for disbarment or disciplinary action is well
taken. Indeed her privilege speech is not actionable criminally or in a disciplinary
proceeding under the Rules of Court.

Despite this, the court feels that the lady senator has
gone beyond the limits of decency and good conduct for the statements made which were
intemperate and highly improper in substance. The court is not hesitant to impose some
form of disciplinary sanctions on her but the factual and legal circumstances of this cases
however deter the court from doing so even without any sign of remorse from her. The
petition is dismissed.

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Section 13

Bengzon v. Drilon 208 SCRA 133, 143-145

Facts

Petitioners are retired justices of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals who are
currently receiving pensions under RA 910 as amended by RA 1797. President Marcos
issued a decree repealing section 3-A of RA 1797 which authorized the adjustment of the
pension of retired justices and officers and enlisted members of the AFP. PD 1638 was
eventually issued by Marcos which provided for the automatic readjustment of the
pension of officers and enlisted men was restored, while that of the retired justices was
not. RA 1797 was restored through HB 16297 in 1990. When her advisers gave the wrong
information that the questioned provisions in 1992 GAA were an attempt to overcome her
earlier veto in 1990, President Aquino issued the veto now challenged in this petition.

It turns out that PD 644 which repealed RA 1797 never became a valid law absent its
publication, thus there was no law. It follows that RA 1797 was still in effect and HB 16297
was superfluous because it tried to restore benefits which were never taken away validly.
The veto of HB 16297 did not also produce any effect.

Issue:

Whether the President may veto certain provisions of the General Appropriatons Act?

Ruling:

The act of the Executive in vetoing the particular provisions is an exercise of a


constitutionally vested power. But even as the Constitution grants the power, it also
provides limitations to its exercise. The Executive must veto a bill in its entirety or not at
all. He or she is, therefore, compelled to approve into law the entire bill, including its
undesirable parts. It is for this reason that the Constitution has wisely provided the item
veto power to avoid inexpedient riders from being attached to an indispensable
223
appropriation or revenue measure. What was done by the President was the vetoing of a
provision and not an item.

Doctrine: Pocket Veto Power

Under the Constitution, the President does not have the so-called pocket-veto
power, i.e., disapproval of a bill by inaction on his part. The failure of the President to
communicate his veto of any bill represented to him within 30 days after the receipt
thereof automatically causes the bill to become a law.

This rule corrects the Presidential practice under the 1935 Constitution of releasing
veto messages long after he should have acted on the bill. It also avoids uncertainty as to
what new laws are in force.

When is it allowed?

The exception is provided in par (2),Sec 27 of Art 6 of the Constitution which grants
the President power to veto any particular item or items in an appropriation, revenue or
tariff bill. The veto in such case shall not affect the item or items to which he does not
object.

3 ways how a bill becomes a law:

1. When the President signs it


2. When the President vetoes it but the veto is overridden by 2/3 vote of all the members
of each House; and
3. When the president does not act upon the measure within 30 days after it shall have
been presented to him.

Section 14

224
Puyat v. De Guzman 113 SCRA 31

Facts:

On 14 May 1979, Puyat and his group were elected as directors of the International Pipe
Industries. The election was subsequently questioned by Acero (Puyats rival) claiming
that the votes were not properly counted hence he filed a quo warranto proceeding
before the Securities and Exchange Commission on 25 May 1979. Prior to Aceros filing of
the case, Estanislao Fernandez, then a member of the Interim Batasang Pambansa
purchased ten shares of stock of IPI from a member of Aceros group. And during a
conference held by SEC Commissioner de Guzman (from May 25-31 79) to have the
parties confer with each other, Estanislao Fernandez entered his appearance as counsel for
Acero. Puyat objected arguing that it is unconstitutional for an assemblyman to appear as
counsel (to anyone) before any administrative body (such as the SEC). This being cleared,
Fernandez inhibited himself from appearing as counsel for Acero. He instead filed an
Urgent Motion for Intervention in this said SEC case for him to intervene not as a counsel
but as a legal owner of IPI shares and as a person who has a legal interest in the matter in
litigation. The SEC Commissioner granted the motion in effect granting Fernandez leave to
intervene. Puyat then moved to question the Commissioners action.

Issue:

Whether or not Assemblyman Fernandez, as a stockholder of IPI, may intervene in the SEC
case without violating Sec. 11, Art. VIII (now Sec. 14, Art. VI) of the Constitution.

Ruling:

No, Assemblyman Fernandez, as a stockholder of IPI, may intervene in the SEC case
without violating Sec. 11, Art. VIII (now Sec. 14, Art. VI) of the Constitution.

In the case at bar, Fernandez cannot appear before the SEC body under the guise that he is
not appearing as a counsel. Even though he is a stockholder and that he has a legal interest
225
in the matter in litigation he is still barred from appearing. He bought the stocks before the
litigation took place. During the conference he presented himself as counsel but because it
is clearly stated that he cannot do so under the constitution he instead presented himself
as a party of interest which is clearly a work around and is clearly an act after the fact. A
mere work around to get himself involved in the litigation. What could not be done directly
could not likewise be done indirectly.

SECTION 16
19. G.R. No. 134577 November 18, 1998
SEN. MIRIAM DEFENSOR SANTIAGO and SEN. FRANCISCO S. TATAD, petitioners,
226
vs.
SEN. TEOFISTO T. GUINGONA, JR. and SEN. MARCELO B. FERNAN, respondents.

FACT:
In 1998 Senator Marcelo B. Fernan (Fernan) was declared the duly elected President
of the Senate by a vote of 20 to 2, over Senator Francisco Tatad (Tatad). Tatad thereafter
manifested that he was assuming the position of minority leader. Reasoning that those
who voted for Fernan comprised the majority, while only those who had voted for him,
the losing nominee, belonged to the minority.
Sen. Juan Flavier manifested that senators belonging to the Lakas-NUCD-UMPD
party numbering seven(7) and, thus also a minority had chosen senator Guingona as
the minority leader.
Fernan formally recognized Guingona as the minority leaderof the Senate. Leading
to the filing before the SC, by Senator Santiago and Tatad a petition for quo warranto
alleging that guingona had been usurping, unlawfully holding and exercising the position
of senate minority leader, a position that, according to them rightfully belonged to Tatad

ISSUES:
1. Was there an actual violation of the constitution?
RULING:
None. The term "majority" has been judicially defined a number of times. When
referring to a certain number out of a total or aggregate, it simply "means the number
greater than half or more than half of any total." The plain and unambiguous words of the
subject constitutional clause simply mean that the Senate President must obtain the votes
of more than one half of all the senators. Not by any construal does it thereby delineate
who comprise the "majority," much less the "minority," in the said body. And there is no
showing that the framers of our Constitution had in mind other than the usual meanings of
these terms. While the Constitution mandates that the President of the Senate must be
elected by a number constituting more than one half of all the members thereof, it does
not provide that the members who will not vote for him shall ipso facto constitute the
"minority," who could thereby elect the minority leader. Verily, no law or regulation states
that the defeated candidate shall automatically become the minority leader.

227
While the Constitution is explicit on the manner of electing a Senate President and a
House Speaker, it is, however, dead silent on the manner of selecting the other officers in
both chambers of Congress. All that the Charter says is that "[e]ach House shall choose
such other officers as it may deem necessary." To our mind, the method of choosing who
will be such other officers is merely a derivative of the exercise of the prerogative
conferred by the aforequoted constitutional provision. Therefore, such method must be
prescribed by the Senate itself, not by this Court. In this regard, the Constitution vests in
each house of Congress the power "to determine the rules of its proceedings."
NO VIOLATION WAS COMMITTED.
Some Legal Terms defined:
1) Usurpation generally refers to unauthorized arbitrary assumption and exercise
of power by one without color of title or who is not entitled by law thereto. A quo
warranto proceeding is the proper legal remedy to determine the right or title to
the contested public office and to oust the holder from its enjoyment.
2) grave abuse of discretion is meant such capricious or whimsical exercise of
judgment as is equivalent to lack of jurisdiction. The abuse of discretion must be
patent and gross as to amount to an evasion of positive duty or a virtual refusal to
perform a duty enjoined by law, or to act at all in contemplation of law as where
the power is exercised in an arbitrary and despotic manner by reason of passion
and hostility

20. G.R. No. L-17144 October 28, 1960


SERGIO OSMEA, JR., vs. SALIPADA K. PENDATUN,
FACTS:
Congressman Osmen a took the floor on the one-hour privilege to deliver a speech,
entitled A Message to Garcia wherein said speech contained serious imputations of
bribery against the President. Being unable to produce evidence thereof, Osmen a was
then found to be guilty of serious disorderly behaviour by the House of Representatives.
Osmen a argues that the Constitution gave him complete parliamentary immunity, and so,
for words spoken in the House, he ought not to be questioned.
228
ISSUE: Whether said disciplinary action by the House is in violation of Section 15, Article
VI of the Constitution? (Read Par. 3 of Section 16 of the 1987 Constitution)
RULING:
NO. Said disciplinary action is not in violation of the Constitution. Section 15,
Article VI of the Constitution provides that for any speech or debate in Congress, the
Senators or Members of the House of Representative shall not be questioned in any other
place. Although exempt from prosecution or civil actions for their words uttered in
Congress, the members of Congress may, nevertheless, be questioned in Congress itself.
Observe that they shall not be questioned in any other place in Congress.
Petition was dismissed.

21. PAREDES VS SANDIGANBAYAN


FACTS :In January 1990, Teofilo Gelacio, the then vice mayor of San Francisco, Agusan del
Sur filed a case against Ceferino Paredes, Jr. (who was then the governor of the same
province), Atty. Generoso Sansaet (counsel of Paredes), and Mansueto Honrada (a clerk of
court). The three allegedly conspired to falsify a copy of a Notice of Arraignment and of the
Transcript of Stenographic Notes. Gelacio claimed that, in fact, no arraignment notice had
ever been issued against him in a criminal proceeding against him. Gelacio was able to
produce a certification from the judge handling the case himself that the criminal case
against him never reached the arraignment stage because the prosecution was dismissed.
Atty. Sansaet on his part maintained that there was indeed a Notice of Arraignment but he
later retracted his testimonies. Paredes claimed that Sansaet only changed his side
because of political realignment. Subsequently, the Office of the Ombudsman
recommended that Paredes et al be charged with Falsification of Public Documents.
Paredes appealed but was eventually denied by the Sandiganbayan.
ISSUE: Whether or not Paredes, now a member of Congress, may be suspended by order of
the Sandiganbayan.
HELD: Yes. The Supreme Court affirmed the order of suspension of Congressman Paredes
by the Sandiganbayan, despite his protestations on the encroachment by the court on the
prerogatives of congress. The SC ruled:
x x x. Petitioners invocation of Section 16 (3), Article VI of the Constitution which deals
with the power of each House of Congress inter alia to punish its Members for disorderly
behavior, and suspend or expel a Member by a vote of two-thirds of all its Members
229
subject to the qualification that the penalty of suspension, when imposed, should not
exceed sixty days is unavailing, as it appears to be quite distinct from the suspension
spoken of in Section 13 of RA 3019, which is not a penalty but a preliminary, preventive
measure, prescinding from the fact that the latter is not being imposed on petitioner for
misbehavior as a Member of the House of Representatives.

22. U.S. VS PONS 34 PHIL 729


FACTS: Juan Pons and Gabino Beliso were trading partners. On April 5, 1914, the steamer
Lopez y Lopez arrived in Manila from Spain and it contained 25 barrels of wine. The said
barrels of wine were delivered to Beliso. Beliso subsequently delivered 5 barrels to Pons
house. On the other hand, the customs authorities noticed that the said 25 barrels listed as
wine on record were not delivered to any listed merchant (Beliso not being one). And so
the customs officers conducted an investigation thereby discovering that the 25 barrels of
wine actually contained tins of opium. Since the act of trading and dealing opium is against
Act No. 2381, Pons and Beliso were charged for illegally and fraudulently importing and
introducing such contraband material to the Philippines. Pons appealed the sentence
arguing that Act 2381 was approved while the Philippine Commission (Congress) was not
in session. He said that his witnesses claim that the said law was passed/approved on 01
March 1914 while the special session of the Commission was adjourned at 12MN on
February 28, 1914. Since this is the case, Act 2381 should be null and void.
ISSUE: Whether or not the SC must go beyond the recitals of the Journals to determine if
Act 2381 was indeed made a law on February 28, 1914.
RULING:
The SC looked into the Journals to ascertain the date of adjournment but the SC refused to
go beyond the recitals in the legislative Journals. The said Journals are conclusive on the
Court and to inquire into the veracity of the journals of the Philippine Legislature, when
they are, as the SC have said, clear and explicit, would be to violate both the letter and the
spirit of the organic laws by which the Philippine Government was brought into existence,
to invade a coordinate and independent department of the Government, and to interfere
with the legitimate powers and functions of the Legislature. Pons witnesses cannot be
given due weight against the conclusiveness of the Journals which is an act of the
legislature. The journals say that the Legislature adjourned at 12 midnight on February 28,
1914. This settles the question, and the court did not err in declining to go beyond these
journals. The SC passed upon the conclusiveness of the enrolled bill in this particular case.

230
23. CASCO PHILIPPINE CHEMICAL CO. VS GIMENEZ
FACTS: Casco Philippine Chemical Co., Inc. (Casco) was engaged in the production of
synthetic resin glues used primarily in the production of plywood. The main components
of the said glue are urea and formaldehyde which are both being imported abroad.
Pursuant to a Central Bank circular, Casco paid the required margin fee for its imported
urea and formaldehyde. Casco however paid in protest as it maintained that urea and
formaldehyde are tax exempt transactions. The Central Bank agreed and it issued vouchers
for refund. The said vouchers were submitted to Pedro Gimenez, the then Auditor General,
who denied the tax refund. Gimenez maintained that urea and formaldehyde, as two
separate and distinct components are not tax exempt; that what is tax exempt is urea
formaldehyde (the synthetic resin formed by combining urea and formaldehyde). Gimenez
cited the provision of Sec. 2, par 18 of Republic Act No. 2609 which provides:
The margin established by the Monetary Board pursuant to the provision of section one
hereof shall not be imposed upon the sale of foreign exchange for the importation of the
following:
xxx xxx xxx
XVIII. Urea formaldehyde for the manufacture of plywood and hardboard when imported
by and for the exclusive use of end-users.
Casco however averred that the term urea formaldehyde appearing in this provision
should be construed as urea and formaldehyde. It further contends that the bill
approved in Congress contained the copulative conjunction and between the terms
urea and, formaldehyde, and that the members of Congress intended to exempt urea
and formaldehyde separately as essential elements in the manufacture of the synthetic
resin glue called urea formaldehyde, not the latter a finished product, citing in support of
this view the statements made on the floor of the Senate, during the consideration of the
bill before said House, by members thereof.
The enrolled bill however used the term urea formaldehyde
ISSUE: Whether or not the term urea formaldehyde should be construed as urea and
formaldehyde.
RULING: No. Urea formaldehyde is not a chemical solution. It is the synthetic resin formed
as a condensation product from definite proportions of urea and formaldehyde under
certain conditions relating to temperature, acidity, and time of reaction. Urea
formaldehyde is clearly a finished product, which is patently distinct and different from
231
urea and formaldehyde, as separate articles used in the manufacture of the synthetic
resin known as urea formaldehyde.
The opinions or statements of any member of Congress during the deliberation of the said
law/bill do not represent the entirety of the Congress itself. What is printed in the enrolled
bill would be conclusive upon the courts. The enrolled bill which uses the term urea
formaldehyde instead of urea and formaldehyde is conclusive upon the courts as
regards the tenor of the measure passed by Congress and approved by the President. If
there has been any mistake in the printing of the bill before it was certified by the officers
of Congress and approved by the Executive on which the SC cannot speculate, without
jeopardizing the principle of separation of powers and undermining one of the
cornerstones of our democratic system the remedy is by amendment or curative
legislation, not by judicial decree.

232
24. ARROYO VS DE VENECIA
FACTS: A petition was filed challenging the validity of RA 8240, which amends certain
provisions of the National Internal Revenue Code. Petitioners, who are members of the
House of Representatives, charged that there is violation of the rules of the House which
petitioners claim are constitutionally-mandated so that their violation is tantamount to a
violation of the Constitution.
The law originated in the House of Representatives. The Senate approved it with certain
amendments. A bicameral conference committee was formed to reconcile the disagreeing
provisions of the House and Senate versions of the bill. The bicameral committee
submitted its report to the House. During the interpellations, Rep. Arroyo made an
interruption and moved to adjourn for lack of quorum. But after a roll call, the Chair
declared the presence of a quorum. The interpellation then proceeded. After Rep. Arroyos
interpellation of the sponsor of the committee report, Majority Leader Albano moved for
the approval and ratification of the conference committee report. The Chair called out for
objections to the motion. Then the Chair declared: There being none, approved. At the
same time the Chair was saying this, Rep. Arroyo was asking, What is thatMr. Speaker?
The Chair and Rep. Arroyo were talking simultaneously. Thus, although Rep. Arroyo
subsequently objected to the Majority Leaders motion, the approval of the conference
committee report had by then already been declared by the Chair.
On the same day, the bill was signed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives and
the President of the Senate and certified by the respective secretaries of both Houses of
Congress. The enrolled bill was signed into law by President Ramos.
ISSUE: Whether or not RA 8240 is null and void because it was passed in violation of the
rules of the House.
RULING: No. Rules of each House of Congress are hardly permanent in character. They are
subject to revocation, modification or waiver at the pleasure of the body adopting them as
they are primarily procedural. Courts ordinarily have no concern with their observance.
They may be waived or disregarded by the legislative body. Consequently, mere failure to
conform to them does not have the effect of nullifying the act taken if the requisite number
of members has agreed to a particular measure. But this is subject to qualification. Where
the construction to be given to a rule affects person other than members of the legislative
body, the question presented is necessarily judicial in character. Even its validity is open to
question in a case where private rights are involved.
In the case, no rights of private individuals are involved but only those of a member who,
instead of seeking redress in the House, chose to transfer the dispute to the Court.

233
The matter complained of concerns a matter of internal procedure of the House with
which the Court should not be concerned. The claim is not that there was no quorum but
only that Rep. Arroyo was effectively prevented from questioning the presence of a
quorum. Rep. Arroyos earlier motion to adjourn for lack of quorum had already been
defeated, as the roll call established the existence of a quorum. The question of quorum
cannot be raised repeatedly especially when the quorum is obviously present for the
purpose of delaying the business of the House.

SECTION 17
25. LAZATIN VS HRET 168 SCRA 391
FACTS:
Lazatin filed the instant petition assailing the jurisdiction of the COMELEC to annul his
proclamation after he had taken his oath of office, assumed office, and discharged the
duties of Congressman of the 1st District of Pampanga. Lazatin claims that the HRET and
not the COMELEC is the sole judge of all election contests. Buan, Jr., and Timbol (Lazatins
opposition), alleged that the instant petition has become moot and academic because the
assailed COMELEC Resolution had already become final and executory when the SC issued
a TRO on October 6, 1987. In the COMMENT of the Sol-Gen, he alleges that the instant
petition should be given due course because the proclamation was valid. The Telex Order
issued by the COMELEC directing the canvassing board to proclaim the winner if
warranted under Section 245 of the Omnibus Election Code," was in effect a grant of
authority by the COMELEC to the canvassing board, to proclaim the winner. A Separate
Comment was filed by the COMELEC, alleging that the proclamation of Lazatin was illegal
and void because the board simply corrected the returns contested by Lazatin without
waiting for the final resolutions of the petitions of candidates Timbol, Buan, Jr., and Lazatin
himself, against certain election returns.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the issue should be placed under the HRETs jurisdiction.
HELD: Yes
The SC in a Resolution dated November 17, 1987 resolved to give due course to the
petition. The petition is impressed with merit because petitioner has been proclaimed
winner of the Congressional elections in the first district of Pampanga, has taken his oath
of office as such, and assumed his duties as Congressman. For this Court to take
cognizance of the electoral protest against him would be to usurp the functions of the
House Electoral Tribunal. The alleged invalidity of the proclamation (which had been
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previously ordered by the COMELEC itself) despite alleged irregularities in connection
therewith, and despite the pendency of the protests of the rival candidates, is a matter that
is also addressed, considering the premises, to the sound judgment of the Electoral
Tribunal.

26. BONDOC VS PINEDA 201 SCRA 792


Facts: In the elections held on May 11, 1987,Marciano Pineda of the LDP and Emigdio
Bondoc of the NP were candidates for the position of Representative for the Fourth District
of Pampanga. Pineda was proclaimed winner. Bondoc filed a protest in the House of
Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET), which is composed of 9 members, 3 of whom
are Justices of the SC and the remaining 6 are members of the House of Representatives
(5members belong to the LDP and 1 member is from the NP). Thereafter, a decision had
been reached in which Bondoc won over Pineda. Congressman Camasura of the LDP voted
with the SC Justices and Congressman Cerilles of the NP to proclaim Bondoc the winner of
the contest. On the eve of the promulgation of the Bondoc decision, Congressman
Camasura received a letter informing him that he was already expelled from the LDP for
allegedly helping to organize the Partido Pilipino of Eduardo Cojuangco and for allegedly
inviting LDP members in Davao Del Sur to join said political party. On the day of the
promulgation of the decision, the Chairman of HRET received a letter informing the
Tribunal that on the basis of the letter from the LDP, the House of Representatives decided
to withdraw the nomination and rescind the election of Congressman Camasura to the
HRET.
Issue: Whether or not the House of Representatives, at the request of the dominant
political party therein, may change that partys representation in the HRET to thwart the
promulgation of a decision freely reached by the tribunal in an election contest pending
therein
Held: No. The purpose of the constitutional convention creating the Electoral Commission
was to provide an independent and impartial tribunal for the determination of contests to
legislative office, devoid of partisan consideration. As judges, the members of the tribunal
must be non-partisan. They must discharge their functions with complete detachment,
impartiality and independence even independence from the political party to which they
belong. Hence, disloyalty to party and breach of party discipline are not valid grounds for
the expulsion of a member of the tribunal. In expelling Congressman Camasura from the
HRET for having cast a conscience vote in favor of Bondoc, based strictly on the result of
the examination and appreciation of the ballots and the recount of the votes by the
tribunal, the House of Representatives committed a grave abuse of discretion, an injustice
235
and a violation of the Constitution. Its resolution of expulsion against Congressman
Camasura is, therefore, null and void. Another reason for the nullity of the expulsion
resolution of the House of Representatives is that it violates Congressman Camasuras
right to security of tenure. Members of the HRET, as sole judge of congressional election
contests, are entitled to security of tenure just as members of the Judiciary enjoy security
of tenure under the Constitution. Therefore, membership in the HRET may not be
terminated except for a just cause, such as, the expiration of the members congressional
term of office, his death, permanent disability, resignation from the political party he
represents in the tribunal, formal affiliation with another political party or removal for
other valid cause. A member may not be expelled by the House of Representatives for
party disloyalty, short of proof that he has formally affiliated with another.

27. CHAVEZ V COMELEC


Facts:
This case was originally an urgent petition ad cautelam praying, among others, for
the issuance of a temporary restraining order enjoining respondent Commission on
Elections (COMELEC) from proclaiming the 24th highest senatorial candidate.
On May 5, 1992, this Court issued a resolution in GR No. 104704. The above
mentioned resolution was received by respondent COMELEC on May 6, 1992 and on the
same day, petitioner filed an urgent motion to disseminate through the fastest available
means and order said Election Officials to delete the name Melchor Chavez as printed in
the certified list of candidates tally sheets, election returns and count all votes in favor of
Fransisco I. Chavez. But petitioner assailed that COMELEC failed to perform its mandatory
function thus the name of Melchor Chavez remained undeleted.
Petitioner prays not only for a restraining order but the judgment be rendered
requiring the COMELEC to reopen the ballot boxes in 80,348 precincts in 13 provinces
including Metro Manila, scan the ballots for Chavez votes which were invalidated or
declared stray and credit said scanned Chavez votes in favor of petitioner.
Issue:
Whether or not Supreme Court has jurisdiction to entertain the instant petition.
Ruling:
No. It is quite obvious that petitioners prayer does not call for the correction of
manifest errors in the certificates of canvass or election returns before the COMELEC but
for the ballots contained therein. Indeed, petitioner has not even pointed to any manifest
236
error in the certificates of canvass or election returns he desires to be rectified. There
being none, petitioners proper recourse is to file a regular election protest which, under
the constitution and the Omnibus Election code, exclusively pertains to the Senate
Electoral Tribunal.
Thus, Sec. 17 Art. Vl of the constitution provides that the Senate and the House of
Representatives shall each have an Electoral Tribunal which shall be the sole judge of all
contest relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of their respective members
(Emphasis supplied). The word sole underscores the exclusivity of the tribunals
jurisdiction over election contest relating to their respective members. It is therefore
crystal clear that this Court has no jurisdiction to entertain the instant petition. It is the
Senate Electoral Tribunal which has exclusive jurisdiction to act on the complaint of
petitioner relating to the election of a member of the Senate.
As the authenticity of the certificates of canvass or election returns are not
questioned, they must be prima facie considered valid for purposes of canvassing the same
and proclamation of the winning candidates.
Premises considered, the Court resolved to dismiss the instant petition for lack of
merit.

28. PIMENTEL VS HRET


FACTS: On March 3, 1995, the Party-List System Act took effect. On May 11, 1998, in
accordance with the Party-List System Act, national elections were held which included,
for the first time, the election through popular vote of party-list groups and organizations
whose nominees would become members of the House. Proclaimed winners were 14
party-list representatives from 13 organizations, including petitioners from party-list
groups.
Subsequently, the House constituted its HRET and CA contingent by electing its
representatives to these two constitutional bodies. In practice, the procedure involves the
nomination by the political parties of House members who are to occupy seats in the
HRET and the CA. From available records, it does not appear that after the May 11, 1998
elections the party-list groups in the House nominated any of their representatives to the
HRET or the CA. As of the date of filing of the instant petitions, the House contingents to
the HRET and the CA were composed solely of district representatives belonging to the
different political parties.
On February 2, 2000, petitioners filed with this Court their Petitions for Prohibition,
Mandamus and Preliminary Injunction (with Prayer for Temporary Restraining Order)
237
against the HRET, its Chairman and Members, and against the CA, its Chairman and
Members. Petitioners contend that, under the Constitution and the Party-List System Act,
party-list representatives should have 1.2 or at least 1 seat in the HRET, and 2.4 seats in
the CA. Petitioners charge that respondents committed grave abuse of discretion in
refusing to act positively on the letter of Senator Pimentel. In its Resolution of February 8,
2000. the Court en banc directed the consolidation of G.R. No. 141490 with G.R. No.
141489.
ISSUE: WHETHER THE PRESENT COMPOSITION OF THE HOUSE ELECTORAL TRIBUNAL
VIOLATES THE CONSTITUTIONAL REQUIREMENT OF PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION
BECAUSE THERE ARE NO PARTY-LIST REPRESENTATIVES IN THE HRET.
RULING: No. Under Section 17, Article VI of the Constitution, each chamber of Congress
exercises the power to choose, within constitutionally defined limits, who among their
members would occupy the allotted 6 seats of each chambers respective electoral tribunal.
Thus, even assuming that party-list representatives comprise a sufficient number and have
agreed to designate common nominees to the HRET and the CA, their primary recourse
clearly rests with the House of Representatives and not with this Court. Under Sections 17
and 18, Article VI of the Constitution, party-list representatives must first show to the
House that they possess the required numerical strength to be entitled to seats in the
HRET and the CA. Only if the House fails to comply with the directive of the Constitution
on proportional representation of political parties in the HRET and the CA can the party-
list representatives seek recourse to this Court under its power of judicial review. Under
the doctrine of primary jurisdiction, prior recourse to the House is necessary before
petitioners may bring the instant case to the court. Consequently, petitioners direct
recourse to this Court is premature.
The discretion of the House to choose its members to the HRET and the CA is not absolute,
being subject to the mandatory constitutional rule on proportional representation.
However, under the doctrine of separation of powers, the Court may not interfere with the
exercise by the House of this constitutionally mandated duty, absent a clear violation of the
Constitution or grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction.
Otherwise, the doctrine of separation of powers calls for each branch of government to be
left alone to discharge its duties as it sees fit. Neither can the Court speculate on what
action the House may take if party-list representatives are duly nominated for
membership in the HRET and the CA.
It does appear that after the May 11, 1998 elections, the House barred the party-list
representatives from seeking membership in the HRET or the CA. Rather, it appears from
the available facts that the party-list groups in the House at that time simply refrained
238
from participating in the election process. The party-list representatives did not designate
their nominees even up to the time they filed the instant petitions, with the predictable
result that the House did not consider any party-list representative for election to the
HRET or the CA. As the primary recourse of the party-list representatives lies with the
House of Representatives, the Court cannot resolve the issues presented by petitioners at
this time.

29. PALPARAN VS HRET


FACTS: In G.R. 189466, petitioner Daryl Grace J. Abayon is the first nominee of the Aangat
Tayo party-list organization that won a seat in the House of Representatives during the
2007 elections. Respondents filed a petition for quo warranto with respondent HRET
against petitioner Abayon. They claimed that Aangat Tayo was not eligible for a party-list
seat in the House of Representatives, since it did not represent the marginalized and
underrepresented sectors since she did not belong to the marginalized and
underrepresented sectors, she being the wife of an incumbent congressional district
representative.
It was Aangat Tayo that was taking a seat in the House of Representatives, and not Abayon
who was just its nominee. All questions involving her eligibility as first nominee, said
Abayon, were internal concerns of Aangat Tayo.
In G.R.189506, petitioner Jovito S. Palparan, Jr. is the first nominee of the Bantay party-list
group that won a seat in the 2007 elections for the members of the House of
Representatives. Lesaca and the others alleged that Palparan was ineligible to sit in the
House of Representatives as party-list nominee because he did not belong to the
marginalized and underrepresented sectors that Bantay represented, namely, the victims
of communist rebels, Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Units (CAFGUs), former rebels,
and security guards.
Petitioner Palparan countered that the HRET had no jurisdiction over his person since it
was actually the party-list Bantay, not he, that was elected to and assumed membership in
the House of Representatives. Palparan claimed that he was just Bantays nominee.
Consequently, any question involving his eligibility as first nominee was an internal
concern of Bantay. Such question must be brought, he said, before that party-list group,
not before the HRET.
ISSUE: Whether or not respondent HRET has jurisdiction over the question of
qualifications of petitioners Abayon and Palparan as nominees of Aangat Tayo and Bantay
party-list organizations.
239
HELD: Yes. Section 17, Article VI of the Constitution provides that the HRET shall be the
sole judge of all contests relating to, among other things, the qualifications of the members
of the House of Representatives. Since, as pointed out above, party-list nominees are
"elected members" of the House of Representatives no less than the district
representatives are, the HRET has jurisdiction to hear and pass upon their qualifications.
By analogy with the cases of district representatives, once the party or organization of the
party-list nominee has been proclaimed and the nominee has taken his oath and assumed
office as member of the House of Representatives, the COMELECs jurisdiction over
election contests relating to his qualifications ends and the HRETs own jurisdiction
begins.
The Court holds that respondent HRET did not gravely abuse its discretion when it
dismissed the petitions for quo warranto against Aangat Tayo party-list and Bantay party-
list but upheld its jurisdiction over the question of the qualifications of petitioners Abayon
and Palparan.

30. BELLO VS COMELEC


FACTS: On March 25, 2010, petitioners Liza L. Maza, Saturnino C. Ocampo, and Bayan
Muna Party-List, represented by Teodoro Casin o, (collectively referred to as certiorari
petitioners) filed with the COMELEC a petition for disqualification against Arroyo,
pursuant to Resolution No. 8696, in relation with Sections 2 and 9 of Republic Act (RA) No.
794112 (the Party- List System Act).
The certiorari petitioners argued that not only must the party-list organization factually
and truly represent the marginalized and the underrepresented; the nominee must as well
be a Filipino citizen belonging to the marginalized and underrepresented sectors,
organizations and parties, citing in this regard the case of Ang Bagong Bayani-OFW Labor
Party v. COMELEC.14 On this basis, the certiorari petitioners concluded that Arroyo cannot
be considered a member of the marginalized and underrepresented sector, particularly,
the sector which the AGPP represents tricycle drivers and security guards because he is
not only a member of the First Family, but is also (a) an incumbent member of the House
of Representatives; (b) the Chairman of the Houses Energy Committee; and, (c) a member
of key committees in the House, namely: Natural Resources, Aquaculture, Fisheries
Resources, Ethics and Privileges, Justice, National Defense and Security, Public Works and
Highways, Transportation and Ways and Means.
On July 28 and 29, 2010, two (2) separate petitions for quo warranto were filed with the
House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET) questioning Arroyos eligibility as

240
AGPPs representative in the House of Representatives. On September 7, 2010, the HRET
took cognizance of the petitions by issuing a Summons directing Arroyo to file his Answer
to the two petitions.
Arroyo counter-argues that the petitions should be dismissed outright because upon his
proclamation, oath and assumption to office as a duly elected member of the House of
Representatives, the jurisdiction over issues relating to his qualifications now lies with the
HRET as the sole judge of all contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of
members of the House of Representatives.
ISSUE: Whether the HRET has jurisdiction over the question of Arroyos qualifications as
AGPPs nominee after his proclamation and assumption to office as a member of the House
of Representatives.
HELD: Yes.
In the case of Palparan vs HRET The Supreme Court had stated that; What is inevitable is
that Section 17, Article VI of the Constitution provides that the HRET shall be the sole
judge of all contests relating to, among other things, the qualifications of the members of
the House of Representatives. Since, as pointed out above, party-list nominees are "elected
members" of the House of Representatives no less than the district representatives are, the
HRET has jurisdiction to hear and pass upon their qualifications. By analogy with the cases
of district representatives, once the party or organization of the party-list nominee has
been proclaimed and the nominee has taken his oath and assumed office as member of the
House of Representatives, the COMELECs jurisdiction over election contests relating to his
qualifications ends and the HRETs own jurisdiction begins.
In the case of Perez vs Comelec the Supreme Court had stated; that at the time of the filing
of this petition on June 16, 1998, private respondent was already a member of the House
of Representatives, this Court has no jurisdiction over the same. Pursuant to Art. VI, 17 of
the Constitution, the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal has the exclusive original
jurisdiction over the petition for the declaration of private respondents ineligibility.
SECTION 18

31. DAZA V SINGSON


FACTS: After the congressional elections of May 11, 1987, the House of Representatives
proportionally apportioned its twelve seats in the Commission on Appointments in
accordance with Article VI, Section 18, of the Constitution. Petitioner Raul A. Daza was
among those chosen and was listed as a representative of the Liberal Party.

241
On September 16, 1988, the Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino was reorganized, resulting
in a political realignment in the House of Representatives. On the basis of this
development, the House of Representatives revised its representation in the Commission
on Appointments by withdrawing the seat occupied by the petitioner and giving this to the
newly-formed LDP. The chamber elected a new set of representatives consisting of the
original members except the petitioner and including therein respondent Luis C. Singson
as the additional member from the LDP.
The petitioner came to this Court on January 13, 1989, to challenge his removal from the
Commission on Appointments and the assumption of his seat by the respondent.
ISSUE: Whether or not the realignment will validly change the composition of the
Commission on Appointments
HELD: No.
At the core of this controversy is Article VI, Section 18, of the Constitution providing as
follows:
Sec. 18. There shall be a Commission on Appointments consisting of the President of the
Senate, as ex officio Chairman, twelve Senators and twelve Members of the House of
Representatives, elected by each House on the basis of proportional representation from
the political parties and parties or organizations registered under the party-list system
represented therein. The Chairman of the Commission shall not vote, except in case of a
tie. The Commission shall act on all appointments submitted to it within thirty session
days of the Congress from their submission. The Commission shall rule by a majority vote
of all the Members.
The authority of the House of Representatives to change its representation in the
Commission on Appointments to reflect at any time the changes that may transpire in the
political alignments of its membership. It is understood that such changes must be
permanent and do not include the temporary alliances or factional divisions not involving
severance of political loyalties or formal disaffiliation and permanent shifts of allegiance
from one political party to another.
The Court holds that the respondent has been validly elected as a member of the
Commission on Appointments and is entitled to assume his seat in that body pursuant to
Article VI, Section 18, of the Constitution.

32. COSETENG VS MITRA

242
Facts: Congressional elections of May 11, 1987 resulted in representatives from diverse
political parties Petitioner Anna Dominique Coseteng was the only candidate elected
under the banner of KAIBA.
A year later, the Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino or LDP was organized as a political
party. As 158 out of 202 members of the House of Representatives formally affiliated with
the LDP, the House committees, including the House representation in the Commission on
Appointments, had to be reorganized. Petitioner Coseteng then wrote a letter to Speaker
Ramon Mitra requesting that as representative of KAIBA, she be appointed as a member of
the Commission on Appointments and House Electoral Tribunal.
On December 5, 1988, the House of Representatives, revised the House majority
membership in the Commission on Appointments to conform with the new political
alignments by replacing Rep. Raul A. Daza, LP, with Rep. Luis C. Singson, LDP, however,
Congressman Ablan, KBL, was retained as the 12th member representing the House
minority.
On February 1, 1989, Coseteng and her party, filed this Petition for Extraordinary Legal
Writs praying that the Supreme Court declare as null and void the election of respondent
Ablan, Verano-Yap, Romero, Cuenco, Mercado, Bandon, Cabochan, Imperial, Lobregat,
Beltran, Locsin, and Singson, as members of the Commission on Appointments, to enjoin
them from acting as such and to enjoin also the other respondents from recognizing them
as members of the Commission on Appointments on the theory that their election to that
Commission violated the constitutional mandate of proportional representation
Issue: WON the members of the House in the Commission on Appointments were chosen
on the basis of proportional representation from the political parties therein as provided
in Section 18, Article VI of the 1987 Constitution. Holding/
Held: Yes, petition is dismissed for lack of merit. Section 18, Article VI of the 1987
Constitution reads: Sec. 18. There shall be a Commission on Appointments consisting of
the President of the Senate, as ex oficio Chairman, twelve Senators, and twelve Members of
the House of Representatives elected by each House on the basis of proportional
representation from the political parties and parties or organizations registered under the
party-list system represented therein. The chairman of the Commission shall not vote,
except in case of a tie. The Commission shall act on all appointments submitted to it within
thirty session days of the Congress from their submission. The commission shall rule by a
majority vote of all the Members. (Art. VI, 1987 Constitution.) The composition of the
House membership in the Commission on Appointments was based on proportional
representation of the political parties in the House. There are 160 members of the LDP in
243
the House. They represent 79% of the House membership (which may be rounded out to
80%). Eighty percent (80%) of 12 members in the Commission on Appointments would
equal 9.6 members, which may be rounded out to ten (10) members from the LDP. The
remaining two seats were apportioned to the LP (respondent Lorna Verano-Yap) as the
next largest party in the Coalesced Majority and the KBL (respondent Roque Ablan) as the
principal opposition party in the House. There is no doubt that this apportionment of the
House membership in the Commission on Appointments was done on the basis of
proportional representation of the political parties therein. There is no merit in the
petitioners contention that the House members in the Commission on Appointments
should have been nominated and elected by their respective political parties. The petition
itself shows that they were nominated by their respective floor leaders in the House. They
were elected by the House (not by their party) as provided in Section 18, Article VI of the
Constitution. The validity of their election to the Commission on Appointments-eleven
(11) from the Coalesced Majority and one from the minority-is unassailable.

33. GUINGONA VS GONZALES


Facts:
After the May 11, 1992 elections, the senate was composed of 15 LDP senators, 5
NPC senators, 3 LAKAS-NUCD senators, and 1 LP-PDP-LABAN senator. To suffice the
requirement that each house must have 12 representatives in the CoA, the parties agreed
to use the traditional formula: (No. of Senators of a political party) x 12 seats) Total No.
of Senators elected. The results of such a formula would produce 7.5 members for LDP, 2.5
members for NPC, 1.5 members for LAKAS-NUCD, and 0.5 member for LP-PDP-LABAN.
Romulo, as the majority floor leader, nominated 8 senators from their party because he
rounded off 7.5 to 8 and that Tan ada from LP-PDP-LABAN should represent the same party
to the CoA. This is also pursuant to the proposition compromise by Sen Tolentino who
proposed that the elected members of the CoA should consist of eight LDP, one LP-PDP-
LABAN, two NPC and one LAKAS-NUCD. Guingona, a member of LAKAS-NUCD, opposed
the said compromise. He alleged that the compromise is against proportional
representation.
Issue: whether or not rounding off is allowed in determining a partys representation in
the Commission on Appointments
Held: Yes. It is a fact accepted by all such parties that each of them is entitled to a
fractional membership on the basis of the rule on proportional representation of each of
the political parties. A literal interpretation of Section 18 of Article VI of the Constitution
244
leads to no other manner of application. The problem is what to do with the fraction of .5
or 1/2 to which each of the parties is entitled. The LDP majority in the Senate converted a
fractional half membership into a whole membership of one senator by adding one half
or .5 to 7.5 to be able to elect Romulo. In so doing one other partys fractional membership
was correspondingly reduced leaving the latters representation in the Commission on
Appointments to less than their proportional representation in the Senate. This is clearly a
violation of Section 18 because it is no longer in compliance with its mandate that
membership in the Commission be based on the proportional representation of the
political parties. The election of Senator Romulo gave more representation to the LDP and
reduced the representation of one political party either the LAKAS NUCD or the NPC. A
party should have at least 1 seat for every 2 duly elected senators-members in the CoA.
Where there are more than 2 parties in Senate, a party which has only one member
senator cannot constitutionally claim a seat. In order to resolve such, the parties may
coalesce with each other in order to come up with proportional representation especially
since one party may have affiliations with the other party.

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SECTION 19
Section 19
34. TANADA VS COMELEC
FACTS: Petitioner Wigberto R. Tan ada, Jr., (Wigberto) and respondents Angelina D. Tan
(Angelina) and Alvin John S. Tan ada (Alvin John) were contenders for the position of
Member of the House of Representatives for the 4th District of Quezon Province in the just
concluded May 13, 2013 National Elections. Wigberto ran under the banner of the Liberal
Party; Alvin John was the official congressional candidate of Lapiang Manggagawa; while
Angelina was fielded by the National Peoples Coalition.
In a related development, despite the cancellation of Alvin Johns CoC due to his material
misrepresentations therein, his name was not deleted from and thus, remained printed
on the ballot, prompting Wigberto to file a motion with the Provincial Board of
Canvassers of Quezon Province (PBOC) asking that the votes cast in the name of Alvin John
be credited to him instead in accordance with the Courts ruling in Dela Cruz v. COMELEC
and COMELEC Resolution No. 9599.20 The PBOC, however, denied Wigbertos motion in a
Resolution dated May 16, 2013, holding that the votes of Alvin John could not be counted
in favor of Wigberto because the cancellation of the formers CoC was on the basis of his
material misrepresentations under Section 78 of the OEC and not on being a nuisance
candidate under Section 69 of the same law. Consequently, the PBOC canvassed the votes
of all three contenders separately, and thereafter, on May 16, 2013, proclaimed Angelina as
the winning candidate for the position of Member of the House of Representatives for the
4th District of Quezon Province. According to Wigberto, it was for the foregoing reason
that he impleaded Angelina as a party-respondent in the instant petition for certiorari.
ISSUE: Wigberto assails the COMELEC En Banc Resolution dated April 25, 2013 declaring
that Alvin John was not a nuisance candidate as defined under Section 69 of the OEC. In
consequence, he seeks that the votes cast in favor of Alvin John be credited to him and,
thereafter, to be declared the winning candidate for the congressional post.
HELD: Petition was dismissed.
Sec. 17 of Article VI The Senate and the House of Representatives shall each have an
Electoral Tribunal which shall be the sole judge of all contests relating to the election,
returns, and qualifications of their respective Members. Each Electoral Tribunal, shall be
composed of nine Members, three of whom shall be Justices of the Supreme Court to be
designated by the Chief Justice, and the remaining six shall be Members of the Senate or
the House of Representatives, as the case may be, who shall be chosen on the basis of
proportional representation from the political parties and the parties or organizations
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registered under the party-list system represented therein. The senior Justice in the
Electoral Tribunal shall be its Chairman.
Case law states that the proclamation of a congressional candidate following the election
divests the COMELEC of jurisdiction over disputes relating to the election, returns, and
qualifications of the proclaimed representative in favor of the HRET. The phrase "election,
returns and qualifications" refers to all matters affecting the validity of the contestees
title. In particular, the term "election" refers to the conduct of the polls, including the
listing of voters, the holding of the electoral campaign, and the casting and counting of the
votes; "returns" refers to the canvass of the returns and the proclamation of the winners,
including questions concerning the composition of the board of canvassers and the
authenticity of the election returns; and "qualifications" refers to matters that could be
raised in a quo warranto proceeding against the proclaimed winner, such as his disloyalty
or ineligibility or the inadequacy of his CoC.
In the foregoing light, considering that Angelina had already been proclaimed as Member
of the House of Representatives for the 4th District of Quezon Province on May 16, 2013,
as she has in fact taken her oath and assumed office past noon time of June 30, 2013, the
Court is now without jurisdiction to resolve the case at bar. As they stand, the issues
concerning the conduct of the canvass and the resulting proclamation of Angelina as
herein discussed are matters which fall under the scope of the terms "election" and
"returns" as above-stated and hence, properly fall under the HRETs sole jurisdiction.

Section 21 and 22
35. BENGZON VS SENATE BLUE RIBBON COMMITTEE
FACTS: On 30 July 1987, the Republic of the Philippines, represented by the Presidential
Commission on Good Governance (PCGG), filed a complaint with Sandiganbayan against
the petitioners of this case. PCGG allege, among others, that: defendants (petitioners
therein) Benjamin Kokoy Romualdez and Juliette. Gomez Romualdez, alleged cronies of
former President Marcos and First Lady Imelda Romualdez Marcos, engaged in schemes
and stratagems to unjustly enrich themselves at the expense of the Filipino people. Among
these stratagems are (1) obtained control of some big business enterprises such as
MERALCO, Pilipinas Shell, and PCI Bank, (2) manipulated the formation of Erectors
Holding Inc, to appear viable and borrow more capital, reaching a total of more that P2
billion, (3) collaborated with lawyers (petitioners therein) of the Bengzon Law Offices in
concealing funds and properties, in maneuvering the purported sale of interests in certain
corporations, in misusing the Meralco Pension Fund worth P25 million, and in cleverly
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hiding behind the veil of corporate entity. On 13 September 1988, Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile
delivered a speech before the Senate on the alleged take-over of SolOil Incorporated by
Ricardo Lopa (who died during the pendency of this case) and called upon the senate to
look into possible violation of the Anti Graft and Corrupt Practices Act or RA 3019. The
Senate Committee on Accountability of Public Officers or Blue Ribbon Committee (SBRC)
started its investigation through a hearing on 23 May 1989, but Lopa and Bengzon
declined to testify. The SBRC rejected petitioner Bengzon s plea and voted to pursue its
investigation. Petitioner claims that the SBRC, in requiring their attendance and testimony,
acted in excess of its jurisdiction and legislative purpose. Hence this petition.
ISSUE:
1 .WON the SBRC s inquiry has a valid legislative purpose.
2. WON the sale or disposition of the Romualdez corporations is a purely private
transaction which is beyond the power of the SBRC to inquire into.
HELD: 1. NO. The speech of Sen. Enrile contained no suggestion on contemplated
legislation; he merely called upon the Senate to look into a possible violation of Sec. 5 of
RA 3019. The purpose of the inquiry to be conducted by respondent SBRC was to find out
WON the relatives of President Aquino, particularly Ricardo Lopa, had violated the law in
connection with the alleged sale of the 36/39 corporations of Kokoy Romualdez to the
Lopa Group. There appears, therefore, no intended legislation involved. The inquiry also is
not conducted pursuant to Senate Resolution No. 2123 (SR 2123), as the committee
alleges. The inquiry under SR 2123 is to look into the charges against PCGG filed by
stockholders of Oriental Petroleum in connection with the implementation of Section 26
Article XVIII of the Constitution.
2. YES. Mr. Lopa and the petitioners are not connected with the government and did their
acts as private citizens, hence such a case of alleged graft and corruption is within the
jurisdiction, not of the SBRC, but of the courts. Sandiganbayan already took jurisdiction of
this issue before the SBRC did. The inquiry of the respondent committee into the same
justiciable controversy already before the Sandiganbayan would be an encroachment of
into the exclusive domain of judicial jurisdiction.

36. SABIO ET AL VS GORDON ET AL


FACTS:Pursuant to Senate Resolution No. 455, Senator Gordon requested PCGG Chairman
Sabio and his Commissioners to appear as resource persons in the public meeting jointly

248
conducted by the Committee on Government Corporations and Public Enterprises and
Committee on Public Services.
Chairman Sabio declined the invitation because of prior commitment, and at the same
time invoked Section 4(b) of EO No. 1: No member or staff of the Commission shall be
required to testify or produce evidence in any judicial, legislative or administrative
proceeding concerning matters within its official cognizance.
ISSUE: Whether or not Section 4(b) of E.O. No.1 limits power of legislative inquiry by
exempting all PCGG members or staff from testifying in any judicial, legislative or
administrative proceeding.
RULING: No. Article VI, Section 21 of the 1987 Constitution grants the power of inquiry
not only to the Senate and the House of Representatives, but also to any of their respective
committees. Clearly, there is a direct conferral of investigatory power to the committees
and it means that the mechanism which the Houses can take in order to effectively
perform its investigative functions are also available to the committees.
It can be said that the Congress power of inquiry has gained more solid existence and
expansive construal. The Courts high regard to such power is rendered more evident in
Senate v. Ermita, where it categorically ruled that the power of inquiry is broad enough to
cover officials of the executive branch. Verily, the Court reinforced the doctrine in Arnault
that the operation of government, being a legitimate subject for legislation, is a proper
subject for investigation and that the power of inquiry is co-extensive with the power to
legislate.
Considering these jurisprudential instructions, Section 4(b) is directly repugnant with
Article VI, Section 21. Section 4(b) exempts the PCGG members and staff from the
Congress power of inquiry. This cannot be countenanced. Nowhere in the Constitution is
any provision granting such exemption. The Congress power of inquiry, being broad,
encompasses everything that concerns the administration of existing laws as well as
proposed or possibly needed statutes. It even extends to government agencies created by
Congress and officers whose positions are within the power of Congress to regulate or
even abolish. PCGG belongs to this class.
A statute may be declared unconstitutional because it is not within the legislative power to
enact; or it creates or establishes methods or forms that infringe constitutional principles;
or its purpose or effect violates the Constitution or its basic principles.
Moreover, Sec. 4(b) of E.O. No. 1 has been repealed by the Constitution because it is
inconsistent with the constitutional provisions on the Congress power of inquiry (Art. VI,

249
Sec. 21), the principle of public accountability (Art. XI, Sec. 1), the policy of full disclosure
(Art. II, Sec. 28), and the right of access to public information (Art. III, Sec. 7).
Certainly, a mere provision of law cannot pose a limitation to the broad power of Congress,
in the absence of any constitutional basis.

37. SENATE ET AL VS ERMITA ET AL


Facts:
This case is regarding the railway project of the North Luzon Railways Corporation with
the China National Machinery and Equipment Group as well as the Wiretapping activity of
the ISAFP, and the Fertilizer scam.
The Senate Committees sent invitations to various officials of the Executive Department
and AFP officials for them to appear before Senate on Sept. 29, 2005. Before said date
arrived, Executive Sec. Ermita sent a letter to Senate President Drilon, requesting for a
postponement of the hearing on Sept. 29 in order to afford said officials ample time and
opportunity to study and prepare for the various issues so that they may better enlighten
the Senate Committee on its investigation. Senate refused the request.
On Sept. 28, 2005, the President issued EO 464, effective immediately, which, among
others, mandated that all heads of departments of the Executive Branch of the
government shall secure the consent of the President prior to appearing before either
House of Congress. Pursuant to this Order, Executive Sec. Ermita communicated to the
Senate that the executive and AFP officials would not be able to attend the meeting since
the President has not yet given her consent. Despite the lack of consent, Col. Balutan and
Brig. Gen. Gudani, among all the AFP officials invited, attended the investigation. Both
faced court marshal for such attendance.
Issue: Whether E.O. 464 contravenes the power of inquiry vested in Congress.
Ruling: To determine the constitutionality of E.O. 464, the Supreme Court discussed the
two different functions of the Legislature: The power to conduct inquiries in aid of
legislation and the power to conduct inquiry during question hour.
Question Hour:
The power to conduct inquiry during question hours is recognized in Article 6, Section 22
of the 1987 Constitution, which reads:

250
The heads of departments may, upon their own initiative, with the consent of the
President, or upon the request of either House, as the rules of each House shall provide,
appear before and be heard by such House on any matter pertaining to their departments.
Written questions shall be submitted to the President of the Senate or the Speaker of the
House of Representatives at least three days before their scheduled appearance.
Interpellations shall not be limited to written questions, but may cover matters related
thereto. When the security of the State or the public interest so requires and the President
so states in writing, the appearance shall be conducted in executive session.
The objective of conducting a question hour is to obtain information in pursuit of
Congress oversight function. When Congress merely seeks to be informed on how
department heads are implementing the statutes which it had issued, the department
heads appearance is merely requested.
The Supreme Court construed Section 1 of E.O. 464 as those in relation to the appearance
of department heads during question hour as it explicitly referred to Section 22, Article 6
of the 1987 Constitution.
In aid of Legislation:
The Legislatures power to conduct inquiry in aid of legislation is expressly recognized in
Article 6, section21 of the 1987 Constitution, which reads:
The Senate or the House of Representatives or any of its respective committees may
conduct inquiries in aid of legislation in accordance with its duly published rules of
procedure. The rights of persons appearing in, or affected by, such inquiries shall be
respected.
The power of inquiry in aid of legislation is inherent in the power to legislate. A legislative
body cannot legislate wisely or effectively in the absence of information respecting the
conditions which the legislation is intended to affect or change. And where the legislative
body does not itself possess the requisite information, recourse must be had to others who
do possess it.
But even where the inquiry is in aid of legislation, there are still recognized exemptions to
the power of inquiry, which exemptions fall under the rubric of executive privilege. This
is the power of the government to withhold information from the public, the courts, and
the Congress. This is recognized only to certain types of information of a sensitive
character. When Congress exercise its power of inquiry, the only way for department heads
to exempt themselves therefrom is by a valid claim of privilege. They are not exempt by the

251
mere fact that they are department heads. Only one official may be exempted from this
power -- the President.
Section 2 & 3 of E.O. 464 requires that all the public officials enumerated in Section 2(b)
should secure the consent of the President prior to appearing before either house of
Congress. The enumeration is broad. In view thereof, whenever an official invokes E.O.464
to justify the failure to be present, such invocation must be construed as a declaration to
Congress that the President, or a head of office authorized by the President, has
determined that the requested information is privileged.
The letter sent by the Executive Secretary to Senator Drilon does not explicitly invoke
executive privilege or that the matter on which these officials are being requested to be
resource persons falls under the recognized grounds of the privilege to justify their
absence. Nor does it expressly state that in view of the lack of consent from the President
under E.O. 464, they cannot attend the hearing. The letter assumes that the invited official
possesses information that is covered by the executive privilege. Certainly, Congress has
the right to know why the executive considers the requested information privileged. It
does not suffice to merely declare that the President, or an authorized head of office, has
determined that it is so.
The claim of privilege under Section 3 of E.O. 464 in relation to Section 2(b) is thus invalid
per se. It is not asserted. It is merely implied. Instead of providing precise and certain
reasons for the claim, it merely invokes E.O. 464, coupled with an announcement that the
President has not given her consent.
Wherefore, the petitions are partly granted. Sections 2(b) and 3 of E.O. 464 are declared
void. Section 1(a) are however valid.

38. GUDANI ET AL VS LT. GEN. SENGA ET AL


FACTS:
The Senate invited Gen. Gudani and Lt. Col. Balutan to clarify allegations of 2004 election
fraud and the surfacing of the Hello Garci tapes. PGMA issued EO 464 enjoining officials
of the executive department including the military establishment from appearing in any
legislative inquiry without her consent. AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Senga issued a
Memorandum, prohibiting Gen. Gudani, Col. Balutan et al from appearing before the
Senate Committee without Presidential approval. However, the two appeared before the
Senate in spite the fact that a directive has been given to them. As a result, the two were
relieved of their assignments for allegedly violating the Articles of War and the time
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honoured principle of the Chain of Command. Gen. Senga ordered them to be subjected
before the General Court Martial proceedings for willfuly violating an order of a superior
officer.
ISSUE: Whether or not the President has the authority to issue an order to the members of
the AFP preventing them from testifying before a legislative inquiry.
RULING: Yes. The SC hold that President has constitutional authority to do so, by virtue of
her power as commander-in-chief, and that as a consequence a military officer who defies
such injunction is liable under military justice. At the same time, any chamber of Congress
which seeks the appearance before it of a military officer against the consent of the
President has adequate remedies under law to compel such attendance. Any military
official whom Congress summons to testify before it may be compelled to do so by the
President. If the President is not so inclined, the President may be commanded by judicial
order to compel the attendance of the military officer. Final judicial orders have the force
of the law of the land which the President has the duty to faithfully execute.
SC ruled in Senate v. Ermita that the President may not issue a blanket requirement of
prior consent on executive officials summoned by the legislature to attend a congressional
hearing. In doing so, the Court recognized the considerable limitations on executive
privilege, and affirmed that the privilege must be formally invoked on specified grounds.
However, the ability of the President to prevent military officers from testifying before
Congress does not turn on executive privilege, but on the Chief Executives power as
commander-in-chief to control the actions and speech of members of the armed forces.
The Presidents prerogatives as commander-in-chief are not hampered by the same
limitations as in executive privilege.
At the same time, the refusal of the President to allow members of the military to appear
before Congress is still subject to judicial relief. The Constitution itself recognizes as one of
the legislatures functions is the conduct of inquiries in aid of legislation. Inasmuch as it is
ill-advised for Congress to interfere with the Presidents power as commander-in-chief, it
is similarly detrimental for the President to unduly interfere with Congresss right to
conduct legislative inquiries. The impasse did not come to pass in this petition, since
petitioners testified anyway despite the presidential prohibition. Yet the Court is aware
that with its pronouncement today that the President has the right to require prior
consent from members of the armed forces, the clash may soon loom or actualize.
The duty falls on the shoulders of the President, as commander-in-chief, to authorize the
appearance of the military officers before Congress. Even if the President has earlier

253
disagreed with the notion of officers appearing before the legislature to testify, the Chief
Executive is nonetheless obliged to comply with the final orders of the courts.
39. NERI VS SEANTE COMMITTEE ON ACCOUNTABILITY

FACTS: The Senate issued various Senate Resolutions directing SBRC, among others, to
conduct an investigation regarding the NBN-ZTE deal. Neri, the head of NEDA, was then
invited to testify before the Senate Blue Ribbon. He disclosed that the COMELEC Chairman
Abalos offered him P200M in exchange for his approval of the NBN Project, that he
informed PGMA about the bribery and that she instructed him not to accept the bribe.
However, when probed further on what they discussed about the NBN Project, he refused
to answer, invoking executive privilege. In particular, he refused to answer the questions
on (a) whether or not President Arroyo followed up the NBN Project, (b) whether or not
she directed him to prioritize it, and (c) whether or not she directed him to approve. As a
result, the Senate cited him for contempt.
ISSUE: Whether or not the communications elicited by the 3 questions covered by
executive privilege.
RULING: Yes. The SC recognized the executive privilege which is the Presidential
communications privilege. It pertains to communications, documents or other materials
that reflect presidential decision-making and deliberations and that the President believes
should remain confidential. Presidential communications privilege applies to decision-
making of the President. It is rooted in the constitutional principle of separation of power
and the Presidents unique constitutional role.
The claim of executive privilege is highly recognized in cases where the subject of inquiry
relates to a power textually committed by the Constitution to the President, such as the
area of military and foreign relations. The information relating to these powers may enjoy
greater confidentiality than others.
Elements of presidential communications privilege:
1) The protected communication must relate to a quintessential and non-delegable
presidential power. - i.e. the power to enter into an executive agreement with other
countries. This authority of the President to enter into executive agreements without the
concurrence of the Legislature has traditionally been recognized in Philippine
jurisprudence.

254
2) The communication must be authored or solicited and received by a close advisor
of the President or the President himself. The judicial test is that an advisor must be in
operational proximity with the President.
3) The presidential communications privilege remains a qualified privilege that may
be overcome by a showing of adequate need, such that the information sought likely
contains important evidence and by the unavailability of the information elsewhere by an
appropriate investigating authority. - there is no adequate showing of a compelling need
that would justify the limitation of the privilege and of the unavailability of the
information elsewhere by an appropriate investigating authority.

40. REGHIS ROMERO VS SEN. JINGGOY ESTRADA ET AL


FACTS: Reghis, owner of R-II Bulders, received an invitation from the Senate Committee on
Labor, Employment and Human Resources inviting him to shed light in connection with
the alleged loss by the Overseas Welfare Workers Administration (OWWA) of some P450
Million investment in the Smokey Mountain Project. The inquiry purportedly was for the
purpose of review and possible amendment of Republic 8042, the Migrant Workers Act. By
way of reply, Reghis requested that he be excused from the proceedings, which the
Committee denied, again by letter. Invitations were also sent to the entire board of R-II
Builders for the hearing on September 4, 2006; subpoena ad testificandum was also
served on Reghis for him to attend the hearing. Thus, Reghis and the board of directors
filed a petition for certiorari with prayer for temporary restraining order before the
Supreme Court. Having failed to secure a TRO, Reghis had no choice but to attend the
hearing. He later on filed another filed another manifestation reiterating his plea for a
TRO; according to him, when another resource person, Atty. Frank Chavez, was recognized,
he talked about issues which were raised in Chavez vs. National Housing Authority (then
pending before the Supreme Court), none of which had any relation to the subject in
inquiry. He was required to attend the next hearing. The board followed suit, arguing that
they were merely being harassed, as their names were never mentioned in any of the
investigation.
Essentially, Reghis and company argues in support of their petition that the hearing in aid
of inquiry was a violation of the sub-judice rule as there is a pending case (Chavez vs.
NHA) still pending before the Supreme Court; the same is a violation of their right against
self-incrimination; since the hearing was being conducted to ascertain their liability for
plunder, the same is not in aid of legislation;

255
The Senate Committee, in their comment, argued that the conduct of inquiry in aid of
legislation was a political question; that the pendency of the Chavez case was not a valid
ground to stop them from conducting the inquiry; the resource persons right against self-
incrimination are amply protected since they may invoke the right if they feel the question
is incriminatory.
ISSUE: Whether the Senate Committees inquiry is sub judice to the subject raised at
hand?
HELD: The Supreme Court dismissed the petition thus:
Chavez, assuming for argument that it involves issues subject of the respondent
Committees assailed investigation, is no longer sub judice or before a court or judge for
consideration. For by an en banc Resolution dated July 1, 2008, the Court, in G.R. No.
164527, denied with finality the motion of Chavez, as the petitioner in Chavez, for
reconsideration of the Decision of the Court dated August 15, 2007. In fine, it will not avail
petitioners any to invoke the sub judice effect of Chavez and resist, on that ground, the
assailed congressional invitations and subpoenas. The sub judice issue has been rendered
moot and academic by the supervening issuance of the en banc Resolution of July 1, 2008
in G.R. No. 164527. An issue or a case becomes moot and academic when it ceases to
present a justiciable controversy, so that a determination of the issue would be without
practical use and value. In such cases, there is no actual substantial relief to which the
petitioner would be entitled and which would be negated by the dismissal of the
petition.14 Courts decline jurisdiction over such cases or dismiss them on the ground of
mootness, save in certain exceptional instances,15 none of which, however, obtains under
the premises.
Thus, there is no more legal obstacleon the ground of sub judice, assuming it is
invocableto the continuation of the Committees investigation challenged in this
proceeding.
At any rate, even assuming hypothetically that Chavez is still pending final adjudication by
the Court, still, such circumstance would not bar the continuance of the committee
investigation. What we said in Sabio v. Gordon suggests as much:
The same directors and officers contend that the Senate is barred from inquiring into the
same issues being litigated before the Court of Appeals and the Sandiganbayan. Suffice it to
state that the Senate Rules of Procedure Governing Inquiries in Aid of Legislation provide
that the filing or pendency of any prosecution or administrative action should not stop or
abate any inquiry to carry out a legislative purpose.

256
A legislative investigation in aid of legislation and court proceedings has different
purposes. On one hand, courts conduct hearings or like adjudicative procedures to settle,
through the application of a law, actual controversies arising between adverse litigants and
involving demandable rights. On the other hand, inquiries in aid of legislation are, inter
alia, undertaken as tools to enable the legislative body to gather information and, thus,
legislate wisely and effectively; and to determine whether there is a need to improve
existing laws or enact new or remedial legislation, albeit the inquiry need not result in any
potential legislation. On-going judicial proceedings do not preclude congressional hearings
in aid of legislation. Standard Chartered Bank (Philippine Branch) v. Senate Committee on
Banks, Financial Institutions and Currencies (Standard Chartered Bank) provides the
following reason:
[T]he mere filing of a criminal or an administrative complaint before a court or quasi-
judicial body should not automatically bar the conduct of legislative investigation.
Otherwise, it would be extremely easy to subvert any intended inquiry by Congress
through the convenient ploy of instituting a criminal or an administrative complaint.
Surely, the exercise of sovereign legislative authority, of which the power of legislative
inquiry is an essential component, cannot be made subordinate to a criminal or
administrative investigation.
As succinctly stated in x x x Arnault v. Nazareno
[T]he power of inquirywith process to enforce itis an essential and appropriate
auxiliary to the legislative function. A legislative body cannot legislate wisely or effectively
in the absence of information respecting the conditions which the legislation is intended to
affect or change; and where the legislative body does not itself possess the requisite
informationwhich is not infrequently truerecourse must be had to others who
possess it.
While Sabio and Standard Chartered Bank advert only to pending criminal and
administrative cases before lower courts as not posing a bar to the continuation of a
legislative inquiry, there is no rhyme or reason that these cases doctrinal pronouncement
and their rationale cannot be extended to appealed cases and special civil actions awaiting
final disposition before this Court.

Section 24
41. TOLENTINO VS SECRETARY OF FINANCE

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FACTS: RA 7716, otherwise known as the Expanded Value-Added Tax Law, is an act that
seeks to widen the tax base of the existing VAT system and enhance its administration by
amending the National Internal Revenue Code. There are various suits questioning and
challenging the constitutionality of RA 7716 on various grounds.
Tolentino contends that RA 7716 did not originate exclusively from the House of
Representatives but is a mere consolidation of HB. No. 11197 and SB. No. 1630 and it did
not pass three readings on separate days on the Senate thus violating Article VI, Sections
24 and 26(2) of the Constitution, respectively.
Art. VI, Section 24: All appropriation, revenue or tariff bills, bills authorizing increase of
the public debt, bills of local application, and private bills shall originate exclusively in the
House of Representatives, but the Senate may propose or concur with amendments.
Art. VI, Section 26(2): No bill passed by either House shall become a law unless it has
passed three readings on separate days, and printed copies thereof in its final form have
been distributed to its Members three days before its passage, except when the President
certifies to the necessity of its immediate enactment to meet a public calamity or
emergency. Upon the last reading of a bill, no amendment thereto shall be allowed, and the
vote thereon shall be taken immediately thereafter, and the yeas and nays entered in the
Journal.
ISSUE: Whether or not RA 7716 violated Art. VI, Section 24 and Art. VI, Section 26(2) of
the Constitution.
HELD: No. The argument that RA 7716 did not originate exclusively in the House of
Representatives as required by Art. VI, Sec. 24 of the Constitution will not bear analysis. To
begin with, it is not the law but the revenue bill which is required by the Constitution to
originate exclusively in the House of Representatives. To insist that a revenue statute and
not only the bill which initiated the legislative process culminating in the enactment of the
law must substantially be the same as the House bill would be to deny the Senates power
not only to concur with amendments but also to propose amendments. Indeed, what the
Constitution simply means is that the initiative for filing revenue, tariff or tax bills, bills
authorizing an increase of the public debt, private bills and bills of local application must
come from the House of Representatives on the theory that, elected as they are from the
districts, the members of the House can be expected to be more sensitive to the local needs
and problems. Nor does the Constitution prohibit the filing in the Senate of a substitute bill
in anticipation of its receipt of the bill from the House, so long as action by the Senate as a
body is withheld pending receipt of the House bill.

258
The next argument of the petitioners was that S. No. 1630 did not pass 3 readings on
separate days as required by the Constitution because the second and third readings were
done on the same day. But this was because the President had certified S. No. 1630 as
urgent. The presidential certification dispensed with the requirement not only of printing
but also that of reading the bill on separate days. That upon the certification of a bill by the
President the requirement of 3 readings on separate days and of printing and distribution
can be dispensed with is supported by the weight of legislative practice.

42. ALVAREZ VS GUINGONA


Facts: HB 8817, entitled An Act Converting the Municipality of Santiago into an
Independent Component City to be known as the City of Santiago, was filed in the House
of Representatives, subsequently passed by the House of Representatives, and transmitted
to the Senate. A counterpart of HB 8817, SB 1243 was filed in the Senate, and was passed
as well. The enrolled bill was submitted to and signed by the Chief Executive as RA 7720.
When a plebiscite on the Act was held on July 13, 1994, a great majority of the registered
voters of Santiago voted in favor of the conversion of Santiago into a city.
Issue: whether or not considering that the Senate passed SB 1243, its own version of HB
8817, RA 7720 can be said to have originated in the House of Representatives
Held:
Yes. Bills of local application are required to originate exclusively in the House of
Representatives. Petitioners contend that since a bill of the same import was passed in the
Senate, it cannot be said to have originated in the House of Representatives.
Such is untenable because it cannot be denied that the HB was filed first (18 Apr 1993).
The SB was filed 19 May. The HB was approved on third reading 17 Dec, and was
transmitted to the Senate 28 Jan 1994.
The filing in the Senate of a substitute bill in anticipation of its receipt of the bill from the
House, does not contravene the constitutional requirement that a bill of local application
should originate in the House of Representatives, for as long as the Senate does not act
thereupon until it receives the House bill.
The filing in the Senate of a substitute bill in anticipation of its receipt of the bill from the
House of Representatives, does not contravene the constitutional requirement that a bill of
local application should originate in the House of Representatives, for as long as the Senate
does not act thereupon until it receives the House bill.

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In Tolentino v. Secretary of Finance, the Court said that what the Constitution simply
means is that the initiative for filing revenue, tariff, or tax bills, bills authorizing an
increase of the public debt, private bills and bills of local application must come from the
House of Representatives on the theory that, elected as they are from the districts, the
members of the House can be expected to be more sensitive to the local needs and
problems. On the other hand, the senators, who are elected at large, are expected to
approach the same problems from the national perspective. Both views are thereby made
to bear on the enactment of such laws. Nor does the Constitution prohibit the filing in the
Senate of a substitute bill in anticipation of its receipt of the bill from the House, so long as
action by the Senate as a body is withheld pending receipt of the House bill.

Section 25
GARCIA VS MATA
Facts:
The donation of the property to the government to make the property public does not
cure the constitutional defect. The fact that the law was passed when the said property
was still a private property cannot be ignored. In accordance with the rule that the taxing
power must be exercised for public purposes only, money raised by taxation can be
expanded only for public purposes and not for the advantage of private individuals.
Inasmuch as the land on which the projected feeder roads were to be constructed
belonged then to Zulueta, the result is that said appropriation sought a private purpose,
and, hence, was null and void.
Issue: Whether RA 1600 is valid. Does it contain rider in an appropriation bill?
Held: The incongruity and irrelevancy are already evident. Section 11 of RA 1600 fails to
disclose the relevance to any appropriation item. RA 1600 is an appropriation law for the
operation of government while Section 11 refers to a fundamental governmental policy of
calling to active duty and the reversion of inactive statute of reserve officers in the AFP.
Hence it was A NON-APPROPRIATION ITEM INSERTED IN AN APPROPRIATION MEASURE,
in violation of the constitutional prohibition against RIDERS to the general appropriation
act. It was indeed a new and completely unrelated provision attached to the GAA.

260
It also violates the rule on one-bill, one subject. The subject to be considered must be
expressed in the title of the act. When an act contains provisions which are clearly not
embraced in the subject of the act, as expressed in the title, such provisions are void,
inoperative and without effect.
SECTION 11 is unconstitutional. Garcia cannot compel the AFP to reinstate him.

44. DEMETRIA VS ALBA


FACTS: Demetrio Demetria et al as taxpayers and members of the Batasan Pambansa
sought to prohibit Manuel Alba, then Minister of the Budget, from disbursing funds
pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 1177 or the Budget Reform Decree of 1977. Demetria
assailed the constitutionality of paragraph 1, Section 44 of the said PD. This Section
provides that:
The President shall have the authority to transfer any fund, appropriated for the different
departments, bureaus, offices and agencies of the Executive Department, which are
included in the General Appropriations Act, to any program, project or activity of any
department, bureau, or office included in the General Appropriations Act or approved
after its enactment.
Demetria averred that this is unconstitutional for it violates the 1973 Constitution.
ISSUE: Whether or not Paragraph 1, Section 44, of PD 1177 is constitutional.
HELD: No. The Constitution provides that no law shall be passed authorizing any transfer
of appropriations, however, the President, the Prime Minister, the Speaker, the Chief Justice
of the Supreme Court, and the heads of constitutional commissions may by law be
authorized to augment any item in the general appropriations law for their respective
offices from savings in other items of their respective appropriations.
However, paragraph 1 of Section 44 of PD 1177 unduly overextends the privilege granted
under the Constitution. It empowers the President to indiscriminately transfer funds from
one department, bureau, office or agency of the Executive Department to any program,
project or activity of any department, bureau or office included in the General
Appropriations Act or approved after its enactment, without regard as to whether or not
the funds to be transferred are actually savings in the item from which the same are to be
taken, or whether or not the transfer is for the purpose of augmenting the item to which
said transfer is to be made. It does not only completely disregard the standards set in the
fundamental law, thereby amounting to an undue delegation of legislative powers, but

261
likewise goes beyond the tenor thereof. Indeed, such constitutional infirmities render the
provision in question null and void.
But it should be noted, transfers of savings within one department from one item to
another in the GAA may be allowed by law in the interest of expediency and efficiency.
There is no transfer from one department to another here.

262
45. PHILCONSA VS ENRIQUEZ
FACTS:
Petitioners assailed the validity of RA 7663 or General Appropriations Act of 1994.
GAA contains a special provision that allows any members of the Congress the
REalignment of Allocation for Operational Expenses, provided that the total of said
allocation is not exceeded.
Philconsa claims that only the Senate President and the Speaker of the House of
Representatives are the ones authorized under the Constitution to realign savings, not the
individual members of Congress themselves.
President signed the law, but Vetoes certain provisions of the law and imposed certain
provisional conditions: that the AFP Chief of Staff is authorized to use savings to augment
the pension funds under the Retirement and Separation Benefits of the AFP.
ISSUE: Whether or not RA 7663 is violative of Article VI, Section 25 (5) of 1987
Constitution.
RULING:Yes. Only the Senate President and the Speaker of the House are allowed to
approve the realignment.
Furthermore, two conditions must be met: 1) the funds to be realigned are actually
savings, and 2) the transfer is for the purpose of augmenting the items of expenditures to
which said transfer to be made.
As to the certain condition given to the AFP Chief of Staff, it is violative of of Sections 25(5)
and 29(1) of the Article VI of the Constitution. The list of those who may be authorized to
transfer funds is exclusive. the AFP Chief of Staff may not be given authority.

Section 26

PHILCONSA VS GIMENEZ
FACTS
RA No. 3836, An Act Amending Subsection , Section 12 of Commonwealth Act
Numbered 186. As Amended by Republic Act Numbered 3096, allows a Senator or a
member of the House of Representatives and an elective officer of either House of
Congress to retire regardless of age and whose service must be at least 12 years.
263
Philippine Constitution Association, Inc. , a non-profit civic organization duly incorporated
under Philippine laws instituted this petition challenging the constitutionality of the law
in question.
ISSUE
Whether or not the little of RA No. 3836 is germane to the subject matter expressed in the
act.
HELD
No. It is to be observed that under RA No. 3836, amending the first paragraph of section
12, subsection c of CA No. 186, retirement benefits are granted to members of GSIS. This
paragraph is related and germane to the subject of CA No. 186. The succeeding paragraph
of RA. No 3836 refers to members of Congress and elective in any manner to the subject of
CA. No. 186 establishing the GSIS and which provides both retirement and issuance
benefits to its members.
The constitutionality requirement with respect to titles of statutes as sufficient to
reflect their contents is not met by the title of said RA. No. 3836, thus , void.

47. TIO VS VIDEOGRAM REGULATORY BOARD


FACTS: In 1985, Presidential Dedree No. 1987 entitled An Act Creating the Videogram
Regulatory Board was enacted which gave broad powers to the VRB to regulate and
supervise the videogram industry. The said law sought to minimize the economic effects of
piracy. There was a need to regulate the sale of videograms as it has adverse effects to the
movie industry. The proliferation of videograms has significantly lessened the revenue
being acquired from the movie industry, and that such loss may be recovered if
videograms are to be taxed. Section 10 of the PD imposes a 30% tax on the gross receipts
payable to the LGUs.
In 1986, Valentin Tio assailed the said PD as he averred that it is unconstitutional on the
following grounds:
1. Section 10 thereof, which imposed the 30% tax on gross receipts, is a rider and is not
germane to the subject matter of the law.
2. There is also undue delegation of legislative power to the VRB, an administrative body,
because the law allowed the VRB to deputize, upon its discretion, other government
agencies to assist the VRB in enforcing the said PD.

264
ISSUE: Whether or not the Valentin Tios arguments are correct.
HELD: No.
1. The Constitutional requirement that every bill shall embrace only one subject which
shall be expressed in the title thereof is sufficiently complied with if the title be
comprehensive enough to include the general purpose which a statute seeks to achieve. In
the case at bar, the questioned provision is allied and germane to, and is reasonably
necessary for the accomplishment of, the general object of the PD, which is the regulation
of the video industry through the VRB as expressed in its title. The tax provision is not
inconsistent with, nor foreign to that general subject and title. As a tool for regulation it is
simply one of the regulatory and control mechanisms scattered throughout the PD.
2. There is no undue delegation of legislative powers to the VRB. VRB is not being tasked
to legislate. What was conferred to the VRB was the authority or discretion to seek
assistance in the execution, enforcement, and implementation of the law. Besides, in the
very language of the decree, the authority of the BOARD to solicit such assistance is for a
fixed and limited period with the deputized agencies concerned being subject to the
direction and control of the [VRB].

48. PHILIPPINE JUDGES ASSICIATION VS PRADO


FACTS:
Petitioners assailed the validity of Sec 35 R.A. No. 7354 which withdraw the franking
privilege from the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals, the Regional Trial Courts, the
Metropolitan Trial Courts, the Municipal Trial Courts, and the Land Registration
Commission and its Registers of Deeds, along with certain other government offices.
The petition assails the constitutionality of R.A. No. 7354 on the grounds that: (1) its title
embraces more than one subject and does not express its purposes; (2) it did not pass the
required readings in both Houses of Congress and printed copies of the bill in its final form
were not distributed among the members before its passage; and (3) it is discriminatory
and encroaches on the independence of the Judiciary.
ISSUE:
Whether or not Sec 35 of RA 7354 is constitutional.
RULING:
No. SC held that Sec 35 R.A. No. 7354 is unconstitutional.
265
1. Article VI, Sec. 26(l), of the Constitution providing that "Every bill passed by the
Congress shall embrace only one subject which shall be expressed in the title thereof."
The title of the bill is not required to be an index to the body of the act, or to be as
comprehensive as to cover every single detail of the measure. It has been held that if the
title fairly indicates the general subject, and reasonably covers all the provisions of the act,
and is not calculated to mislead the legislature or the people, there is sufficient compliance
with the constitutional requirement.
We are convinced that the withdrawal of the franking privilege from some agencies is
germane to the accomplishment of the principal objective of R.A. No. 7354, which is the
creation of a more efficient and effective postal service system. Our ruling is that, by virtue
of its nature as a repealing clause, Section 35 did not have to be expressly included in the
title of the said law.
2. The petitioners maintain that the second paragraph of Sec. 35 covering the repeal of the
franking privilege from the petitioners and this Court under E.O. 207, PD 1882 and PD 26
was not included in the original version of Senate Bill No. 720 or House Bill No. 4200. As
this paragraph appeared only in the Conference Committee Report, its addition, violates
Article VI, Sec. 26(2) of the Constitution. The petitioners also invoke Sec. 74 of the Rules of
the House of Representatives, requiring that amendment to any bill when the House and
the Senate shall have differences thereon may be settled by a conference committee of
both chambers.
Casco Philippine Chemical Co. v. Gimenez laid down the rule that the enrolled bill, is
conclusive upon the Judiciary (except in matters that have to be entered in the journals
like the yeas and nays on the final reading of the bill). The journals are themselves also
binding on the Supreme Court.
Applying these principles, we shall decline to look into the petitioners' charges that an
amendment was made upon the last reading of the bill that eventually became R.A. No.
7354 and that copies thereof in its final form were not distributed among the members of
each House. Both the enrolled bill and the legislative journals certify that the measure was
duly enacted i.e., in accordance with Article VI, Sec. 26(2) of the Constitution. We are
bound by such official assurances from a coordinate department of the government, to
which we owe, at the very least, a becoming courtesy.

49. TOLENTINO VS SECRETARY OF FINANCE

266
FACTS: RA 7716, otherwise known as the Expanded Value-Added Tax Law, is an act that
seeks to widen the tax base of the existing VAT system and enhance its administration by
amending the National Internal Revenue Code. There are various suits questioning and
challenging the constitutionality of RA 7716 on various grounds.
Tolentino contends that RA 7716 did not originate exclusively from the House of
Representatives but is a mere consolidation of HB. No. 11197 and SB. No. 1630 and it did
not pass three readings on separate days on the Senate thus violating Article VI, Sections
24 and 26(2) of the Constitution, respectively.
Art. VI, Section 24: All appropriation, revenue or tariff bills, bills authorizing increase of
the public debt, bills of local application, and private bills shall originate exclusively in the
House of Representatives, but the Senate may propose or concur with amendments.
Art. VI, Section 26(2): No bill passed by either House shall become a law unless it has
passed three readings on separate days, and printed copies thereof in its final form have
been distributed to its Members three days before its passage, except when the President
certifies to the necessity of its immediate enactment to meet a public calamity or
emergency. Upon the last reading of a bill, no amendment thereto shall be allowed, and the
vote thereon shall be taken immediately thereafter, and the yeas and nays entered in the
Journal.
ISSUE: Whether or not RA 7716 violated Art. VI, Section 24 and Art. VI, Section 26(2) of
the Constitution.
HELD: No. The argument that RA 7716 did not originate exclusively in the House of
Representatives as required by Art. VI, Sec. 24 of the Constitution will not bear analysis. To
begin with, it is not the law but the revenue bill which is required by the Constitution to
originate exclusively in the House of Representatives. To insist that a revenue statute and
not only the bill which initiated the legislative process culminating in the enactment of the
law must substantially be the same as the House bill would be to deny the Senates power
not only to concur with amendments but also to propose amendments. Indeed, what the
Constitution simply means is that the initiative for filing revenue, tariff or tax bills, bills
authorizing an increase of the public debt, private bills and bills of local application must
come from the House of Representatives on the theory that, elected as they are from the
districts, the members of the House can be expected to be more sensitive to the local needs
and problems. Nor does the Constitution prohibit the filing in the Senate of a substitute bill
in anticipation of its receipt of the bill from the House, so long as action by the Senate as a
body is withheld pending receipt of the House bill.

267
The next argument of the petitioners was that S. No. 1630 did not pass 3 readings on
separate days as required by the Constitution because the second and third readings were
done on the same day. But this was because the President had certified S. No. 1630 as
urgent. The presidential certification dispensed with the requirement not only of printing
but also that of reading the bill on separate days. That upon the certification of a bill by the
President the requirement of 3 readings on separate days and of printing and distribution
can be dispensed with is supported by the weight of legislative practice.

50. TAN VS DEL ROSARIO


Facts:
Petitioners challenge the constitutionality of RA 7496 or the simplified income
taxation scheme (SNIT) under Arts (26) and (28) and III (1). The SNIT contained changes
in the tax schedules and different treatment in the professionals which petitioners assail
as unconstitutional for being isolative of the equal protection clause in the constitution.
Issue:
Is the contention meritorious?\
Ruling:
No. uniformity of taxation, like the hindered concept of equal protection, merely
require that all subjects or objects of taxation similarly situated are to be treated alike both
privileges and liabilities. Uniformity, does not offend classification as long as it rest on
substantial distinctions, it is germane to the purpose of the law. It is not limited to existing
only and must apply equally to all members of the same class.

The legislative intent is to increasingly shift the income tax system towards the
scheduled approach in taxation of individual taxpayers and maintain the present global
treatment on taxable corporations. This classification is neither arbitrary nor
inappropriate.
Section 27

TOLENTINO VS SECRETARY OF FINANCE


FACTS: House of Rep. filed House Bill 11197 (An Act Restructuring the VAT System to
Widen its Tax Base and Enhance its Admin., Amending for these Purposes)
268
- Upon receipt of Senate, Senate filed another bill completely different from that of the
House Bill
- Senate finished debates on the bill and had the 2nd and 3rd reading of the Bill on the
same day
- Bill was deliberated upon in the Conference Committee and become enrolled bill
which eventually became the EVAT law.
Issue: WoN the Senate bill violated the three readings on separate days requirement of
the Consti
Ruling: NO. The Pres. certified that the Senate bill was urgent. Presidential certification
dispensed the requirement not only of printing but also reading the bill in 3 separate days.
In fact, the Senate accepted the Pres. certification

52. GONZALES VS MACARAIG


FACTS: Gonzales, together w/ 22 other senators, assailed the constitutionality of Corys
veto of Section 55 of the 1989 Appropriations Bill (Sec 55 FY 89, and subsequently of its
counterpart Section 16 of the 1990 Appropriations Bill (Sec 16 FY 90). Gonzalez averred
the following: (1) the Presidents line-veto power as regards appropriation bills is limited
to item/s and does not cover provision/s; therefore, she exceeded her authority when she
vetoed Section 55 (FY 89) and Section 16 (FY 90) which are provision; (2) when the
President objects to a provision of an appropriation bill, she cannot exercise the item-veto
power but should veto the entire bill; (3) the item-veto power does not carry with it the
power to strike out conditions or restrictions for that would be legislation, in violation of
the doctrine of separation of powers; and (4) the power of augmentation in Article VI,
Section 25 [5] of the 1987 Constitution, has to be provided for by law and, therefore,
Congress is also vested with the prerogative to impose restrictions on the exercise of that
power.
ISSUE: Whether or not the President exceeded the item-veto power accorded by the
Constitution. Or differently put, has the President the power to veto `provisions of an
Appropriations Bill.
HELD: SC ruled that Congress cannot include in a general appropriations bill matters that
should be more properly enacted in separate legislation, and if it does that, the
inappropriate provisions inserted by it must be treated as item, which can be vetoed by
the President in the exercise of his item-veto power. The SC went one step further and

269
rules that even assuming arguendo that provisions are beyond the executive power to
veto, and Section 55 (FY 89) and Section 16 (FY 90) were not provisions in the
budgetary sense of the term, they are inappropriate provisions that should be treated as
items for the purpose of the Presidents veto power.

53. BENGZON VS DRILON


FACTS:
Petitioners are retired justices of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals who are
currently receiving pensions under RA 910 as amended by RA 1797. President Marcos
issued a decree repealing section 3-A of RA 1797 which authorized the adjustment of the
pension of retired justices and officers and enlisted members of the AFP. PD 1638 was
eventually issued by Marcos which provided for the automatic readjustment of the
pension of officers and enlisted men was restored, while that of the retired justices was
not. RA 1797 was restored through HB 16297 in 1990. When her advisers gave the wrong
information that the questioned provisions in 1992 GAA were an attempt to overcome her
earlier veto in 1990, President Aquino issued the veto now challenged in this petition.
It turns out that PD 644 which repealed RA 1797 never became a valid law absent its
publication, thus there was no law. It follows that RA 1797 was still in effect and HB 16297
was superfluous because it tried to restore benefits which were never taken away validly.
The veto of HB 16297 did not also produce any effect.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the veto of the President of certain provisions in the GAA of FY 1992
relating to the payment of the adjusted pensions of retired Justices is constitutional or
valid.

HELD:
The veto of these specific provisions in the GAA is tantamount to dictating to the Judiciary
ot its funds should be utilized, which is clearly repugnant to fiscal autonomy. Pursuant to
constitutional mandate, the Judiciary must enjoy freedom in the disposition of the funds
allocated to it in the appropriations law.
Any argument which seeks to remove special privileges given by law to former Justices on
the ground that there should be no grant of distinct privileges or preferential treatment

270
to retired Justices ignores these provisions of the Constitution and in effect asks that these
Constitutional provisions on special protections for the Judiciary be repealed.
The petition is granted and the questioned veto is illegal and the provisions of 1992 GAA
are declared valid and subsisting.

54. PHILCONSA VS ENRIQUEZ


Facts:
RA 7663 (former House bill No. 10900, the General Appropriations Bill of 1994) entitled
An Act Appropriating Funds for the Operation of the Government of the Philippines from
January 1 to December 1, 1994, and for other Purposes was approved by the President
and vetoed some of the provisions.
Petitioners assail the special provision allowing a member of Congress to realign his
allocation for operational expenses to any other expense category claiming that it violates
Sec. 25, Art 7 of the Constitution. Issues of constitutionality were raised before the
Supreme Court.
PhilConsA prayed for a writ of prohibition to declare unconstitutional and void a.) Art 16
on the Countrywide Development Fund and b.) The veto of the President of the Special
provision of Art XLVIII of the GAA of 1994.
16 members of the Senate sought the issuance of writs of certiorari, prohibition and
mandamus against the Exec. Secretary, the Sec of Dept of Budget and Management and the
National Treasurer and questions: 1.) Constitutionality of the conditions imposed by the
President in the items of the GAA of 1994 and 2.) the constitutionality of the veto of the
special provision in the appropriation for debt services.
Senators Tanada and Romulo sought the issuance of the writs of prohibition and
mandamus against the same respondents. Petitioners contest the constitutionality of: 1.)
veto on four special provisions added to items in the GAA of 1994 for the AFP and DPWH;
and 2.) the conditions imposed by the President in the implementation of certain
appropriations for the CAFGUs, DPWH, and Natl Highway Authority.
Issue:
Whether or not the veto of the president on four special provisions is constitutional and
valid?
Held:
271
Special Provision on Debt Ceiling Congress provided for a debt-ceiling. Vetoed by the
Pres. w/o vetoing the entire appropriation for debt service. The said provisions are
germane to & have direct relation w/ debt service. They are appropriate provisions &
cannot be vetoed w/o vetoing the entire item/appropriation. VETO VOID.
Special Provision on Revolving Funds for SCUs said provision allows for the use of
income & creation of revolving fund for SCUs. Provision for Western Visayas State Univ. &
Leyte State Colleges vetoed by Pres. Other SCUs enjoying the privilege do so by existing
law. Pres. merely acted in pursuance to existing law. VETO VALID.
Special Provision on Road Maintenance Congress specified 30% ratio fo works for
maintenance of roads be contracted according to guidelines set forth by DPWH. Vetoed by
the Pres. w/o vetoing the entire appropriation. It is not an inappropriate provision; it is
not alien to the subj. of road maintenance & cannot be veoted w/o vetoing the entire
appropriation. VETO VOID.
Special Provision on Purchase of Military Equip. AFP modernization, prior approval of
Congress required before release of modernization funds. It is the so-called legislative
veto. Any prov. blocking an admin. action in implementing a law or requiring legislative
approval must be subj. of a separate law. VETO VALID.

Special Provision on Use of Savings for AFP Pensions allows Chief of Staff to augment
pension funds through the use of savings. According to the Consttution, only the Pres. may
exercise such power pursuant to a specific law. Properly vetoed. VETO VALID.
Special Provision on Conditions for de-activation of CAFGUs use of special fund for the
compensation of the said CAFGUs. Vetoed, Pres. requires his prior approval. It is also an
amendment to existing law (PD No. 1597 & RA No. 6758). A provision in an appropriation
act cannot be used to repeal/amend existing laws. VETO VALID.
Section 28
55. KAPATIRAN NG MGA NAGLILINGKOD SA PAMAHALAAN NG PILIPINAS VS TAN
FACTS:
EO 372 was issued by the President of the Philippines which amended the Revenue Code,
adopting the value-added tax (VAT) effective January 1, 1988. Four petitions assailed the
validity of the VAT Law from being beyond the President to enact; for being oppressive,
discriminatory, regressive and violative of the due process and equal protection clauses,
among others, of the Constitution. The Integrated Customs Brokers Association

272
particularly contend that it unduly discriminate against customs brokers (Section 103r) as
the amended provision of the Tax Code provides that service performed in the exercise of
profession or calling (except custom brokers) subject to occupational tax under the Local
Tax Code and professional services performed by registered general professional
partnerships are exempt from VAT.
ISSUE:
Whether the E-VAT law is void for being discriminatory against customs brokers
RULING:
No. The phrase except custom brokers is not meant to discriminate against custom
brokers but to avert a potential conflict between Sections 102 and 103 of the Tax Code, as
amended. The distinction of the customs brokers from the other professionals who are
subject to occupation tax under the Local Tax Code is based on material differences, in that
the activities of customs partake more of a business, rather than a profession and were
thus subjected to the percentage tax under Section 174 of the Tax Code prior to its
amendment by EO 273. EO 273 abolished the percentage tax and replaced it with the VAT.
If the Association did not protest the classification of customs brokers then, there is no
reason why it should protest now.

56. PROVINCE OF ABRA VS JUDGE HERNANDO


FACTS: The Province of Abra sought to tax the properties of the Roman Catholic Bishop,
Inc. of Bangued. Judge Harold Hernando dismissed the petition of Abra without hearing its
side. Hernando ruled that there is no question that the real properties sought to be taxed
by the Province of Abra are properties of the respondent Roman Catholic Bishop of
Bangued, Inc. Likewise, there is no dispute that the properties including their produce are
actually, directly and exclusively used by the Roman Catholic Bishop of Bangued, Inc. for
religious or charitable purposes.
ISSUE: Whether or not the properties of the church (in this case) is exempt from taxes.
HELD: No, they are not tax exempt. It is true that the Constitution provides that charitable
institutions, mosques, and non-profit cemeteries are required that for the exemption of
lands, buildings, and improvements, they should not only be exclusively but also
actually and directly used for religious or charitable purposes. The exemption from
taxation is not favored and is never presumed, so that if granted it must be strictly

273
construed against the taxpayer. However, in this case, there is no showing that the said
properties are actually and directly used for religious or charitable uses.

57. ABRA VALLEY COLLEGE VS AQUINO


FACTS: Petitioner, an educational corporation and institution of higher learning duly
incorporated with the Securities and Exchange Commission in 1948, filed a complaint to
annul and declare void the Notice of Seizure and the Notice of Sale of its lot and
building located at Bangued, Abra, for non-payment of real estate taxes and penalties
amounting to P5,140.31. Said Notice of Seizure by respondents Municipal Treasurer and
Provincial Treasurer, defendants below, was issued for the satisfaction of the said taxes
thereon.
The parties entered into a stipulation of facts adopted and embodied by the trial court in
its questioned decision. The trial court ruled for the government, holding that the second
floor of the building is being used by the director for residential purposes and that the
ground floor used and rented by Northern Marketing Corporation, a commercial
establishment, and thus the property is not being used exclusively for educational
purposes. Instead of perfecting an appeal, petitioner availed of the instant petition for
review on certiorari with prayer for preliminary injunction before the Supreme Court, by
filing said petition on 17 August 1974.
ISSUE: Whether or not the lot and building are used exclusively for educational purposes.
HELD: Section 22, paragraph 3, Article VI, of the then 1935 Philippine Constitution,
expressly grants exemption from realty taxes for cemeteries, churches and parsonages or
convents appurtenant thereto, and all lands, buildings, and improvements used exclusively
for religious, charitable or educational purposes. Reasonable emphasis has always been
made that the exemption extends to facilities which are incidental to and reasonably
necessary for the accomplishment of the main purposes. The use of the school building or
lot for commercial purposes is neither contemplated by law, nor by jurisprudence. In the
case at bar, the lease of the first floor of the building to the Northern Marketing
Corporation cannot by any stretch of the imagination be considered incidental to the
purpose of education. The test of exemption from taxation is the use of the property for
purposes mentioned in the Constitution.
The decision of the CFI Abra (Branch I) is affirmed subject to the modification that half of
the assessed tax be returned to the petitioner. The modification is derived from the fact

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that the ground floor is being used for commercial purposes (leased) and the second floor
being used as incidental to education (residence of the director).
Section 29

PASCUAL VS SEC. OF PUBLIC WORKS


Facts: In 1953, Republic Act No. 920 was passed. This law appropriated P85,000.00 for
the construction, reconstruction, repair, extension and improvement Pasig feeder road
terminals. Wenceslao Pascual, then governor of Rizal, assailed the validity of the law. He
claimed that the appropriation was actually going to be used for private use for the
terminals sought to be improved were part of the Antonio Subdivision. The said
Subdivision is owned by Senator Jose Zulueta who was a member of the same Senate that
passed and approved the same RA. Pascual claimed that Zulueta misrepresented in
Congress the fact that he owns those terminals and that his property would be unlawfully
enriched at the expense of the taxpayers if the said RA would be upheld. Pascual then
prayed that the Secretary of Public Works and Communications be restrained from
releasing funds for such purpose. Zulueta, on the other hand, perhaps as an afterthought,
donated the said property to the City of Pasig.
ISSUE: Whether or not the appropriation is valid.
HELD: No, the appropriation is void for being an appropriation for a private purpose. The
subsequent donation of the property to the government to make the property public does
not cure the constitutional defect. The fact that the law was passed when the said property
was still a private property cannot be ignored. In accordance with the rule that the taxing
power must be exercised for public purposes only, money raised by taxation can be
expanded only for public purposes and not for the advantage of private individuals.
Inasmuch as the land on which the projected feeder roads were to be constructed
belonged then to Zulueta, the result is that said appropriation sought a private purpose,
and, hence, was null and void.

AGLIPAY VS RUIZ
Facts:
Petitioner Aglipay, the head of Phil. Independent Church, filed a writ of prohibition against
respondent Ruiz, the Director of Post, enjoining the latter from issuing and selling postage
stamps commemorative of the 33rd Intl Eucharistic Congress organized by the Roman

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Catholic. The petitioner invokes that such issuance and selling, as authorized by Act 4052
by the Phil. Legislature, contemplates religious purpose for the benefit of a particular
sect or church. Hence, this petition.
Issue:
Whether or not the issuing and selling of commemorative stamps is constitutional?
Held/Reason:
The Court said YES, the issuing and selling of commemorative stamps by the respondent
does not contemplate any favor upon a particular sect or church, but the purpose was only
to advertise the Philippines and attract more tourist and the government just took
advantage of an event considered of international importance, thus, not violating the
Constitution on its provision on the separation of the Church and State. Moreover, the
Court stressed that Religious freedom, as a constitutional mandate is not inhibition of
profound reverence for religion and is not denial of its influence in human affairs.
Emphasizing that, when the Filipino people implored the aid of Divine Providence, they
thereby manifested reliance upon Him who guides the destinies of men and nations. The
elevating influence of religion in human society is recognized here as elsewhere. In fact,
certain general concessions are indiscriminately accorded to religious sects and
denominations.

GUINGONA VS CARAGUE
Facts:
The 1990 budget consists of P98.4 Billion in automatic appropriation (with P86.8 Billion
for debt service) and P155.3 Billion appropriated under Republic Act No. 6831, otherwise
known as the General Appropriations Act, or a total of P233.5 Billion, while the
appropriations for the Department of Education, Culture and Sports amount to
P27,017,813,000.00.
The said automatic appropriation for debt service is authorized by P.D. No. 81, entitled
Amending Certain Provisions of Republic Act Numbered Four Thousand Eight Hundred
Sixty, as Amended (Re: Foreign Borrowing Act), by P.D. No. 1177, entitled Revising the
Budget Process in Order to Institutionalize the Budgetary Innovations of the New Society,
and by P.D. No. 1967, entitled An Act Strengthening the Guarantee and Payment Positions
of the Republic of the Philippines on Its Contingent Liabilities Arising out of Relent and
Guaranteed Loan by Appropriating Funds For The Purpose.

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The petitioner seek the declaration of the unconstitutionality of P.D. No. 81, Sections 31 of
P.D. 1177, and P.D. No. 1967. The petition also seeks to restrain the disbursement for debt
service under the 1990 budget pursuant to said decrees.
Issue:
Is the appropriation of P86 billion in the P233 billion 1990 budget violative of
Section 29(1), Article VI of the Constitution?
Held:
No. There is no provision in our Constitution that provides or prescribes any
particular form of words or religious recitals in which an authorization or appropriation
by Congress shall be made, except that it be made by law, such as precisely the
authorization or appropriation under the questioned presidential decrees. In other words,
in terms of time horizons, an appropriation may be made impliedly (as by past but
subsisting legislations) as well as expressly for the current fiscal year (as by enactment of
laws by the present Congress), just as said appropriation may be made in general as well
as in specific terms. The Congressional authorization may be embodied in annual laws,
such as a general appropriations act or in special provisions of laws of general or special
application which appropriate public funds for specific public purposes, such as the
questioned decrees. An appropriation measure is sufficient if the legislative intention
clearly and certainly appears from the language employed (In re Continuing
Appropriations, 32 P. 272), whether in the past or in the present.

OSMENA VS ORBOS
" To avoid the taint of unlawful delegation of the power to tax, there must be a standard
which implies that the legislature determines matter of principle and lays down
fundamental policy."
FACTS: Senator John Osmen a assails the constitutionality of paragraph 1c of PD 1956, as
amended by EO 137, empowering the Energy Regulatory Board (ERB) to approve the
increase of fuel prices or impose additional amounts on petroleum products which
proceeds shall accrue to the Oil Price Stabilization Fund (OPSF) established for the
reimbursement to ailing oil companies in the event of sudden price increases. The
petitioner avers that the collection on oil products establishments is an undue and invalid
delegation of legislative power to tax. Further, the petitioner points out that since a 'special
fund' consists of monies collected through the taxing power of a State, such amounts
belong to the State, although the use thereof is limited to the special purpose/objective for
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which it was created. It thus appears that the challenge posed by the petitioner is
premised primarily on the view that the powers granted to the ERB under P.D. 1956, as
amended, partake of the nature of the taxation power of the State.
ISSUE: Is there an undue delegation of the legislative power of taxation?
HELD: None. It seems clear that while the funds collected may be referred to as taxes, they
are exacted in the exercise of the police power of the State. Moreover, that the OPSF as a
special fund is plain from the special treatment given it by E.O. 137. It is segregated from
the general fund; and while it is placed in what the law refers to as a "trust liability
account," the fund nonetheless remains subject to the scrutiny and review of the COA. The
Court is satisfied that these measures comply with the constitutional description of a
"special fund." With regard to the alleged undue delegation of legislative power, the Court
finds that the provision conferring the authority upon the ERB to impose additional
amounts on petroleum products provides a sufficient standard by which the authority
must be exercised. In addition to the general policy of the law to protect the local
consumer by stabilizing and subsidizing domestic pump rates, P.D. 1956 expressly
authorizes the ERB to impose additional amounts to augment the resources of the Fund.

PHILCONSA VS ENRIQUEZ
Facts: The General Appropriations Act appropriated Php 86.3 billion for debt services.
Congress added a special provision which provided that the amount appropriated shall be
used for payment of the national debt only and not to be paid to the liabilities of the
Central Bank. The appropriation for DPWH also provided that the maximum amount to be
contracted for the maintenance of national roads and bridges should not exceed 30% the
appropriation for medicines by the Armed Forces of the Philippines required approval
Congress for the release of funds.
In the General Appropriations Act of 1994 the appropriation for the Armed Forces of the
Philippines contains a provision authorizing the Chief of Staff to use savings in the
appropriation to augment the pension and gratuity fund of the Armed Forces of the
Philippines. The President vetoed the authorization given by the Chief of Staff to use
savings to augment the pension and gratuity fund. Several Senators questioned the validity
of the veto.
Issue: Whether or not the Presidents veto is valid?

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Decision: Petition dismissed. Congress can not include in the general appropriations
matters that should be enacted in a separate legislation and if it does so, the inappropriate
provision must be treated as an item and can be vetoed by the President.
The provision in GAA authorizing the Chief of Staff to use savings to augment the pension
and gratuity fund violates Section 25 (paragraph 5) and Section 29 (paragraph 1) of
Article 6 of the 1987 Constitution. Only the President is authorized to augment items from
savings in the general appropriation to the executive branch. Also pursuant to Section 29
no money shall be paid out of the treasury except in pursuance of an appropriation made
by law.

Section 30

FIRST LEPANTO CERAMICS INC VS CA


FACTS:
The case arose when the Bureau of Investments (BOI) granted the petitioner
s application to
amend its BOI certificate by changing the scope of its registered product from
glazed floor tiles to ceramic tiles. Eventually,
Mariwasa filed an MR of the said BOI decision. Soon rebuffed in its bid for reconsideration,
Mariwasa filed an petition for review with respondent Court of Appeals pursuan to
Circular 1-91. CA temporarily restrained the BOI from implementing its decision. The TRO
lapsed by its own terms twenty (20) days after its issuance, without issuing any
preliminary injunction. Petitioner filed a motion to dismiss and to lift the restraining order
contending that CA does not have jurisdiction over the BOI case, since the same is
exclusively vested with the Supreme Court pursuant to Article 82 of EO 226 (the Omnibus
Investments Code of 1987). Petitioner argued that the Judiciary Reorganization Act of
1980 or B.P. 129 and Circular 1-91, "Prescribing the Rules Governing Appeals to the Court
of Appeals from a Final Order or Decision of the Court of Tax Appeals and Quasi-Judicial
Agencies" cannot be the basis of Mariwasa's appeal to respondent court because the
procedure for appeal laid down therein runs contrary to Article 82 of E.O. 226 , a
substantive right which under the constitution cannot be modified. While Mariwasa
maintains that whatever inconsistency there may have been between B.P. 129 and Article
82 of E.O. 226 on the question of venue for appeal, has already been resolved by Circular 1-
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91 of the Supreme Court, which was promulgated on February 27, 1991 or four (4) years
after E.O. 226 was enacted.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the Court of Appeals has jurisdiction over the case
HELD:
YES. Circular 1-91 effectively repealed or superseded Article 82 of E.O. 226 insofar as the
manner and method of enforcing the right to appeal from decisions of the BOI are
concerned. Appeals from decisions of the BOI, which by statute was previously allowed to
be filed directly with the Supreme Court, should now be brought to the Court of Appeals.
The substantive right to appeal from decisions or orders of the BOI under EO 226 remains
and continues to be respected. Circular I-91 simply transferred the venue of the appeals
from the decisions of this agency to respondent CA and a different period of appeal 15
days from notice (sa EO 226 30 days from receipt of decision). It did not make an incursion
into the right to appeal.

DIAZ VS CA
Facts:
On 23 January 1991, Davao Light and Power Company, Inc. (DLPC) filed with the
Energy Regulatory Board (ERB) an application for the approval of the sound value
appraisal of its property in service.
The Asian Appraisal Company valued the property and equipment of DLPC as of
12 March 1990 at One Billion One Hundred Forty One Million Seven Hundred Seventy Four
Thousand Pesos (P1,141,774,000.00).
On 6 December 1992, ERB approved the application of DLPC after deducting
Fourteen Million Eight Hundred Thousand Pesos (P14,800,000.00) worth of property and
equipment which were not used by DLPC in its operation.
On 6 July 1992, petitioners filed a petition for review on certiorari before the
Supreme Court assailing the decision of ERB on the ground of lack of jurisdiction and/or
grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack of jurisdiction.
In our resolution of 8 September 1992, the Supreme Court referred the case for
proper disposition to the Court of Appeals which subsequently dismissed the petition on
the ground that (1) the filing of the petition for review with the Supreme Court was a
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wrong mode of appeal, and (2) the petition did not comply with the provisions of Supreme
Court Circular 1-88 in that (a) it did not state the date when the petitioners received notice
of the ERB decision, (b) it did not state the date when the petitioners filed a motion for
reconsideration, and (c) it inconsistently alleged different dates when petitioners
supposedly received the denial of their motion by ERB.
On 18 December 1992, petitioners filed a motion for reconsideration contending
that our resolution of 8 September 1992 was a directive for the Court of Appeals to
disregard the above circular.
In its resolution of 24 March 1993, the Court of Appeals denied the motion for
reconsideration for lack of merit.
Issue:
whether or not E.O. No. 172 is violative of Section 30, Article VI of the Constitution
Held:
Yes. Since Sec. 10 of E.O. No. 172 was enacted without the advice and concurrence
of the Supreme Court, this provision never became effective, with the result that it cannot
be deemed to have amended the Judiciary Reorganization Act of 1980. Consequently, the
authority of the Court of Appeals to decide cases from the Board of Energy, now ERB,
remains.

Section 32

SUBIC BAY METROPOLITAN AUTHORITY VS COMELEC


FACTS:
On March 13, 1992, Congress enacted RA. 7227 (The Bases Conversion and Development
Act of 1992), which created the Subic Economic Zone. RA 7227 likewise created SBMA to
implement the declared national policy of converting the Subic military reservation into
alternative productive uses.
On November 24, 1992, the American navy turned over the Subic military reservation to
the Philippines government. Immediately,petitioner commenced the implementation of its
task, particularly the preservation of the sea-ports, airport, buildings, houses and other
installations left by the American navy.

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On April 1993, the Sangguniang Bayan of Morong, Bataan passed Pambayang Kapasyahan
Bilang 10, Serye 1993, expressing therein its absolute concurrence, as required by said
Sec. 12 of RA 7227, to join the Subic Special Economic Zone and submitted such to the
Office of the President.
On May 24, 1993, respondents Garcia filed a petition with the Sangguniang Bayan of
Morong to annul Pambayang Kapasyahan Blg.10, Serye 1993.
The petition prayed for the following: a) to nullify PambayangKapasyang Blg. 10 for
Morong to join the Subic Special Economi Zone,b) to allow Morong to join provided
conditions are met.
The Sangguniang Bayan ng Morong acted upon the petition by promulgating Pambayang
Kapasyahan Blg. 18, Serye 1993, requesting Congress of the Philippines so amend certain
provisions of RA 7227.
Not satisfied, respondents resorted to their power initiative under the LGC of 1991.
On July 6, 1993, COMELEC denied the petition for local initiative on the ground that the
subject thereof was merely a resolution and not an ordinance.
On February 1, 1995, the President issued Proclamation No. 532 defining the metes and
bounds of the SSEZ including therein the portion of the former naval base within the
territorial jurisdiction of the Municipality of Morong.
On June 18, 19956, respondent Comelec issued Resolution No. 2845and 2848, adopting a
"Calendar of Activities for local referendum and providing for "the rules and guidelines to
govern the conduct of the referendum.
On July 10, 1996, SBMA instituted a petition for certiorari contesting the validity of
Resolution No. 2848 alleging that public respondent is intent on proceeding with a local
initiative that proposes an amendment of a national law.
Issue:
1. WON Comelec committed grave abuse of discretion in promulgating Resolution No.
2848 which governs the conduct of the referendum proposing to annul or repeal
Pambayang Kapasyahan Blg. 10
2. WON the questioned local initiative covers a subject within the powersof the people of
Morong to enact; i.e., whether such initiative "seeks the amendment of a national law."
Ruling:
1. YES. COMELEC committed grave abuse of discretion.
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FIRST. The process started by private respondents was an INITIATIVE but respondent
Comelec made preparations for a REFERENDUM only.
In fact, in the body of the Resolution as reproduced in the footnote below,the word
"referendum" is repeated at least 27 times, but "initiative" is not mentioned at all. The
Comelec labeled the exercise as a "Referendum"; the counting of votes was entrusted to a
"Referendum Committee"; the documents were called "referendum returns"; the
canvassers, "Referendum Board of Canvassers" and the ballots themselves bore the
description"referendum". To repeat, not once was the word "initiative" used in said body
of Resolution No. 2848. And yet, this exercise is unquestionably an INITIATIVE.
As defined, Initiative is the power of the people to propose bills and laws,and to enact or
reject them at the polls independent of the legislative assembly. On the other hand,
referendum is the right reserved to the people to adopt or reject any act or measure which
has been passed by a legislative body and which in most cases would without action on the
part of electors become a law.
In initiative and referendum, the Comelec exercises administration and supervision of the
process itself, akin to its powers over the conduct of elections. These law-making powers
belong to the people, hence the respondent Commission cannot control or change the
substance or the content of legislation.
2. The local initiative is NOT ultra vires because the municipal resolution is still in the
proposal stage and not yet an approved law.
The municipal resolution is still in the proposal stage. It is not yet an approved law. Should
the people reject it, then there would be nothing to contest and to adjudicate. It is only
when the people have voted for it and it has become an approved ordinance or resolution
that rights and obligations can be enforced or implemented thereunder. At this point, it is
merely a proposal and the writ or prohibition cannot issue upon a mere conjecture or
possibility. Constitutionally speaking, courts may decide only actual controversies, not
hypothetical questions or cases.
In the present case, it is quite clear that the Court has authority to review Comelec
Resolution No. 2848 to determine the commission of grave abuse of discretion. However, it
does not have the same authority in regard to the proposed initiative since it has not been
promulgated or approved, or passed upon by any "branch or instrumentality" or lower
court, for that matter. The Commission on Elections itself has made no reviewable
pronouncements about the issues brought by the pleadings. The Comelec simply included
verbatim the proposal in its questioned Resolution No. 2848. Hence, there is really no

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decision or action made by a branch, instrumentality or court which this Court could take
cognizance of and acquire jurisdiction over, in the exercise of its review powers.

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