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Dr. Salvador Laurel, chair of the National Centennial Celebration in 1998 was
charged by the Office of the Ombudsman for violating Section 3 (e) of RA 3019 or the
Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, in relation to the award of centennial contracts to
Asia Construction, exhibiting manifest bias in the issuance of Notice to Proceed (NTP)
in the construction of the Freedom Ring in the absence of a valid contract.

In this case, Laurel assailed the jurisdiction of the Ombudsman on the ground
that he is not a public officer, and that the National Centennial Commission was not a
public Office.

Petitioner submits that some of the characteristics of a public office are not
present in the position of NCC Chair, namely: (1) the delegation of sovereign functions;
(2) salary, since he purportedly did not receive any compensation; and (3) continuance,
the tenure of the NCC being temporary.


(1) Whether the petitioner in this case is a public officer.

(2) Whether the NCC is a public office.


Yes, the Executive Order creating the NCC precisely delagated NCC to execute
the foregoing policies and objectives in the celebration of the National Centennial
Celebration. Clearly, the NCC performs sovereign functions. It is, therefore, a public
office, and petitioner, as its Chair, is a public officer.

Furthermore, RA 3019 defined a public officer includes elective and appointive

officials and employees, permanent or temporary, whether in the classified or
unclassified or exemption service receiving compensation, even nominal, from the
government as defined in the preceding paragraph.

The Introductory Provisions of the Administrative Code of 1987,29 on the other

hand, states:

Officer – as distinguished from "clerk" or "employee", refers to a person whose

duties not being of a clerical or manual nature, involves the exercise of discretion
in the performance of the functions of the government. When used with

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reference to a person having authority to do a particular act or perform a
particular person in the exercise of governmental power, "officer" includes any
government employee, agent or body having authority to do the act or exercise
that function.

It bears noting that under Republic Act No. 6713 (The Code of Conduct and
Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees), one may be considered a "public
official" whether or not one receives compensation, thus:

"Public Officials" include elective and appointive officials and employees,

permanent or temporary, whether in the career or non-career service including
military and police personnel, whether or not they receive compensation,
regardless of amount.

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ABAKADA Partylist vs Purisima
August 14, 2008

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.It covers all officials
and employees of the BIR and the BOC with at least six months of service, regardless of
employment status.
However, 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 rewards. Thus, the system of rewards
and incentives invites corruption and undermines the constitutionally mandated duty
of these officials and employees to serve the people with utmost responsibility,
integrity, loyalty and efficiency.
In their comment, respondents, through the Office of the Solicitor General,
question the petition for being premature as there is no actual case or controversy yet.
Petitioners have not asserted any right or claim that will necessitate the exercise of this
Court’s jurisdiction. Nevertheless, respondents acknowledge that public policy requires
the resolution of the constitutional issues involved in this case. They assert that the
allegation that the reward system will breed mercenaries is mere speculation and does
not suffice to invalidate the law.
Whether or not RA 9335 is unconstitutional

Section 1, Article 11 of the Constitution states:

Sec. 1. Public office is a public trust. Public officers and employees must at all
times be accountable to the people, serve them with utmost responsibility,
integrity, loyalty, and efficiency, act with patriotism, and justice, and lead
modest lives.

Public office is a public trust. It must be discharged by its holder not for his own
personal gain but for the benefit of the public for whom he holds it in trust. By
demanding accountability and service with responsibility, integrity, loyalty, efficiency,

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patriotism and justice, all government officials and employees have the duty to be
responsive to the needs of the people they are called upon to serve.

Public officers enjoy the presumption of regularity in the performance of their

duties. This presumption necessarily obtains in favor of BIR and BOC officials and
employees. RA 9335 operates on the basis thereof and reinforces it by providing a
system of rewards and sanctions for the purpose of encouraging the officials and
employees of the BIR and the BOC to exceed their revenue targets and optimize their
revenue-generation capability and collection.

The presumption is disputable but proof to the contrary is required to rebut it. It
cannot be overturned by mere conjecture or denied in advance (as petitioners would
have the Court do) specially in this case where it is an underlying principle to advance a
declared public policy.

Petitioners’ claim that the implementation of RA 9335 will turn BIR and BOC
officials and employees into "bounty hunters and mercenaries" is not only without any
factual and legal basis; it is also purely speculative.

Public service is its own reward. Nevertheless, public officers may by law be
rewarded for exemplary and exceptional performance. A system of incentives for
exceeding the set expectations of a public office is not anathema to the concept of public
accountability. In fact, it recognizes and reinforces dedication to duty, industry,
efficiency and loyalty to public service of deserving government personnel.

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G.R. No. 159813 August 9, 2006

That on or about April 9, 1991, in the City of Davao, Philippines, Tony
VN. Figueroa, writer under the column entitled Footprints of the People's Daily Forum,
conspiring, confederating and helping one another with his co-accused Rogelio J.
Flaviano, Publisher-Editor of the same magazine, with malicious intent of impeaching
the honesty, integrity, character as well as the reputation and the social standing of one
Aproniano Rivera and with intent to cast dishonor, discredit and contempt upon said
Aproniano Rivera, willfully, unlawfully and feloniously published in the People's Daily
Forum, a news publication.

On arraignment, petitioners as accused, assisted by counsel, entered a

common plea of Not Guilty. Thereafter, trial on the merits ensued.
On June 8, 1993, the RTC rendered its decision[3] finding both petitioners
guilty as charged and accordingly sentenced them, thus:

WHEREFORE, finding the evidence of the prosecution sufficient to prove the

guilt of both accused, Tony Figueroa and Rogelio Flaviano, columnist and
publisher-editor, respectively of the People's Daily Forum, of the offense
charged, beyond reasonable doubt; their evidence adduced is not sufficient to
afford their exoneration.

The decision of the Regional Trial Court was AFFIRMED in all respects. Hence, this


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The petition lacks merit.

In praying for their acquittal, petitioners attempt to pass off the

subject published article as one that portrays the condition of the Bankerohan Public
Market in general. Citing Jimenez v. Reyes,[5] they challenge the finding of the
two courts below on the libelous or defamatory nature of the same article which, to
them, must be read and construed in its entirety. It is their posture that the article was
not directed at the private character of complainant Aproniano Rivera but on the sorry
state of affairs at the Bankerohan Public Market.

Our own reading of the entire text of the published article convinces us of
its libelous or defamatory character. While it is true that a publication's libelous nature
depends on its scope, spirit and motive taken in their entirety, the article in question as
a whole explicitly makes mention of private complainant Rivera all throughout. It
cannot be said that the article was a mere general commentary on the alleged
existing state of affairs at the aforementioned public market because Rivera was not
only specifically pointed out several times therein but was even tagged with derogatory
names. Indubitably, this name-calling was, as correctly found by
the two courts below, directed at the very person of Rivera himself.

It is next contended by the petitioners that Rivera is a public officer. On this

premise, they invoke in their favor the application of one of the exceptions to the legal
presumption of the malicious nature of every defamatory
imputation, as provided for under paragraph (2), Article 354 of the Revised Penal Code,
to wit:

Art. 354. Requirement for publicity. - Every defamatory imputation is

presumed to be malicious, even if it be true, if no good intention and
justifiable motive for making it is shown, except in the following cases:
xxx xxx xxx

2. A fair and true report, made in good faith, without any

comments or remarks, of any judicial, legislative, or other official
proceedings which are not of confidential nature, or of any statement,
report, or speech delivered in said proceedings, or of any other act
performed by public officers in the exercise of their functions.

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Again, as correctly found by both the trial court and the CA, Rivera is not a public
officer or employee but a private citizen. Hence, the published article cannot be
considered as falling within the ambit of privileged communication within the context
of the above-quoted provision of the Penal Code.

A public office is the right, authority and duty, created and conferred by law, by
which an individual is invested with some portion of the sovereign functions of the
government, to be exercised by him for the benefit of the public. The individual so
invested is a public officer. The most important characteristic which distinguishes an
office from an employment or contract is that the creation and conferring of an office
involve a delegation to the individual of some of the sovereign functions of
government, to be exercised by him for the benefit of the public; that some portion of
the sovereignty of the country, either legislative, executive or judicial, attaches, to be
exercised for the public benefit. Unless the powers conferred are of this nature, the
individual is not a public officer.

Clearly, Rivera cannot be considered a public officer. Being a member of the

market committee did not vest upon him any sovereign function of the government, be
it legislative, executive or judicial. As reasoned out by the CA, the operation of a public
market is not a governmental function but merely an activity undertaken by the city in
its private proprietary capacity. Furthermore, Rivera's membership in the market
committee was in representation of the association of market vendors, a non-
governmental organization belonging to the private sector.

Indeed, even if we were to pretend that Rivera was a public officer, which he
clearly is not, the subject article still would not pass muster as Article 354(2), supra, of
the Revised Penal Code expressly requires that it be a fair and true report, made in good
faith, without any comments or remarks. Even a mere cursory glance at the article reveals
that it is far from being that.

Page 7 of 46
G.R. Nos. 147026-27 September 11, 2009
(Dela Cruz)

Javier was the private sector representative in the National Book Development
Board (NBDB), which was created by R.A. 8047, otherwise known as the “Book
Publishing Industry Development Act.” R.A. No. 8047 provided for the creation of the
NBDB, which was placed under the administration and supervision of the Office of the
President. The NBDB is composed of eleven (11) members who are appointed by the
President, five (5) of whom come from the government, while the remaining six (6) are
chosen from the nominees of organizations of private book publishers, printers, writers,
book industry related activities, students and the private education sector.
Petitioner was appointed to the Governing Board for a term of one year. During
that time, she was also the President of the Book Suppliers Association of the
Philippines (BSAP). She was on a holdover capacity in the following year. On
September 14, 1998, she was again appointed to the same position and for the same
period of one year. Part of her functions as a member of the Governing Board is to
attend book fairs to establish linkages with international book publishing bodies. On
September 29, 1997, she was issued by the Office of the President a travel authority to
attend the Madrid International Book Fair in Spain on October 8-12, 1997. Based on her
itinerary of travel, she was paid P139,199.00 as her travelling expenses. Unfortunately,
petitioner was not able to attend the scheduled international book fair.

Whether or not Javier is a public officer. (YES)

YES, Javier is a public officer.
A public office is the right, authority and duty, created and conferred by law, by
which, for a given period, either fixed by law or enduring at the pleasure of the creating
power, an individual is invested with some portion of the sovereign functions of the
government, to be exercised by him for the benefit of the public. The individual so
invested is a public officer.
Notwithstanding that petitioner came from the private sector to sit as a member
of the NBDB, the law invested her with some portion of the sovereign functions of the
government, so that the purpose of the government is achieved. In this case, the
government aimed to enhance the book publishing industry as it has a significant role
in the national development. Hence, the fact that she was appointed from the public

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sector and not from the other branches or agencies of the government does not take her
position outside the meaning of a public office.

The Court is not unmindful of the definition of a public officer pursuant to

the Anti Graft Law, which provides that a “public officer” includes elective and
appointive officials and employees, permanent or temporary, whether in the
classified or unclassified or exempt service receiving compensation, even nominal,
from the government. Thus, pursuant to the Anti Graft Law, one is a public officer if
one has been elected or appointed to a public office.Petitioner was appointed by the
President to the Governing Board of the NDBD.
Article 203 of the Revised Penal Code defines a “public officer” as any person who,
by direct provision of the law, popular election or appointment by competent
authority, shall take part in the performance of public functions in the Government of
the Philippine Islands, or shall perform in said Government or in any of its branches
public duties as an employee, agent, or subordinate official, of any rank or classes.

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GR Nos. 208481-82 February 07, 2018
(c/o Tits)

Respondent Regalado was a public employee, holding the position Immigration
Officer I with the Bureau of Immigration.nIn October 2006, Carmelita F. Doromal
(Doromal), the owner and administrator of St. Martha'snDay Care Center and Tutorial
Center, Inc. (St. Martha's), went to the Davao Office of the Bureau of Immigration to
inquire about its letter requiring her school to obtain an accreditation to admit foreign
students. There, she met Regalado, who told her that she needed to pay P50,000.00 as
"processing fee" for the accreditation.

On April 7, 2007, Regalado called Doromal on the latter's mobile phone asking if
the school was"ready." Doromal responded by saying that the school was ready for
inspection, but not to pay P50,000.00 as accreditation fee. Regalado persuaded Doromal
to pay P50,000.00 directly to her by claiming that the cost of the inspection could soar as
high as P100,000.00 if it were to be done instead by officers coming from the Bureau of
Immigration's Manila Office, as Doromal would still have to spend for the inspectors'
plane fares, billeting at the Marco Polo Hotel, and a special dinner on top of the
P50,000.00 "honorarium." Regalado insisted on how paying just P50,000.00 directly to
her would benefit Doromal.

Doromal asked if it was possible to pay the P10,000.00 by check but Regalado
insisted on payment by cash. Regalado instructed Diaz and Tautho to return the
following day with P30,000.00. She then directed them to pay the accreditation fee of
P10,000.00 with the cashier. After payment, Regalado demanded that they surrender to
her: the official receipt. Before leaving, Regalado asked Diaz about her companion.

In its November 5, 2008 Decision, the Office of the Ombudsman for Mindanao
found Regalado guilty. In its January 7, 2013 Decision, the Court of Appeals affirmed in
toto the Office of the Ombudsman's ruling.

The Court of Appeals explained that in the first place, St. Martha's did not even
have to seek accreditation. The supposed basis for accreditation, Office Memorandum
Order No. RBR 00-57, apply only to the accreditation of Riper Education Institutions
and not to Day Care Centers like St. Martha's. The Court of Appeals added that this
Memorandum required the payment of P10,000.00 only, not P50,000.00, as accreditation
fee. It also explained that Regalado knowingly used a falsified copy of this
Memorandum, one which did not bear the signature of then Bureau of Immigration
Commissioner Rufus Rodriguez, and which erroneously indicated P50,000.00 as the
accreditation fee.

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Whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in meting upon respondent Maria
Rowena Regalado the reduced penalty of one (1)-year suspension without pay, in view
of the mitigating circumstances it appreciated in respondent's favor.

Yes, the CA erred in its decision.

The 1987 Constitution spells out the basic ethos underlying public office: Section
1. Public office is a public trust. Public officers and employees must at all times be
accountable to the people, serve them with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty, and
efficiency, act with patriotism and justice, and lead modest lives.

The fundamental notion that one's tenure in government springs exclusively

from the trust reposed by the public means that continuance in office is contingent upon
the extent to which one is able to maintain that trust. No one has a vested right to public
office. One can continue to hold public office only for as long as he or she proves
worthy of public trust.

Consistent with the dignity of public office, our civil service system maintains
that misconduct tainted with "any of the additional elements of corruption, willful
intent to violate the law or disregard of established rules" is grave. This gravity means
that misconduct was committed with such depravity that it justifies not only putting an
end to an individual's current engagement as a public servant, but also the foreclosure
of any further opportunity at occupying public office.

A. The following are grave offenses with their corresponding penalties:

3. Grave Misconduct

1st offense – Dismissal

Section 58. Administrative Disabilities Inherent in Certain Penalties. —

a. The penalty of dismissal shall carry with it that of cancellation of eligibility,

forfeiture of retirement benefits, and the perpetual disqualification for reemployment in
the government service, w1less otherwise provided in the decision.

The three (3)-fold liability rule in the law on public officers, "which states that the
wrongful acts or omissions of a public officer may give rise to civil, criminal and
administrative liability. An action for each can proceed independently of the others."

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It is clear, then, that respondent's actions deserve the supreme penalty of
dismissal from service. The Court of Appeals, however, held that certain circumstances
warrant the reduction of respondent's penalty to a year-long suspension.

The Court of Appeals was in serious error. In taking this as a mitigating

circumstance, the Court of Appeals ran afoul of the clear text of the Uniform Rules on
Administrative Cases in the Civil Service. Rule IV, Section 52(A)(3) of these Rules
unqualifiedly states that dismissal shall be meted even if it is only the first offense.

Jurisprudence has been definite on this point. This Court's En Banc Decision in
Duque v. Veloso underscored how "the clear language of Section 52, Rule IV does not
consider a first-time offender as a mitigating circumstance."

Section 52, Rule IV of the Uniform Rules, the commission of an administrative

offense classified as a serious offense (like dishonesty) is punishable by dismissal from
the service even for the first time. In other words, the clear language of Section 52, Rule
IV does not consider a first-time offender as a mitigating circumstance. Likewise, under
statutory construction principles, a special provision prevails over a general provision.

She is to suffer the penalty of dismissal from service, along with its accessory
penalties of cancellation of eligibility, forfeiture of retirement benefits, and perpetual
disqualification from employment in government.

Page 12 of 46
G.R. No. 146875. July 14, 2003

On May 27, 1997, respondent took his oath and thereafter assumed office as the
duly proclaimed and elected barangay captain of Barangay Batasan Hills, Quezon City,
in the 1997 Barangay Elections. Meanwhile, Roque Fermo, his rival candidate, filed an
election protest with the Metropolitan Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 40. On
January 18, 1999, Fermo was declared as the winner in the Barangay
Elections. Respondent filed a notice of appeal with the COMELEC while Fermo filed a
motion for execution pending appeal.
On May 27, 1997, respondent took his oath and thereafter assumed office as the duly
proclaimed and elected barangay captain of Barangay Batasan Hills, Quezon City, in
the 1997 Barangay Elections. Meanwhile, Roque Fermo, his rival candidate, filed an
election protest with the Metropolitan Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 40. On
January 18, 1999, Fermo was declared as the winner in the Barangay Elections.
Respondent filed a notice of appeal with the COMELEC while Fermo filed a motion for
execution pending appeal.
On October 27, 1999, the COMELEC issued a writ of execution directing Fermo to
vacate the office of Barangay Chairman of Barangay Batasan Hills. On October 28, 1999,
Fermo was served a copy of the writ of execution but refused to acknowledge receipt
thereof. He also refused to vacate the premises of the barangay hall of Batasan Hills.
This did not, however, prevent respondent and his staff from discharging their
functions and from holding office at the SK-Hall of Batasan Hills. On the same date,
respondent appointed Godofredo L. Ramos as Barangay Secretary and on November 8,
1999, he appointed Rodel G. Liquido as Barangay Treasurer.
On November 16, 1999, respondent took his oath of office as Barangay Captain of
Batasan Hills, Quezon City before Mayor Ismael Mathay, Jr. The following day,
November 17, 1999, Roque Fermo turned over to respondent all the assets and
properties of the barangay.
On November 20, 1999, the Barangay Council of Batasan Hills issued Resolution
No. 001-S-1999 ratifying the appointment of Godofredo L. Ramos as Barangay
Secretary, effective November 1, 1999 and Resolution No. 002-S-1999 ratifying the
appointment of Rodel G. Liquido, as Barangay Treasurer, also effective November 1,
Sometime in January 2000, petitioner barangay councilors filed with the Quezon
City Council a complaint[18] for violation of the anti-graft and corrupt practices act and
falsification of legislative documents against respondent and all other barangay officials
who signed the questioned resolution and payroll, namely, Barangay Secretary

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Godofredo L. Ramos, Barangay Treasurer Rodel G. Liquido, Barangay Kagawad Charlie
O. Mangune, Gonzalo S. Briones, Sr., Maryann T. Castaeda, Elias G. Gamboa, and SK-
Chairman Sharone Amog. They contended that defendants made it appear in the
payroll that he and his appointees rendered services starting November 8, 1999 when,
in truth, they commenced to serve only on November 17, 1999 after respondent took his
oath and assumed the office of barangay chairman. They further claimed that the
effectivity date of the barangay secretary and barangay treasurers appointment, as
approved in Resolution No. 001-S-1999, was November 16, 1999, but respondent
fraudulently antedated it to November 1, 1999. Petitioners also contended that
respondent connived with the other barangay officials in crossing out their names in the

WON the re-taking of an oath is requirement before Laxina can assume office as
Barangay Captain.


An oath of office is a qualifying requirement for a public office; a prerequisite to the

full investiture with the office. It is only when the public officer has satisfied the
prerequisite of oath that his right to enter into the position becomes plenary and
complete. However, once proclaimed and duly sworn in office, a public officer is
entitled to assume office and to exercise the functions thereof. The pendency of an
election protest is not sufficient basis to enjoin him from assuming office or from
discharging his functions. Unless his election is annulled by a final and executory
decision, or a valid execution of an order unseating him pending appeal is issued, he
has the lawful right to assume and perform the duties of the office to which he has been
In the case at bar, respondent was proclaimed as the winner in the 1997 Barangay
Elections in Batasan Hills, Quezon City; he took his oath on May 27, 1997 and thereafter
assumed office. He is therefore vested with all the rights to discharge the functions of
his office. Although in the interim, he was unseated by virtue of a decision in an
election protest decided against him, the execution of said decision was annulled by the
COMELEC in its September 16, 1999 Resolution which, incidentally, was sustained by
this Court on March 13, 2000, in Fermo v. Commission on Elections. It was held therein
that [w]hen the COMELEC nullified the writ of execution pending appeal in favor of
FERMO, the decision of the MTC proclaiming FERMO as the winner of the election was
stayed and the status quo or the last actual peaceful uncontested situation preceding the
controversy was restored The status quo referred to the stage when respondent was
occupying the office of Barangay Captain and discharging its functions. For purposes of

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determining the continuity and effectivity of the rights arising from respondents
proclamation and oath taken on May 27, 1997, it is as if the said writ of execution
pending appeal was not issued and he was not ousted from office. The re-taking of his
oath of office on November 16, 1999 was a mere formality considering that his oath
taken on May 27, 1997 operated as a full investiture on him of the rights of the office.
Hence, the taking anew of his oath of office as Barangay Captain of Batasan Hills,
Quezon City was not a condition sine qua non to the validity of his re-assumption in
office and to the exercise of the functions thereof.

Page 15 of 46
Joson vs Ombudsman
G.R. Nos. 210220-21 April 06, 2016

Joson in this case filed information against Governor Umali for allegedly
appointing Ferdinand as an employee/consultant in the province despite his
knowledge of the latter’s disqualification for appointment or re-employment in any
government position.

Governor Umali averred that the consultancy services rendered by Ferdinand

could not be considered as government service within the contemplation of law and,
hence, not governed by the Civil Service Law, Rules and Regulations. Further,
Governor Umali alleged that Ferdinand’s service is good only for six months and
renewable, thus beyond the contemplation as government employee.

On the other note, Governor Umali averred that the true and actual date of the
execution of the second consultancy contract was January 2, 2008 as clearly shown by
the effectivity of the engagement of Ferdinand. He explained that the date of execution
of the second contract was mistakenly stamped the date of the notarial act, February 28,
2008 by the secretary of the notary public.

Ferdinand, on the other hand, posited in his Counter-Affidavit, dated June 16,
2008, that although his dismissal from government service was not yet final as his
motion for reconsideration had not yet been resolved by the Office of the President at
the time of his appointment, there was no way that his service contract with the
Provincial Government of Nueva Ecija could be construed as to create a public office.

Whether Ferdinand was to be considered as a government employee

No, Ferdinant is not to be considered as government employee.

In Posadas v. Sandiganbayan, the Court stated that a consultancy service is not

considered government service.

Pursuant to CSC Resolution No. 93-1881 dated May 25, 1993, a contract for consultancy
services is not covered by Civil Service Law, rules and regulations because the said
position is not found in the index of position titles approved by DBM. Accordingly, it

Page 16 of 46
does not need the approval of the CSC. xxx A "consultant" is defined as one who
provides professional advice on matters within the field of his specific knowledge or
training. There is no employer-employee relationship in the engagement of a
consultant but that of client-professional relationship.

Further, the Court notes that Ferdinand did not take an oath of office prior to his
rendition of consultancy services for the Provincial Government of Nueva Ecija. All
public officers and employees from the highest to the lowest rank are required to take
an oath of office which marks their assumption to duty. It is well-settled that on oath of
office is a qualifying requirement for public office, a prerequisite to the full investiture
of the office.

In this case, Ferdinand was not required to take an oath of office because he
rendered consultancy services for the provincial government not by virtue of an
appointment or election to a specific public office or position but by a contractual

In fine, those who have rendered services with the government, without
occupying a public office or without having been elected or appointed as a public
officer evidenced by a written appointment and recorded with the Civil Service
Commission, did so outside the concept of government service.

Page 17 of 46
G.R. No. 164978, October 13, 2005

President Arroyo issued appointments to respondents as acting secretaries of
their respective departments without the consent of the Commission on Appointments,
while Congress is in their regular session.

Subsequently after the Congress had adjourned, President Arroyo issued ad interim
appointments to respondents as secretaries of the departments to which they were
previously appointed in an acting capacity.

Petitioners’ arguments:

 Petitioners senators, assailing the constitutionality of the appointments, assert

that “while Congress is in session, there can be no appointments, whether
regular or acting, to a vacant position of an office needing confirmation by the
Commission on Appointments, without first having obtained its consent.

Respondents’ arguments:

 Respondent secretaries maintain that the President can issue appointments in an

acting capacity to department secretaries without the consent of the Commission
on Appointments even while Congress is in session.
 EO 292, which devotes a chapter to the President’s power of appointment.
Sections 16 and 17, Chapter 5, Title I, Book III of EO 292 read:

SEC. 16. Power of Appointment. — The President shall exercise the

power to appoint such officials as provided for in the Constitution and

SEC. 17. Power to Issue Temporary Designation. — (1) The President

may temporarily designate an officer already in the government service or
any other competent person to perform the functions of an office in the
executive branch, appointment to which is vested in him by law, when: (a)
the officer regularly appointed to the office is unable to perform his duties
by reason of illness, absence or any other cause; or (b) there exists a

Whether the President can issue appointments in an acting capacity to
department secretaries while Congress is in session.

Page 18 of 46
Yes. The essence of an appointment in an acting capacity is its temporary nature.
It is a stop-gap measure intended to fill an office for a limited time until the
appointment of a permanent occupant to the office. In case of vacancy in an office
occupied by an alter ego of the President, such as the office of a department secretary,
the President must necessarily appoint an alter ego of her choice as acting secretary
before the permanent appointee of her choice could assume office.

The office of a department secretary may become vacant while Congress is in session.
Since a department secretary is the alter ego of the President, the acting appointee to the
office must necessarily have the President’s confidence. Thus, by the very nature of the
office of a department secretary, the President must appoint in an acting capacity a
person of her choice even while Congress is in session.

Ad interim appointments and acting appointments are both effective upon acceptance.
But ad-interim appointments are extended only during a recess of Congress, whereas
acting appointments may be extended any time there is a vacancy. Moreover ad-interim
appointments are submitted to the Commission on Appointments for confirmation or
rejection; acting appointments are not submitted to the Commission on Appointments.
Acting appointments are a way of temporarily filling important offices but, if abused,
they can also be a way of circumventing the need for confirmation by the Commission
on Appointments.

The absence of abuse is readily apparent from President Arroyo’s issuance of ad interim
appointments to respondents immediately upon the recess of Congress, way before the
lapse of one year.

Note: Can Congress impose the automatic appointment of the undersecretary?

Congress, through a law, cannot impose on the President the obligation to appoint
automatically the undersecretary as her temporary alter ego.

The power to appoint is essentially executive in nature, and the legislature may not
interfere with the exercise of this executive power except in those instances when the
Constitution expressly allows it to interfere. Limitations on the executive power to
appoint are construed strictly against the legislature. The scope of the legislature’s
interference in the executive’s power to appoint is limited to the power to prescribe the
qualifications to an appointive office. Congress cannot appoint a person to an office in
the guise of prescribing qualifications to that office. Neither may Congress impose on
the President the duty to appoint any particular person to an office.

Page 19 of 46

Respondent Edgardo Tallado and Jesus Typoco were both candidates for
Governor in Camarines Norte during the May 2007 National Elections.
Typoco was declared winner, however, upon Tallado's petition for correction of
manifest error, he was proclaimed winner and thereafter assumed as Governor on
March 2010. He ran again during the 2010 and 2013 national and local elections where
he won and served as Governor in Camarines Norte, and on 2015, filed another
Certificate of Candidacy for the same position.
Petitioner Sofronio, Albania in this case, filed a disqualification case against
Tallado, on the ground that he violated the three-term rule and he was suspended from
office for one year over an administrative case.

Whether Tallado violated the three-term rule and thus be disqualified from
running in the same elective position.

No, the Supreme Court held that two conditions must concur for the application
of the disqualification of a candidate based on violation of the three-term limit rule,
which are: (1) that the official concerned has been elected for three consecutive terms in
the same local government post, and (2) that he has fully served three consecutive

In this case, while respondent ran as Governor of Camarines Norte in the 2007
elections, he did not win as such. It was only after he filed la petition for correction of
manifest error that he was proclaimed as the duly-elected Governor. He assumed the
post and served the unexpired term of his opponent from March 22, 2010 until June 30,
2010. Consequently, he did not hold the office for the full term of three years to which
he was supposedly entitled to. Thus, such period of time that respondent served as
Governor did not constitute a complete and full service of his term. The period when he
was out of office involuntarily interrupted the continuity of his service as Governor.26
As he had not fully served the 2007-2010 term, and had not been elected for three
consecutive terms as Governor, there was no violation of the three-term limit rule when
he ran again in the 2016 elections.

An involuntary interrupted term, cannot, in the context of the disqualification

rule, be considered as one term for purposes of counting the threeterm threshold.

Furthermore, the Supreme Court stressed that the violation of the three-term rule
is not a ground for petition of disqualification, and that it is an ineligibility which is a

Page 20 of 46
proper ground for a petition to deny due course to or to cancel a Certificate of
Candidacy under Section 78 of the OEC, which must be filed within 25 days from the
time of filing of the COC, as provided under Section 78 of the Omnibus Election Code.
However, as the COMELEC found, the petition was filed beyond the reglementary
period, and dismissed the petition for being filed out time.

In addition, respondent's suspension from office is indeed not a ground for a

petition for disqualification as Section 40 (b) clearly speaks of removal from office as a
result of an administrative offense that would disqualify a candidate from running for
any elective local position.

WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED.

Page 21 of 46
Abundo vs Comelec

Page 22 of 46

Lucena City councilor Wilfredo F. Asilo was elected to the said office for three
consecutive terms: 1998-2001, 2001-2004, and 2004-2007. In September 2005, during his
third term of office, the Sandiganbayan issued an order of 90-day preventive
suspension against him in relation to a criminal case. The said suspension order was
subsequently lifted by the Court, and Asilo resumed the performance of the functions of
his office.

Asilo then filed his certificate of candidacy for the same position in 2007. His
disqualification was sought by herein petitioners on the ground that he had been
elected and had served for three consecutive terms, in violation of the three-term
Constitutional limit.

WON the suspensive condition interrupts the three-term limitation rule of

NO. The preventive suspension of public officials does not interrupt their term
for purposes of the three-term limit rule under the Constitution and the Local
Government Code (RA 7160).

The candidacy of Lucena City Councilor Wilfredo F. Asilo for a fourth term in
the 2007 elections was in contravention of the three-term limit rule of Art. X, sec. 8 of the
Constitution since his 2004-2007 term was not interrupted by the preventive suspension
imposed on him, the SC granted the petition of Simon B. Aldovino, Danilo B. Faller, and
Ferdinand N. Talabong seeking Asilo’s disqualification.

“Preventive suspension, by its nature, does not involve an effective interruption

of service within a term and should therefore not be a reason to avoid the three-term
limitation,” held the Court. It noted that preventive suspension can pose as a threat
“more potent” than the voluntary renunciation that the Constitution itself disallows to
evade the three-term limit as it is easier to undertake and merely requires an easily
fabricated administrative charge that can be dismissed soon after a preventive
suspension has been imposed.

Page 23 of 46
G.R. No. 168550. August 10, 2006
(Dela Cruz)

Norma L. Mejes (Mejes) filed a petition to disqualify Moreno from running for
Punong Barangay on the ground that the latter was convicted by final judgment of the
crime of Arbitrary Detention. The Comelec en banc granted her petition and
disqualified Moreno. Moreno filed an answer averring that the petition states no cause
of action because he was already granted probation. Allegedly, following the case of
Baclayon v. Mutia, the imposition of the sentence of imprisonment, as well as the
accessory penalties, was thereby suspended. Moreno also argued that under Sec. 16 of
the Probation Law of 1976 (Probation Law), the final discharge of the probation shall
operate to restore to him all civil rights lost or suspended as a result of his conviction
and to fully discharge his liability for any fine imposed.

However, the Comelec en banc assails Sec. 40(a) of the Local Government Code
which provides that those sentenced by final judgment for an offense involving moral
turpitude or for an offense punishable by one (1) year or more of imprisonment, within
two (2) years after serving sentence, are disqualified from running for any elective local
position. Since Moreno was released from probation on December 20, 2000,
disqualification shall commence on this date and end two (2) years thence. The grant of
probation to Moreno merely suspended the execution of his sentence but did not affect
his disqualification from running for an elective local office.

On his petition, Moreno argues that the disqualification under the Local
Government Code applies only to those who have served their sentence and not to
probationers because the latter do not serve the adjudged sentence. The Probation Law
should allegedly be read as an exception to the Local Government Code because it is a
special law which applies only to probationers. Further, even assuming that he is
disqualified, his subsequent election as Punong Barangay allegedly constitutes an
implied pardon of his previous misconduct.

Does Moreno’s probation grant him the right to run in public office?

Yes. Sec. 16 of the Probation Law provides that "[t]he final discharge of the
probationer shall operate to restore to him all civil rights lost or suspended as a result of
his conviction and to fully discharge his liability for any fine imposed as to the offense

Page 24 of 46
for which probation was granted." Thus, when Moreno was finally discharged upon the
court's finding that he has fulfilled the terms and conditions of his probation, his case
was deemed terminated and all civil rights lost or suspended as a result of his
conviction were restored to him, including the right to run for public office.

It is important to note that the disqualification under Sec. 40(a) of the Local
Government Code covers offenses punishable by one (1) year or more of imprisonment,
a penalty which also covers probationable offenses. In spite of this, the provision does
not specifically disqualify probationers from running for a local elective office.

Probation Law should be construed as an exception to the Local Government

Code. While the Local Government Code is a later law which sets forth the
qualifications and disqualifications of local elective officials, the Probation Law is a
special legislation which applies only to probationers. It is a canon of statutory
construction that a later statute, general in its terms and not expressly repealing a prior
special statute, will ordinarily not affect the special provisions of such earlier statute.

Page 25 of 46
Mercado vs Manzano
G.R. No. 135083 May 26, 1999
(c/o Tits)

Petitioner Ernesto Mercado and Eduardo Manzano were both candidates for
Vice-Mayor of Makati in the May 11, 1998 elections.

Based on the results of the election, Manzano garnered the highest number of
votes. However, his proclamation was suspended due to the pending petition for
disqualification filed by Ernesto Mercado on the ground that he was not a citizen of the
Philippines but of the United States.

From the facts presented, it appears that Manzano is both a Filipino and a US

The Commission on Elections declared Manzano disqualified as candidate for

said elective position.

However, in a subsequent resolution of the COMELEC en banc, the

disqualification of the respondent was reversed. Respondent was held to have
renounced his US citizenship when he attained the age of majority and registered
himself as a voter in the elections of 1992, 1995 and 1998.

Manzano was eventually proclaimed as the Vice-Mayor of Makati City on

August 31, 1998. Thus the present petition.

Whether or not a dual citizen is disqualified to hold public elective office in the

The court ruled that the phrase "dual citizenship" in R.A. 7160 Sec. 40 (d) and
R.A. 7854 Sec. 20 must be understood as referring to dual allegiance. Dual citizenship is
different from dual allegiance. The former arises when, as a result of the application of
the different laws of two or more states, a person is simultaneously considered a
national by the said states. Dual allegiance on the other hand, refers to a situation in
which a person simultaneously owes, by some positive act, loyalty to two or more
states. While dual citizenship is involuntary, dual allegiance is a result of an

Page 26 of 46
individual's volition. Article IV Sec. 5 of the Constitution provides "Dual allegiance of
citizens is inimical to the national interest and shall be dealt with by law."

Consequently, persons with mere dual citizenship do not fall under this
disqualification. Unlike those with dual allegiance, who must, therefore, be subject to
strict process with respect to the termination of their status, for candidates with dual
citizenship, it should suffice if, upon the filing of their certificates of candidacy, they
elect Philippine citizenship to terminate their status as persons with dual citizenship
considering that their condition is the unavoidable consequence of conflicting laws of
different states.

By electing Philippine citizenship, such candidates at the same time forswear

allegiance to the other country of which they are also citizens and thereby terminate
their status as dual citizens. It may be that, from the point of view of the foreign state
and of its laws, such an individual has not effectively renounced his foreign
citizenship. That is of no moment.

When a person applying for citizenship by naturalization takes an oath that he

renounces his loyalty to any other country or government and solemnly declares that he
owes his allegiance to the Republic of the Philippines, the condition imposed by law is
satisfied and complied with. The determination whether such renunciation is valid or
fully complies with the provisions of our Naturalization Law lies within the province
and is an exclusive prerogative of our courts. The latter should apply the law duly
enacted by the legislative department of the Republic. No foreign law may or should
interfere with its operation and application.

The court ruled that the filing of certificate of candidacy of respondent sufficed to
renounce his American citizenship, effectively removing any disqualification he might
have as a dual citizen. By declaring in his certificate of candidacy that he is a Filipino
citizen; that he is not a permanent resident or immigrant of another country; that he will
defend and support the Constitution of the Philippines and bear true faith and
allegiance thereto and that he does so without mental reservation, private respondent
has, as far as the laws of this country are concerned, effectively repudiated his
American citizenship and anything which he may have said before as a dual citizen.

On the other hand, private respondent’s oath of allegiance to the Philippines,

when considered with the fact that he has spent his youth and adulthood, received his
education, practiced his profession as an artist, and taken part in past elections in this
country, leaves no doubt of his election of Philippine citizenship.

Page 27 of 46
His declarations will be taken upon the faith that he will fulfill his undertaking
made under oath. Should he betray that trust, there are enough sanctions for declaring
the loss of his Philippine citizenship through expatriation in appropriate
proceedings. In Yu v. Defensor-Santiago, the court sustained the denial of entry into
the country of petitioner on the ground that, after taking his oath as a naturalized
citizen, he applied for the renewal of his Portuguese passport and declared in
commercial documents executed abroad that he was a Portuguese national. A similar
sanction can be taken against anyone who, in electing Philippine citizenship, renounces
his foreign nationality, but subsequently does some act constituting renunciation of his
Philippine citizenship.

The petition for certiorari is DISMISSED for lack of merit.

Page 28 of 46
G.R. No. 120099 July 24, 1996

Petitioner Eduardo T. Rodriguez and private respondent Bienvenido O. Marquez
Jr. (Rodriguez and Marquez, for brevity) were protagonists for the gubernatorial post of
Quezon Province in the May 1992 elections. Rodriguez won and was proclaimed duly-
elected governor. Marquez challenged Rodriguez’ victory via petition for quo warranto
before the COMELEC, alleging that the latter has a pending case in LA, hence, a fugitive
from justice and thus disqualified for the elective position.

Marquez Decision defined the term “fugitive from justice”, which includes not
only those who flee after conviction to avoid punishment but likewise those who, after
being charged, flee to avoid prosecution. This definition truly finds support from
jurisprudence (. . .), and it may be so conceded as expressing the general and ordinary
connotation of the term.

In previous case, the issue of whether or not Rodriguez is a “fugitive from

justice” under the definition thus given was not passed upon by the Court. That task
was to devolve on the COMELEC upon remand of the case to it, with the directive to
proceed therewith with dispatch conformably with the MARQUEZ Decision.

Rodriguez and Marquez renewed their rivalry for the same position of governor.
This time, Marquez challenged Rodriguez’ candidacy via petition for disqualification
before the COMELEC, based principally on the same allegation that Rodriguez is a
“fugitive from justice.”

The COMELEC, allegedly having kept in mind the MARQUEZ Decision

definition of “fugitive from justice”, found Rodriguez to be one. At any rate, Rodriguez
again emerged as the victorious candidate in the May 8, 1995 election for the position of

Marquez filed urgent motions to suspend Rodriguez’ proclamation which the

COMELEC granted.

Whether or not the COMELEC decision suspending Rodriguez is valid?

Page 29 of 46

The definition thus indicates that the intent to evade is the compelling factor that
animates one’s flight from a particular jurisdiction. And obviously, there can only be an
intent to evade prosecution or punishment when there is knowledge by the fleeing
subject of an already instituted indictment, or of a promulgated judgment of conviction.
To elaborate, the same parties (Rodriguez and Marquez) and issue (whether or not
Rodriguez is a “fugitive from justice”) are involved in the MARQUEZ Decision and the
instant petition. The MARQUEZ Decision was an appeal (the Marquez’ quo warranto
petition before the COMELEC). The instant petition is also an appeal although the
COMELEC resolved the latter jointly (Marquez’ petition for the disqualification of
Rodriguez). Therefore, what was irrevocably established as the controlling legal rule in
the MARQUEZ Decision must govern the instant petition. And we specifically refer to
the concept of “fugitive from justice” as defined in the main opinion in the MARQUEZ
Decision, which highlights the significance of an intent to evade but which Marquez
and the COMELEC, with their proposed expanded definition, seem to trivialize or

To re-define “fugitive from justice” would only foment instability in our

jurisprudence when hardly has the ink dried in the MARQUEZ Decision.

To summarize, the term “fugitive from justice” as a ground for the

disqualification or ineligibility of a person seeking to run for any elective local petition
under Section 40(e) of the Local Government Code, should be understood according to
the definition given in the MARQUEZ Decision.

A “fugitive from justice” includes not only those who flee after conviction to
avoid punishment but likewise those who, after being charged, flee to avoid
Intent to evade on the part of a candidate must therefore be established by proof that
there has already been a conviction or at least, a charge has already been filed, at the
time of flight.
Not being a “fugitive from justice” under this definition, Rodriguez cannot be denied
the Quezon Province gubernatorial post.

Page 30 of 46
Sobejana-Condon vs COMELEC
G.R. No. 198742, August 10, 2012

Teodora Sobejana-Condon, petitioner, was a natural-born Filipino citizen having
been born of Filipino parents. She became a naturalized Australian citizen owing to her
marriage to a foreign national.

On December 2, 2005, she filed an application to re-acquire Philippine citizenship

pursuant to Section 3 of R.A. No. 9225 otherwise known as the "Citizenship Retention
and Re-Acquisition Act of 2003." The application was approved and the petitioner took
her oath of allegiance to the Republic of the Philippines.
Thereafter, the petitioner filed an unsworn Declaration of Renunciation of
Australian Citizenship, which later issued the Order certifying that she has ceased to be
an Australian citizen.

Teodora sought elective office during the May 10, 2010 elections for the position
of Vice-Mayor and was proclaimed as the winning candidate. She took her oath of office
on May 13, 2010.

Soon thereafter, private respondents Robelito V. Picar, Wilma P. Pagaduan and

Luis M. Bautista, (private respondents), filed separate petitions for quo warranto
questioning the petitioner’s eligibility before the RTC.

The petitions similarly sought the petitioner’s disqualification from holding her
elective post on the ground that she is a dual citizen and that she failed to execute a
"personal and sworn renunciation of any and all foreign citizenship before any public
officer authorized to administer an oath" as imposed by Section 5(2) of R.A. No. 9225.

The petitioner denied being a dual citizen and averred that since September 27,
2006, she ceased to be an Australian citizen. She claimed that the Declaration of
Renunciation of Australian Citizenship she executed in Australia sufficiently complied
with Section 5(2), R.A. No. 9225 and that her act of running for public office is a clear
abandonment of her Australian citizenship.

Whether Teodora is disqualified from running for elective office due to failure to
renounce her Australian Citizenship in accordance with Sec. 5 (2) of R.A 9225

Page 31 of 46
Failure to renounce foreign citizenship in accordance with the exact tenor of
Section 5(2) of Republic Act (R.A.) No. 9225 renders a dual citizen ineligible to run for
and thus hold any elective public office.

Yes, Teodora was disqualified to run from elective office.

Section 5(2) of Republic Act No. 9225 compels natural-born Filipinos, who have
been naturalized as citizens of a foreign country, but who reacquired or retained their
Philippine citizenship (1) to take the oath of allegiance under Section 3 of Republic Act
No. 9225, and (2) for those seeking elective public offices in the Philippines, to
additionally execute a personal and sworn renunciation of any and all foreign
citizenship before an authorized public officer prior or simultaneous to the filing of
their certificates of candidacy, to qualify as candidates in Philippine elections.

Under the provisions of the aforementioned law, the Teodora has validly re-
acquired her Filipino citizenship when she took an Oath of Allegiance to the Republic of
the Philippines. At that point, she held dual citizenship, i.e., Australian and Philippine.

A year before she initially sought elective public office, she filed a renunciation of
Australian citizenship in Canberra, Australia. Admittedly, however, the same was not
under oath contrary to the exact mandate of Section 5(2) that the renunciation of foreign
citizenship must be sworn before an officer authorized to administer oath.

Therefore, Teodora was not allowed to run an elective position as she was not
able to renounce her foreign citizenship under oath.

Page 32 of 46
G.R. No. 193237, October 9, 2012

Both Jalosjos and Cardino were candidates for Mayor of Dapitan City,
Zamboanga del Norte in the May 2010 elections. Jalosjos was running for his third term.
Cardino filed on 6 December 2009 a petition under Section 78 of the Omnibus Election
Code to deny due course and to cancel the certificate of candidacy of Jalosjos.
Cardino’s arguments:

 Cardino asserted that Jalosjos made a false material representation in his

certificate of candidacy when he declared under oath that he was eligible for the
Office of Mayor.
 Cardino claimed that long before Jalosjos filed his certificate of candidacy,
Jalosjos had already been convicted by final judgment for robbery and sentenced
to prisión mayor by the Regional Trial Court, Branch 18 (RTC) of Cebu City.

Comelec’s ruling:
 The COMELEC granted Cardino’s petition and cancelled Jalosjos’ certificate of
 It concluded that Jalosjos has indeed committed material misrepresentation in his
certificate of candidacy.
 It ruled that Jalosjos “is not eligible by reason of his disqualification as provided
for in Section 40(a) of Republic Act No. 7160

Whether Jalosjos was disqualified to run as candidate for Mayor of Dapitan City

Yes. A sentence of prisión mayor by final judgment is a ground for
disqualification under Section 40 of the Local Government Code and under Section 12
of the Omnibus Election Code. It is also a material fact involving the eligibility of a
candidate under Sections 74 and 78 of the Omnibus Election Code.

The penalty of prisión mayor automatically carries with it, by operation of law,
the accessory penalties of temporary absolute disqualification and perpetual special
disqualification. Under the Revised Penal Code, both temporary absolute
disqualification and perpetual special disqualification constitute ineligibilities to hold
elective public office.

Page 33 of 46
The accessory penalty of perpetual special disqualification takes effect
immediately once the judgment of conviction becomes final. The effectivity of this
accessory penalty does not depend on the duration of the principal penalty, or on
whether the convict serves his jail sentence or not. Once the judgment of conviction
becomes final, it is immediately executory. Any public office that the convict may be
holding at the time of his conviction becomes vacant upon finality of the judgment, and
the convict becomes ineligible to run for any elective public office perpetually.

In the case of Jalosjos, he became ineligible perpetually to hold, or to run for any
elective public office from the time his judgment of conviction became final. Jalosjos’
certificate of candidacy was void from the start since he was not eligible to run for any
public office at the time he filed his certificate of candidacy. Jalosjos was never a
candidate at any time, and all votes for Jalosjos were stray votes.

Page 34 of 46
G.R. No. 140335, December 13, 2000


Thelma Gaminde was appointed by the President of the Philippines as

Commissioner of the Civil Service Commission, ad interim and assumed office on June
22, 1993 after oath of office.

The Commission on Appointments (COA) and the Congress of the Philippines

confirmed the appointment on September 7, 1993. Gaminde, on February 24, 1998,
sought the Office of the President for clarification on the expiry date of her term of
office. In response to her request, the Chief Presidential Legal Counsel opined that her
term office will expire on February 2, 2000 instead of February 2, 1999. Relying on said
advisory opinion, Gaminde remained in office after February 2, 1999.

However, on February 4, 1999, Chairman Corazon Alma de Leon wrote COA

requesting opinion whether or not Gaminde and her co-terminus staff may be paid their
salaries notwithstanding the expiration of their appointments on February 2, 1999.

The General Counsel of COA issued an opinion on February 18, 1999 that “the
term of Commissioner Gaminde has expired on February 2, 1999 as stated in her
appointment conformably with the constitutional intent.” Consequently, on March 24,
1999, CSC Resident Auditor Flovitas Felipe issued a Notice of Disallowance,
disallowing in audit the salaries and emoluments of Gaminde and her co-terminus staff
effective February 2, 1999.

Gaminde appealed COA’s disallowance but it was dismissed, and affirmed the
propriety of the disallowance; and held that the issue of Gaminde’s office term may be
properly addressed by mere reference to her appointment paper which set the
expiration date of February 2, 1999, and that the Commission was bereft of power to
recognize an extension of her term, not even with the implied acquiescence of the Office
of the President.

Gaminde moved for reconsideration, but was denied by COA.

Page 35 of 46
Whether the term of office of Thelma Gaminde, as Commissioner, Civil Service
Commission, to which she was appointed on June 11, 1993, expired on February 2, 1999,
as stated in the appointment paper, or on February 2, 2000, as claimed by her.

The term of office of Thelma P. Gaminde as the CSC Commissioner, as appointed
by President Fidel V. Ramos, expired on February 2, 1999. However, she served as de-
facto officer in good faith until February 2, 2000. The term of office of the Chairman and
members of the Civil Service Commission is prescribed in the 1987 Constitution under
Article IX-D, Section 1 (2):
“The Chairman and the Commissioners shall be appointed by the President
withthe consent of the Commission on Appointments for a term of seven years without
reappointment. Of those first appointed, the Chairman shall hold office for seven years,
a Commissioner for five years, and another Commissioner for three years, without
reappointment. Appointment to any vacancy shall be only for the unexpired term of the
predecessor. In no case shall any Member be appointed or designated in a temporary or
acting capacity.”

Therefore, COA erred in disallowing in audit such salary and other emoluments.
Gaminde and her co-terminus staff are entitled to receive their salary and other
emoluments for actual service rendered.

Page 36 of 46
National Amnesty Commission vs COA
September 08, 2014

Petitioner National Amnesty Commission (NAC) is a government agency tasked
to receive, process and review amnesty applications. It is composed of seven members:
a Chairperson, three regular members appointed by the President, and the Secretaries
of Justice, National Defense and Interior and Local Government as ex officio members.

It appears that after personally attending the initial NAC meetings, the three ex
officio members turned over said responsibility to their representatives who were
paid honoraria beginning December 12, 1994. However, on October 15, 1997, NAC
resident auditor disallowed on audit the payment of honoraria to these representatives
amounting to P255,750, pursuant to COA Memorandum No. 97-038. On September 1,
1998, the NGAO upheld the auditors order and notices of disallowance were
subsequently issued.

Meanwhile, on April 28, 1999, the NAC passed Administrative Order No. 2 which
was approved by then President Joseph Estrada on October 19, 1999. Section 1, Rule II
thereof provides: The ex officio members may designate their representatives to the
Commission. Said Representatives shall be entitled to per diems, allowances, bonuses
and other benefits as may be authorized by law.

Petitioner invoked Administrative Order No. 2 in assailing before the COA the
rulings of the resident auditor and the NGAO disallowing payment of honoraria to
the ex officio members representatives, to no avail. Further, NAC contended that the
representatives are de facto officers and as such are entitled to allowances, pursuant to
our pronouncement in Civil Liberties Union vs Executive Secretary which provides
“where there is no de jure officer, a de facto officer, who in good faith has had possession
of the office and has discharged the duties pertaining thereto, is legally entitled to the
emoluments of the office, and may in appropriate action recover the salary, fees and
other compensation attached to the office”.

WON the representatives are considered as de facto officers

No, A de facto officer derives his appointment from one having colorable
authority to appoint, if the office is an appointive office, and whose appointment is
valid on its face. (He is) one who is in possession of an office and is discharging its
duties under color of authority, by which is meant authority derived from an

Page 37 of 46
appointment, however irregular or informal, so that the incumbent be not a mere
Here, the representatives cannot be considered de facto officers because they were
not appointed but were merely designated to act as such. Furthermore, they are not
entitled to something their own principals are prohibited from receiving. Neither can
they claim good faith, given the express prohibition of the Constitution and the finality
of our decision in Civil Liberties Union prior to their receipt of such allowances.

Page 38 of 46

In this Petition for Certiorari under Rule 64 in relation to Rule 65, petitioners
assail the Commission on Audit's (COA) Resolution dated August 12, 2014, denying the
petitioners' Motion for Reconsideration and Supplemental Motion for Reconsideration,
affirming COA's Decision.

This case stemmed from the COA's act of disallowing theExtraordinary and
Miscellaneous Expenses (EMEs) of the ex officio members of the Monetary Board
(MBM), allegedly in violation of their respective constitutional rights.

Petitioner Amanda M. Tetangco, Jr., (Tetangco Jr.) is the Governor of the Banko
Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP). Petitioners Peter B. Favila (Favila), Juanita D. Amatong
(Amatong), Nelly A. Favis-Villafuerte (Favis-Villafuerte ), Alfredo C. Antonio (Antonio)
and Ignacio R. Bunye (Bunye). Were the MBM at the time that the allowance· for EMEs
was approved. Petitioners Marie Michelle N. Ong (Ong), Bella M. Prudencio
(Prudencio), Esmegardo S. Reyes (Reyes) and Ma. Corazon G. Catarroja (Catarroja)
were employees of the BSP who participated in the processing and approval of the

COA's March 23, 2010 Decision No. 2010-048, on the Performance Audit Report
on the allocation and utilization of EME of the MBM, stated, among others, that " x x
x the ex-officio member of the Monetary Board x x x shall not be entitled to additional EMEs,
other than that appropriated for him or her under the GAA as a cabinet member x x x."

Pursuant to this Decision, COA conducted an actual audit of the specific

accounts that allegedly exceeded the prescribed limitations and/or were not properly

As a consequence, the EMEs of MBM Neri and Favila were disallowed and
became the subject of ND dated August 13, 2010. Eventually, the MBM and BSP
personnel, which include the petitioners, were held personally liable under ND Nos. 10-
004 GF (2007-2008) and 10- 004 GF (2007-2009).

Petitioners filed a Motion for Reconsideration and/or Appeal with the COA
Director on May 26, 2011, but the same was denied. They filed a Petition for
Review with the COA, but the same was likewise denied in the COA's December 23,
2013 Decision No. 2013-227.

Page 39 of 46
Whether or not the COA gravely abused its discretion when it disallowed the
EMEs of the ex officio MBM.

The nature of EME, however, was not the foremost reason for the disallowance,
but the limitations imposed by law in availing such allowance. x x x the ex
officio members of the Monetary Board are entitled to EMEs to the extent of that
appropriated in the General Appropriations Act (GAA). Since the ex officio members
already received their EMEs from their respective Departments (as appropriated in the
GAA), the additional EMEs from BSP are no longer necessary. It must be stressed
that the ex officio position is actually and, in legal contemplation, part of the principal
office; hence, the ex officio member is no longer entitled to receive any form of
compensation, allowance or other euphemism from the extended agency.

In fact, the ex officio membership of the cabinet member in the Monetary Board
does not comprise 'another office' but rather annexed to or is required by the primary
functions of his or her official position as cabinet member. Of equal significance, too, is
that the ex officio member of the Monetary Board already receives separate
appropriations under the GAA for EMEs, he or she being a member of the cabinet.
Being such, it is highly irregular that the said ex officio member of the Monetary Board,
who performs only additional duties by virtue of his or her primary functions, will be
provided with additional EMEs, which in this case, appear much higher than his or her
appropriations for the same expenses under the GAA as a cabinet member.

Absent any showing that COA capriciously, arbitrarily or whimsically exercised

its discretion that would be tantamount to evasion of a positive duty or a virtual refusal
to perform the duty or to act at all in contemplation of law resulting to the prejudice of
the rights of the claimants, the Court finds no reason to set aside its decision.

In the absence of grave abuse of discretion; the factual findings of the COA,
which are undoubtedly supported by the evidence on record, must be accorded great
respect and finality. COA, as the duly authorized agency to adjudicate money claims
against government agencies and instrumentalities has acquired special knowledge and
expertise in handling matters falling under its specialized jurisdiction.

Page 40 of 46
NORTHERN LUZON, DENIS B. HABAWEL. A.M. No. 13-04-03-SC; December 10,
(Dela Cruz)

Atty. Marlou B. Ubano, IBP Governor for Western Visayas sought to invalidate
the Resolution of the IBP Board of Governors which approved the nomination of Atty.
Lynda Chaguile as the replacement of IBP Governor for Northern Luzon, Denis B.
Habawel. He noted that on the IBP By-Laws which considers as ipso facto resigned
from his or her post any official of the IBP who files a Certificate of Candidacy for any
elective public office. Under the amended By-Laws, the resignation takes effect on the
starting date of the official campaign period.

Atty. Ubano alleged that the IBP Governor for Northern Luzon, Denis B.
Habawel, filed a Certificate of Candidacy to run for the position of Provincial Governor
of the Province of Ifugao. Hence, he is considered ipso facto resigned from the IBP.

Atty. Ubano challenged the IBP Board of Governors' approval of Atty. Chaguiles
succession as IBP Governor for Northern Luzon on two grounds: First, there was, as
yet, no vacancy. Atty. Habawel was himself present at the meeting where his
replacement was named. There was, therefore, no need to name a replacement. Second,
the right to elect the successor of a resigned IBP Governor is vested, not in the IBP
Board of Governors, but in the delegates of the concerned region; thus, the IBP Board of
Governors approval of the nominee to succeed Atty. Habawel is ultra vires.

In support of this second ground, Section 44 of the IBP By-Laws provides:

Sec. 44. Removal of members. x x x x x x[x] In case of any vacancy in the office of
Governor for whatever cause, the delegates from the region shall by majority vote, elect
a successor from among the members of the Chapter to which the resigned governor is
a member to serve as governor for the unexpired portion of the term.
In its Comment, the IBP Board of Governors assailed the first ground raised by
Atty.Ubano by saying that it was not necessary for a position to be absolutely vacant
before a successor may be appointed or elected.As for the second ground, the IBP Board
of Governors argued that it has been the "tradition"of the IBP that "where the unexpired
term is only for a very short period of time, it is usually the Board of Governors which
appoint a replacement or an officer in charge to serve the unexpired term."

Page 41 of 46
Meanwhile, Atty. Ubano filed another motion seeking to prevent Atty. Chaguile
from exercising the functions as IBP Governor of Northern Luzon.

A.M. No. 13-05-08-SC: The second Administrative Matter assails the conduct of the
election of the IBP Executive Vice President (EVP). In this election, Atty. Vicente M.
Joyas was elected IBP Governor for Southern Luzon.

Atty. Ubano sought to nullify the May 22, 2013 election claiming that the IBP election of
the EVP was marred by inordinate haste, grave irregularities, patent hostility, manifest
bias and prejudice, as well as the presiding officers absolute lack of independence and
that the election violated Section 47 of the IBP By-Laws which requires that the EVP be
elected by a vote of at least five (5) Governors. Atty. Ubano emphasized that Atty.
Chaguiles vote in favor of Atty. Joyas was invalid, as Atty. Chaguiles appointment as
governor was itselfultra vires, and therefore, voidab initio.

[1] Was the appointment of Atty. Chaguile as Governor ultra vires, therefore
restraining her to exercise functions relative to the position?

[2] Is the election for the IBP EVP void in violation Section 47 of the IBP By-Laws
and restrained Atty. Vicente M. Joyas from discharging his duties?

As pointed out by the IBP Board of Governors in its Compliance, "the term of
Atty. Lynda Chaguile as Governor for Northern Luzon expired on June 30, 2013."A new
Governor for Northern Luzon, Atty. Oliver Cachapero, was elected.As Atty. Chaguile is
no longer serving as IBP Governor for Northern Luzon, the matter of ousting or
restraining Atty. Chaguile from exercising the functions of such office is no longer an
available relief.

As a rule, this Court may only adjudicate actual, ongoing controversies. The
Court is not empowered to decide moot questions or abstract propositions, or to declare
principles or rules of law which cannot affect the result as to the thing in issue in the
case before it. In other words, when a case is moot, it becomes non-justiciable.
(Pormento v. Estrada, G.R. No. 191988; August 31, 2010)

However, we recognize that the validity of Atty. Chaguiles appointment as

Governor for Northern Luzon affects the validity of her actions as the occupant of this
office, especially her participation in the IBP Board of Governors election of the IBP
EVP, which is the subject of the second Administrative Matter.

Page 42 of 46
We hold that Atty. Chaguile took on the role of IBP Governor for Northern
Luzon in a de facto capacity.
To be a de facto officer, all of the following elements must be present: 1) There
must be a de jure office; 2) There must be color of right or general acquiescence by the
public; and 3) There must be actual physical possession of the office in good faith.
Tuanda v. Sandiganbayan, 319 Phil. 460

In the present case, there is no dispute that a de jure office, that of IBP Governor
for Northern Luzon exists. Likewise, Atty. Chaguile took possession of and performed
the functions of the IBP Governor for Northern Luzon through a process, albeit
"irregular or informal, so that she is not a mere volunteer,"that is, not through her own
actions but through those of the IBP Board of Governors. Thus, she did so under "color
of authority,Civil Service Commission v. Joson, Jr., 473 Phil. 844 (2004).

The IBP Board of Governors approval was secured through a process that it
characterized as a "tradition," allowing it to appoint a replacement for an officer who
vacates his or her office shortly before his or her term expires.

Although being in violation of the IBP By-Laws, this supposed tradition cannot
earn our imprimatur. Be that as it may, in all of the occasions cited by the IBP Board of
Governors, the authority of replacement governors was derived from a process, which,
though irregular,enabled them to act as and be accepted as governors.

Having said these, we agree with a point raised by Atty. Ubano. As with statutes,
the IBP By-Laws "violation or non-observance [ought] not be excused by disuse, or
custom, or practice to the contrary." CIVIL CODE, Art. 7.We do not validate the IBP
Board of Governors erroneous practice. To reiterate our earlier words: "We cannot
countenance this. No amount of previous practice or "tradition" can validate such a
patently erroneous action."

Having established that Atty. Chaguile was the IBP Governor for Northern
Luzon in a de facto capacity, we turn to the validity of her actions as a de facto officer.
Accordingly, all official actions of Atty. Chaguile asde facto IBP Governor for Northern
Luzon must be deemed valid, binding, and effective, as though she were the officer
validly appointed and qualified for the office. It follows that her participation and vote
in the election for IBP EVP held on May 22, 2013 are in order. DENIED.

Page 43 of 46
Funa vs Agra
G.R. No. 191644,vFebruary 19, 2013
(c/o Tits)

The petitioner alleges that on March 1, 2010, President Gloria M. Macapagal
Arroyo appointed Agra as the Acting Secretary of Justice following the resignation of
Secretary Agnes VST Devanadera in order to vie for a congressional seat in Quezon
Province; that on March 5, 2010, President Arroyo designated Agra as the Acting
Solicitor General in a concurrent capacity; that on April 7, 2010, the petitioner,
commenced this suit to challenge the constitutionality of Agra’s concurrent
appointments or designations, claiming it to be prohibited under Section 13, Article VII
of the 1987 Constitution; that during the pendency of the suit, President Benigno S.
Aquino III appointed Atty. Jose Anselmo I. Cadiz as the Solicitor General; and that
Cadiz assumed as the Solicitor General and commenced his duties as such on August 5,

Agra renders a different version of the antecedents. He represents that on

January 12, 2010, he was then the Government Corporate Counsel when President
Arroyo designated him as the Acting Solicitor General in place of Solicitor General
Devanadera who had been appointed as the Secretary of Justice; that on March 5, 2010,
President Arroyo designated him also as the Acting Secretary of Justice vice Secretary
Devanadera who had meanwhile tendered her resignation in order to run for Congress
representing a district in Quezon Province in the May 2010 elections; that he then
relinquished his position as the Government Corporate Counsel; and that pending the
appointment of his successor, Agra continued to perform his duties as the Acting
Solicitor General.

Notwithstanding the conflict in the versions of the parties, the fact that Agra has
admitted to holding the two offices concurrently in acting capacities is settled, which is
sufficient for purposes of resolving the constitutional question that petitioner raises

Whether or not Agra’s holding of concurrent position is unconstitutional.


At the center of the controversy is the correct application of Section 13, Article
VII of the 1987 Constitution, viz:

Page 44 of 46
Section 13. The President, Vice-President, the Members of the Cabinet, and their
deputies or assistants shall not, unless otherwise provided in this Constitution, hold any other
office or employment during their tenure. They shall not, during said tenure, directly or
indirectly practice any other profession, participate in any business, or be financially interested
in any contract with, or in any franchise, or special privilege granted by the Government or any
subdivision, agency, or instrumentality thereof, including government-owned or controlled
corporations or their subsidiaries. They shall strictly avoid conflict of interest in the conduct of
their office.

A relevant and complementing provision is Section 7, paragraph (2), Article IX-B

of the 1987 Constitution, to wit:

Section 7. x x x Unless otherwise allowed by law or the primary functions of his position,
no appointive official shall hold any other office or employment in the Government or any
subdivision, agency or instrumentality thereof, including government-owned or controlled
corporations or their subsidiaries.

Being designated as the Acting Secretary of Justice concurrently with his position
of Acting Solicitor General, therefore, Agra was undoubtedly covered by Section 13,
Article VII, supra, whose text and spirit were too clear to be differently read. Hence,
Agra could not validly hold any other office or employment during his tenure as the
Acting Solicitor General, because the Constitution has not otherwise so provided.

It was of no moment that Agra’s designation was in an acting or temporary

capacity. The text of Section 13, supra, plainly indicates that the intent of the Framers of
the Constitution was to impose a stricter prohibition on the President and the Members
of his Cabinet in so far as holding other offices or employments in the Government or in
government-owned or government controlled-corporations was concerned.

In this regard, to hold an office means to possess or to occupy the office, or to be

in possession and administration of the office, which implies nothing less than the
actual discharge of the functions and duties of the office. Indeed, in the language of
Section 13 itself, supra, the Constitution makes no reference to the nature of the
appointment or designation. The prohibition against dual or multiple offices being held
by one official must be construed as to apply to all appointments or designations,
whether permanent or temporary, for it is without question that the avowed objective
of Section 13, supra, is to prevent the concentration of powers in the Executive
Department officials, specifically the President, the Vice-President, the Members of the
Cabinet and their deputies and assistants.

Page 45 of 46
To construe differently is to “open the veritable floodgates of circumvention of
an important constitutional disqualification of officials in the Executive Department and
of limitations on the Presidents power of appointment in the guise of temporary
designations of Cabinet Members, undersecretaries and assistant secretaries as officers-
in-charge of government agencies, instrumentalities, or government-owned or
controlled corporations.

It is not amiss to observe, lastly, that assuming that Agra, as the Acting Solicitor
General, was not covered by the stricter prohibition under Section 13, supra, due to
such position being merely vested with a cabinet rank under Section 3, Republic Act
No. 9417, he nonetheless remained covered by the general prohibition under Section 7,
supra. Hence, his concurrent designations were still subject to the conditions under the
latter constitutional provision. In this regard, the Court aptly pointed out in Public
Interest Center, Inc. v. Elma:

The general rule contained in Article IX-B of the 1987 Constitution permits an
appointive official to hold more than one office only if “allowed by law or by the
primary functions of his position.” In the case of Quimson v. Ozaeta, this Court ruled
that, “[t]here is no legal objection to a government official occupying two government
offices and performing the functions of both as long as there is no incompatibility.” The
crucial test in determining whether incompatibility exists between two offices was laid
out in People v. Green – whether one office is subordinate to the other, in the sense that
one office has the right to interfere with the other.

Page 46 of 46