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PNB VS CIR

G.R. No. L-32667 81 SCRA 214 January 31, 1978


PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK, petitioner,
vs.
COURT OF INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS, GABRIEL V. MANANSALA and GILBERT P. LORENZO,
in his official capacity as authorized Deputy sheriff, respondents.

Facts:

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:

That the appointment of respondent Gilbert P. Lorenzo as authorized deputy sheriff to serve the
writ of execution was contrary to law and
That the funds subject of the garnishment “may be public in character.” In thus denying the motion
to quash, petitioner contended that there was on the part of respondent Court a failure to abide by
authoritative doctrines amounting to a grave abuse of discretion.

The Philippine National Bank (PNB) moves to quash the notice of garnishment is denied for the
lack of merit. PNB is therefore ordered to comply within five days from receipt with the ‘notice of
Garnishment’ dated May 6, 1970.”

The petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration, but it was denied. Hence, this certiorari petition.

Issues:

Whether or not the order denying motion to quash a notice of garnishment can be stigmatized as a
grave abuse of discretion.

Discussions:
According to the doctrine of state immunity, under suits against Government Agencies:
“An incorporated Agency has a charter of its own that invests it with a separate judicial personality.
If the agency is incorporated, the test of suability is found in its charter.”
From the opinion being penned by the great Chief Justice Marshall. As was pointed out by him: “It
is, we think, a sound principle, that when a government becomes a partner in any trading company,
it divests itself, so far as concerns the transactions of that company, of its sovereign character, and
takes that of a private citizen. Instead of communicating to the company its privileges and its
prerogatives, it descends to a level with those with whom it associates itself, and takes the
character which belongs to its associates, and to the business which is to be transacted.

Ruling

No. Supreme Court ruled that there has not been a grave abuse of discretion. The premise that the
funds could be spoken of as public in character may be accepted in the sense that the People’s
Homesite and Housing Corporation was a government-owned entity It does not follow though that
they were exempt from garnishment.

As stated in “National Shipyard and Steel Corporation v. Court of Industrial Relations”, a


government owned and controlled corporation has a personality of its own, distinct and separate
from that of the Government. It may sue and be sued and may be subjected to court processes just
like any other corporation.

Justice Ozaeta held that 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 business thru the instrumentality of a corporation, the governmnent divests
itself pro hac vice of its sovereign character, so as to render the corporation subject to the rules of
law governing private corporations.
SSS vs. CA(120 SCRA 707)

FACTS:

Spouses David and Socorro Cruz, applied and granted a real estate loan by the SSS
withresidential lot located at Pateros, Rizal as collateral. The spouses Cruz complied with their
monthlypayments. 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 defaultedin payment, Pursuant for these application for foreclosure notices were
published on the second noticethe counsel for spouses Cruz sent a letter to SSS informing the
latter that his clients are up to date intheir payment of the monthly amortization and the SSS should
discontinued the publication of thenotices of foreclosure. This request remain unheaded, this
spouses Cruz filed an action for damagesagainst SSS before RTC in Rizal. SSS invoking its
immunity from suit being an agency of the governmentperforming government function. The trial
court and court of appeal nevertheless awarded damages infavor of spouses Cruz which was
affirmed by court of appeal, Hence this petition.

ISSUE: Whether or not SSS is immune from suit.

HELD:

Negative.. The SSS has a distinct legal personality and it can be sued for damages. The
SSS doesnot enjoy immunity from suit by express statutory consent.It has corporated 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 immunityfrom suit as an
entity performing governmental function, by virtue of the explicit provision of theaforecited enabling
law, the government must be deemed to have waived immunity in respect of theSSS, although it
does not thereby concede its liability that statutory law has given to the private citizen aremedy for
the enforcement and protection of his rights. The SSS thereby has been required to submitto the
jurisdiction of the court; subject to its right to interpose any lawful defense.
GAUDENCIO RAYO VS COURT OF FIRST INSTANCE BULACAN
G.R. NO. L-55273-83
DECEMBER 19, 1981

FACTS:

On October 26, 1978, typhoon “Kading” struck Bulacan. Due to this, the National Power
Corporation (NPC), through its plant superintendent Benjamin Chavez, simultaneously opened 3
floodgates of Angat Dam.
The opening of the floodgates caused several towns to be inundated (the town of
Norzagaray was the most affected one). It resulted to a hundred deaths and damage to properties
that were worth over a million pesos.
Petitioners (victims) filed a complaint for damages against NPC, including plant
superintendent Benjamin Chavez.

Respondent filed counterclaims and put up a special and affirmative defense that “in the
operation of the Angat Dam,” it is “performing a purely governmental function”, hence it “cannot be
sued without the express consent of the State.”

Petitioners oppose the defense, contending that the NPC is not performing governmental
but merely proprietary functions and that under its own organic act, Section 3 (d) of Republic Act
No. 6395, it can sue and be sued in any court.

CFI dropped the NPC from the complaint and left Chavez as the sole party-defendant.

CFI RULING: Upon a motion for reconsideration, the CFI ruled that petitioners’ reliance on Sec. 3
of RA 6395 is not tenable since the same refer to such matters that are only within the scope of the
other corporate powers of said defendant and not matters of tort as in the instant cases.
Being an agency performing a purely governmental function in the operation of the Angat Dam,
said defendant was not given any right to commit wrongs upon individuals. To sue said defendant
for tort may require the express consent of the State. PETITION DISMISSED.

ISSUES:
1. Whether respondent National Power Corporation performs a governmental function with
respect to the management and operation of the Angat Dam; and
2. Whether the power of respondent National Power Corporation to sue and be sued under
its organic charter includes the power to be sued for tort.

HELD:

SC reversed the CFI decision and GRANTED petitioners to reinstate their complaint
against the NPC. It is sufficient to say that 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. (R.A. No. 6395).
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 the NPC can “sue and
be sued in any court” is without qualification on the cause of action and accordingly it can include a
tort claim such as the one instituted by the petitioners.
MALONG VS PNR

Date: August 7, 1985

Facts:

The 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
and Capas. The tragedy occurred because Jaime had to sit near the door of a coach. The 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 totaling P136,370.

Upon the Solicitor General's motion, the trial court dismissed the complaint. It ruled that it
had no jurisdiction because the PNR, being a government instrumentality, the action was a suit
against the State (Sec. 16, Art. XV of the Constitution).

The Malong spouses appealed to this Court pursuant to Republic Act No. 5440
R.A. No. 5440 changed the mode of appeal from courts of first instance (now Regional Trial
Courts) to the Supreme Court in cases involving only questions of law, or the constitutionality or
validity of any treaty, law, ordinance, etc. or the legality of any tax, impost, assessment or toll, etc.,
or the jurisdiction of any inferior court, from ordinary appeal — i.e., by notice of appeal, record on
appeal and appeal bond, under Rule 41— to appeal by certiorari, under Rule 45

Issue/s:

WON PNR is immune from suit.


WON the State acted in a sovereign capacity or in a corporate capacity when it organized the PNR
for the purpose of engaging in transportation
WON the State acted differently when it organized the PNR as successor of the Manila Railroad
Company

Held:

No, PNR is NOT immune. 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
WHEREFORE, the order of dismissal is reversed and set aside. The case is remanded to the trial
court for further proceedings. Costs against the Philippine National Railways.

Ratio:
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 objects for which
the entity was organized." (Nat. Airports Corp. vs. Teodoro and Phil. Airlines, Inc., 91 Phil. 203,
206; Santos vs, Santos, 92 Phil. 281, 285; Harry Lyons, Inc. vs. USA, 104 Phil. 593.)
Suits against State agencies with respect to matters in which they have assumed to act in
a private or non-governmental capacity are not suits against the State
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
The point is that when the government enters into a commercial business it abandons its
sovereign capacity and is to be treated like any other private corporation (Bank of the U.S. vs.
Planters' Bank, 9 Wheat. 904, 6 L. ed. 244, cited in Manila Hotel Employees Association vs. Manila
Hotel Company, et al., 73 Phil. 374, 388).
There is not one law for the sovereign and another for the subject, but when the sovereign
engages in business and the conduct of business enterprises, and contracts with individuals,
whenever the contract in any form comes before the courts, the rights and obligation of the
contracting parties must be adjusted upon the same principles as if both contracting parties were
private persons. Both stand upon equality before the law, and the sovereign is merged in the
dealer, contractor and suitor (People vs. Stephens, 71 N.Y. 549).
Justice Abad Santos (Separate Opinion) : All corporations organized by the government
are its instrumentality by the very reason of their creation. But that fact alone does not invest them
with immunity from suit.
DISINI vs SANDIGANBAYAN

G.R. No. 180564; 22 June 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 latter’s 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 Herminio’s 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 Republic’s 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
Disini’s motion to quash the subpoena. Disini, thus, brought the matter to the Supreme Court.

The Republic maintained that the PCGG’s 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 Disini’s immunity from testifying against
Herminio contravened the state’s 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. Disini’s 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 Disini’s 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 Government’s 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.
Tobias vs Abalos, G.R. No. L-114783
December 8, 1994

Facts:

Complainants, invoking their right as taxpayers and as residents of Mandaluyong, filed a


petition questioning the constitutionality of 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 of
Mandaluyong." Before the enactment of the law, Mandaluyong and San Juan belonged to the
same legislative district.

The petitioners contended that the act is unconstitutional for violation of three provisions of
the constitution. First, it violates the one subject one bill rule. The bill provides for the conversion of
Mandaluyong to HUC as well as the division of congressional district of San Juan and
Mandaluyong into two separate district. Second, it also violate Section 5 of Article VI of the
Constitution, which provides that the House of Representatives shall be composed of not more
than two hundred and fifty members, unless otherwise fixed by law. The division of San Juan and
Mandaluyong into separate congressional districts increased the members of the House of
Representative beyond that provided by the Constitution. Third, Section 5 of Article VI also
provides 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 Section 5. Petitioners
stated that the division was not made pursuant to any census showing that the minimum population
requirement was attained.

Issue:

(1) Does RA 7675 violate the one subject one bill rule?
(2) Does it violate Section 5(1) of Article VI of the Constitution on the limit of number of rep?
(3) Is the inexistence of mention of census in the law show a lack of constitutional requirement?

Rulings:

‘ The Supreme Court ruled that the contentions are devoid of merit. With regards to the first
contention of one subject one bill rule, the creation of a separate congressional district for
Mandaluyong is not a separate and distinct subject from its conversion into a HUC but is a natural
and logical consequence. In addition, a liberal construction of the "one title-one subject" rule has
been invariably adopted by this court so as not to cripple or impede legislation.

The second contention that the law violates the present limit of the number of
representatives, the provision of the section itself show that the 250 limit is not absolute. The
Constitution clearly provides that the House of Representatives shall be composed of not more
than 250 members, "unless otherwise provided by law”. Therefore, the increase in congressional
representation mandated by R.A. No. 7675 is not unconstitutional.
Veterans Federation Party v. COMELEC [G.R. No. 136781. October 6, 2000]
Veterans Federation Party v. COMELEC
[G.R. No. 136781. October 6, 2000]

Facts:

COMELEC proclaimed 14 party-list representatives from 13 parties which obtained at least 2% of


the total number of votes cast for the party-list system as members of the House of
Representatives. Upon petition for respondents, who were party-list organizations, it proclaimed 38
additional party-list representatives although they obtained less than 2% of the total number of
votes cast for the party-list system on the ground that under the Constitution, it is mandatory that at
least 20% of the members of the House of Representatives come from the party-list
representatives.

Issue:

Is the twenty percent allocation for party-list representatives mentioned in Section 5 (2), Article VI
of the Constitution, mandatory or is it merely a ceiling? In other words, should the twenty percent
allocation for party-list solons be filled up completely and all the time?

Held:

It is not mandatory. It merely provides a ceiling for the party-list seats in the House of
Representatives. The Constitution vested Congress with the broad power to define and prescribe
the mechanics of the party-list system of representatives. In the exercise of its constitutional
prerogative, Congress deemed it necessary to require parties participating in the system to obtain
at least 2% of the total votes cast for the party list system to be entitled to a party-list seat.
Congress wanted to ensure that only those parties having a sufficient number of constituents
deserving of representation are actually represented in Congress.
BAGONG BAYANI PARTY LIST vs COMELEC
June 26, 2001

Facts:

Bagong Bayani and and Akbayan Citizens Party filed before the COMELEC a Petition
under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court, challenging Omnibus Resolution No. 3785 issued by the
COMELEC. This resolution approved the participation of 154 organizations and parties, including
those impleaded, in the 2001 party list elections. Petitioners seek 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 none-marginalized or overrepresented.

Issues:

a. Whether or not political parties may participate in the party-list elections


b. Whether or not the party-list system is exclusive to ‘marginalized and
underrepresented’ sectors and organizations.

Held:

The Petitions are partly meritorious. These cases should be remanded to the COMELEC
which will determine, after summary evidentiary hearings, whether the 154 parties and
organizations enumerated in the assailed Omnibus Resolution satisfy the requirements of the
Constitution and RA 7941. The resolution of this Court directed the COMELEC “to refrain
proclaiming any winner” during the last party-list election, shall remain in force until after the
COMELEC have compiled and reported its compliance.
a. Yes
b. No.

Rationale:

a. Political parties, even the major ones, may participate in the party-list
elections. 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."
Furthermore, under Sections 7 and 8, Article IX (C) of the Constitution, political
parties may be registered under the party-list system. For its part, Section 2
of RA 7941 also provides for "a party-list system of registered national, regional and
sectoral parties or organizations or coalitions thereof, x x x." Section 3 expressly states that a
"party" is "either a political party or a sectoral party or a coalition of
parties."

b. That political parties may participate in the party-list elections does not mean,
however, that any political party -- or any organization or group for that matter -- may
do so. The requisite character of these parties or organizations must be consistent
with the purpose of the party-list system, as laid down in the Constitution and RA
7941. Section 5, Article VI of the Constitution. The provision on the party-list
system is not self-executory. It is, in fact, interspersed with phrases like "in
accordance with law" or "as may be provided by law"; it was thus up to Congress to
sculpt in granite the lofty objective of the Constitution. Hence, RA 7941 was
enacted.
RA 7941 the Party list Act (1995)
BANAT V. COMELEC
G.R. No. 179271, April 21, 2009

Facts:

Barangay Association for National Advancement and Transparency (BANAT) filed before the
National Board of Canvassers(NBC) a petition to proclaim the full number of party list
representatives provided by the Constitution. However, the recommendation of the head of the
legal group of COMELEC’s national board of canvassers to declare the petition moot and
academic was approved by the COMELEC en banc.

BANAT filed for petition for certiorari and mandamus assailing the resolution of COMELEC to their
petition to proclaim the full number of party list representatives provided by the Constitution.

The COMELEC, sitting as the NBC, promulgated a resolution proclaiming thirteen (13) parties as
winners in the party-list elections in May 2007. The COMELEC announced that, upon completion of
the canvass of the party-list results, it would determine the total number of seats of each winning
party, organization, or coalition in accordance with Veterans Federation Party v. COMELEC
formula.

Bayan Muna, Abono, and Advocacy for Teacher Empowerment Through Action, Cooperation and
Harmony Towards Educational Reforms (A Teacher) asked the COMELEC, acting as NBC, to
reconsider its decision to use the Veterans formula. COMELEC denied the consideration. Bayan
Muna, Abono, and A Teacher filed for certiorari with mandamus and prohibition assailing the
resolution of the COMELEC in its decision to use the Veterans formula.

ISSUES:

-Whether or not the twenty percent allocation for party-list representatives in Section 5(2), Article VI
of the Constitution mandatory or merely a ceiling

-Whether or not the three-seat limit in Section 11(b) of RA 7941 is constitutional

-Whether or not the two percent threshold prescribed in Section 11(b) of RA 7941 to qualify for one
seat is constitutional

-How shall the party-list representatives be allocated?

-Does the Constitution prohibit the major political parties from participating in the
party-list elections? If not, can the major political parties be barred from participating
in the party-list elections?

RULING:

The 20% allocation of party-list representatives is merely a ceiling; party-list representatives cannot
be more than 20% of the members of the House of Representatives.

Yes, it is constitutional. The three-seat cap, as a limitation to the number of seats that a
qualified party-list organization may occupy, remains a valid statutory device that
prevents any party from dominating the party-list elections.

The second clause of Section 11(b) of R. A. 7941 “those garnering more than two percent (2%) of
the votes shall be entitled to additional seats in proportion to their total number of votes” is
unconstitutional. The two percent thresholdonly in relation to the distribution of the additional seats
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."

In determining the allocation of seats for party-list representatives under Section 11 of R.A. No.
7941, the following procedure shall be observed:
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. 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.

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.

4. Each party, organization, or coalition shall be entitled to not more than three (3)
seats.

Neither the Constitution nor R.A. No. 7941 prohibits major political parties from participating in the
party-list system. On the contrary, the framers of the Constitution clearly intended the major
political parties to participate in party-list elections through their sectoral wings. Also, in defining a
"party" that participates in party-list elections as either "a political party or a sectoral party," R.A.
No. 7941 also clearly intended that major political parties will participate in the party-list elections.
Excluding the major political parties in party-list elections is manifestly against the Constitution, the
intent of the Constitutional Commission, and R.A. No. 7941. However, by the vote of 8-7, the Court
decided to continue the ruling in Veterans disallowing major political parties from participating in
the party-list elections, directly or indirectly.
Aquino III V. Comelec
Apr. 7, 2010

FACTS:

This is a Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court. Petitioners
Senator Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III and Mayor Jesse Robredo seek the nullification as
unconstitutional of Republic Act No. 9716, entitled “An Act Reapportioning the Composition of the
First (1st) and Second (2nd) Legislative Districts in the Province of Camarines Sur and Thereby
Creating a New Legislative District From Such Reapportionment.”

Republic Act No. 9716 originated from House Bill No. 4264, and was signed into law by President
Gloria Macapagal Arroyo on 12 October 2009. It took effect on 31 October 2009 creating an
additional legislative district for the Province of Camarines Sur by reconfiguring the existing first
and second legislative districts of the province.

The Province of Camarines Sur was estimated to have a population of 1,693,821,2 distributed
among four (4) legislative districts. Following the enactment of Republic Act No. 9716, 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 contend that the reapportionment introduced by Republic Act No. 9716, runs afoul of
the explicit constitutional standard that requires a minimum population of two hundred fifty
thousand (250,000) for the creation of a legislative district. Petitioners rely on Section 5(3), Article
VI of the 1987 Constitution as basis for the cited 250,000 minimum population standard. The
provision reads: (3) Each legislative district shall comprise, as far as practicable, contiguous,
compact, and adjacent territory. Each city with a population of at least two hundred fifty thousand,
or each province, shall have at least one representative.

The petitioners claim that the reconfiguration by Republic Act No. 9716 of the first and second
districts of Camarines Sur is unconstitutional, because the proposed first district will end up with a
population of less than 250,000 or only 176,383.

Issue:

w/n a population of 250,000 is an indispensable constitutional requirement for the creation of a new
legislative district in a province?

Ruling:

Petition is denied. There is no specific provision in the Constitution that fixes a 250,000 minimum
population that must compose a legislative district.

The use by the subject provision of a comma to separate the phrase “each city with a population of
at least two hundred fifty thousand” from the phrase “or each province” point to no other conclusion
than that the 250,000 minimum population is only required for a city, but not for a province.
Apropos for discussion is the provision of the Local Government Code on the creation of a province
which, by virtue of and upon creation, is entitled to at least a legislative district. Thus, Section 461
of the Local Government Code states:

Requisites for Creation. –


(a) A province may be created if it has an average annual income, as certified by the Department
of Finance, of not less than Twenty million pesos (P20,000,000.00) based on 1991 constant prices
and either of the following requisites:
(i) a contiguous territory of at least two thousand (2,000) square kilometers, as certified by the
Lands Management Bureau; or
(ii) a population of not less than two hundred fifty thousand (250,000) inhabitants as certified by the
National Statistics Office.
Notably, the requirement of population is not an indispensable requirement, but is merely an
alternative addition to the indispensable income requirement.
Bai Sandra Sema v Comelec July 16, 2008

Facts:

On 28 August 2006, the ARMM’s legislature, the ARMM Regional Assembly, exercising its
power to create provinces under Section 19, Article VI of RA 9054, enacted Muslim Mindanao
Autonomy Act No. 201 (MMA Act 201) creating the Province of Shariff Kabunsuan composed of
the eight municipalities in the first district of Maguindanao. MMA Act 201 provides:

Later, three new municipalities were carved out of the original nine municipalities constituting
Shariff Kabunsuan, bringing its total number of municipalities to 11. Thus, what was left of
Maguindanao were the municipalities constituting its second legislative district. Cotabato City,
although part of Maguindanao’s first legislative district, is not part of the Province of Maguindanao.

On 6 February 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.

Resolution No. 07-0407, which adopted the recommendation of the COMELEC’s Law
Department under a Memorandum dated 27 February 2007, provides in pertinent parts:
Considering the foregoing, the Commission RESOLVED, as it hereby resolves, to adopt the
recommendation of the Law Department that pending the enactment of the appropriate law by
Congress, to maintain the status quo with Cotabato City as part of Shariff Kabunsuan in the First
Legislative District of Maguindanao.

On 10 May 2007, the COMELEC issued Resolution No. 7902, subject of these petitions,
amending Resolution No. 07-0407 by renaming the legislative district in question as “Shariff
Kabunsuan Province with Cotabato City (formerly First District of Maguindanao with Cotabato
City).”

Issue:

The petitions raise the following issues:


I. In G.R. No. 177597:
(A) Preliminarily –
(1) whether the writs of Certiorari, Prohibition, and Mandamus are proper to test the
constitutionality of COMELEC Resolution No. 7902; and
(2) whether the proclamation of respondent Dilangalen as representative of Shariff
Kabunsuan Province with Cotabato City mooted the petition in G.R. No. 177597.

(B) On the merits –


(1) whether Section 19, Article VI of RA 9054, delegating to the ARMM Regional Assembly
the power to create provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays, is constitutional; and
(2) if in the affirmative, whether a province created by the ARMM Regional Assembly under
MMA Act 201 pursuant to Section 19, Article 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.
II. In G.R No. 177597 and G.R No. 178628, whether COMELEC Resolution No. 7902 is valid
for maintaining the status quo in the first legislative district of Maguindanao (as “Shariff Kabunsuan
Province with Cotabato City [formerly First District of Maguindanao with Cotabato City]”), despite
the creation of the Province of Shariff Kabunsuan out of such district (excluding Cotabato City).

Held:

WHEREFORE, we declare Section 19, Article VI of Republic Act No. 9054 UNCONSTITUTIONAL
insofar as it grants to the Regional Assembly of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao the
power to create provinces and cities. Thus, we declare VOID Muslim Mindanao Autonomy Act No.
201 creating the Province of Shariff Kabunsuan. Consequently, we rule that COMELEC Resolution
No. 7902 is VALID.
COMELEC en banc V AKB, et. al April 2, 2013

FACTS:
This case partially abandoned the rulings in Ang Bagong Bayani vs COMELEC and BANAT vs
COMELEC.
Atong Paglaum, Inc. and 51 other parties were disqualified by the Commission on Elections in the
May 2013 party-list elections for various reasons but primarily for not being qualified as
representatives for marginalized or underrepresented sectors.
Atong Paglaum et al then filed a petition for certiorari against COMELEC alleging grave abuse of
discretion on the part of COMELEC in disqualifying them.

ISSUE:
Whether or not the COMELEC committed grave abuse of discretion in disqualifying the said party-
lists.

HELD:
No. The COMELEC merely followed the guidelines set in the cases of Ang Bagong Bayani and
BANAT. However, the Supreme Court remanded the cases back to the COMELEC as the
Supreme Court now provides for new guidelines which abandoned some principles established in
the two aforestated cases. The new guidelines are as follows:

I. Parameters. In qualifying party-lists, the COMELEC must use the following parameters:

1. Three different groups may participate in the party-list system: (1) national parties or
organizations, (2) regional parties or organizations, and (3) sectoral parties or organizations.
2. National parties or organizations and regional parties or organizations do not need to organize
along sectoral lines and do not need to represent any “marginalized and underrepresented” sector.
3. Political parties can participate in party-list elections provided they register under the party-list
system and do not field candidates in legislative district elections. A political party, whether major
or not, that fields candidates in legislative district elections can participate in party-list elections only
through its sectoral wing that can separately register under the party-list system. The sectoral wing
is by itself an independent sectoral party, and is linked to a political party through a coalition.
4. Sectoral parties or organizations may either be “marginalized and underrepresented” or lacking
in “well-defined political constituencies.” It is enough that their principal advocacy pertains to the
special interest and concerns of their sector. The sectors that are “marginalized and
underrepresented” include labor, peasant, fisherfolk, urban poor, indigenous cultural communities,
handicapped, veterans, and overseas workers. The sectors that lack “well-defined political
constituencies” include professionals, the elderly, women, and the youth.
5. A majority of the members of sectoral parties or organizations that represent the “marginalized
and underrepresented” must belong to the “marginalized and underrepresented” sector they
represent. Similarly, a majority of the members of sectoral parties or organizations that lack “well-
defined political constituencies” must belong to the sector they represent. The nominees of sectoral
parties or organizations that represent the “marginalized and underrepresented,” or that represent
those who lack “well-defined political constituencies,” either must belong to their respective sectors,
or must have a track record of advocacy for their respective sectors. The nominees of national and
regional parties or organizations must be bona-fide members of such parties or organizations.
6. National, regional, and sectoral parties or organizations shall not be disqualified if some of their
nominees are disqualified, provided that they have at least one nominee who remains qualified.
II. In the BANAT case, major political parties are disallowed, as has always been the practice, from
participating in the party-list elections. But, since there’s really no constitutional prohibition nor a
statutory prohibition, major political parties can now participate in the party-list system provided that
they do so through their bona fide sectoral wing (see parameter 3 above).
Allowing major political parties to participate, albeit indirectly, in the party-list elections will
encourage them to work assiduously in extending their constituencies to the “marginalized and
underrepresented” and to those who “lack well-defined political constituencies.”
Ultimately, the Supreme Court gave weight to the deliberations of the Constitutional Commission
when they were drafting the party-list system provision of the Constitution. The Commissioners
deliberated that it was their intention to include all parties into the party-list elections in order to
develop a political system which is pluralistic and multiparty. (In the BANAT case, Justice Puno
emphasized that the will of the people should defeat the intent of the framers; and that the intent of
the people, in ratifying the 1987 Constitution, is that the party-list system should be reserved for the
marginalized sectors.)
III. The Supreme Court also emphasized that the party-list system is NOT RESERVED for the
“marginalized and underrepresented” or for parties who lack “well-defined political constituencies”.
It is also for national or regional parties. It is also for small ideology-based and cause-oriented
parties who lack “well-defined political constituencies”. The common denominator however is that
all of them cannot, they do not have the machinery – unlike major political parties, to field or
sponsor candidates in the legislative districts but they can acquire the needed votes in a national
election system like the party-list system of elections.
If the party-list system is only reserved for marginalized representation, then the system itself
unduly excludes other cause-oriented groups from running for a seat in the lower house.

As explained by the Supreme Court, party-list representation should not be understood to include
only labor, peasant, fisherfolk, urban poor, indigenous cultural communities, handicapped,
veterans, overseas workers, and other sectors that by their nature are economically at the margins
of society. It should be noted that Section 5 of Republic Act 7941 includes, among others, in its
provision for sectoral representation groups of professionals, which are not per se economically
marginalized but are still qualified as “marginalized, underrepresented, and do not have well-
defined political constituencies” as they are ideologically marginalized.
Romualdez-Marcos vs COMELEC
CITATION: 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. Paul’s 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.

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 petitioner has satisfied the 1year residency requirement to be eligible in running
as representative of the First District of Leyte.

HELD:

Residence is used synonymously with domicile for election purposes. The court are in favor of a
conclusion supporting petitoner’s 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 Imelda’s 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.

3. A wife does not automatically gain the husband’s 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
brother’s 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 vs. Comelec
Sept, 18, 1995
Special Civil Action in the Supreme Court. Certiorari.

Relevant Provisions:
Section 6, Article VI of the 1987 Constitution
No person shall be a Member of the House of Representatives unless he is a natural-born citizen
of the Philippines and, on the day of the election, is at least twenty-five years of age, able to read
and write, and, except the party-list representatives, a registered voter in the district in which he
shall be elected, and a resident thereof for a period of not less than one year immediately
preceding the day of the election.

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 a candidate 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.
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 “residency” in the certificate of candidacy actually connotes “domicile” to warrant the
disqualification of Aquino from the position in the electoral district.
2. WON 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.

Held:
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. The Court cited the
deliberations of the Constitutional Commission wherein this principle was applied.
Mr. Nolledo:
I remember that in the 1971 Constitutional Convention, there was an attempt to require residence
in the place not less than one year immediately preceding the day of elections.

What is the Committee’s concept of residence for the legislature? Is it actual residence or is it the
concept of domicile or constructive residence?
Mr. Davide:
This is in the district, for a period of not less than one year preceding the day of election. This was
in effect lifted from the 1973 constituition, the interpretation given to it was domicile.
Mrs. Braid:
On section 7, page2, Noledo has raised the same point that resident has been interpreted at times
as a matter of intention rather than actual residence.

Mr. De los Reyes
So we have to stick to the original concept that it should be by domicile and not physical and actual
residence.
Therefore, the framers intended the word “residence” to have the same meaning of domicile.
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 law requirements, this defeats the essence of representation, which is to 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.
Which brings us to the second issue.

2. No, Aquino has not established domicile of choice in the district he was running in.
The SC agreed with the Comelec’s 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 .
Aquino’s 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.
Aquino’s 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.
Aquino’s 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.
Aquino was thus rightfully disqualified by the Commission on Elections due to his lack of one year
residence in the district.
Decision
Instant petition dismissed. Order restraining respondent Comelec from proclaiming the candidate
garnering the next highest number of votes in the congressional elections of Second district of
Makati City made permanent.
CO VS HRET

FACTS:

The petitioners come to this Court asking for the setting aside and reversal of a decision of the
House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET). The HRET declared that respondent Jose
Ong, Jr. is a natural born Filipino citizen and a resident of Laoang, Northern Samar for voting
purposes.

On May 11, 1987, the congressional election for the second district of Northern Samar was held.
Among the candidates who vied for the position of representative in the second legislative district
of Northern Samar are the petitioners, Sixto Balinquit and Antonio Co and the private respondent,
Jose Ong, Jr. Respondent Ong was proclaimed the duly elected representative of the second
district of Northern Samar.

The petitioners filed election protests against the private respondent premised on the following
grounds: 1) Jose Ong, Jr. is not a natural born citizen of the Philippines; and 2) Jose Ong, Jr. is not
a resident of the second district of Northern Samar.

The HRET in its decision dated November 6, 1989, found for the private respondent.

ISSUE:
whether or not, the HRET acted with grave abuse of discretion. (EWAN KO KUNG TAMA TOH)

HELD:

On Jurisdiction
The Constitution explicitly provides that the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET)
and the Senate Electoral Tribunal (SET) shall be the sole judges of all contests relating to the
election, returns, and qualifications of their respective members. (See Article VI, Section 17,
Constitution)

The authority conferred upon the Electoral Tribunal is full, clear and complete. The use of the
word sole emphasizes the exclusivity of the jurisdiction of these Tribunals.

The Supreme Court under the 1987 Constitution, has been given an expanded jurisdiction, so to
speak, to review the decisions of the other branches and agencies of the government to determine
whether or not they have acted within the bounds of the Constitution. (See Article VIII, Section 1,
Constitution)

Yet, in the exercise thereof, the Court is to merely check whether or not the governmental branch
or agency has gone beyond the Constitutional limits of its jurisdiction, not that it erred or has a
different view. In the absence of a showing that the HRET has committed grave abuse of discretion
amounting to lack of jurisdiction, there is no occasion for the Court to exercise its corrective power;
it will not decide a matter which by its nature is for the HRET alone to decide. (See Marcos v.
Manglapus, 177 SCRA 668 [1989]) It has no power to look into what it thinks is apparent error.

In the case at bar, the Court finds no improvident use of power, no denial of due process on the
part of the HRET which will necessitate the exercise of the power of judicial review by the Supreme
Court.
On Citizenship
His grandfather was naturalized as a Filipino, Ong married a Filipina…. Blah blah…. He is only
renting a house. Even assuming that the private respondent does not own any property in Samar,
the Supreme Court in the case ofDe los Reyes v. Solidum (61 Phil. 893 [1935]) held that it is not
required that a person should have a house in order to establish his residence and domicile. It is
enough that he should live in the municipality or in a rented house or in that of a friend or relative.
(Emphasis supplied) To require the private respondent to own property in order to be eligible to run
for Congress would be tantamount to a property qualification. The Constitution only requires that
the candidate meet the age, citizenship, voting and residence requirements. Nowhere is it required
by the Constitution that the candidate should also own property in order to be qualified to run.
(see Maquera v. Borra, 122 Phil. 412 [1965])
Dimaporo v. Mitra
202 SCRA 779 / G.R. No. 96859
October 15, 1991

FACTS:

Petitioner Mohamad Ali Dimaporo was elected Representative for the Second Legislative District of
Lanao del Sur during the 1987 congressional elections. On 15 January 1990, petitioner filed with
the COMELEC a Certificate of Candidacy for the position of Regional Governor of the Autonomous
Region in Muslim Mindanao in the immediately following elections. Upon being informed of this
development by the COMELEC, respondents Speaker and Secretary of the House of
Representatives excluded petitioner's name from the Roll of Members of the House of
Representatives pursuant to Section 67, Article IX of the Omnibus Election Code which states:
Any elective official whether national or local running for any office other than the one which he is
holding in a permanent capacity except for President and Vice-President shall be considered ipso
facto resigned from his office upon the filing of his certificate of candidacy.

Having lost in the autonomous region elections, petitioner, in a letter addressed to respondent
Speaker, expressed his intention "to resume performing my duties and functions as elected
Member of Congress. He maintains that he did not thereby lose his seat as congressman because
Section 67, Article IX of B.P. Blg. 881 is not operative under the present Constitution, being
contrary thereto, and therefore not applicable to the present members of Congress.

In support of his contention, petitioner points out that the term of office of members of the House of
Representatives, as well as the grounds by which the incumbency of said members may be
shortened, are provided for in the Constitution. Section 2, Article XVIII thereof provides that "the
Senators, Members of the House of Representatives and the local officials first elected under this
Constitution shall serve until noon of June 30, 1992," while Section 7, Article VI states: "The
Members of the House of Representatives shall be elected for a term of three years which shall
begin, unless otherwise provided by law, at noon on the thirtieth day of June next following their
election. He asserts that under the rule expressio unius est exclusio alterius, Section 67, Article IX
of B.P. Blg. 881 is repugnant to these constitutional provisions in that it provides for the shortening
of a congressman's term of office on a ground not provided for in the Constitution.
Moreover, he claims that he cannot be said to have forfeited his seat as it is only when a
congressman holds another office or employment that forfeiture is decreed. Filing a certificate of
candidacy is not equivalent to holding another office or employment.

ISSUE:

1. IS SECTION 67, ARTICLE IX, OF B.P. BLG. 881 OPERATIVE UNDER THE PRESENT
CONSTITUTION?

2. COULD THE RESPONDENT SPEAKER AND/OR THE RESPONDENT SECRETARY, 'BY


ADMINISTRATIVE ACT', EXCLUDE THE PETITIONER FROM THE ROLLS OF THE HOUSE OF
REPRESENTATIVES, THEREBY PREVENTING HIM FROM EXERCISING HIS FUNCTIONS AS
CONGRESSMAN, AND DEPRIVING HIM OF HIS RIGHTS AND PRIVILEGES AS SUCH?

HELD:

The petition is DISMISSED for lack of merit.

1. The officials running for office other than the ones they are holding will be considered resigned
not because of abuse of facilities of power or the use of office facilities but primarily because under
our Constitution, we have this …chapter on accountability of public officers (both in the 1973 and
1987 constitution). Section 1 of Article XI (1987) on "Accountability of Public Officers" states that:

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.

Under this commentary on accountability of public officers, the elective public officers must serve
their principal, the people, not their own personal ambition. Petitioner failed to discern that rather
than cut short the term of office of elective public officials, this statutory provision (Section 67,
Article IX of B.P. Blg. 881) seeks to ensure that such officials serve out their entire term of office by
discouraging them from running for another public office and thereby cutting short their tenure by
making it clear that should they fail in their candidacy, they cannot go back to their former position.
This is consonant with the constitutional edict that all public officials must serve the people with
utmost loyalty and not trifle with the mandate which they have received from their constituents.

Under the questioned provision, when an elective official covered thereby files a certificate of
candidacy for another office, an overt, concrete act of voluntary renunciation of the elective office
presently being held, he is deemed to have voluntarily cut short his tenure, not his term. Forfeiture
(is) automatic and permanently effective upon the filing of the certificate of candidacy for another
office. Only the moment and act of filing are considered. Once the certificate is filed, the seat is
forever forfeited and nothing save a new election or appointment can restore the ousted official.
The law does not make the forfeiture dependent upon future contingencies, unforeseen and
unforeseeable.

That the ground cited in Section 67, Article IX of B.P. Blg. 881 is not mentioned in the Constitution
itself as a mode of shortening the tenure of office of members of Congress, does not preclude its
application to present members of Congress. Section 2 of Article XI provides that "(t)he President,
the Vice-President, the Members of the Supreme Court, the Members of the Constitutional
Commissions, and the Ombudsman may be removed from office, on impeachment … All other
public officers and employees may be removed from office as provided by law, but not by
impeachment. Such constitutional expression clearly recognizes that the four (4) grounds found in
Article VI of the Constitution by which the tenure of a Congressman may be shortened are not
exclusive. The expression in the constitution of the circumstances which shall bring about a
vacancy does not preclude the legislature from prescribing other grounds

Additionally, this Court has enunciated the presumption in favor of constitutionality of legislative
enactment. To justify the nullification of a law, there must be a clear and unequivocal breach of the
Constitution, not a doubtful and argumentative implication. A doubt, even if well-founded, does not
suffice.
2. As administrative officers, both the Speaker and House Secretary-General perform ministerial
functions; It was their duty to remove petitioner's name from the Roll considering the unequivocal
tenor of Section 67, Article IX, B.P. Blg. 881. When the COMELEC communicated to the House of
Representatives that petitioner had filed his certificate of candidacy for regional governor of Muslim
Mindanao, respondents had no choice but to abide by the clear and unmistakable legal effect of
Section 67, Article IX of B.P. Blg. 881. These officers cannot refuse to perform their duty on the
ground of an alleged invalidity of the statute imposing the duty. The reason for this is obvious. It
might seriously hinder the transaction of public business if these officers were to be permitted in all
cases to question the constitutionality of statutes and ordinances imposing duties upon them and
which have not judicially been declared unconstitutional. Officers of the government from the
highest to the lowest are creatures of the law and are bound to obey it.

In conclusion, We reiterate the basic concept that a public office is a public trust. It is created for
the interest and benefit of the people. As such, the holder thereof is subject to such regulations and
conditions as the law may impose and he cannot complain of any restrictions which public policy
may dictate on his office.
Jimenez v. Cabangbang
NICANOR T. JIMENEZ v. BARTOLOME CABANGBANG, (A)
G.R. No. L-15905 August 3, 1966

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.
 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, he was not performing his official duty, either as a member of
Congress or as officer or any Committee thereof. Hence, said communication is not absolutely
privileged.
 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.

HELD:

 No, the publication in question is not a privileged communication.


 The determination of the 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.
 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 vs. Jalosjos (G.R. No. 132875-76)
Facts:
The accused-appellant, Romeo Jalosjos, is a full-fledged member of Congress who is confined at
the national penitentiary while his conviction for statutory rape and acts of lasciviousness is
pending appeal. The accused-appellant filed a motion asking that he be allowed to fully discharge
the duties of a Congressman, including attendance at legislative sessions and committee meetings
despite his having been convicted in the first instance of a non-bailable offense.

Jalosjos’ primary argument is the "mandate of sovereign will." He states that the sovereign
electorate of the First 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. He calls this a covenant with his constituents made possible by the intervention of
the State. He adds that it cannot be defeated by insuperable procedural restraints arising from
pending criminal cases.

Jalosjos avers that his constituents in the First District of Zamboanga del Norte want their voices to
be heard and that since he is treated as bona fide member of the House of Representatives, the
latter urges a co-equal branch of government to respect his mandate.

Issue:
Whether or not accused-appellant should be allowed to discharge mandate as member of House of
Representatives and to leave his cell.

Held:
To allow accused-appellant to attend congressional sessions and committee meetings will virtually
make him a free man.

When the voters of his district elected the accused-appellant to Congress, they did so with full
awareness of the limitations on his freedom of action. They did so with the knowledge that he could
achieve only such legislative results which he could accomplish within the confines of prison. To
give a more drastic illustration, if voters elect a person with full knowledge that he is suffering from
a terminal illness, they do so knowing that at any time, he may no longer serve his full term in
office.

To allow accused-appellant to attend congressional sessions and committee meetings for 5 days
or more in a week will virtually make him a free man with all the privileges appurtenant to his
position. Such an aberrant situation not only elevates accused-appellant’s status to that of a
special class, it also would be a mockery of the purposes of the correction system.

In the ultimate analysis, the issue before us boils down to a question of constitutional equal
protection.

The Constitution guarantees: "x x x nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of laws."
This simply means that all persons similarly situated shall be treated alike both in rights enjoyed
and responsibilities imposed. The organs of government may not show any undue favoritism or
hostility to any person. Neither partiality nor prejudice shall be displayed.

Does being an elective official result in a substantial distinction that allows different treatment? Is
being a Congressman a substantial differentiation which removes the accused-appellant as a
prisoner from the same class as all persons validly confined under law?

The performance of legitimate and even essential duties by public officers has never been an
excuse to free a person validly in prison.

We, therefore, find that election to the position of Congressman is not a reasonable classification in
criminal law enforcement. The functions and duties of the office are not substantial distinctions
which lift him from the class of prisoners interrupted in their freedom and restricted in liberty of
movement. Lawful arrest and confinement are germane to the purposes of the law and apply to all
those belonging to the same class.
August 25, 2009 | A.C. No. 7399

Antero J. Pobre, complainant


Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago, respondent

FACTS:

In one of her privilege speeches before the Senate, Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago delivered the
following remarks:

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 a different environment than
in a Supreme Court of idiots. x x x

Her speech came as a response to the decision of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) declaring
that only sitting members of the Supreme Court can be nominated for the impending vacancy of
the CJ post. Consequently, nominees who were not incumbent members of the Court, including
Sen. Defensor-Santiago, were automatically disqualified.

Private complainant Antero J. Pobre filed the instant petition before the Court, contending that the
lady senator's utterances amounted to a total disrespect towards then CJ Panganiban and a direct
contempt of Court. Accordingly, he wanted disbarment proceedings or other disciplinary actions to
be taken against Sen. Defensor-Santiago.

ISSUE:

Whether or not there is a ground for Sen. Defensor-Santiago to be disbarred or subjected to


disciplinary action by the Court for her questioned speech.

HELD:

No, the Court sided with Sen. Defensor-Santiago's defense that she should be afforded
parliamentary immunity from suit pursuant to Section 11, Art. VI of the 1987 Constitution, which
section states in part that "no [Senator] x x x shall be questioned nor be held liable in any other
place for any speech or debate in the Congress or in any committee thereof." Although there was
no express admission on the part of the lady senator that she did indeed say those words, there
was no categorical denial either, which the Court ultimately regarded as an implied admission.

Despite the dismissal of the letter-complaint, the Court heavily chastised the lady senator for
indulging in "insulting rhetoric and offensive personalities." In fact, her excuse that her questioned
speech was a prelude to crafting remedial legislation on the JBC struck the Court as being a mere
afterthought in light of the controversy her utterances had managed to stir.

Still, the Court held that parliamentary immunity is essential because without it, the parliament or
its equivalent would "degenerate into a polite and ineffective forum." However, it should be noted
that "[l]egislators are immune from deterrents to the uninhibited discharge of of their legislative
duties, not for their private indulgence, but for the public good."
BENGZON VS. DRILON
G.R. 103524 April 15, 1992 208 SCRA 133
Gutierrez, J.:

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” 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.
PUYAT, ET. AL. vs. DE GUZMAN JR., ET. AL. G.R. No. L-51122, 25 March 1982 Case Digest

FACTS:

On 14 May 1979, an election for the eleven Directors of the International Pipe Industries (IPI), a
private corporation, was held – six of the elected directors were herein petitioners that may be
called the Puyat Group, while the other five were herein respondents, the Acero Group. Thus, the
Puyat Group would be in control of the Board and of the management of IPI.

On 25 May 1979, the Acero Group instituted at the SEC quo warranto proceedings questioning the
election.

Conferences were held on 25-31 May 1979 and the Puyat Group objected on Constitutional
grounds the appearance of Justice Estanislao Fernandez, then a member of the Interim Batasang
Pambansa, as counsel for the Acero group. Section 11, Article VIII, 1973 Constitution, then in
force, provided that no Assemblyman could "appear as counsel before xxx any administrative
body" and SEC was an administrative body. The prohibition being clear, Assemblyman Fernandez
did not continue his appearance.

When SEC Case was called on 31 May 1979, it turned out that Assemblyman Fernandez had
purchased on 15 May 1979 ten shares of IPI stock for Php200.00, but the deed of sale was
notarized only on 30 May 1979. He then filed on 31 May 1979 an Urgent Motion for Intervention in
the SEC Case as the owner of 10 IPI shares alleging legal interest in the matter in litigation, which
motion was granted by the SEC Commissioner.

ISSUE:

Whether or not Assemblyman Fernandez, in intervening in the SEC Case, is in effect appearing as
counsel, albeit indirectly, before an administrative body in contravention of the Constitutional
provision.

RULING:

The Court en banc ruled that ordinarily, by virtue of the Motion for Intervention, Assemblyman
Fernandez cannot be said to be appearing as counsel. His appearance could theoretically be for
the protection of his ownership of ten (10) IPI shares.

However, certain salient circumstances militate against the intervention of Assemblyman


Fernandez. He had acquired a mere Php200.00 worth of stock in IPI. He acquired them "after the
fact", that is, on 30 May 1979, after the contested election of Directors, after the quo warranto suit
had been filed, and one day before the scheduled hearing of the case before the SEC. And what is
more, before he moved to intervene, he had signified his intention to appear as counsel for the
Acero group, but which was objected to by petitioners Puyat group. Realizing, perhaps, the validity
of the objection, he decided, instead, to "intervene" on the ground of legal interest in the matter
under litigation.

Under those facts and circumstances, there has been an indirect appearance as counsel before an
administrative body, which is a circumvention of the Constitutional prohibition. The "intervention"
was an afterthought to enable him to appear actively in the proceedings in some other capacity.

A ruling upholding the "intervention" would make the constitutional provision ineffective. All an
Assemblyman need do, if he wants to influence an administrative body is to acquire a minimal
participation in the "interest" of the client and then "intervene" in the proceedings. That which the
Constitution directly prohibits may not be done by indirection or by a general legislative act
which is intended to accomplish the objects specifically or impliedly prohibited.

Thus, the intervention of Assemblyman Fernandez in the SEC Case falls within the ambit of the
prohibition contained in the 1973 Constitution. Respondent Commissioner's Order granting
Assemblyman Fernandez leave to intervene in the SEC Case was reversed and set aside
Santiao vs Guingona

Facts:
During the first regular session of the eleventh Congress, Senator Fernan was declared the duly
elected President of the Senate by a vote of 20 to 2. Senator Tatad manifested that, with the
agreement of Senator Santiago, allegedly the only other member of the minority, he was assuming
the position of minority leader. He explained that those who had voted for Senator Fernan
comprised the majority, while only those who had voted for him, the losing nominee, belonged to
the minority. Senator Flavier manifested that the senators belonging to the Lakas-NUCD-UMDP
Party numbering 7 and, thus, also a minority had chosen Senator Guingona as the minority leader.
Thereafter, the majority leader informed the body that he was in receipt of a letter signed by the 7
Lakas-NUCD-UMDP senators, stating that they had elected Senator Guingona as the minority
leader. By virtue thereof, the Senate President formally recognized Senator Guingona as the
minority leader of the Senate. Senators Santiago and Tatad filed a petition for quo warranto,
alleging that Senator Guingona had been usurping, unlawfully holding and exercising the position
of Senate minority leader, a position that, according to them, rightfully belonged to Senator Tatad.

Issues:
(1) Whether or not the Court has jurisdiction over the petition
(2) Whether or not there is an actual violation of the Constitution

Held: Regarding the first issue, jurisdiction over the subject matter of a case is determined by the
allegations of the complaint or petition, regardless of whether the petitioner is entitled to the relief
asserted. In light of the allegations of the petitioners, it is clear that the Court has jurisdiction over
the petition. It is well within the power and jurisdiction of the Court to inquire whether indeed the
Senate or its officials committed a violation of the Constitution or gravely abused their discretion in
the exercise of their functions and prerogatives.

However, the interpretation proposed by petitioners finds no clear support from the Constitution,
the laws, the Rules of the Senate or even from practices of the Upper House. The term “majority,”
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. In effect, 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. No law or regulation states that the
defeated candidate shall automatically become the minority leader.

While the Constitution is explicit in 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 under Art. VI, Sec. 16(1) is that “each House shall choose
such other officers as it may deem necessary.” The method of choosing who will be such other
officers is merely a derivative of the exercise of the prerogative conferred by the said constitutional
provision. Therefore, such method must be prescribed by the Senate itself, not by the Court.
OSMENA vs PENDATUN

Facts:

In June 1960, Congressman Sergio Osmeña, Jr. delivered a speech entitled “A Message to
Garcia”. In the said speech, he disparaged then President Carlos Garcia and his administration.
Subsequently, House Resolution No. 59 was passed by the lower house in order to investigate the
charges made by Osmeña during his speech and that if his allegations were found to be baseless
and malicious, he may be subjected to disciplinary actions by the lower house.
Osmeña then questioned the validity of the said resolution before the Supreme Court. Osmeña
avers that the resolution violates his parliamentary immunity for speeches delivered in
Congress. Congressman Salipada Pendatun filed an answer where he averred that the Supreme
Court has not jurisdiction over the matter and Congress has the power to discipline its members.

Issue: Whether or not Osmeña’s immunity has been violated?

Held:

No. Section 15, Article VI of the 1935 Constitution enshrines parliamentary immunity upon
members of the legislature which is a fundamental privilege cherished in every parliament in a
democratic world. It guarantees the legislator complete freedom of expression without fear of being
made responsible in criminal or civil actions before the courts or any other forum outside the Hall of
Congress. However, it does not protect him from responsibility before the legislative body
whenever his words and conduct are considered disorderly or unbecoming of a member therein.
Therefore, Osmeña’s petition is dismissed.
Paredes, Jr. v. Sandiganbayan Art.6, Sec. 16 /

Internal discipline

Facts:

While Congressman Paredes was still provincial governor, charges of violations of Anti-Graft Law
were filed against him before the Sandiganbayan. He was elected to Congress.

During his second term in Congress, Sandiganbayan imposed a preventive suspension on him
pursuant to the A-G law. Issues: Petitioner challenges the authority of the SB to suspend a
district representative.

Held:

Suspension holds.

Ratio:

Petitioner’s inv
ocation of Sec.16(3) Art.6 of the constitution is unavailing. Suspension spoken of in Sec.13 of A-G
law is no a penalty but a preliminary, preventive measure. The law is not being imposed on the
petitioner for misbehavior as a member of the House of Representatives.
US vs PONS

Facts:

Juan Pons was charged and convicted of bringing opium to Philippines on board
steamer Lopez Y Lopez. Pons contend that the last day of the special session of the
Philippine Legislature for 1914 was the 28th day of February; that Act No. 2381,
under which Pons must be punished if found guilty, was not passed or approved on
the 28th of February but on March 1 of that year; and that, therefore, the same is
null and void.

Issue:

Whether or not Act 2381 is valid?

Decision:

Judgment affirmed. When the legislative journals show with certainty the time of
adjournment of the Legislature and are clear and unambiguous they are conclusive.
Extraneous evidence cannot be admitted to show a different date of adjournment.
Casco Philippine Chemicals v. Gimenez
7 SCRA 347

FACTS:

On July 1, 1959, pursuant to RA 2609 (Foreign Exchange Margin Fee Law), the Central Bank of
the Philippines fixed a uniform margin fee of 25% on foreign exchange transactions. Petitioner had
bought foreign exchange for the importation of urea and formaldehyde, raw materials for resin
glues, and was thus paying for the margin fees at that time. Relying on Resolution No. 1529 of the
Monetary Board of the said bank declaring that the separate importation of urea and formaldehyde
is exempt from the said fee, the petitioner sought for a refund of the margin fees.

ISSUE:

Whether or not urea and formaldehyde are exempt from the payment of the aforesaid margin fee

HELD:

Urea and formaldehyde are not exempt from fees by law. RA 2609 only exempts urea
formaldehyde and not the separate importation of urea and formaldehyde as they are different, the
former being a finished product. The enrolled bill which uses the term “urea formaldehyde” is
conclusive upon the courts. The courts cannot speculate that there had been an error I printing of
the bill as this shall violate the principle of separation of powers. Shall there have been any error in
the printing, the remedy is by amendment or curative legislation, not by a judicial decree.
GARCIA v. EXECUTIVE SECRETARY
G.R. No. 198554
July 30, 2012
677 SCRA 750

FACTS: Garcia, tried by the Special General Court Martial NR 2, was charged with and convicted
of violation of the 96th Article of War (Conduct Unbecoming an Officer and Gentleman) and
violation of the 97th Article of War (Conduct Prejudicial to Good Order and Military Discipline) for
failing to disclose all his assets in his Sworn Statement of Assets and Liabilities and Net worth for
the year 2003 as required by RA 3019, as amended in relation to RA 6713.

Garcia, among others, argued that the confirmation issued by the OP directing his two-year
detention in a penitentiary had already been fully served following his preventive confinement
subject to Article 29 of the RPC (Revised Penal Code). He was released on December 16, 2010
after a preventive confinement for six years and two months. He was initially confined at his
quarters at Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo before he was transferred to the Intelligence Service of
the Armed Forces of the Philippines (ISAFP) Detention Center, and latter to the Camp Crame
Custodial Detention Center.

Hence, on September 16, 2011, or a week after the OP confirmed the sentence of the court martial
against him, Garcia was arrested and detained and continues to be detained, for 2 years, at the
maximum security compound of the National Penitentiary in Muntinlupa. The OP stated that Art 29
of the RPC is not applicable in Military Courts for it is separate and distinct from ordinary courts.

Hence, this petition.

ISSUE: (1) Whether or not Article 29 of the RPC is applicable in Military Courts; and (2) Whether
or not the application of Article 29 of the RPC in the Articles of War is in accordance with the Equal
Protection Clause of the 1987 Constitution

RULING: (1) The Court ruled that applying the provisions of Article 29 of the Revised Penal Code
(RPC) (Period of preventive imprisonment deducted from time of imprisonment), the time within
which the petitioner was under preventive confinement should be credited to the sentence
confirmed by the Office of the President, subject to the conditions set forth by the same law.

The Court held that “the General Court Martial is a court within the strictest sense of the word and
acts as a criminal court.” As such, certain provisions of the RPC, insofar as those that are not
provided in the Articles of War and the Manual for Courts-Martial, can be supplementary. “[A]bsent
any provision as to the application of a criminal concept in the implementation and execution of the
General Court Martial’s decision, the provisions of the Revised Penal Code, specifically Article 29
should be applied. In fact, the deduction of petitioner’s (Garcia) period of confinement to his
sentence has been recommended in the Staff Judge Advocate Review.”

(2) The Court further held that the application of Article 29 of the RPC in the Articles of War is in
accordance with the Equal Protection Clause of the 1987 Constitution. “The concept of equal
justice under the law requires the state to govern impartially, and it may not draw distinctions
between individuals solely on differences that are irrelevant to a legitimate governmental objective.

It, however, does not require the universal application of the laws to all persons or things without
distinction. What it simply requires is equality among equals as determined according to a valid
classification. Indeed, the equal protection clause permits classification,” held the Court.
PEOPLE VS VERA

Doctrine: Requites for a valid class legislation: (1) must rest on substantial distinctions; (2)
must be germane to the purposes of the law; (3) must not be limited to existing conditions
only; (4) must apply equally to all members of the same class.

Facts:

1. Private respondent (Cu-Unjieng) was convicted of a criminal charge by trial court of Manila.
2. He filed several motions for reconsideration or new trial but was denied. On 1936, the SC
remanded the case to the original court of origin for the execution of judgment.
3. While waiting for the new trial, he appealed to Insular Probation Office (IPO) for probation but
was denied.
4. However, Judge Vera, upon another request by petitioner, allowed the petition to be set for
hearing for probation.
5. Petitioners then filed a case to Judge Vera for the latter has no power to place the petitioner
under probation because it is in violation of Sec. 11 of the Act 4221 (i.e., the grant to the
provincial boards the power to provide a system of probation to convicted person.)
Petitioner’s contentions:
1. Judge Vera has no power to place the petitioner under probation because it is in violation of
Sec. 11 of the Act 4221 because nowhere it states that it is to be made applicable to chartered
cities like the City of Manila.
2. Assuming if includes cities, it violates equal protection clause for being an invalid classification
because its applicability is not uniform throughout the country for each provincial board has its
own discretion to provide or not to provide a probation system, allocate funds for the probation
officers based on the discretion of each provincial boards as regards their own locality, etc.

Issue: WON the assailed provision is unconstitutional for being violative of the equal protection
clause.

Held:

 YES, the assailed provision is unconstitutional for being violative of the equal protection
clause.
 Class legislation discriminating against some and favoring others in prohibited. But classification
on a reasonable basis, and nor made arbitrarily or capriciously, is permitted. The classification,
however, to be reasonable must be based on substantial distinctions which make real
differences; it must be germane to the purposes of the law; it must not be limited to existing
conditions only, and must apply equally to each member of the class.
 In the case at bar, however, the resultant inequality may be said to flow from the
unwarranted delegation of legislative power. Each provincial board has its own discretion
to provide or not to provide a probation system, allocate funds for the probation officers
based on the discretion of each provincial boards as regards their own locality, etc. What
if the other province decides not to adopt probation system, or it decides not to have salary for
the probation officer?
 it is clear that in section 11 of the Probation Act creates a situation in which discrimination
and inequality are permitted or allowed. Section 11 of Act No. 4221 permits of the denial of
the equal protection of the law and is on that account bad.
EASTERN SHIPPING VS POEA

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 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:
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.
Categories: Constitutional Law 1
Case Digest: Dante O. Casibang vs. Honorable Narciso A. Aquino
20 August 1979

FACTS:

Yu was proclaimed on November 1971 as the elected mayor of Rosales, Pangasinan. Casibang,
his only rival, filed a protest against election on the grounds of rampant vote buying, anomalies and
irregularities and others. During the proceedings of this case, the 1973 Constitution came into
effect. Respondent Yu moved to dismiss the election protest of the petitioner on the ground that
the trial court had lost jurisdiction over the same in view of the effectivity of the new Constitution
and the new parliamentary form of government.

ISSUES:

1. Whether Section 9, Article XVII of the 1973 Constitution rendered the protest moot
and academic; and
2. Whether Section 2, Article XI thereof entrusted to the National Assembly the
revamp of the entire local government structure.
3.
RULING:

1. As stated in Santos vs. Castaneda, “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-elect's right to the contested office.”
2. Section 2 of Article XI does not stigmatize the issue in that electoral protest case
with a political color. For simply, that section allocated unto the National Assembly the
power to enact a local government code "which may not thereafter be amended except by
a majority of all its Members, defining a more responsive and accountable local
government allocating among the different local government units their powers,
responsibilities, and resources, and providing for their qualifications, election and removal,
term, salaries, powers, functions and duties of local officials, and all other matters relating
to the organization and operation of the local units" but "... any change in the existing form
of local government shall not take effect until ratified by a majority of the votes cast in a
plebiscite called for the purpose."
G.R. No. 208566 November 19, 2013
BELGICA vs. HONORABLE EXECUTIVE SECRETARY PAQUITO N. OCHOA JR, et al,
Respondents

NATURE:
These are consolidated petitions taken under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court, all of which assail the
constitutionality of the Pork Barrel System.

FACTS:
The NBI Investigation was spawned by sworn affidavits of six (6) whistle-blowers who declared that
JLN Corporation (Janet Lim Napoles) had swindled billions of pesos from the public coffers for
"ghost projects" using dummy NGOs. Thus, Criminal complaints were filed before the Office of the
Ombudsman, charging five (5) lawmakers for Plunder, and three (3) other lawmakers for
Malversation, Direct Bribery, and Violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Also
recommended to be charged in the complaints are some of the lawmakers’ chiefs -of-staff or
representatives, the heads and other officials of three (3) implementing agencies, and the several
presidents of the NGOs set up by Napoles.
Whistle-blowers alleged that" at least P900 Million from royalties in the operation of the Malampaya
gas project off Palawan province intended for agrarian reform beneficiaries has gone into a dummy
NGO. Several petitions were lodged before the Court similarly seeking that the "Pork Barrel
System" be declared unconstitutional

G.R. No. 208493 – SJS filed a Petition for Prohibition seeking that the "Pork Barrel System" be
declared unconstitutional, and a writ of prohibition be issued permanently
G.R. No. 208566 - Belgica, et al filed an Urgent Petition For Certiorari and Prohibition With Prayer
For The Immediate Issuance of Temporary Restraining Order and/or Writ of Preliminary Injunction
seeking that the annual "Pork Barrel System," presently embodied in the provisions of the GAA of
2013 which provided for the 2013 PDAF, and the Executive‘s lump-sum, discretionary funds, such
as the Malampaya Funds and the Presidential Social Fund, be declared unconstitutional and null
and void for being acts constituting grave abuse of discretion. Also, they pray that the Court issue
a TRO against respondents

UDK-14951 – A Petition filed seeking that the PDAF be declared unconstitutional, and a cease and
desist order be issued restraining President Benigno Simeon S. Aquino III (President Aquino) and
Secretary Abad from releasing such funds to Members of Congress

ISSUES:

1. Whether or not the 2013 PDAF Article and all other Congressional Pork Barrel Laws similar
thereto are unconstitutional considering that they violate the principles of/constitutional provisions
on (a) separation of powers; (b) non-delegability of legislative power; (c) checks and balances; (d)
accountability; (e) political dynasties; and (f) local autonomy.
2. Whether or not the phrases (under Section 8 of PD 910,116 relating to the Malampaya Funds,
and under Section 12 of PD 1869, as amended by PD 1993, relating to the Presidential Social
Fund, are unconstitutional insofar as they constitute undue delegations of legislative power.

HELD:

1. Yes, the PDAF article is unconstitutional. The post-enactment measures which govern the
areas of project identification, fund release and fund realignment are not related to functions of
congressional oversight and, hence, allow legislators to intervene and/or assume duties that
properly belong to the sphere of budget execution. This violates the principle of separation of
powers. Congress‘role must be confined to mere oversight that must be confined to: (1) scrutiny
and (2) investigation and monitoring of the implementation of laws. Any action or step beyond that
will undermine the separation of powers guaranteed by the constitution.

Thus, the court declares the 2013 pdaf article as well as all other provisions of law which similarly
allow legislators to wield any form of post-enactment authority in the implementation or
enforcement of the budget, unrelated to congressional oversight, as violative of the separation of
powers principle and thus unconstitutional.
2. Yes. Sec 8 of PD 910- the phrase “and for such other purposes as may be hereafter directed
by the President”‖ constitutes an undue delegation of legislative power insofar as it does not lay
down a sufficient standard to adequately determine the limits of the President‘s authority with
respect to the purpose for which the Malampaya Funds may be used. It gives the President wide
latitude to use the Malampaya Funds for any other purpose he may direct and, in effect, allows him
to unilaterally appropriate public funds beyond the purview of the law.”

Section 12 of PD 1869, as amended by PD 1993- the phrases:

(b) "to finance the priority infrastructure development projects” was declared constitutional. IT
INDICATED PURPOSE ADEQUATELY CURTAILS THE AUTHORITY OF THE PRESIDENT TO
SPEND THE PRESIDENTIAL SOCIAL FUND ONLY FOR RESTORATION PURPOSES WHICH
ARISE FROM CALAMITIES.

(b)” and to finance the restoration of damaged or destroyed facilities due to calamities, as may be
directed and authorized by the Office of the President of the Philippines” was declared
unconstitutional.IT GIVES THE PRESIDENT CARTE BLANCHE AUTHORITY TO USE THE SAME
FUND FOR ANY INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECT HE MAY SO DETERMINE AS A ―PRIORITY‖.
VERILY, THE LAW DOES NOT SUPPLY A DEFINITION OF ―PRIORITY INFRASTRUCTURE
DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS‖ AND HENCE, LEAVES THE PRESIDENT WITHOUT ANY
GUIDELINE TO CONSTRUE THE SAME
YNOT VS ICA
G.R. No. 74457 – 148 SCRA 659 – Political Law – Police Power – Not Validly Exercised

There had been an existing law which prohibited the slaughtering of carabaos (EO 626).
To strengthen the law, Marcos issued EO 626-A which not only banned the movement of carabaos
from one province to another but as well as the movement of carabeef. On 13 Jan 1984, Ynot was
caught transporting 6 carabaos from Masbate to Iloilo. He was then charged in violation of EO 626-
A. Ynot averred that EO 626-A was unconstitutional for it violated his right to be heard or his right
to due process. He said that the authority provided by EO 626-A to outrightly confiscate carabaos
even without being heard is unconstitutional. The lower court ruled against Ynot ruling that the EO
is a valid exercise of police power in order to promote general welfare so as to curb down the
indiscriminate slaughter of carabaos.

ISSUE:

Whether or not the law is valid.

HELD:

The SC ruled that the EO is not valid as it indeed violates due process. EO 626-A created
a presumption based on the judgment of the executive. The movement of carabaos from one area
to the other does not mean a subsequent slaughter of the same would ensue. Ynot should be
given to defend himself and explain why the carabaos are being transferred before they can be
confiscated. The SC found that the challenged measure is an invalid exercise of the police power
because the method employed to conserve the carabaos is not reasonably necessary to the
purpose of the law and, worse, is unduly oppressive. Due process is violated because the owner of
the property confiscated is denied the right to be heard in his defense and is immediately
condemned and punished. The conferment on the administrative authorities of the power to
adjudge the guilt of the supposed offender is a clear encroachment on judicial functions and
militates against the doctrine of separation of powers. There is, finally, also an invalid delegation of
legislative powers to the officers mentioned therein who are granted unlimited discretion in the
distribution of the properties arbitrarily taken.
TABLARIN VS GUTIERREZ

Facts:

The petitioners sought to enjoin the Secretary of Education, Culture and Sports, the Board
of Medical Education and the Center for Educational Measurement from enforcing a requirement
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. The trial court denied
said petition and the NMAT was conducted and administered as scheduled.

The NMAT, an aptitude test, is considered as an instrument toward upgrading the


selection of applicants for admission into the medical schools and its calculated to improve the
quality of medical education in the country. The cutoff score for the successful applicants, based on
the scores on the NMAT, shall be determined every year by the Board of Medical Education after
consultation with the Association of Philippine Medical Colleges. The NMAT rating of each
applicant, together with the other admission requirements as presently called for under existing
rules, shall serve as a basis for the issuance of the prescribed certificate of eligibility for admission
into the medical colleges.

Issue:

Whether or not Section 5 (a) and (f) of Republic Act No. 2382, as amended, and MECS
Order No. 52, s. 1985 are constitutional.

Held:

Yes. We conclude that prescribing the NMAT and requiring certain minimum scores
therein as a condition for admission to medical schools in the Philippines, do not constitute an
unconstitutional imposition.

T he police power, it is commonplace learning, is the pervasive and non-waivable


power and authority of the sovereign to secure and promote all the important interests and needs
— in a word, the public order — of the general community. An important component of that public
order is the health and physical safety and well being of the population, the securing of which no
one can deny is a legitimate objective of governmental effort and regulation. Perhaps the only
issue that needs some consideration is whether there is some reasonable relation between the
prescribing of passing the NMAT as a condition for admission to medical school on the one hand,
and the securing of the health and safety of the general community, on the other hand. This
question is perhaps most usefully approached by recalling that 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.
PACIFIC STEAM LAUNDRY, INC.
v
LAGUNA LAKE DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY
608 SCRA 442
CARPIO, J.
18 December 2009

Facts:

Petitioner Pacific Steam Laundry, Inc. (petitioner) is a company engaged in the business of
laundry services. On 5 September 2001, the Environmental Quality Management Division of
Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) conducted wastewater sampling of petitioner’s
effluent which showed non-compliance. After a series of subsequent water sampling, PSL still
failed to conform to the regulatory standards. Another wastewater sampling which was conducted
on 5 June 2002, in response to the 17 May 2002 request for re-sampling received by LLDA, finally
showed compliance with the effluent standard in all parameters. On 16 September 2002, LLDA
issued an Order to Pay indicating therein that the penalty should be imposed from the date of initial
sampling to the date there quest for re-sampling was received by the Authority.

Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration, which the LLDA denied.

Issue:

WON the grant of implied power to LLDA to impose penalties violate the rule on non-
delegation of legislative powers.

Ruling:

LLDA’s power to impose fines is not unrestricted. It was only after the investigation finding
the petitioner failing to meet the established water and effluent quality standards that the LLDA
imposed the penalty of P 1,000.00 per day. The P 1,000 penalty per day is in accordance with the
Amount of penalty prescribed under PD 984