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1 February 28, 1986 CREATING THE PRESIDENTIAL COMMISSION ON GOOD GOVERNMENT WHEREAS, vast resources of the government have been amassed by former President Ferdinand E. Marcos, his immediate family, relatives, and close associates both here and abroad; WHEREAS, there is an urgent need to recover all ill-gotten wealth; NOW, THEREFORE, I, CORAZON C. AQUINO, President of the Philippines, do hereby order; Sec. 1. There is hereby created a Commission, to be known as the Presidential Commission on Good Government, composed of Minister Jovito R. Salonga, as Chairman, Mr. Ramon Diaz, Mr. Pedro L. Yap, Mr. Raul Daza and Ms. Mary Conception Bautista as Commissioners. Sec. 2. The Commission shall be charged with the task of assisting the President in regard to the following matters: (a) The recovery of all ill-gotten wealth accumulated by former President Ferdinand E. Marcos, his immediate family, relatives, subordinates and close associates, whether located in the Philippines or abroad, including the takeover or sequestration of all business enterprises and entities owned or controlled by them, during his administration, directly or through nominees, by taking undue advantage of their public office and/or using their powers, authority, influence, connections or relationship. (b) The investigation of such cases of graft and corruption as the President may assign to the Commission from time to time. (c) The adoption of safeguards to ensure that the above practices shall not be repeated in any manner under the new government, and the institution of adequate measures to prevent the occurrence of corruption. Sec. 3. The Commission shall have the power and authority: (a) To conduct investigation as may be necessary in order to accomplish and carry out the purposes of this order. (b) To sequester or place or cause to be placed under its control or possession any building or office wherein any ill-gotten wealth or properties may be found, and any records pertaining thereto, in order to prevent their destruction, concealment or disappearance which would frustrate or hamper the investigation or otherwise prevent the Commission from accomplishing its task. (c) To provisionally take over in the public interest or to prevent its disposal or dissipation, business enterprises and properties taken over by the government of the Marcos Administration or by entities or persons close to former President Marcos, until the transactions leading to such acquisition by the latter can be disposed of by the appropriate authorities. (d) To enjoin or restrain any actual or threatened commission of facts by any person or entity that may render moot and academic, or frustrate, or otherwise make ineffectual the efforts of the Commission to carry out its tasks under this order. (e) To administer oaths, and issue subpoena requiring the attendance and testimony of witnesses and/or the production of such books, papers, contracts, records, statement of accounts and other documents as may be material to the investigation conducted by the Commission. (f) To hold any person in direct or indirect contempt and impose the appropriate penalties, following the same procedures and penalties provided in the Rules of Court. (g) To seek and secure the assistance of any office, agency or instrumentality of the government. (h) To promulgate such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the purpose of this order. Sec. 4. (a) No civil action shall lie against the commission or any member thereof for anything done or omitted in the discharge of the task contemplated by this order. (b) No member or staff of the commission shall be required to testify or produce in any judicial, legislative or administrative proceeding concerning matters within its official cognizance.

Sec. 5. It is hereby directed that, subject to the availability of funds, the amount of Fifty Million Pesos, or so much thereof as may be needed to carry out the purposes of this order, be set aside out of the funds of the National Treasury and made available for expenditure by the Commission. Sec. 6. This Executive Order shall take effect immediately. Done in the City of Manila, this twenty-eight day of February, in the year of Our Lord, nineteen hundred and eighty-six. PRESIDENTIAL COMMISSION ON GOOD GOVERNMENT RULES AND REGULATIONS Pursuant to the authority vested in the Commission under Executive Order No. 1, the following rules and regulations are hereby promulgated for the guidance of all concerned. Sec. 1. Definition. (A) "Ill-gotten wealth" is hereby defined as any asset, property, business enterprise or material possession of persons within the purview of Executive Orders Nos. 1 and 2, acquired by them directly, or indirectly thru dummies, nominees, agents, subordinates and/or business associates by any of the following means or similar schemes: (1) Through misappropriation, conversion, misuse or malversation of public funds or raids on the public treasury; (2) Through the receipt, directly or indirectly, of any commission, gift, share, percentage, kickbacks or any other form of pecuniary benefit from any person and/or entity in connection with any government contract or project or by reason of the office or position of the official concerned. (3) By the illegal or fraudulent conveyance or disposition of assets belonging to the government or any of its subdivisions, agencies or instrumentalities or government-owned or controlled corporations; (4) By obtaining, receiving or accepting directly or indirectly any shares of stock, equity or any other form of interest or participation in any business enterprise or undertaking; (5) Through the establishment of agricultural, industrial or commercial monopolies or other combination and/or by the issuance, promulgation and/or implementation of decrees and orders intended to benefit particular persons or special interests; and (6) By taking undue advantage of official position, authority, relationship or influence for personal gain or benefit. (B) "Sequestration" means taking into custody or placing under the Commission's control or possession any asset, fund or other property, as well as relevant records, papers and documents, in order to prevent their concealment, destruction, impairment or dissipation pending determination of the question whether the said asset, fund or property is ill-gotten wealth under Executive Orders Nos. 1 and 2. In the sequestration of an on-going enterprise, the Commission shall appoint a fiscal agent therein to prevent the transfer, syphoning or dissipation of funds and assets and to audit transactions. Sequestration shall not result in the take-over of the operations of the business, unless otherwise warranted by the exigencies of the situation or required in the national interest. (C) "Freeze order" is an order intended to stop or prevent any act or transaction which may affect the title, possession, status, condition, integrity or value of the asset or property which is or might be the object of any action or proceeding under Executive Orders Nos. 1 and 2, with a view to preserving and conserving the same or to preventing its transfer, concealment, disposition, destruction or dissipation. (D) "Hold order" means an order to temporarily prevent a person from leaving the country where his departure will prejudice, hamper or otherwise obstruct the task of the Commission in the enforcement of Executive Orders Nos. 1 and 2, because such person is known or suspected to be involved in the properties or transactions covered by said Executive Orders. A "hold order" shall be valid only for a maximum period of six months, unless for good reasons extended by the Commission en banc. Sec. 2. Writ of sequestration, freeze, and hold orders. To enable the Commission to accomplish its task of recovering ill-gotten wealth, it may issue writs of sequestration and freeze and/or hold orders.

Sec. 3. Who may issue. A writ of sequestration or a freeze or hold order may be issued by the Commission upon the authority of at least two Commissioners, based on the affirmation or complaint of an interested party or motu proprio when the Commission has reasonable grounds to believe that the issuance thereof is warranted. Sec. 4. How service made. Service of the writ of sequestration or freeze order shall be made in the same manner as service of summons under the Revised Rules of Court. Refusal of the party concerned to accept service shall not prevent the enforcement of the writ of order. Whenever necessary in the public interest, the Commission may order or authorize the break-in or forcible entry into the premises to locate and secure the properties to be sequestered. A hold order shall be communicated to the appropriate governmental authorities for implementation. Sec. 5. Who may contest. The person against whom a writ of sequestration or freeze or hold order is directed may request the lifting thereof in writing, either personally or through counsel within five (5) days from receipt of the writ of order, or in case of a hold order, from date of knowledge thereof. Sec. 6. Procedure for review of writ or order. After due hearing or motu proprio for good cause shown, the Commission may lift the writ of order unconditionally or subject to such conditions as it may deem necessary, taking into consideration the evidence and the circumstance of the case. The resolution of the Commission may be appealed by the party concerned to the Office of the President of the Philippines within fifteen (15) days from receipt thereof. Sec. 7. Conduct of investigations. The Commission may conduct a hearing, after due notice to the party or parties concerned within the purview of Executive Orders Nos. 1 and 2, to ascertain whether any particular asset, property or enterprise constitutes ill-gotten wealth and to determine the appropriate action to be taken in order to carry out the purposes of said Executive Orders. If the party concerned is in the Philippines, it will be sufficient to serve notice of the hearing on him personally or by registered mail. In case the party concerned is abroad or his whereabouts are unknown, the notice shall be published in two newspapers of general circulation in the Philippines. The notice shall state the date, time and place of hearing, which shall not be earlier than ten (10) days from the date of publication. A copy of the notice shall also be sent by registered mail to the party concerned at his address abroad, if known. Sec. 8. Hearing. The Commission, in the exercise of its powers to investigate or hear cases within its jurisdiction shall act according to the requirements of due process and fairness, and shall not be strictly bound by the technical rules of evidence. The hearing shall be open to the public. Sec. 9. Prima facie evidence. Any accumulation of assets, properties and other material possessions of these persons covered by Executive Orders Nos. 1 and 2, whose value is out of proportion to their known lawful income is prima facie deemed ill-gotten wealth. Sec. 10. Findings of the Commission. Based on the evidence adduced, the Commission shall determine whether there is reasonable ground to believe that the asset, property or business enterprise in question constitute ill-gotten wealth as described in Executive Orders Nos. 1 and 2. In the event of an affirmative finding, the Commission shall certify the case to the Solicitor General for appropriate action in accordance with law. Businesses, properties, funds and other assets found to be lawfully acquired shall be immediately released and the writ of sequestration, hold/or freeze orders lifted accordingly. lawphi1.net Sec. 11. Date of Effectivity. The provisions of these Rules and Regulations shall be effective immediately. lawphi1.net DONE in Pasig, Metro Manila, this 11th day of April, 1986. (SGD.) JOVITO R. SALONGA Minister

Republic of the Philippines SUPREME COURT Manila EN BANC G.R. No. 192935 December 7, 2010

LOUIS "BAROK" C. BIRAOGO, Petitioner, vs. THE PHILIPPINE TRUTH COMMISSION OF 2010, Respondent. x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -x G.R. No. 193036 REP. EDCEL C. LAGMAN, REP. RODOLFO B. ALBANO, JR., REP. SIMEON A. DATUMANONG, and REP. ORLANDO B. FUA, SR., Petitioners, vs. EXECUTIVE SECRETARY PAQUITO N. OCHOA, JR. and DEPARTMENT OF BUDGET AND MANAGEMENT SECRETARY FLORENCIO B. ABAD, Respondents. DECISION MENDOZA, J.: When the judiciary mediates to allocate constitutional boundaries, it does not assert any superiority over the other departments; it does not in reality nullify or invalidate an act of the legislature, but only asserts the solemn and sacred obligation assigned to it by the Constitution to determine conflicting claims of authority under the Constitution and to establish for the parties in an actual controversy the rights which that instrument secures and guarantees to them. --- Justice Jose P. Laurel1 The role of the Constitution cannot be overlooked. It is through the Constitution that the fundamental powers of government are established, limited and defined, and by which these powers are distributed among the several departments.2 The Constitution is the basic and paramount law to which all other laws must conform and to which all persons, including the highest officials of the land, must defer.3 Constitutional doctrines must remain steadfast no matter what may be the tides of time. It cannot be simply made to sway and accommodate the call of situations and much more tailor itself to the whims and caprices of government and the people who run it.4 For consideration before the Court are two consolidated cases5 both of which essentially assail the validity and constitutionality of Executive Order No. 1, dated July 30, 2010, entitled "Creating the Philippine Truth Commission of 2010." The first case is G.R. No. 192935, a special civil action for prohibition instituted by petitioner Louis Biraogo (Biraogo) in his capacity as a citizen and taxpayer. Biraogo assails Executive Order No. 1 for being violative of the legislative power of Congress under Section 1, Article VI of the Constitution6 as it usurps the constitutional authority of the legislature to create a public office and to appropriate funds therefor.7

The second case, G.R. No. 193036, is a special civil action for certiorari and prohibition filed by petitioners Edcel C. Lagman, Rodolfo B. Albano Jr., Simeon A. Datumanong, and Orlando B. Fua, Sr. (petitionerslegislators) as incumbent members of the House of Representatives. The genesis of the foregoing cases can be traced to the events prior to the historic May 2010 elections, when then Senator Benigno Simeon Aquino III declared his staunch condemnation of graft and corruption with his slogan, "Kung walang corrupt, walang mahirap." The Filipino people, convinced of his sincerity and of his ability to carry out this noble objective, catapulted the good senator to the presidency. To transform his campaign slogan into reality, President Aquino found a need for a special body to investigate reported cases of graft and corruption allegedly committed during the previous administration. Thus, at the dawn of his administration, the President on July 30, 2010, signed Executive Order No. 1 establishing the Philippine Truth Commission of 2010 (Truth Commission). Pertinent provisions of said executive order read:

PCGG, dapat na bang buwagin? Published : Saturday, January 12, 2013 00:00 Article Views : 541 Written by : Ka Willie Buyson Villarama AFTER the People Power Revolution of 1986, Pres. Corazon Aquino issued Executive Order No. 1 on February 28, 1986, thereby making the creation of the PCGG, the first official act of the revolutionary government. It is significant to note that, at the time of its creation, then President Aquino was in full possession of both executive and legislative powers. Ito ang simula ng Presidential Commission on Good Government o PCGG. Ang PCGG ang executive order na kinatakutan ng lahat ng mga nasangkot sa pakikipag-negosyo kay dating Pangulong Ferdinand Marcos -- totoo man o hindi ang negosyo, may kurapsyon man ito o wala. Naghasik ng takot and Executive Order No. 1. Nagdulot din ito ng matinding lungkot sa marami tulad ng lungkot na naranasan ng isang pulitikong tinuring kong ama nang ma-sequester ang maliit niyang condominium kahit wala siyang transaksyon sa gobyerno nuon. Pagkaraan ng 27 taon, minarapat ng kasalukuyang PCGG chair na si Andres Bautista na ilipat na ang trabaho ng PCGG sa Department of Justice (DOJ). Malaki na raw ang nagagastos ng gobyerno sa paghahanap ng nakatagong yaman ni Marcos. We filed a draft bill on winding down, sabi ni PCGG Chair Andres D. Bautista sa isang press conference ng PCGG. Ayon kay Bautista, may kabuuang Php164 billion Marcos assets ang nasamsam ng PCGG. Dagdag pa ni Bautista, PCGGs functions in pursuit of ill-gotten wealth may be assumed by the Department of Justice and the Office of the Solicitor General. Sumasalungat naman sa panukalang ito ang dating Senador Rene Saguisag. Sabi niya, The Aquino administration should not abolish the Presidential Commission on Good Government but instead allocate more funds so that better people may be hired to recover the peoples wealth from the family of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos. Ano ba ang meron sa PCGG at maraming mga taong nasira ang reputasyon dito, maging ang mga inuusig at mga taga-usig? Marami ring mahuhusay na tao na tulad ni Bautista na ngayon ay halos umaayaw na. Bakit lumaganap pa ang kurapsyon sa paghahanap ng mga pag-aari galing sa nakaw na yaman? Tama ang sinasabi sa Biblia na money is the root of all evil. Ayon sa 1Timoteo 6:10: Sapagkat ang pag-ibig sa salapi ay ugat ng lahat ng kasamaan. Dahil sa paghahangad na yumaman, may mga taong nalalayo sa pananampalataya at nasasadlak sa maraming kapighatian. Ang dalangin natin ay pag-ibayuhin ang pagpapatupad ng mga layunin kung bakit itinatag ang PCGG. At idagdag natin sa dasal na: 1) huwag masiraan ng loob sa paghahanap ng mga dapat hanapin na yaman na nakaw kung mayroon pa; 2) magbigay ng leksyon sa mga gusto pang magnakaw sa kaban ng bayan; 3) makipag-ugnayan sa lahat ng ahensya ng pamahalaan na may kinalaman sa pagsugpo ng graft and corruption at pati na sa mga NGO, pribadong grupo at mga multi-national agencies na ang pakay ay sugpuin ang kurapsyon sa buong mundo. Marami tayong matututunan sa mga tulad ng Transparency International, Independent Commission Against Corruption, at sa marami pang ibang grupo sa ibat ibang lalawigan o syudad sa Pilipinas. At higit sa lahat, hindi dapat bitawan ang tungkulin ng pamahalaan na bigyan ng closure o pagtatapos, hindi lamang ang paghahanap ng natatagong yaman na ninakaw ng rehimeng Marcos, kundi pati na rin ang paghahanap ng katarungan at pananagutan sa mga krimeng nagawa nito sa taumbayan. Para sa atin, napakahirap intindihin ang mga pangyayaring ito -- na may naatasan na pangunahan ang isang ahensyang maghahanap ng tagong-yaman, tinanggap niya ang tungkulin ngunit ngayon ay ipinapasa na ang kanyang trabaho sa iba.

Joker Arroyo: PCGG has outlived its purpose

MANILA, PhilippinesThe Presidential Commission on Good Government has outlived its purpose and its about time the Department of Justice take over from where it would leave, Sen. Joker Arroyo said on Wednesday. Arroyo was the executive secretary in 1986 when then President Corazon Aquino created the PCGG to chase the alleged multibillion-dollar loot of the Marcoses and their cronies after the dictatorship fell. [Its] mandate has run its course. It is problematic whether the government can gather additional evidence after 26 years. The main task of the PCGGto gather evidence and build up the caseshas been winnowed by time, Arroyo said in a statement. Arroyo said that while recovery of ill-gotten wealth, mandated by Cory Aquinos Executive Order Nos. 1, 2, 14 and 14-A, was a valid advocacy, the PCGGs mandate was time-limited by the very nature of the campaign. It was one of the centerpieces of Corys crusade for good governance. And the campaign has had a good run, Arroyo said. Arroyo added that Congress has also extended the life of the PCGG quite a number of times.

Executive Order No. 1 is Unconstitutional

by Alan F. Paguia

Former Professor of Law Ateneo Law School University of Batangas Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila alanpaguia@yahoo.com

Why is President Noynoy Aquinos Executive Order (EO) No. 1, dated July 30, 2010, CREATING THE PHILIPPINE TRUTH COMMISSION OF 2010 unconstitutional?

Because it appears to violate two (2) constitutional principles. First, the principle of equal protection of the law, and second, the principle of separation of powers.

Violation of equal protection

1. The EO materially provides:

...WHEREAS, corruption in the Philippines has reached very alarming levels, and undermined (sic) the peoples trust and confidence in the Government and its institutions;

WHEREAS, there is an urgent call for the determination of the truth regarding certain reports of large scale graft and corruption in the government and to put a closure to them by the filing of the appropriate cases against those involved, if warranted, and to deter others from committing the evil, restore the peoples faith and confidence in the Government and in their public servants;

WHEREAS, the Presidents battlecry during his campaign for the Presidency in the last elections kung walang corrupt, walang mahirap expresses a solemn pledge that if elected, he would end corruption and the evil it breeds;

WHEREAS, there is a need for a separate body dedicated solely to investigating and finding out the truth concerning the reported cases of graft and corruption during the previous administration, and which will recommend the prosecution of the offenders and secure justice for all;...

... NOW THEREFORE, I, BENIGNO SIMEON AQUINO III, President of the Republic of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by law, do hereby order:

SECTION 1. Creation of a Commission. There is hereby created the PHILIPPINE TRUTH COMMISSION, hereafter referred to as the COMMISSION, which shall primarily seek and find the truth on, and toward this end, investigate reports of graft and corruption of such scale and magnitude that shock and offend the moral and ethical sensibilities of the people, committed by public officers and employees, their co-principals, accomplices and accessories from the private sector, if any, during the previous administration; and thereafter recommend the appropriate action or measure to be taken thereon to ensure that the full measure of justice shall be served without fear or favor.

The Commission shall be composed of a Chairman and four (4) members who will act as an independent collegial body:

SECTION 2. Powers and Functions. The Commission, which shall have all the powers of an investigative body under Section 37, Chapter 9, Book I of the Administrative Code of 1987, is primarily tasked to conduct a thorough fact-finding investigation of reported cases of graft and corruption referred to in Section 1, involving third level public officers and higher, their co-principals, accomplices and accessories from the private sector, if any, during the previous administration and thereafter submit its findings and recommendations to the President, Congress and the Ombudsman...

...SECTION 14. Term of the Commission. The Commission shall accomplish its mission on or before Decmber 31, 2012...

2. In short, the Commission was created to investigate reported cases of graft and corruption during the previous administration, meaning the Gloria Arroyo administration, and not the other previous administrations.

3. The EO singles out the Arroyo administration from the other previous administrations.

4. Does the EO claim there are no reports of graft and corruption during previous administrations other than the Arroyo administration? NO.

5. Does the EO claim there are no reports of large-scale graft and corruption during previous administrations other than the Arroyo administration? NO. In fact, it states corruption in the Philippines has reached very alarming levels, resulting in the need to restore the peoples faith and confidence in the Government.

6. Does the EO claim the very alarming levels of corruption in the Philippines were caused wholly and exclusively by the Arroyo administration? NO.

7. Does the EO claim the previous administrations other than the Arroyo administration, did not contribute to the very alarming levels of corruption in the Philippines? NO.

8. Does the EO claim there is no causal relation between the previous administrations other than the Arroyo administration, on one hand, and the very alarming levels of corruption in the Philippines, on the other? NO.

9. Consequently, it would appear that, compared with the other previous administrations, the Arroyo administration does not have a monopoly of reports of large-scale graft and corruption that need to be investigated. The truth is, all previous administrations share the common predicament.

10. Thus: (a) there appears no substantial distinction between the Arroyo administration and the other previous administrations, and (b) the EO does not apply equally to all members of the class of previous administrations. While the EO commands the Truth Commission to investigate the Arroyo administration, there apppears no command to investigate the OTHER previous administrations. According to jurisprudence, these infirmities would render the EO violative of the equal protection clause (Quinto v. Comelec, G.R. No. 189698, December 1, 2009) and, therefore, VOID from the beginning (Art. 5, CIVIL CODE; Velasco v. Lopez, 1 Phil 720).

Violation of separation of powers

11. Under the Constitution, the essential duty of the Chief Executive is to ensure that the laws be faithfully executed (Sec. 17, Art. VII).

12. What law does EO 1 seek to ensure to be faithfully executed? The Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (RA 3019).

13. What government agency has the constitutional duty to investigate cases of graft and corruption? The independent Office of the Ombudsman (Sec. 5, Art. XI).

14. What is the scope of the Ombudsmans power of investigation? According to the Constitution, it shall: Investigate on its own, or on complaint by any person, any act or ommission of any public official, employee, office or agency, when such act or ommission appears to be illegal, unjust, improper, or inefficient (Sec. 13, subpar. 1, ibid.).

15. Under the EO, the duty of the Truth Commission is to investigate reports of graft and corruption during the previous administration. Under the Constitution, the duty of the Ombudsman is to investigate any act or ommission when such act or ommission appears to be illegal. Is there any substantial difference? NONE. Both laws seek to investigate graft and corruption or illegal acts or ommissions committed by public officials. The Truth Commission is, therefor, a DUPLICATION of the Ombudsman. It is the Chief Executives Ombudsman, as against the Constitutions independent Office of the Ombudsman.

16. The Chief Executive, through EO 1, instead of respecting the SEPARATE power of the independent Office of the Ombudsman to investigate cases of graft and corruption, does the opposite by creating a Truth Commission that will USURP, or ENCROACH upon, the same power to investigate vested by the Constitution exclusively in favor of the Ombudsman. Expired term

17. The Chief Executive either has trust or no trust in the current Ombudsman, Merceditas Gutierrez. In the first case, there would be no need for EO 1. The Ombudsman can do the job of the Truth Commission. In the second case, the question that naturally arises is: WHY? Regardless of the answer, and regardless of the need for a Truth Commission, the answer is the Chief Executive must follow the Rule of Law. If indeed there is a need for an executive Truth Commission outside of the Office of the Ombudsman, then let it be created through an Executive Order that does not violate the Constitution.

18. The Chief Executive appears to ignore, albeit without any apparent reason, the fact that Ombudsman Gutierrezs term of office had expired in 2009. Ombudsman Aniano Desiertos seven-year term from 1995 to 2002 was completed. Ombudsman Simeon Marcelo followed and began his seven-year term from 2002 to 2009, but did not complete the same. He resigned in 2005. To complete Marcelos term, Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez was appointed in his place in 2005. Thus, the latters TENURE was cut short by the expiration of Marcelos TERM in 2009. The Constitution vested Desierto and Marcelo with a TERM of seven (7) years each. Gutierrez had no such term under the law. She only had a TENURE or actual stay in office for the balance of Marcelos term. Gutierrez is, therefore, an overstaying Ombudsman who is acting WITHOUT JURISDICTION.

19. Under the foregoing premises, should the Chief Executive declare the Office of the Ombudsman vacant, and appoint a new one? YES. It is a matter of DUTY under the Constitution.