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QUASI JUDICIAL POWER

Syquia vs. Board of Power and Waterworks FACTS: Ruiz, Enriquez and Moses filed 3 separate complaints with Board of Power and Waterworks charging Syquia as administrator of the South Syquia Apartments with the offense of selling electricity without permit or franchise and alleging that Syquia billed them for their electricity consumption in excess of the Meralco rates. In her answer, Syquia questioned the jurisdiction of the Board, saying that she is not engaged in the sale of electric power but merely passes to the apartment tenants as the end-users their legitimate electric current bills in accordance with their lease contracts. ISSUE: Whether or not the Board has jurisdiction HELD: Respondent board as a regulatory board manifestly exceeded its jurisdiction in taking cognizance of and adjudicating the complaints filed by respondents against petitioner. Respondent board acquired no jurisdiction over petitioner's contractual relations with respondents-complainants as her tenants, since petitioner is not engaged in a public service nor in the sale of electricity without permit or franchise. Respondents' complaints against being charged he additional cost of electricity for common facilities used by the tenants (in addition to those registered in their respective apartment meters) give rise to a question that is purely civil in character that is to be adjudged under the applicable provisions of the Civil Code (not the Public Service Act) and not by the respondent regulatory board which has no jurisdiction but by the regular courts of general jurisdiction. Respondent board in resolving the complaints against petitioner and requiring her to absorb the additional rising costs of electricity consumed for the common areas and elevator service even at a resultant loss of P15,000.00 a year arrogated the judicial function. Its orders were beyond its jurisdiction and must be set aside as null and void. Globe Wireless Ltd. vs. Public Service Commission Private respondent Antonio Arnaiz sent a message to Maria Diaz in Spain through the telegraph office of the Bureau of Telecommunications in Dumagete and was transmitted to Manila. The message, however, was not delivered to the addressee. After being informed of said fact, Arnaiz sent a complaint to the Public Service Commissioner a lettercomplaint. In its answer, petitioner denied liability but questioned PSCs jurisdiction over the subject matter. After hearing, the PSC found petitioner responsible for the unsatisfactory service complained of and ordered it to pay a fine. ISSUE: W/N PSC has jurisdiction to discipline and impose fine upon petitioner HELD: NO. The Public Service Act vested in the PSC jurisdiction, supervision and control over all public services and their franchises, equipment and other properties. However, Section 5 of RA 4630, the legislative franchise under which petitioner was operating, limited respondent Commissions jurisdiction over petitioner only to the rate which petitioner may charge the public. The negligence imputed to public respondent had nothing whatsoever to do with the subject matter of very limited jurisdiction of the Commission over petitioner. Philippine Lawyers Association vs. Agrava Respondent Director of the Philippine Patent Office issued a circular announcing an examination schedule for the purpose of

determining who are qualified to practice as patent attorneys before the Philippine Patent Office, the said examination to cover patent law and jurisprudence and the rules of practice before said office. According to said circular, members of the Philippine Bar, engineers and other persons with sufficient scientific and technical training are qualified. Petitioners contend that one who has passed the bar exams and licensed by the Supreme Court to practice law in the Philippines is duly qualified to practice before the said office. On the other hand, respondent Director maintains that the prosecution of patent cases does not involve entirely the practice of law but includes the application of scientific and technical knowledge and training. ISSUE: W/N the appearance before the Philippine Patent Office is included in the practice of law HELD: YES. The practice of law includes such appearance before the Patent Office, the representation of applicants, oppositors, and other persons, and the prosecution of their applications for patent, their oppositions thereto or the enforcement of their rights in patent cases. The practice before the Patent Office involves the interpretation and application of other laws and legal principles. Furthermore, the Director of Patents, exercising as he does judicial or quasi-judicial functions, it is reasonable to hold that a member of the bar, because of his legal knowledge and training, should be allowed to practice before the said office, without further examination or other qualification. GUEVARA VS. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS FACTS: The facts which gave rise to the present contemptuous incident are: The Commission on Elections, on May 4, 1957, after proper negotiations, awarded to the National Shipyards & Steel Corporation (NASSCO), the Acme Steel Mfg. Co., Inc. (ACME), and the Asiatic Steel Mfg. Co., Inc. (ASIATIC), the contracts to manufacture and supply the Commission 12,000, 11,000 and 11,000 ballot boxes at P17.64, P14.00 and P17.00 each, respectively. On May 8, 1957, both the NASSCO and the ASIATIC signed with the Commission on Elections the corresponding contracts thereon. On May 13, 1957, the Commission cancelled the award to the ACME for failure of the latter to sign the contract within the designated time and awarded to the NASSCO and the ASIATIC, one-half each, the 11,000 ballot boxes originally alloted to the ACME. The corresponding contracts thereon were signed on May 16, 1957. Then followed a series of petitions filed by the ACME for the reconsideration of the resolution of the Commission of May 13, 1957. The first of these petitions was filed on May 14, 1957 which, after hearing, was denied by the Commission in its resolution of May 16, 1957. The second petition was filed on May 16, 1957 and was denied on May 17, 1957. The third petition was filed on May 20, 1957, and because of the seriousness of the grounds alleged therein for the annulment of its previous resolutions, the Commission resolved to conduct a formal investigation on the matter ordering the NASSCO and the ASIATIC to file their respective answers. Thereafter, after these corporations had filed their answers, the Commission held a formal hearing thereon on May 24, 1957. On May 28, 1957, the ACME filed a memorandum on the points adduced during the hearing, and on June 4, 1957, the Commission issued its resolution denying the third motion for reconsideration. The article signed by petitioner was published in the June 2, 1957 issue of the Sunday Times, a newspaper of nationwide circulation. ISSUE: The question to be determined is whether the Commission on

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Elections has the power and jurisdiction to conduct contempt proceedings against petitioner with a view to imposing upon him the necessary disciplinary penalty in connection with the publication of an article in the Sunday Times issue of June 2, 1957 which, according to the charge, tended to interfere with and influence said Commission in the adjudication of a controversy then pending determination and to degrade and undermine the function of the Commission and its members in the administration of all laws relative to the conduct of elections. HELD: It would therefore appear that the Commission on Elections not only has the duty to enforce and administer all laws relative to the conduct of elections but the power to try, hear and decide any controversy that may be submitted to it in connection with the elections. And as an incident of this power, it may also punish for contempt in those cases provided for in Rule 64 of the Rules of Court under the same procedure and with the same penalties provided therein. In this sense, the Commission, although it cannot be classified as a court of justice within the meaning of the Constitution (Section 13, Article VIII), for it is merely an independent administrative body (The Nacionalista Party vs. Vera, 85 Phil., 126; 47 Off. Gaz. 2375), may however exercise quasi-judicial functions in so far as controversies that by express provision of the law come under its jurisdiction. As to what questions may come within this category, neither the Constitution nor the Revised Election Code specifies. The former merely provides that it shall come under its jurisdiction, saving those involving the right to vote, all administrative questions affecting elections, including the determination of the number and location of polling places, and the appointment of election inspectors and other election officials, while the latter is silent as to what questions may be brought before it for determination. But it is clear that, to come under its jurisdiction, the questions should be controversial in nature and must refer to the enforcement and administration of all laws relative to the conduct of election. The difficulty lies in drawing the demarcation line between a duty which inherently is administrative in character and a function which is justiciable and which would therefore call for judicial action by the Commission. But this much depends upon the factors that may intervene when a controversy should arise. RULING OF COURT: Wherefore, petition is granted. Respondent Commission is hereby enjoined from proceeding with the contempt case set forth in its resolution of June 20, 1957, without pronouncement as to costs. The preliminary injunction issued by this Court is made permanent. ANG TIBAY vs. THE COURT OF INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS FACTS: Teodoro Toribio owns and operates Ang Tibay a leather company which supplies the Philippine Army. Due to alleged shortage of leather, Toribio caused the layoff of members of National Labor Union Inc. (NLU). NLU averred that Toribios act is not valid as it is not within the Collective Bargaining Agreement. They also alleged that there are two labor unions in Ang Tibay; NLU and National Workers Brotherhood (NWB). They further contend that NWB is dominated by Toribio himself hence he favors it over NLU. NLU prays for a new trial as they were able to come up with new evidence/documents that they were not able to obtain before, as they were inaccessible and they were not able to present it before in the Court of Industrial Relations. ISSUE: Whether or not there has been a due process of law.

HELD: The SC ruled that there should be a new trial in favor of NLU. The Court of Industrial Relations is a special court whose functions are specifically stated in the law of its creation (Commonwealth Act No. 103). It is more an administrative than a part of the integrated judicial system of the nation. It has jurisdiction over the entire Philippines, to consider, investigate, decide, and settle any question, matter controversy or dispute arising between, and/or affecting employers and employees or laborers, and regulate the relations between them, subject to, and in accordance with, the provisions of Commonwealth Act No. 103 (Section 1). In fine, it may appeal to voluntary arbitration in the settlement of industrial disputes; may employ mediation or conciliation for that purpose, or recur to the more effective system of official investigation and compulsory arbitration in order to determine specific controversies between labor and capital industry and in agriculture. There is in reality here a mingling of executive and judicial functions, which is a departure from the rigid doctrine of the separation of governmental powers. The fact, however, that the Court of Industrial Relations may be said to be free from the rigidity of certain procedural requirements does not mean that it can, in justifiable cases before it, entirely ignore or disregard the fundamental and essential requirements of due process in trials and investigations of an administrative character. There are primary rights which must be respected even in proceedings of this character; (1) The right to a hearing, which includes the right of the party interested or affected to present his own case and submit evidence in support thereof. (2) Not only must the party be given an opportunity to present his case and to adduce evidence tending to establish the rights which he asserts but the tribunal must consider the evidence presented. (3) While the duty to deliberate does not impose the obligation to decide right, it does imply a necessity which cannot be disregarded, namely, that of having something to support its decision. A decision with absolutely nothing to support it is a nullity, a place when directly attached. (4) Not only must there be some evidence to support a finding or conclusion but the evidence must be substantial. Substantial evidence is more than a mere scintilla; it means such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion. (5) The decision must be rendered on the evidence presented at the hearing, or at least contained in the record and disclosed to the parties affected. (6) The Court of Industrial Relations or any of its judges, therefore, must act on its or his own independent consideration of the law and facts of the controversy, and not simply accept the views of a subordinate in arriving at a decision. (7) The Court of Industrial Relations should, in all controversial questions, render its decision in such a manner that the parties to the proceeding can know the various issues involved, and the reasons for the decisions rendered. The performance of this duty is inseparable from the authority conferred upon it. In the right of the foregoing fundamental principles, it is sufficient to observe that, except as to the alleged agreement between the Ang Tibay and the National Worker's Brotherhood, the record is barren and does not satisfy the thirst for a factual basis upon which to predicate, in a national way, a conclusion of law.

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The SC further held that that the interest of justice would be better served if the movant is given opportunity to present at the hearing the documents referred to in his motion and such other evidence as may be relevant to the main issue involved. Thus, the motion for a new trial was granted, and the entire record of the case was remanded to the Court of Industrial Relations, with instruction that it reopen the case, receive all such evidence as may be relevant and otherwise proceed in accordance with the requirements set forth hereinabove. Secretary of Justice vs. Judge Lantion Facts: On June 18, 1999, the Department of Justice received from the Department of Foreign Affairs of the United States requesting for the extradition of Mark Jimenez for various crimes in violation of US laws. In compliance with the related municipal law, specifically Presidential Decree No. 1069 Prescribing the Procedure for Extradition of Persons Who Have committed Crimes in a Foreign Country and the established Extradition Treaty Between the Government of the Philippines and the Government of the United States of America, the department proceeded with the designation of a panel of attorneys to conduct a technical evaluation and assessment as provided for in the presidential decree and the treaty. The respondent requested for a copy of the official extradition request as well as the documents and papers submitted therein. The petitioner denied the request as it alleges that such information is confidential in nature and that it is premature to provide such document as the process is not a preliminary investigation but a mere evaluation. Therefore, the constitutional rights of the accused are not yet available. Issue: 1.Whether or not private respondent, Mark B. Jimenez, be granted access to the official extradition request and documents with an opportunity to file a comment on or opposition thereto 2.Whether or not private respondents entitlement to notice and hearing during the evaluation stage of the proceedings constitute a breach of the legal duties of the Philippine Government under the RP-US Extradition Treaty Ruling: The Supreme Court ruled that the private respondent be furnished a copy of the extradition request and its supporting papers and to give him a reasonable period of time within which to file his comment with supporting evidence. In this case, there exists a clear conflict between the obligation of the Philippine Government to comply with the provisions of the treaty and its equally significant role of protection of its citizens of its right of due process. The processes outlined in the treaty and in the presidential decree already pose an impending threat to a prospective extraditees liberty as early as the evaluation stage. It is not an imagined threat to his liberty, but a very imminent one. On the other hand, granting due process to the extradition case causes delay in the process.The rule of pacta sunt servanda, one of the oldest and most fundamental maxims of international law, requires the parties to a treaty to keep their agreement therein in good faith. The doctrine of incorporation is applied whenever municipal tribunals are confronted with situations in which there appears to be a conflict between a rule of international law and the provisions of the constitution or statute of a local state. Efforts should be done to harmonize them. In a situation, however, where the conflict is irreconcilable and a choice has to be made between a rule of international law and municipal law, jurisprudence dictates that municipal law should be upheld by the municipal courts. The doctrine of incorporation decrees that rules of international law are given equal standing, but are not superior to, national legislative enactments.In this case, there is no conflict between international law and municipal law. The United States and the

Philippines share a mutual concern about the suppression and punishment of crime in their respective jurisdictions. At the same time, both States accord common due process protection to their respective citizens. In fact, neither the Treaty nor the Extradition Law precludes the rights of due process from a prospective extradite.