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EN BANC

SULTAN ALIMBUSAR P. LIMBONA, petitioner, vs. CONTE MANGELIN, SALIC ALI, SALINDATO ALI, PILIMPINAS CONDING, ACMAD TOMAWIS, GERRY TOMAWIS, JESUS ORTIZ, ANTONIO DELA FUENTE, DIEGO PALOMARES, JR., RAUL DAGALANGIT, and BIMBO SINSUAT, respondents. G.R. No. 803 ! F"#$%a$& '8, ! 8

DOCTRINE OF T(E CASE) Decentralization of power, involves an abdication of political power in the favor of local governments units declare to be autonomous. In that case, the autonomous government is free to chart its own destiny and shape its future with minimum intervention from central authorities. FACTS) On March 12, 1 !" petitioner #imbona was elected $pea%er of the &egional #egislative 'ssembly or (atasang )ampoo% of *entral Mindanao. On +ovember 2, 1 !", members of &egional #egislative 'ssembly sans the petitioner #imbona convened in defiance to short recess called for by petitioner as the latter was to attend a congressional committee hearing for Muslim 'ffairs in *ongress. During the convention, having ac,uired ,uorum, members thereof move to declare the $pea%ership of the &egional #egislative 'ssembly vacant, thereby e-pelling petitioner from office. )etitioner #imbona filed petition for in.unction praying that a restraining order or writ of preliminary in.unction be issued en.oining respondents from proceeding with their session to be held on +ovember /, 1 !", and on any day thereafter and that .udgment be rendered declaring the proceedings held by

respondents of their session on +ovember 2, 1 !" as null and void. In view thereof, the .urisdiction of the $upreme *ourt to hear and decide matters over autonomous region was challenged by respondents.

ISSUE0 're the so1called autonomous governments of Mindanao, as they are now constituted, sub.ect to the .urisdiction of the national courts2

(ELD0 'n autonomy is either decentralization of administration or decentralization of power. 'n autonomous government that en.oys autonomy of the latter category 3decentralization of power4 5*O+$6. 31 !"4, art. 7, sec. 1/.8 is sub.ect alone to the decree of the organic act creating it and accepted principles on the effects and limits of 9autonomy.9 On the other hand, an autonomous government of the former class 3decentralization of government4 is, as we noted, under the supervision of the national government acting through the )resident 3and the Department of #ocal :overnment4.
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If the

$angguniang )ampoo% 3of &egion 7II4, then, is autonomous in the latter sense 3decentralization of power4, its acts are, debatably beyond the domain of this *ourt in perhaps the same way that the internal acts, say, of the *ongress of the )hilippines are beyond our .urisdiction. (ut if it is autonomous in the former category only 3decentralization of administration4 it comes unarguably under our .urisdiction. 'n e-amination of the very )residential Decree creating the autonomous governments of Mindanao persuades us that they

were never meant to e-ercise autonomy in the second sense 3decentralization of power4, that is, in which the central government commits an act of self1immolation. )residential Decree +o. 1<1!, in the first place, mandates that 95t8he )resident shall have the power of general supervision and control over 'utonomous &egions.9 ("n*", +" a,,%-" .%$/,d/*0/on. 'nd if we can ma%e an in,uiry in the validity of the e-pulsion in ,uestion, with more reason can we review the petitioner=s removal as $pea%er.