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DIGESTED CASES FOR LGC

GREGO vs. COMELEC


G.R. No. 125955 June 19, 1997
FACTS --- Sec 40 (b) of Republic Act 7160 (the Local Government Code) which took effect on January
1, 1992, disqualifies a person for any elective position on the ground that had been removed from
office as a result of an administrative case.
On October 31, 1981, Basco was removed from his position as Deputy Sheriff upon a finding of serious
misconduct in an administrative complaint.
He ran as a candidate for Councilor, won and assumed office for three terms during the Elections of
January 18, 1988; May 11, 1992 and May 8, 1995. As in the past, respondents right to office was
contested.
On May 13, 1995, petitioner, seeks for the respondents disqualification, pursuant to the above
provision, contending that as long as a candidate was once removed from office due to an
administrative case, regardless of whether it took place during or prior to the effectivity of the Code,
the disqualification applies.
Respondent contends that the petitioner is not entitled to said relief because Section 40 par. b of the
LGC may not be validly applied to persons who were dismissed prior to its effectivity. To do so would
make it ex post facto, bill of attainder, and retroactive legislation which impairs vested rights
ISSUE --- WON Section 40 (b) of Republic Act No. 7160 applies retroactively to those removed from
office before it took effect on January 1, 1992.
HELD --- No. It is a settled issue that Section 40 (b) of Republic Act No. 7160 does not have any
retroactive effect. Laws operate only prospectively and not retroactively.
A statute, despite the generality in its language, must not be so construed as to overreach acts, events
or matters which transpired before its passage: Lex prospicit, non respicit. The law looks forward, not
backward.
MORENO vs. COMELEC
G.R. No. 168550 August 10, 2006
FACTS --- Norma Mejes filed a petition to disqualify Urbano Moreno from running for Punong Barangay
on the ground that the latter was convicted by final judgment of Arbitrary Detention and was
sentenced to suffer imprisonment of 4 months and 1 day to 2 years and 4 months by the RTC. Moreno
filed an answer averring that the petition states no cause of action because he was already granted
probation. Allegedly, following the case of Baclayon v. Mutia, the imposition of the sentence of
imprisonment, as well as the accessory penalties, was thereby suspended. Moreno also argued that
under the Probation Law, the final discharge of the probation shall operate to restore to him all civil
rights lost or suspended as a result of his conviction and to fully discharge his liability for any fine
imposed. The order of the trial court dated December 18, 2000 allegedly terminated his probation and
restored to him all the civil rights he lost as a result of his conviction, including the right to vote and be
voted for in the July 15, 2002 elections.
The Investigating Officer of the Office of the Provincial Election Supervisor of Samar recommended that
Moreno be disqualified from running. The Comelec First Division adopted this recommendation. On
motion for reconsideration filed with the Comelec en banc, the Resolution of the First Division was
affirmed.
In this petition, Moreno argues that the disqualification under Sec. 40(a)1 of the Local Government
Code (LGC) applies only to those who have served their sentence and not to probationers because the
latter do not serve the adjudged sentence. He alleges that he applied for and was granted probation
within the period specified therefore. He never served a day of his sentence as a result. Hence, the
disqualification under the LGC does not apply to him.

ISSUE --- Whether or not Moreno is qualified to run, which is dependent on WON his sentence was
served
HELD --- Morenos sentence was not served, hence he is qualified to run for Punong Barangay.
The resolution of the present controversy depends on the application of the phrase within two (2)
years after serving sentence found in Sec. 40(a) of the LGC.
In Baclayon v. Mutia, the Court declared that an order placing defendant on probation is not a sentence
but is rather, in effect, a suspension of the imposition of sentence. We held that the grant of probation
to petitioner suspended the imposition of the principal penalty of imprisonment, as well as the
accessory penalties of suspension from public office and from the right to follow a profession or calling,
and that of perpetual special disqualification from the right of suffrage. We thus deleted from the order
granting probation the paragraph which required that petitioner refrain from continuing with her
teaching profession.
Applying this doctrine to the instant case, the accessory penalties of suspension from public office,
from the right to follow a profession or calling, and that of perpetual special disqualification from the
right of suffrage, attendant to the penalty of arresto mayor in its maximum period to prision
correccional in its minimum period imposed upon Moreno were similarly suspended upon the grant of
probation.
It appears then that during the period of probation, the probationer is not even disqualified from
running for a public office because the accessory penalty of suspension from public office is put on
hold for the duration of the probation.
Clearly, the period within which a person is under probation cannot be equated with service of the
sentence adjudged. Sec. 4 of the Probation Law specifically provides that the grant of probation
suspends the execution of the sentence. During the period of probation, the probationer does not
serve the penalty imposed upon him by the court but is merely required to comply with all the
conditions prescribed in the probation order.

ABUNDO vs. COMELEC


G.R. No. 201716

January 8, 2013

FACTS --- For four (4) successive regular elections, namely, the 2001, 2004, 2007 and 2010 national
and local elections, Petitioner Abelardo Abundo, Sr. (Abundo) vied for the position of municipal mayor.
In both the 2001 and 2007 runs, he emerged and was proclaimed as the winning mayoralty candidate
and accordingly served the corresponding terms as mayor. In the 2004 electoral derby, however, the
municipal board of canvassers initially proclaimed as winner one Jose Torres (Torres), who, in due time,
performed the functions of the office of mayor. Abundo protested Torres election and proclamation.
Abundo was eventually declared the winner of the 2004 mayoralty electoral contest, paving the way
for his assumption of office starting May 9, 2006 until the end of the 2004-2007 term on June 30, 2007,
or for a period of a little over one year and one month. Then came the May 10, 2010 elections where
Abundo and Torres again opposed each other. When Abundo filed his certificate of candidacy for the
mayoralty seat relative to this electoral contest, Torres sought the formers disqualification to run.
The RTC declared Abundo as ineligible, under the three-term limit rule, to run in the 2010 elections for
the position of, and necessarily to sit as, mayor. In its Resolution, the Commission on Elections
(COMELEC) Second Division affirmed the decision of RTC, which affirmed by COMELEC en banc.
ISSUE --- Whether or not Abundo has consecutively served for three terms.
HELD --- The petition is partly meritorious.
CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: Involuntary Interruption of Service

The consecutiveness of what otherwise would have been Abundos three successive, continuous
mayorship was effectively broken during the 2004- 2007 term when he was initially deprived of title to,
and was veritably disallowed to serve and occupy, an office to which he, after due proceedings, was
eventually declared to have been the rightful choice of the electorate.
The declaration of being the winner in an election protest grants the local elected official the right to
serve the unexpired portion of the term. Verily, while he was declared winner in the protest for the
mayoralty seat for the 2004-2007 term, Abundos full term has been substantially reduced by the
actual service rendered by his opponent (Torres). Hence, there was actual involuntary interruption in
the term of Abundo and he cannot be considered to have served the full 2004-2007 term.
Prior to the finality of the election protest, Abundo did not serve in the mayors office and, in fact, had
no legal right to said position. During the pendency of the election protest, Abundo ceased from
exercising power or authority. Consequently, the period during which Abundo was not serving as mayor
should be considered as a rest period or break in his service because prior to the judgment in the
election protest, it was Abundos opponent, Torres, who was exercising such powers by virtue of the still
then valid proclamation.
Petition is PARTLY GRANTED.

ALDOVINO vs. COMELEC


G.R. No. 184836
December 23, 2009
FACTS --- Lucena City councilor Wilfredo F. Asilo was elected to the said office for three consecutive
terms: 1998-2001, 2001-2004, and 2004-2007. In September 2005, during his third term of office, the
Sandiganbayan issued an order of 90-day preventive suspension against him in relation to a criminal
case. The said suspension order was subsequently lifted by the Court, and Asilo resumed the
performance of the functions of his office.
Asilo then filed his certificate of candidacy for the same position in 2007. His disqualification was
sought by herein petitioners on the ground that he had been elected and had served for three
consecutive terms, in violation of the three-term Constitutional limit.
ISSUE --- WON the suspensive condition interrupts the three-term limitation rule of COMELEC?
RULING --- NO. The preventive suspension of public officials does not interrupt their term for purposes
of the three-term limit rule under the Constitution and the Local Government Code (RA 7160).
The candidacy of Lucena City Councilor Wilfredo F. Asilo for a fourth term in the 2007 elections was in
contravention of the three-term limit rule of Art. X, sec. 8 of the Constitution since his 2004-2007 term
was not interrupted by the preventive suspension imposed on him, the SC granted the petition of
Simon B. Aldovino, Danilo B. Faller, and Ferdinand N. Talabong seeking Asilos disqualification.
Preventive suspension, by its nature, does not involve an effective interruption of service within a
term and should therefore not be a reason to avoid the three-term limitation, held the Court. It noted
that preventive suspension can pose as a threat more potent than the voluntary renunciation that
the Constitution itself disallows to evade the three-term limit as it is easier to undertake and merely
requires an easily fabricated administrative charge that can be dismissed soon after a preventive
suspension has been imposed.

BORJA vs. COMELEC


G.R. No. 133495 September 3, 1998
FACTS --- Private respondent Jose T. Capco, Jr. was elected vice-mayor of Pateros on January 18, 1988
for a term ending June 30, 1992. On September 2, 1989, he became mayor, by operation of law, upon
the death of the incumbent, Cesar Borja. For the next two succeeding elections in 1992 and 1995, he
was again re-elected as Mayor.
On March 27, 1998, private respondent Capco filed a certificate of candidacy for mayor of Pateros
relative to the May 11, 1998 elections. Petitioner Benjamin U. Borja, Jr., who was also a candidate for

mayor, sought Capcos disqualification on the theory that the latter would have already served as
mayor for three consecutive terms by June 30, 1998 and would therefore be ineligible to serve for
another term after that.
The Second Division of the Commission on Elections ruled in favor of petitioner and declared private
respondent Capco disqualified from running for reelection as mayor of Pateros but in the motion for
reconsideration, majority overturned the original decision.
ISSUE --1. w/n Capco has served for three consecutive terms as Mayor
2. w/n Capco can run again for Mayor in the next election
HELD --1. No. Capco was not elected to the office of mayor in the first term but simply found himself
thrust into it by operation of law. Neither had he served the full term because he only
continued the service, interrupted by the death, of the deceased mayor. A textual analysis
supports the ruling of the COMELEC that Art. X, Sec. 8 contemplates service by local officials
for three consecutive full terms as a result of election. It is not enough that an individual has
served three consecutive terms in an elective local officials, he must also have been elected to
the same position for the same number of times before the disqualification can apply.

2. Yes. Although he has already first served as mayor by succession, he has not actually served
three full terms in all for the purpose of applying the three-term limit. The three-term limit shall
apply when these 2 conditions concur: (1) the local official concerned has been elected three
consecutive times; and (2) he has fully served three consecutive terms.