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TAADA VS.

TUVERA
136 SCRA 27 (April 24, 1985)
Publication in the Official Gazette (Enforceability of
a Statute)

may be bound by law, he must first be officially and


specifically informed of its contents. The Court
declared that presidential issuances of general
application which have not been published have no
force and effect.

FACTS:
TAADA VS. TUVERA
Invoking the right of the people to be informed on
matters of public concern as well as the principle
that laws to be valid and enforceable must be
published in the Official Gazette, petitioners filed for
writ of mandamus to compel respondent public
officials to publish and/or cause to publish various
presidential decrees, letters of instructions, general
orders, proclamations, executive orders, letters of
implementations and administrative orders.
The Solicitor General, representing the
respondents, moved for the dismissal of the case,
contending that petitioners have no legal
personality to bring the instant petition.

146 SCRA 446 (December 29, 1986)


FACTS:
This is a motion for reconsideration of the decision
promulgated on April 24, 1985. Respondent argued
that while publication was necessary as a rule, it
was not so when it was otherwise as when the
decrees themselves declared that they were to
become effective immediately upon their approval.
ISSUES:

ISSUE:
Whether or not publication in the Official Gazette is
required before any law or statute becomes valid
and enforceable.

1. Whether or not a distinction be made between


laws of general applicability and laws which are not
as to their publication;
2. Whether or not a publication shall be made in
publications of general circulation.

HELD:

HELD:

Art. 2 of the Civil Code does not preclude the


requirement of publication in the Official Gazette,
even if the law itself provides for the date of its
effectivity. The clear object of this provision is to
give the general public adequate notice of the
various laws which are to regulate their actions and
conduct as citizens. Without such notice and
publication, there would be no basis for the
application of the maxim ignoratia legis nominem
excusat. It would be the height of injustive to punish
or otherwise burden a citizen for the transgression
of a law which he had no notice whatsoever, not
even a constructive one.

The clause unless it is otherwise provided refers


to the date of effectivity and not to the requirement
of publication itself, which cannot in any event be
omitted. This clause does not mean that the
legislature may make the law effective immediately
upon approval, or in any other date, without its
previous publication.

The very first clause of Section 1 of CA 638 reads:


there shall be published in the Official Gazette.
The word shall therein imposes upon respondent
officials an imperative duty. That duty must be
enforced if the constitutional right of the people to
be informed on matter of public concern is to be
given substance and validity.
The publication of presidential issuances of public
nature or of general applicability is a requirement of
due process. It is a rule of law that before a person

Laws should refer to all laws and not only to those


of general application, for strictly speaking, all laws
relate to the people in general albeit there are some
that do not apply to them directly. A law without any
bearing on the public would be invalid as an
intrusion of privacy or as class legislation or as an
ultra vires act of the legislature. To be valid, the law
must invariably affect the public interest eve if it
might be directly applicable only to one individual,
or some of the people only, and not to the public as
a whole.
All statutes, including those of local application and
private laws, shall be published as a condition for
their effectivity, which shall begin 15 days after
publication unless a different effectivity date is fixed
by the legislature.

Publication must be in full or it is no publication at


all, since its purpose is to inform the public of the
content of the law.
Article 2 of the Civil Code provides that publication
of laws must be made in the Official Gazette, and
not elsewhere, as a requirement for their effectivity.
The Supreme Court is not called upon to rule upon
the wisdom of a law or to repeal or modify it if it
finds it impractical.
The publication must be made forthwith, or at least
as soon as possible.
J. Cruz:
Laws must come out in the open in the clear light of
the sun instead of skulking in the shadows with
their dark, deep secrets. Mysterious
pronouncements and rumored rules cannot be
recognized as binding unless their existence and
contents are confirmed by a valid publication
intended to make full disclosure and give proper
notice to the people. The furtive law is like a
scabbarded saber that cannot faint, parry or cut
unless the naked blade is drawn.

G.R. No. 170488


CMTC INTERNATIONAL MARKETING
CORPORATION, vs. BHAGIS INTERNATIONAL
TRADING CORPORATION
Facts
Before this Court is a Petition for Review
on Certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court
assailing the Resolutions dated August 19,
20051 and November 15, 2005 of the Former
Special Twelfth Division of the Court of Appeals in
CA-G.R. CV No. 84742.
Petitioner instituted a Complaint for Unfair
Competition and/or Copyright Infringement and
Claim for Damages with Prayer for Temporary
Restraining Order and Writ of Preliminary Injunction
against respondent before the Regional Trial Court
of Makati (trial court).
On February 14, 2005, the trial court rendered a
Decision4 dismissing the complaint filed by
petitioner.
After receiving a copy of the trial courts Decision,
petitioner seasonably filed a Notice of Appeal
before the Court of Appeals (appellate court) on
March 4, 2005.
Thereafter, the appellate court issued a Notice to
File the Appellants Brief on May 20, 2005, which
was received by the law office representing
petitioner on May 30, 2005, stating as follows:
Pursuant to Rule 44, Sec. 7 of the 1997 Rules of
Civil Procedure you are hereby required to file with
this Court within forty-five (45) days from receipt of
this notice, SEVEN (7) legibly typewritten,
mimeographed or printed copies of the Appellants
Brief with legible copies of the assailed decision of
the Trial Court and proof of service of two copies
upon the appellee/s.
However, despite said notice, petitioner failed to file
its appellants brief timely. Hence, on August 19,
2005, the appellate court issued a Resolution
dismissing the appeal filed by petitioner.
Upon receipt of the order of dismissal, petitioner
filed its Motion for Reconsideration with Motion to

Admit Appellants Brief,9 which was filed forty-two


(42) days late from the date of its expiration on July
15, 2005.
On November 15, 2005, the appellate court denied
petitioners Motion for Reconsideration with Motion
to Admit Appellants Brief. It ruled that one of the
grounds by which the Court of Appeals may, on its
own motion or that of the appellee, dismiss the
appeal is the failure on the part of the appellant to
serve and file the required number of copies of his
brief within the time prescribed by the Rules of
Court.
Accordingly, petitioner filed a petition for review
on certiorari before this Court questioning the
August 19, 2005 and November 15, 2005
Resolutions of the appellate court.
Simply, the issue to be resolved is the propriety of
the dismissal of petitioners appeal for its failure to
file the appellants brief within the reglementary
period.
The Court finds merit in the instant petition.
Time and again, this Court has emphasized that
procedural rules should be treated with utmost
respect and due regard, since they are designed to
facilitate the adjudication of cases to remedy the
worsening problem of delay in the resolution of rival
claims and in the administration of justice. From
time to time, however, we have recognized
exceptions to the Rules, but only for the most
compelling reasons where stubborn obedience to
the Rules would defeat rather than serve the ends
of justice.
In Obut v. Court of Appeals, this Court reiterated
that it "cannot look with favor on a course of action
which would place the administration of justice in a
straightjacket, for then the result would be a poor
kind of justice if there would be justice at all. Verily,
judicial orders are issued to be obeyed,
nonetheless a non-compliance is to be dealt with as
the circumstances attending the case may warrant.
What should guide judicial action is the principle
that a party-litigant if to be given the fullest
opportunity to establish the merits of his complaint
of defense rather than for him to lose life, liberty,
honor or property on technicalities."

The same principle was highlighted in Philippine


National Bank and Development Bank of the
Philippines v. Philippine Milling Company,
Incorporated, et al. where the Court ruled that even
if an appellant failed to file a motion for extension of
time to file his brief on or before the expiration of
the reglementary period, the Court of Appeals does
not necessarily lose jurisdiction to hear and decide
the appealed case, and that the Court of Appeals
has discretion to dismiss or not to dismiss
appellants appeal, which discretion must be a
sound one to be exercised in accordance with the
tenets of justice and fair play having in mind the
circumstances obtaining in each case.
Ergo, where strong considerations of substantive
justice are manifest in the petition, the strict
application of the rules of procedure may be
relaxed, in the exercise of its equity jurisdiction.
Thus, a rigid application of the rules of procedure
will not be entertained if it will obstruct rather than
serve the broader interests of justice in the light of
the prevailing circumstances in the case under
consideration.
In the instant case, it is apparent that there is a
strong desire to file an appellants brief on
petitioners part.
When petitioner filed its motion attaching therewith
its appellants brief, there was a clear intention on
the part of petitioner not to abandon his appeal. As
a matter of fact, were it not for its counsels act of
inadvertently misplacing the Notice to File Brief in
another file, petitioner could have seasonably filed
its appellants brief as its counsel had already
prepared the same even way before the receipt of
the Notice to File Brief.
It bears stressing at this point then that the rule,
which states that the mistakes of counsel binds the
client, may not be strictly followed where
observance of it would result in outright deprivation
of the clients liberty or property, or where the
interest of justice so requires. In rendering justice,
procedural infirmities take a backseat against
substantive rights of litigants. Corollarily, if the strict
application of the rules would tend to frustrate
rather than promote justice, this Court is not without
power to exercise its judicial discretion in relaxing
the rules of procedure.16

Also, it must be stressed that petitioner had no


participatory negligence in the dismissal of its
appeal. Hence, the ensuing dismissal of its appeal
was completely attributable to the gross negligence
of its counsel. For said reason, the Court is not
averse to suspending its own rules in the pursuit of
justice. Where reckless or gross negligence of
counsel deprives the client of due process of law, or
when the interests of justice so require, relief is
accorded to the client who suffered by reason of
the lawyers gross or palpable mistake or
negligence.
GRANTED.

Velasco vs. Villegas [G.R. No. L-24153 (120


SCRA), February 14, 1983]

(1) To impose payment of license fees for


engaging in the businessof massage clinics, and;

Post under case digests, Political Law at Sunday,


February 26, 2012 Posted by Schizophrenic Mind
Facts: Petitioners herein are members of the Sta.

(2) To forestall possible immorality which might

Cruz Barbershop Association. This is an appeal

grow from the construction of a separate room for

from the lower court's(LC) order dismissing their

massaging customers.

suit for declatory relief. They are challenging the


constitutionality of Ord. No. 4964. They contend
that it amounts to deprivation of properties and their

This Court has been most liberal in sustaining

means of livelihood without dueprocess of law.

ordinances based onthe general welfare clause.


And for that reason, the petitioners rights were not

The assailed ordinance is worded thus: "It shall be


prohibited for any operator of any barber shop to
conduct the business of massaging customers or
other persons in any adjacent room or rooms of
saidbarber shop, or in any room or rooms within the
same building where the barber shop is located as
long as the operator of thebarber shop and the
room where massaging is conducted is the same
person."
Respondent in its reply, said that the Ordinance No.
4964 is constitutional and such is just an exercise
of the state's inherent power (police power).
Issue: Whether or not the assailed Ordinance
violated the petitioner's right to property and their
means of livelihood.
Held: Ordinance

is

Constitutional.

Petition

is

dismissed, LC decision affirmed.


Enactment of such (Ordinance) is a valid exercise
of Police Power.
The objectives of the Ordinance are:

violated and

they are not

dueprocess of law.

deprived

of

the

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES VS. BENJAMIN


SORIA
G.R. No. 179031 ; 14 November 2012

only one sending his children to school since his


wife already neglected them and seldom comes
home.

PONENTE: Del Castillo

ISSUE:

SUBJECT:Rape

Whether or not the allegations of the accused is


credible to cast a reasonable doubt which would

FACTS:

warrant his acquittal

Version of the Prosecution:

HELD:

The victim, AAA, is the daughter of the accused. On

Rape can now be committed either through

February 26, 2000, AAA and her siblings enjoyed

sexual intercourse or by sexual assault. Rape

the spaghetti their father brought home for

under paragraph 1 of Article 266-A is referred to as

merienda. After eating, AAA went to the bedroom to

rape through sexual intercourse. Carnal knowledge

rest.

entered the

is the central element and it must be proven

room and positioned himself on top of AAA, took off

beyond reasonable doubt. On the other hand, rape

her clothes and inserted his penis into her vagina.

under paragraph 2 of Article 266-A is commonly

AAA felt intense pain from her breast down to her

known as rape by sexual assault. The perpetrator

vagina and thus told her father that it was painful.

commits this kind of rape by inserting his penis into

At that point, appellant apologized to his daughter,

another persons mouth or anal orifice, or any

stood up, and left the room. The whole incident was

instrument or object into the genital or anal orifice

witnessed by AAAs brother, BBB. The pain

of another person.

Thereafter,

appellant

also

persisted until AAAs vagina started to bleed. She


The

thus told her aunt about it and they proceeded to a

RTC

and

the

CA

found the

hospital for treatment. Her mother was also

accused guilty of rape through sexual intercourse

immediately informed of her ordeal. AAA was taken

but It is evident from the testimony of AAA that she

into the custody of the Department of Social

was unsure whether it was indeed appellants penis

Welfare and Development.

which touched her labia and entered her organ.


AAA stated that she only knew that it was the bird

Version of the Defense:

of her father which was inserted into her vagina


after being told by her brother BBB. Clearly, AAA

Appellant admitted that he was at home on the day

has no personal knowledge that it was appellants

and time of AAAs alleged rape but denied

penis which touched her labia and inserted into

committing the same. Instead, he claimed that the

her vagina. Hence, it would be erroneous to

filing of the rape case against him was instigated by

conclude that there was penile contact based solely

his wife, whom he confronted about her illicit affair

on the declaration of AAAs brother, BBB, which

with a man residing in their community. According

declaration was hearsay due to BBBs failure to

to appellant, he could not have molested AAA

testify.

because he treated her well. In fact, he was the

The court however found it inconsequential that


AAA could not specifically identify the particular
instrument

or

object

that

was

inserted into

her genital. What is important and relevant is that


indeed something was inserted into her vagina.
Moreover, the prosecution satisfactorily established
that appellant accomplished the act of sexual
assault

through

his

moral

ascendancy

and influence over AAA which substituted for


violence and intimidation. Thus, there is no doubt
that appellant raped AAA by sexual assault.
It is also improbable for appellants wife to have
dared encourage their daughter AAA to file the
charges

publicly

expose

the

dishonor

of the

family unless the rape was indeed committed.


Accused is found guilty beyond reasonable doubt
for the crime of rape by sexual assault and is also
ordered to pay AAA civil indemnity and damages.

G.R. No. 199082 : September 18, 2012


JOSE
MIGUEL
T.
ARROYO, Petitioner,
v. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE; COMMISSION
ON ELECTIONS; HON. LEILA DE LIMA, in her
capacity as Secretary of the Department of
Justice; HON. SIXTO BRILLANTES, JR., in his
capacity as Chairperson of the Commission on
Elections; and the JOINT DOJ-COMELEC
PRELIMINARY INVESTIGATION COMMITTEE
and FACT-FINDING TEAM, Respondents.
FACTS:
The Comelec issued
Resolution
No.
9266
approving the creation of a joint committee with the
Department of Justice (DOJ), which shall conduct
preliminary investigation on the alleged election
offenses and anomalies committed during the 2004
and 2007 elections.
The Comelec and the DOJ issued Joint Order No.
001-2011 creating and constituting a Joint
Committee and Fact-Finding Team on the 2004 and
2007 National Elections electoral fraud and
manipulation cases composed of officials from the
DOJ and the Comelec. In its initial report, the FactFinding Team concluded that manipulation of the
results in the May 14, 2007 senatorial elections in
the
provinces
of
North
and
South Cotabato and Maguindanao were
indeed
perpetrated. The Fact-Finding Team recommended
that herein petitioners Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
(GMA), et al. to be subjected to preliminary
investigation for electoral sabotage.
After the preliminary investigation, the COMELEC
en banc adopted a resolution ordering that
information/s for the crime of electoral sabotage be
filed against GMA, et al. while that the charges
against Jose Miguel Arroyo, among others, should
be dismissed for insufficiency of evidence.
Consequently, GMA, et al. assail the validity of the
creation of COMELEC-DOJ Joint Panel and of Joint
Order No. 001-2011 before the Supreme Court.
ISSUES:
Whether or not the creation of COMELEC-DOJ
Joint Panel is valid?

Whether or not Joint Order No. 001-2011 violates the


equal protection clause?
HELD: Petitions are DISMISSED.
FIRST ISSUE: The creation of COMELECDOJ Joint Panel is valid.
POLITICAL LAW: powers of COMELEC
Section 2, Article IX-C of the 1987 Constitution
enumerates the powers and functions of
the Comelec. The grant to the Comelec of the
power to investigate and prosecute election
offenses as an adjunct to the enforcement and
administration of all election laws is intended to
enable the Comelec to effectively insure to the
people the free, orderly, and honest conduct of
elections. The constitutional grant of prosecutorial
power in the Comelec was reflected in Section 265
of Batas Pambansa Blg. 881, otherwise known as
the Omnibus Election Code.
Under the above provision of law, the power to
conduct preliminary investigation is vested
exclusively with the Comelec. The latter, however,
was given by the same provision of law the
authority to avail itself of the assistance of other
prosecuting arms of the government. Thus, under
the Omnibus Election Code, while the exclusive
jurisdiction to conduct preliminary investigation had
been lodged with the Comelec, the prosecutors had
been
conducting
preliminary
investigations
pursuant to the continuing delegated authority
given by the Comelec.
Thus, Comelec Resolution No. 9266, approving the
creation of the Joint Committee and Fact-Finding
Team, should be viewed not as an abdication of the
constitutional bodys independence but as a means
to fulfill its duty of ensuring the prompt investigation
and prosecution of election offenses as an adjunct
of its mandate of ensuring a free, orderly, honest,
peaceful and credible elections.
SECOND ISSUE: Joint Order No. 001-2011 does
not violate the equal protection clause.
CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: equal protection
Petitioners claim that the creation of the Joint
Committee and Fact-Finding Team is in violation of

the equal protection clause of the Constitution


because its sole purpose is the investigation and
prosecution of certain persons and incidents. They
insist that the Joint Panel was created to target only
the Arroyo Administration as well as public officials
linked to the Arroyo Administration.
While GMA and Mike Arroyo were among those
subjected to preliminary investigation, not all
respondents therein were linked to GMA as there
were public officers who were investigated upon in
connection with their acts in the performance of
their official duties. Private individuals were also
subjected to the investigation by the Joint
Committee.
The equal protection guarantee exists to prevent
undue favor or privilege. It is intended to eliminate
discrimination and oppression based on inequality.
Recognizing the existence of real differences
among men, it does not demand absolute equality.
It merely requires that all persons under like
circumstances and conditions shall be treated alike
both as to privileges conferred and liabilities
enforced.
Petitions are DISMISSED.

Park Hotel vs. Soriano


2012-09-10 | G.R. No. 171118
FACTS:
Soriano was initially hired by Park Hotel but was
transferred to Burgos Corporation. Gonzales and
Badilla were employees of Burgos Corporation.
Burgos is a sister company of Park Hotel. Harbutt
and Percy are the General Manager and owner,
respectively, of Park Hotel. Percy, Harbutt and Atty.
Roberto Enriquez are also the officers and
stockholders of Burgos Corporation. Soriano,
Gonzales and Badilla were dismissed from work for
allegedly stealing company properties. As a result,
respondents filed complaints for illegal dismissal,
unfair labor practice, before the Labor Arbiter (LA).
In their complaints, respondents alleged that the
real reason for their dismissal was that they were
organizing a union for the company's employees.
ISSUE:
Whether or not corporate officers are solidarily and
personally liable in a case for illegal dismissal and
unfair labor practice
HELD:
A corporation, being a juridical entity, may act only
through its directors, officers and employees.
Obligations incurred by them, while acting as
corporate agents, are not their personal liability but
the direct accountability of the corporation they
represent. However, corporate officers may be
deemed solidarily liable with the corporation for the
termination of employees if they acted with malice
or bad faith. In the present case, the lower tribunals
unanimously found that Percy and Harbutt, in their
capacity as corporate officers of Burgos, acted
maliciously in terminating the services of
respondents without any valid ground and in order
to suppress their right to self-organization. Section
31 of the Corporation Code makes a director
personally liable for corporate debts if he willfully
and knowingly votes for or assents to patently
unlawful acts of the corporation. It also makes a
director personally liable if he is guilty of gross
negligence or bad faith in directing the affairs of the
corporation. Thus, Percy and Harbutt, having acted

in bad faith in directing the affairs of Burgos, are


jointly and severally liable with the latter for
respondents' dismissal.

G.R. No. 196231

September 4, 2012

EMILIO A. GONZALES III, vs.OFFICE OF THE


PRESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES, acting
through and represented by EXECUTIVE
SECRETARY PAQUITO N. OCHOA, JR
x-----------------------x
G.R. No. 196232
WENDELL BARRERAS-SULIT,
OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT.

Petitioner,

vs.

PERLAS-BERNABE, J.:

These two petitions have been because they raise


a common thread of issues relating to the
President's exercise of the power to remove from
office herein petitioners who claim the protective
cloak of independence of the constitutionallycreated office to which they belong - the Office of
the Ombudsman.

The cases, G.R. No. 196231 and G.R. No. 196232


primarily seeks to declare as unconstitutional
Section 8(2) of Republic Act (R.A.) No. 6770,
otherwise known as the Ombudsman Act of
1989, which gives the President the power to
dismiss a Deputy Ombudsman of the Office of
the Ombudsman.
FACTS: G.R. No. 196231: A formal charge for
Grave Misconduct (robbery, grave threats, robbery
extortion and physical injuries) was filed before
PNP-NCR against Manila Police District Senior
Inspector (P/S Insp.) Rolando Mendoza and four
others. Private complainant, Christian M. Kalaw,
before the Office of the City Prosecutor, filed a
similar charge. While said cases were still pending,
the Office of the Regional Director of the National
Police Commission (NPC) turned over, upon the
request of petitioner Gonzales III, all relevant
documents and evidence in relation to said case to
the Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for
appropriate
administrative
adjudication.
Subsequently a case for Grave Misconduct was

lodged against P/S Insp. Rolando Mendoza and his


fellow police officers in the Office of the
Ombudsman. Meanwhile, the case filed before the
Office of the city Prosecutor was dismissed upon a
finding that the material allegations made by the
complainant had not been substantiated "by any
evidence at all to warrant the indictment of
respondents of the offenses charged." Similarly, the
Internal Affairs Service of the PNP issued a
Resolution recommending the dismissal without
prejudice of the administrative case against the
same police officers, for failure of the complainant
to appear in three (3) consecutive hearings despite
due notice. However, upon the recommendation of
petitioner Gonzales III, a Decision finding P/S Insp.
Rolando Mendoza and his fellow police officers
guilty of Grave Misconduct was approved by the
Ombudsman. Mendoza and his colleagues filed for
a motion for reconsideration which was forwarded
to Ombudsman Gutierrez for final approval, in
whose office it remained pending for final review
and action when P/S Insp. Mendoza hijacked a
bus-load of foreign tourists on that fateful day of
August 23, 2010 in a desperate attempt to have
himself reinstated in the police service.
In the aftermath of the hostage-taking incident,
which ended in the tragic murder of eight
HongKong Chinese nationals, the injury of seven
others and the death of P/S Insp. Rolando
Mendoza, a public outcry against the blundering of
government officials prompted the creation of the
Incident Investigation and Review Committee
(IIRC). It was tasked to determine accountability for
the incident through the conduct of public hearings
and executive sessions. The IIRC found Deputy
Ombudsman Gonzales committed serious and
inexcusable negligence and gross violation of
their own rules of procedure by allowing
Mendoza's motion for reconsideration to
languish for more than nine (9) months without
any justification, in violation of the Ombudsman
prescribed rules to resolve motions for
reconsideration in administrative disciplinary
cases within five (5) days from submission. The
inaction is gross, considering there is no opposition
thereto. The prolonged inaction precipitated the
desperate resort to hostage-taking. Petitioner was
dismissed from service. Hence the petition.

G.R. No. 196232: Acting Deputy Special


Prosecutor of the Office of the Ombudsman
charged Major General Carlos F. Garcia, his wife
Clarita D. Garcia, their sons Ian Carl Garcia, Juan
Paulo Garcia and Timothy Mark Garcia and several
unknown persons with Plunder and Money
Laundering before the Sandiganbayan. The
Sandiganbayan denied Major General Garcia's
urgent petition for bail holding that strong
prosecution evidence militated against the grant of
bail. However, the government, represented by
petitioner, Special Prosecutor Barreras-Sulit and
sought the Sandiganbayan's approval of a Plea
Bargaining Agreement ("PLEBARA") entered into
with the accused. The Sandiganbayan issued a
Resolution finding the change of plea warranted
and the PLEBARA compliant with jurisprudential
guidelines.
Outraged by the backroom deal that could allow
Major General Garcia to get off the hook with
nothing but a slap on the hand notwithstanding
the prosecution's apparently strong evidence of
his culpability for serious public offenses, the
House of Representatives' Committee on
Justice conducted public hearings on the
PLEBARA. At the conclusion of these public
hearings, the Committee on Justice passed and
adopted
Committee
Resolution
No.
3,
recommending to the President the dismissal of
petitioner Barreras-Sulit from the service and
the filing of appropriate charges against her
Deputies and Assistants before the appropriate
government office for having committed acts
and/or omissions tantamount to culpable
violations of the Constitution and betrayal of
public trust, which are violations under the
Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and
grounds for removal from office under the
Ombudsman Act. Hence the petition.
ISSUE: Whether the Office of the President has
jurisdiction
to
exercise
administrative
disciplinary power over a Deputy Ombudsman
and a Special Prosecutor who belong to the
constitutionally-created
Office
of
the
Ombudsman.

HELD: YES. The Ombudsman's administrative


disciplinary power over a DeputyOmbudsman
and Special Prosecutor is not exclusive. While
the
Ombudsman's
authority
to
discipline
administratively is extensive and covers all
government officials, whether appointive or
elective, with the exception only of those officials
removable by impeachment such authority is by no
means exclusive. Petitioners cannot insist that they
should be solely and directly subject to the
disciplinary authority of the Ombudsman. For, while
Section 21 of R.A. 6770 declares the
Ombudsman's disciplinary authority over all
government officials, Section 8(2), on the other
hand, grants the President express power of
removal over a Deputy Ombudsman and a Special
Prosecutor. A harmonious construction of these two
apparently conflicting provisions in R.A. No. 6770
leads to the inevitable conclusion that Congress
had intended the Ombudsman and the President to
exercise concurrent disciplinary jurisdiction over
petitioners as Deputy Ombudsman and Special
Prosecutor, respectively. Indubitably, the manifest
intent of Congress in enacting both provisions Section 8(2) and Section 21 - in the same Organic
Act was to provide for an external authority, through
the person of the President, that would exercise the
power of administrative discipline over the Deputy
Ombudsman and Special Prosecutor without in the
least diminishing the constitutional and plenary
authority of the Ombudsman over all government
officials and employees. Such legislative design is
simply a measure of "check and balance" intended
to address the lawmakers' real and valid concern
that the Ombudsman and his Deputy may try to
protect one another from administrative liabilities.
By granting express statutorypower to the
President to removea Deputy Ombudsman and
aSpecial Prosecutor, Congressmerely filled an
obvious gap inthe law. While the removal of the
Ombudsman himself is also expressly provided for
in the Constitution, which is by impeachment under
Section 2 of the same Article, there is, however, no
constitutional provision similarly dealing with the
removal from office of a Deputy Ombudsman, or a
Special Prosecutor, for that matter. By enacting
Section 8(2) of R.A. 6770, Congress simply filled a
gap in the law without running afoul of any

provision in the Constitution or existing statutes. In


fact, the Constitution itself, under Section 2,
authorizes Congress to provide for the removal of
all other public officers, including the Deputy
Ombudsman and Special Prosecutor, who are not
subject to impeachment.
The Power of the President toRemove a Deputy
Ombudsmanand a Special Prosecutor isImplied
from his Power toAppoint. In giving the President
the power to remove a Deputy Ombudsman and
Special Prosecutor, Congress simply laid down in
express terms an authority that is already implied
from the President's constitutional authority to
appoint the aforesaid officials in the Office of the
Ombudsman. The integrity and effectiveness of the
Deputy Ombudsman for the MOLEO as a military
watchdog looking into abuses and irregularities that
affect the general morale and professionalism in
the military is certainly of primordial importance in
relation to the President's own role as Commanderin-Chief of the Armed Forces. It would not be
incongruous for Congress, therefore, to grant the
President concurrent disciplinary authority over the
Deputy Ombudsman for the military and other law
enforcement offices.
Granting the President the Powerto Remove a
Deputy Ombudsmandoes not Diminish the
Independence of the Office of theOmbudsman.
he claim that Section 8(2) of R.A. No. 6770 granting
the President the power to remove a Deputy
Ombudsman from office totally frustrates, if not
resultantly negates the independence of the Office
of the Ombudsman is tenuous. The independence
which the Office of the Ombudsman is vested with
was intended to free it from political considerations
in pursuing its constitutional mandate to be a
protector of the people. What the Constitution
secures for the Office of the Ombudsman is,
essentially, political independence. This means
nothing more than that "the terms of office, the
salary, the appointments and discipline of all
persons under the office" are "reasonably insulated
from the whims of politicians."
Petitioner Gonzales may not beremoved from
office where thequestioned acts, falling short of
constitutional standards, do notconstitute

betrayal of public trust. Petitioner's act of


directing the PNP-IAS to endorse P/S Insp.
Mendoza's case to the Ombudsman without citing
any reason therefor cannot, by itself, be considered
a manifestation of his undue interest in the case
that would amount to wrongful or unlawful conduct.
After all, taking cognizance of cases upon the
request of concerned agencies or private parties is
part and parcel of the constitutional mandate of the
Office of the Ombudsman to be the "champion of
the people." The factual circumstances that the
case was turned over to the Office of the
Ombudsman upon petitioner's request; that
administrative liability was pronounced against P/S
Insp. Mendoza even without the private
complainant verifying the truth of his statements;
that the decision was immediately implemented; or
that the motion for reconsideration thereof
remained pending for more than nine months
cannot be simply taken as evidence of petitioner's
undue interest in the case considering the lack of
evidence of any personal grudge, social ties or
business affiliation with any of the parties to the
case that could have impelled him to act as he did.
There was likewise no evidence at all of any bribery
that took place, or of any corrupt intention or
questionable motivation. The OP's pronouncement
of administrative accountability against petitioner
and the imposition upon him of the corresponding
penalty of dismissal must be reversed and set
aside, as the findings of neglect of duty or
misconduct in office do not amount to a betrayal of
public trust. Hence, the President, while he may be
vested with authority, cannot order the removal of
petitioner as Deputy Ombudsman, there being no
intentional wrongdoing of the grave and serious
kind amounting to a betrayal of public trust.
The Office of the President is vestedwith
statutory authority to proceedadministratively
against petitionerBarreras-Sulit to determine
theexistence of any of the grounds forher
removal from office as providedfor under the
Constitution and theOmbudsman Act.
WHEREFORE, in G.R. No. 196231, the decision of
the Office of the President in OP Case No. 10-J460 is REVERSED and SET ASIDE. Petitioner
Emilio A. Gonzales III is ordered REINSTATED with

payment of backwages corresponding to the period


of suspension effective immediately, even as the
Office of the Ombudsman is directed to proceed
with the investigation in connection with the above
case against petitioner. In G.R. No. 196232, We
AFFIRM the continuation of OP-DC Case No. 11-B003 against Special Prosecutor Wendell BarrerasSulit for alleged acts and omissions tantamount to
culpable violation of the Constitution and a betrayal
of public trust, in accordance with Section 8(2) of
the Ombudsman Act of 1989.
The challenge to the constitutionality of Section
8(2) of the Ombudsman Act is hereby DENIED.

TAXICAB OPERATORS OF METRO MANILA,


INC vs. THE BOARD OF
TRANSPORTATION (1982)
MELENCIO-HERRERA, J.:

On October 10, 1977, BOT issued Memorandum


Circular No. 77-42 that aimed to phase out and
replace old dilapidated taxis to insure only safe
comfortable units are used by the public, to
respond to complaints by metro manila residents
regarding the old dilapidated taxis, to make the
commuting public more comfortable, have more
convenience and safety. 6 years is enough for taxi
operators to get back cost of unit plus profits. no
car beyond 6 years can still be operated as taxi.
Taxis model 1971 were considered withdrawn on
Dec 31, 1977 applied it to succeeding years just
add one year to both dates. they had to surrender
the expired taxis plates to the BoT for turnover to
Land Transpo Commission.
Pursuant to the above BOT circular, respondent
Director of the Bureau of Land Transportation (BLT)
issued Implementing Circular No. 52, dated August
15, 1980, instructing the Regional Director, the MV
Registrars and other personnel of BLT, all within the
NCR, to implement the phasing out of the taxis.
On January 27, 1981, petitioners filed a Petition
with the BOT, docketed as Case No. 80-7553,
seeking to nullify MC No. 77-42 or to stop its
implementation; to allow the registration and
operation in 1981 and subsequent years of taxicabs
of model 1974, as well as those of earlier models
which were phased-out, provided that, at the time
of registration, they are roadworthy and fit for
operation.

The issues were in the form of questions that


the petitioners presented to the SC through a
query.
A.
Did BOT and BLT promulgate the questioned
memorandum circulars in accord with the manner
required by Presidential Decree No. 101, thereby
safeguarding the petitioners' constitutional right to
procedural due process?
B.
Granting, arguendo, that respondents did
comply with the procedural requirements imposed
by Presidential Decree No. 101, would the
implementation and enforcement of the assailed
memorandum circulars violate the petitioners'
constitutional rights to.
(1) Equal protection of the law;

(2) Substantive due process; and


(3) Protection against arbitrary and unreasonable
classification and standard?
HELD:
The court here did not answer the queries directly
they just dealt with the ff issues
1.
WON the procedural and substantive due
process rights of the taxi operators were violated
NO.
2.
WON their equal protection rights were violated
NO.

On Procedural and Substantive Due Process:


Presidential Decree No. 101 grants to the Board
of Transportation the power
4. To fix just and reasonable standards,
classification,
regulations,
practices,
measurements, or service to be furnished,
imposed, observed, and followed by operators of
public utility motor vehicles.
Section 2 of said Decree provides procedural
guidelines for said agency to follow in the
exercise of its powers:
Sec. 2. Exercise of powers. In the exercise of
the powers granted in the preceding section, the
Board shall proceed promptly along the method of
legislative inquiry.
Apart from its own investigation and studies, the
Board, in its discretion, may require the cooperation
and assistance of the Bureau of Transportation, the
Philippine Constabulary, particularly the Highway
Patrol Group, the support agencies within the
Department of Public Works, Transportation and
Communications, or any other government office or
agency that may be able to furnish useful
information or data in the formulation of the Board
of any policy, plan or program in the implementation
of this Decree.
The Board may also call conferences, require the
submission of position papers or other documents,
information, or data by operators or other persons
that may be affected by the implementation of this
Decree, or employ any other suitable means of
inquiry.
PET claim that they were denied due process
because they were not asked to submit position
papers or to attend conferences regarding the
assailed circ.
SC held that the PD provides a wide leeway as to
how the board will choose to gather data in

formulating its policy. NOT ALL OPTIONS ARE


REQUIRED TO BE DONE FOR POLICY TO BE
VALID the board has the choice of which avenue
to pursue in collecting data.
PET also claim that 6 year limit was arbitrarily set
oppressive they want each taxi cab to be
inspected regarding their condition WON it was still
safe and roadworthy despite age.
Court held that their proposed standard is not
practicable and can open the door to multiple
standards and corruption
Court furthers aid that 6 years is a reasonable time
based on experience and based on cost and fair
returns on the units
Court held that a uniform standard is best and fair

On Equal Protection of the Law:


PET allege that the circular targets and singles out
the taxi industry = violation of their equal protection
rights
Court said NO. Circs of the same kind are also being
implemented in other cities like Cebu and is also in
the process of conducting the same studies and
policy formulations in other cities.
Manila was first because of the heavier traffic
pressure and the more constant use of the taxis in
MM.
SUBSTANTIAL DISTINCTION the traffic conditions
in the various cities

CONCLUSIONS:
Manila has more traffic which means that taxis in
Metro Manila are more heavily used and more likely
to deteriorate.
The public has a right to convenience, comfort and
safety in their public commute.
The danger posed by the dilapidated and old taxis is
a valid nuisance that the Board can abate through
the circular that it passed.
Absent a clear showing of any repugnancy of the
circular it is deemed valid.
Petition DISMISSED

Philippine Communications Satellite


Corporation vs Jose Luis Alcuaz

powers. PHILCOMSAT subsequently clarified its


said submission to mean that the order mandating

By virtue of Republic Act No. 5514, the Philippine


Communications

Satellite

Corporation

(PHILCOMSAT) was granted the authority to


construct and operate such ground facilities as
needed to deliver telecommunications services
from the communications satellite system and
ground terminal or terminals in the Philippines.
PHILCOMSAT

provides

satellite

services

a reduction of certain rates is undue delegation not


of legislative but of quasi-judicial power to NTC, the
exercise of which allegedly requires an express
conferment by the legislative body.
ISSUE: Whether

or

not

there

is

an

undue

delegation of power.

to

HELD: No. There is no undue delegation. The

companies like Globe Mackay (now Globe) and

power of the NTC to fix rates is limited by the

PLDT.

requirements of public safety, public interest,

Under Section 5 of the same law, PHILCOMSAT


was exempt from the jurisdiction, control and
regulation of the Public Service Commission later
known

as

the

National

Telecommunications

Commission (NTC). However, Executive Order No.


196 was later promulgated and the same has
placed PHILCOMSAT under the jurisdiction of the
NTC. Consequently, PHILCOMSAT has to acquire
permit to operate from the NTC in order to continue

reasonable feasibility and reasonable rates,


which

conjointly

more

than

satisfy

the

requirements of a valid delegation of legislative


power. Fundamental is the rule that delegation of
legislative power may be sustained only upon the
ground that some standard for its exercise is
provided and that the legislature in making the
delegation has prescribed the manner of the
exercise of the delegated power.

operating its existing satellites. NTC gave the

Therefore,

necessary

directed

concerned, NTC in this case, establishes a rate, its

PHILCOMSAT to reduce its current rates by 15%.

act must both be non-confiscatory and must have

NTC based its power to fix the rates on EO 546.

been established in the manner prescribed by the

permit

PHILCOMSAT

but

now

it

sues

however

NTC

and

its

commissioner (Jose Luis Alcuaz) assailed the said


directive and holds that the enabling act (EO 546)
of the NTC, empowering it to fix rates for public
service communications, does not provide the
necessary standards which were constitutionally
required, hence, there is an undue delegation of
legislative power, particularly the adjudicatory
powers of NTC. PHILCOMSAT

asserts that

when

the

administrative

agency

legislature; otherwise, in the absence of a fixed


standard,

the

delegation

of

power

becomes

unconstitutional. In case of a delegation of ratefixing power, the only standard which the legislature
is required to prescribe for the guidance of the
administrative

authority

is

that

the

rate

be

reasonable and just. However, it has been held that


even in the absence of an express requirement as
to reasonableness, this standard may be implied.

nowhere in the provisions of EO 546, providing for

However, in this case, it appears that the manner of

the creation of NTC and granting its rate-fixing

fixing the rates was done without due process since

powers,

no hearing was made in ascertaining the rate

nor

of

EO

196,

placing

PHILCOMSAT under the jurisdiction of NTC, can it


be inferred that NTC is guided by any standard in
the exercise of its rate-fixing and adjudicatory

imposed upon PHILCOMSAT