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Bacani vs Nacoco

Co Kim Chan v Valdez Tan Keh

The Government of Philippine Islands vs El Monte de Piedad
Ruffy v Chief of Staff
People vs Gozo
BACANI V NACOCO G.R. No. L-6957, November 29, 1956
Herein petitioners are stenographers in Branch VI of the CIF Manila.
In a pending civil case where the public respondents are involved, they requested
for the services of the stenographers and thereby paid them for the said transcript
at the rate of P1 per page, amounting to P714 in total.
However, upon inspecting the books of the corporation, the Auditor General
disallowed the payment of such fees and sought for the recovery of the amounts
paid. Consequently, the AG required the petitioners to reimburse the amounts
invoking that the National Coconut Corporation is a government entity within the
purview of section 2 of the Revised Administrative Code of 1917 which states
that: The Government of the Philippine Islands is a term which refers to the
corporate governmental entity through which the functions of government are
exercised throughout the Philippine Islands, including, save as the contrary appears
from the context, the various arms through which political authority is made
effective in said Islands, whether pertaining to the central Government or to the
provincial or municipal branches or other form of local government., hence,
exempted from the payment of the fees in question.
ISSUE: Whether the NCC is a government entity and is exempted from the payments
in question?
RULING: The Court held No. Discussing, there are two-fold functions of the
government namely: constituent and ministrant. The constituent function refers to
the bonds of society and are compulsory in nature, while ministrant is more on
public welfare like public works, education, charity, health and safety. From such, we
may infer that there are functions which our government is required to exercise to
promote its objectives as expressed in our Constitution and which are exercised by
it as an attribute of sovereignty, and those which it may exercise to promote merely
the welfare, progress and prosperity of the people.
The NCC has that function because the corporation promotes certain aspects
of the economic life of the people. In short, NCC belongs to what we call the
government-owned and controlled corporation which is governed by Corporation
Albeit the NCC performs governmental functions for the peoples welfare,
however, it was given a corporate power separate and distinct from our
government, for it was made subject to the provisions of our Corporation Law in so
far as its corporate existence and the powers that it may exercise are concerned.

To recapitulate, we may mention that the term Government of the Republic

of the Philippines used in section 2 of the Revised Administrative Code refers only
to that government entity through which the functions of the government are
exercised as an attribute of sovereignty, and in this are included those arms through
which political authority is made effective whether they be provincial, municipal or
other form of local government.
Therefore, NCC is not a government entity and is not exempted from the payment of
fees in question; petitioners are not subject to reimbursement.
Petition GRANTED.

Co Kim Chan v Valdez Tan Keh

Facts of the case: Co Kim Chan had a pending civil case, initiated during the Japanese
occupation, with the Court of First Instance of Manila. After the Liberation of the Manila and the
American occupation, Judge Arsenio Dizon refused to continue hearings on the case, saying
that a proclamation issued by General Douglas MacArthur had invalidated and nullified all
judicial proceedings and judgments of the courts of the Philippines and, without an enabling law,
lower courts have no jurisdiction to take cognizance of and continue judicial proceedings
pending in the courts of the defunct Republic of the Philippines (the Philippine government
under the Japanese).

The court resolved three issues:

1. Whether or not judicial proceedings and decisions made during the Japanese occupation
were valid and remained valid even after the American occupation;
2. Whether or not the October 23, 1944 proclamation MacArthur issued in which he declared
that all laws, regulations and processes of any other government in the Philippines than that of
the said Commonwealth are null and void and without legal effect in areas of the Philippines
free of enemy occupation and control invalidated all judgments and judicial acts and
proceedings of the courts;
3. And whether or not if they were not invalidated by MacArthurs proclamation, those courts
could continue hearing the cases pending before them.

Ratio: Political and international law recognizes that all acts and proceedings of a de facto
government are good and valid. The Philippine Executive Commission and the Republic of the
Philippines under the Japanese occupation may be considered de facto governments,
supported by the military force and deriving their authority from the laws of war.

Municipal laws and private laws, however, usually remain in force unless suspended or
changed by the conqueror. Civil obedience is expected even during war, for the existence of a
state of insurrection and war did not loosen the bonds of society, or do away with civil
government or the regular administration of the laws. And if they were not valid, then it would
not have been necessary for MacArthur to come out with a proclamation abrogating them.
The second question, the court said, hinges on the interpretation of the phrase
processes of any other government and whether or not he intended it to annul all other
judgments and judicial proceedings of courts during the Japanese military occupation.
IF, according to international law, non-political judgments and judicial proceedings of de
facto governments are valid and remain valid even after the occupied territory has been
liberated, then it could not have been MacArthurs intention to refer to judicial processes, which
would be in violation of international law.
A well-known rule of statutory construction is: A statute ought never to be construed to
violate the law of nations if any other possible construction remains.
Another is that where great inconvenience will result from a particular construction, or
great mischief done, such construction is to be avoided, or the court ought to presume that such
construction was not intended by the makers of the law, unless required by clear and
unequivocal words.
Annulling judgments of courts made during the Japanese occupation would clog the
dockets and violate international law, therefore what MacArthur said should not be construed to
mean that judicial proceedings are included in the phrase processes of any other
In the case of US vs Reiter, the court said that if such laws and institutions are continued
in use by the occupant, they become his and derive their force from him. The laws and courts of
the Philippines did not become, by being continued as required by the law of nations, laws and
courts of Japan.
It is a legal maxim that, excepting of a political nature, law once established continues
until changed by some competent legislative power. IT IS NOT CHANGED MERELY BY
CHANGE OF SOVEREIGNTY. Until, of course, the new sovereign by legislative act creates a
Therefore, even assuming that Japan legally acquired sovereignty over the Philippines,
and the laws and courts of the Philippines had become courts of Japan, as the said courts and
laws creating and conferring jurisdiction upon them have continued in force until now, it follows
that the same courts may continue exercising the same jurisdiction over cases pending therein
before the restoration of the Commonwealth Government, until abolished or the laws creating
and conferring jurisdiction upon them are repealed by the said government.

DECISION: Writ of mandamus issued to the judge of the Court of First Instance of
Manila, ordering him to take cognizance of and continue to final judgment the proceedings in
civil case no. 3012.

Summary of ratio:
1. International law says the acts of a de facto government are valid and civil laws continue
even during occupation unless repealed.
2. MacArthur annulled proceedings of other governments, but this cannot be applied on judicial
proceedings because such a construction would violate the law of nations.
3. Since the laws remain valid, the court must continue hearing the case pending before it.
***3 kinds of de facto government: one established through rebellion (govt gets possession and
control through force or the voice of the majority and maintains itself against the will of the
rightful government) through occupation (established and maintained by military forces who
invade and occupy a territory of the enemy in the course of war; denoted as a government of
paramount force) through insurrection (established as an independent government by the
inhabitants of a country who rise in insurrection against the parent state)
Parens Patriae: The Government of Philippine Islands vs El Monte de Piedad G.R. No. L-9959
December 13, 1916
Parens Patriae
The Government of Philippine Islands vs El Monte de Piedad Y Caja de Ahorras de Manila
G.R. No. L-9959 December 13, 1916
On June 3, 1863, an Earthquake took place in the Philippine Islands, which was then
under the Spanish Crown, that devastated lot of civilians. Therefore n Oct. 6 of that year, a
central relief board was appointed, by authority of the King of Spain, to distribute the money
voluntarily contributed by donors. After a thorough investigation and consideration, the relief
board allotted $365703.50 to the various sufferers name in its resolution.
These were later distributed in accordance with the above mentioned allotments, the
sum of $30,299.65, leaving a balance of $365.403.85 for distribution. Upon the petition of the
governing body of the Monte de Piedad, dated February 1, 1833, the Philippine Government, by
order dated the first month, directed its treasured to turn over Monte de Piedad the sum of
$80,000 of relief fund in its installment of 20,000 each. These amounts received on the following
dates: February 15, March 12, April 14, and June 2, 1883, and are still in the possession of
Monte de Piedad.
The Attorney General in representation of the Philippine Islands, a file of claim for the
$80000 together with interest, for the benefit of those persons or their heirs appearing in the list
of names published in the Official Gazette instituted on May, 3, 1912 by the Government of the
Philippine Islands, represented by the Insular Treasurer, and after due trial in the lower court,
judgment was entered in honor of the plaintiff currency, together with legal interest from

February 28, 1912, and cost of cause. The Monte de Piedad then contended that the present
Philippine Government cannot file suit on the ground that the obligation of the former was wiped
out when their was a change of sovereignty.
Whether or not the government of the Philippine Islands has capacity to file a suit
against the Monte de Piedad for the recovery of the said amount.
Under the Principle of Parens Patriae, the Philippine Government being the guardian
of the rights of the people can represent the legitimate claimants of the beneficiary and
therefore has the capacity to file a suit against the appellant. The Philippine Government is not
merely a nominal party thats why it can bring and prosecute this action by exercising its
sovereign powers. The supreme court then held the right of the government to file the case.

Ruffy v Chief of Staff

Facts:During the Japanese occupation, Ramon Ruffy, et al., petitioner, a provincial commander of
thePhilippine Constabulary, retreated in the mountains instead of surrendering to the enemy. He is
organizedand led a guerrilla outfit known as bolo combat tea, or bolo area. The said Bolo area was a
contingent of the 6thh military district, which has been recognized and placed under the operational
control of the USarmy in the South pacific.
Sometime later, Col. Jurado effected a change of command in the bolo area. Major ruffy who wasthen
acting as commanding officer for the Bolo area was relieved of his position. Later on or on Oct 19,1944.
Lieut. Col. Jurado was slain allegedly by the petitioners. It was this murder which gave
rise to petitioners trial.
The trial court convicted petitioner and he now filled this instant petition with the contention thathe was
not subject to military law at the time of the offense for which he had been placed on trial
wascommitted. Petitioners contended that by the enemy occupation of the Philippines, the national defese
actand all laws and regulations creation the existence of the Philippine Army including the articles of
war were suspended during such occupation.
Issue:Whether the petitioner was subject to military law at the time the alleged offense was committed.
Held:YES, petitioners were subject to military law at the time the alleged offense was committed. Therule
that laws of political in nature or affecting relations are considered superseded or in abeyance duringthe
military occupation, is intended for governing of the civil inhabitants of occupied territory. It is
notintended for and does not bind the enemies in arms (such as Philippine army)

PVTA v CIR Digest

role of
government necessitated by the increased responsibility to
provide for the general welfare.


private respondents
filed a petition
seeking relief for their alleged overtime services and the petitioners
failure to pay for said compensation in accordance with CA No. 444.
Petitioner denied the allegations for lack of a cause of cause of
action and lack of jurisdiction. Judge Martinez issued an order, directing
petitioner to pay. Hence, this petition for certiorari on grounds that the
corporation is exercising governmental functions and is therefore exempt
from Commonwealth Act No. 444.
PVTA contended it is beyond the jurisdiction of respondent Court as
it is exercising governmental functions and that it is exempt from the
operation of Commonwealth Act No. 444.
Issue: Whether or not PVTA discharges governmental and not
proprietary functions.

YES. But the distinction between the constituent and ministrant functions
of the government has become obsolete. The government has to provide
RA No. 2265 providing
for a distinction between constituent and
ministrant functions is irrelevant considering the needs of the present
time: The growing complexities of modern society have rendered this
traditional classification of the functions of government obsolete.

The contention of petitioner that the Labor Code does not apply to them
deserve scant consideration.
There is no question based on RA 4155, that petitioner is a governmental
agency. As such, the petitioner can rightfully invoke the doctrine
announced in the leading ACCFA case. The objection of private
respondents with its overtones of the distinction between constituent and
ministrant functions of governments as set forth in Bacani v. Nacoco, is
futile. It does not necessarily follow, that just because petitioner is
engaged in governmental rather than proprietary functions, that the labor
controversy was beyond the jurisdiction of the now defunct respondent
Court. Nor is the objection raised that petitioner does not come within the
coverage of the Eight-Hour Labor Law persuasive.

A reference to the pertinent sections of both Republic Acts 2265 and 2155
renders clear the differentiation that exists. If as a result of the appealed
order, financial burden would have to be borne by petitioner, it has only
itself to blame. It need not have required private respondents to render
overtime service. It can hardly be surmised that one of its chief problems
is paucity of personnel. That would indeed be a cause for astonishment. It
would appear, therefore, that such an objection based on this ground
certainly cannot suffice for a reversal. To repeat, respondent Court must
be sustained.
53 SCRA 476 Political Law Sovereignty
Loreta Gozo bought a house and lot which was located inside the US Naval Reservation
which is within the territorial jurisdiction of Olongapo City. Upon the advice of an assistant in
the Mayors Office and some neighbors, she demolished the house standing thereon
without acquiring the necessary permits and then later on erected another house. She was
then charged by the City Engineers Office for violating a municipal order which requires her
to secure permits for any demolition and/or construction within the City. She was convicted
in violation thereof by the lower court. She appealed and countered that the City of
Olongapo has no administrative jurisdiction over the said lot because it is within a Naval
Base of a foreign country.
ISSUE: Is the Municipal Ordinance enforceable within the US Naval Base?
HELD: Yes. The Philippine Government has not abdicated its sovereignty over the bases as
part of the Philippine territory or divested itself completely of jurisdiction over offenses
committed therein. Under the terms of the treaty, the United States Government has prior or
preferential but not exclusive jurisdiction of such offenses. The Philippine Government
retains not only jurisdictional rights not granted, but also all such ceded rights as the United
States Military authorities for reasons of their own decline to make use of (Military Bases
Agreement). Hence, in the exercise of its sovereignty, the State through the City of
Olongapo does have administrative jurisdiction over the lot located within the US Naval