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Constitutional Law-Case Digests

by: LLB-1B, 2017

Case #1
GR 187617 August 16, 2011

In 1958, the United Nations Convention on the Laws of the Sea (UNCLOS) framed the
Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone (UNCLOS I) benefitting Archipelagic
States like the Philippines.
The Philippines passed RA 3046 in 1961 compliant to UNCLOS I provisions delineating our
territorial seas where we have sovereignty, including our claims on Scarborough Shoal (SS) and
the Kalayaan Group of Islands (KIG).
RA 5446 was then passed by Congress in 1968, correcting typographical errors in RA 3046
and reserved drawing of baselines around Sabah.
Much later, RA 9522 was enacted in 2009 amending RA 3046 to be compliant with UNCLOS
III which Congress has ratified way back 1984.

WON petitioners have legal standing/ locus standi;
WON the writs of certiorari and prohibition are the proper remedies to assail the
constitutionality of RA 9522; and
WON RA 9522 is unconstitutional.

Yes. Petitioners have legal standing as citizens with constitutionally sufficient interest in the
merits of the case which happens to raise issues of national significance needing urgent
Yes. By tradition, when the SC exercises its constitutional power of judicial review, it has
viewed the writs of certiorari and prohibition as proper remedial vehicles to test the
constitutionality of statutes.
No. RA 9522 is not unconstitutional based on the following: o RA 9522 seeks to demarcate
only the maritime zones and not that of the Philippine territory. UNCLOS III has nothing to do
with the acquisition (or loss) of territory. It is a multilateral treaty which regulates sea-use rights
over maritime zones (i.e. territorial waters 12 nautical miles (nm) from baselines (BL);
contiguous zone 24 nm from BL; and exclusive economic zones (EEZ) 200 nm from BL).
RA 9522 is a constructive notice to the world of the extent of maritime space
and submarine areas within which as archipelagic State may exercise treaty-
based rights like sovereignty over territorial waters; jurisdiction to enforce laws in
the contiguous zone, and exploit resources within the EEZ.
Traditional international law typology says states can only acquire territory
thru occupation, accretion, cession, and prescription; not by executing
multilateral treaties. o RA 9522 is not inconsistent with our claim over SS and KIG
and that it results in a loss of 15,000 nm of territorial waters.

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Configuration of baselines drawn in 3046 is the same as in 9522 except for 9

modified basepoints to comply with the maximum length of baselines prescribed
The optimized basepoints and baselines resulted in an increase of the
countrys total marine space from 440,994 to 586,210 nm.
Whether under 3046 or 9522, SS and KIG lie outside baselines since they are
located at a distance from our shorelines. To draw baselines around them would
be violative of UNCLOS III provisions since we will be delving away from the
general configuration of the archipelago.
Section 2 of 9522 even explicitly states that the country will still exercise
jurisdiction and sovereignty over SS and KIG. In the Congress deliberations, Sen.
MDS even refereed to these as contested islands outside our configuration. o
Even if 9522 did not textualize our claim on Sabah, it did not repeal 5446, which
keeps the door open for us drawing the baselines around Sabah.
RA 9522 and UNCLOS III is not incompatible with the delineation of internal
waters as in Art. II of the Constitution. The right of innocent passage is already a
customary practice of international law, and it cannot be forbidden by the
Philippines or we risk retaliatory measures from the international community.
The benefit of RA 9522 is that it sends a constructive notice to the world of the
extent of our maritime zones. The international powers cannot enter freely enter
and exploit resources from our surrounding waters and submarine areas.
RA 9522 also strengthens our countrys case in any international dispute over
our maritime waters and space.

Case #2
Province of North Cotabato vs.ErmitaExec.Sec., Romulo Sec DFA et al
G.R. No. 183591 October 14, 2008


The subject of this case is the memo of agreement on the ancestral domain to be signed
by the GRP and MILF August 5 2008. It is a consolidation of 5 cases on the same topic:

1. By Cotabato and GovPinol on the prayer for declaring the MOA AD contrary to the
constitution and bereft of public feedback mechanism and consultation
2. Zamboanga declaring the same MOA null and void
3. City of Iligan
4. Zamboangadel Norte to null and void the same MOA without operative effect
5. Maceda, Binay, Pimentel prohibiting the same MOA

The MOA-AD is the result of the agreements entered by the Govt and MILF 1996-1997 where
they signed the agreement to end hostilities and the General Framwork of Agreement.

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These talks stopped however when the MILF attacked several municipalities in Mindanao
prompting then President Estrada to declare an all out war which halted the negotiation.
It was on Arroyos administration that the talks resumed despite hesitation from the MILF, with
the intervention of Malaysia. Peace talks resumed and the hostilities suspended. It was when
Iqbal took the MILF leadership that the said MOA AD was crafted.


Lets refer to it as the MOA AD. It is to be signed by the GRP and MILF. It is divided into concepts
and principles, territory, resources and governance.

Simply put the MOA AD describes:

Bangsamoros all indigenous people of Mindanao and adjacent lands, claiming their right to
self governance and ownership having been the first occupants of Mindanao. A Firs Nation
with a defined territory and can enter into treaties and commerce with other states. The
authorityandjurisdiction over these ancestral domains and lands rests on what they call the
Bangsamoro Judicial Entity.

The MOA AD goes on to define its territory, with its internal waters and territorial waters. One
of the glaring declaration is that the sharing of joint jurisdiction,authority and management of
all natural resources and minerals with the GRP only extends to the territorial waters and not
the internal waters.

The MOA AD also stipulates its freedom to enter into any economic cooperation and trade with
other countries with the option to establish trade missions and environmental cooperation with
such countries. The defense of the said BJE will still be with the GRP. (Which begs the question,
who will defend the internal territory of such BJE?). The other claims like participation in Asean
and UN meetings and events, participation in talks about border agreements and protocols and
sharing of resources. MOA AD claims a 75/25 sharing of its natural resources/revenue in favor
of the BJE.

The MOA AD claims an associative relationship with the GRP, meaning shared authority and
responsibility, with the right to build, develop and maintain its own institutions as described in
its Comprehensive Compact.


W/N the MOA AD complied with the process required for judicial review?

W/N they followed the judicial process?

W/N the respondents violatedconstitional and statutory provisions re public

consultation and right to information when they negotiated and signed the MOA AD?

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W/N they violated a provision on public consultation and right to information

Is the MOA in violation of the law and our constition?

W/N MOA is conctitutional


Yes. The MOA AD is unconstitional and unlawful.

The ruling on the first issue:

There is a need for a judicial review even though, according to the SOLGEN, there is still no issue
to review yet as the MOA AD IS JUST A PROPOSAL and therefore falls on the limitations of
judicial review to wit the court should decline ie hypothetical , feigned problems, or mere
academic questions. Meaning, the Court will only decline rendering judgment upon the issue. In
the case at bar, since the MOA AD is only a proposal, its ripeness to be questioned and reviewed
by the court is in contention being that it is not yet a legally demandable right.

The Court answered that because the issue is their alleged acts in violation of their duty and
grave discretion, under EO No 3,acts made by authority in excess of their authority, in violation
of their dutysuch issue is ripe for adjudication. If the constitution is violated it is the right and
dutyof the court to settle the issue. This is regarding whether the act was already done or not.

Re the right to be heard by the provinces and cities, the court ruled that since their LGUs will be
affected by their inclusion in the BJE, they have locus standi. On case of Drilon and Tamano, as
taxpayers and being that those taxes will be used for the MOA AD, they also have the right to be
heard. So included is Mar Roxas as intervenor and the Muslim Multisectoral Movement for
Peace and Devt and Muslim Legal Foundation since they may benefit or be prejudiced from the
said MOA AD.

Re the issue as being moot as the signing has been suspended and GRP disbanded, the SC is not
in agreement. The SC decides that an issue which 1 violates the consti 2 exceptional and
paramount to public interest 3 consti issues requires formulation of controlling principles
guiding the bench, bar and public 4 the case is capable of repetition yet evading review etc.
deserves the courts interest and therefore can rule on the said issue. The suspension of signing
as well as disbandment of the GRP does not make the issue moot and academic as the MOA AD
will create further legal process including amendments to our Constitution, which prompts the
court to further the discourse and add or formulate guiding principles for everyone concerned
since the issue can be repeated again on another time. Re mandamus or the command to stop
the signing, there is no need as the signing has already been suspended.

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2nd Issue:

The right to information is guaranteed in our Constitution. This is apparent in the Tanada v
Tuvera case, where it is the duty of the Govt to inform the public about the laws or policies
being enacted. Quite simply it is the right to know and the duty of the govt to inform us. This is
a guaranteed right in our democracy, essential to the exercise of freedom and accountability of
those in office.

There should be a feedback process by which the people and the govt should be involved, this
should be evident not only when the people is being asked whether they agree on a certain
issue but also, in the formulation of policies, when they are affected, they should also be a part
of such discourse. In this regard, the court viewed Esperon to have acted in grave abuse of
discretion of his authority for not being able to comply with the necessities of the guidelines of
the process with which the MOA AD was made. The act itself is whimsical,
capricious,oppressive, arbitrary and despotic. Meaning, they did not consult it to the public
which further showed that there were omissions on the process that repondents disregarded.
The provinces and LGUs deserved to be involved because it is their territory that is being asked
of them. They are directly affected. Same with the ICP and IPP.

3rd Issue: Constitutionality

Association happens when 2 states OF EQUAL POWER(emphasis mine), establish links, with one
state as associate and one principal. It is between integration and independence. Thus the BJE
as it is defined is an associative state, and therefore unconstitional under the present

The constitution cannot grant such power to the BJE as it is asking because to do so would
recognize it as an associative state. All requisites of a state, sans the name, is present in the BJE
and there is no law in the Constitution allowing such state to exist or co exist within our
definition. It is thus against our soverignty and territorial integrity to grant the MILF its request
to establish BJE.The grant of powers to govern and police itself, is not a right that can be freely
given by the Govt. The state can provide the police and security force for the protections of its

And although the right to self determination is guaranteed international law, one must
distinguish its being internal as in the case of ARMM governing itself and local affairs as against
the BJE wanting to negotiate and initiate trade relations, establish links and participate in
meetings and talks that generally falls solely on the President and his representative. The
Constitution has to be amended to include such grants and it will still go against the concept of
national unity because how can 1 state be represented by two representatives with different

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Supreme Court ruled in favor of the petitioners and declared the BJE/MOA AD as unconstitional.

Case #3
Soriano vs.Laguardia/MTRCB
G.R. No. 164785 April 29, 2009


On his Dating Daan Show, Bro Eli Soriano uttered curses like demonyo, sinungaling, puta,
among others for which the MTRCB suspended his show for 20 days and later a 3 month
suspension. The show has a G rating which is for general viewers.


Whether the suspension given him merits prior restraint?

Whether court made a mistake in ruling that his actions are not part of his right to
religious freedom?

Whether the court should inhibit itself in adjudication involving conflict between
religious groups?

Whether the court made a mistake in penalizing the show for the acts of Bro Eli Soriano?


The petitioners claim for religious freedom and rights to free speech is unfounded
considering that the court finds his words obscene and acting as parenspatriae to the children
who may be able to listen to his show, has acted prudently in suspending the show to prevent
further damage and to protect the interest of the children in as far as being exposed to such
foul and obscene language. His freedom of speech could actually hold ground were it not the
medium used is of national coverage and thus, we can assume that children and minors will be
able to hear his language. The court ruled as well that with regard to his claim of religious
freedom, there is nothing in his utterances that could be religious instead his words are mere
retaliation towards INC. Insults are not religious in as far as the court is concerned.

The court also ruled that freedom can be regulated by the state, especially when freedom as in
religion, may create a divide instead of understanding. The suspension therefore is
constitutional and lawful, with the MTRCB acting in behalf of the state and protecting the
welfare of the child through the principles of parenspatriae.

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Case #4
Lawyers League vs. Aquino (Minute Resolutions En Banc)
G.R. No. 73748 May 22, 1986

On February 25, 1986, after a successful staging of the EDSA Revolution, Pres. Corazon
Aquino issued Presidential Proclamation No. 1, announcing that she and Vice President
Laurel are taking power having been duly elected as President and Vice President in the
February 7, 1986 snap elections.
On March 25, 1986, Proclamation No. 3 was also issued, announcing that the basis of
the Aquino government in its assumption of power is the EDSA Revolution being a
direct exercise of the power of the Filipino people assisted by the Units of the New
Armed Forces of the Philippines.
Petitioners Lawyers League, Peoples Crusade and Councilor Ganay questions the
legitimacy of the Aquino government being illegal and not established pursuant to the
1973 Constitution.

WON petitioners have personality to sue; and
WON the Aquino government is illegal.

No. The petitioners have no personality to sue since they have not stated a cause of
action. o To gain personality, petitioners must show that: (1) they have suffered actual or
threatened injury as a result of the allegedly illegal conduct of the government; (2) the
injury is traceable to the challenged action; and (3) the injury is likely to be redressed by
a favorable action on the part of the Court. Though the resolution was promulgated
only on May 22, 1986, the SC had already voted on April 10, 1986 to dismiss the
petitions. The withdrawal of the first 2 petitioners on April 17, 1986 citing their reason
that they will pursue the questions extra-judicially, have become functus officio,
meaning that the withdrawal has no further virtue or effect on the Courts decision.
No. The Aquino government is not illegal. o Even if the court had expressed that the
legitimacy of the Aquino government is not a justiciable matter since it is political in
nature and rightfully belonging to the real where only the people are the judge, the SC
still decreed that the Aquino government was legitimate on the following reasons:
o That the people has accepted the Aquino government which is now in effective
control of the entire country;
o It is not merely a de facto government but is in fact a lawful and a de jure
government; and

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o The international community of nations has also recognized the legitimacy of the
Aquino government.

Case #5
UP v. Dizon, Stern Builders, and Servillanodela Cruz
G.R. No. 171182 August 23, 2012

UP entered into a General Construction Agreement with Stern Builders for the construction
of the extension building and renovation of College of Arts and Sciences Building in the Campus of
the University of the Philippines, Los Banos (UPLB)

Stern Builders submitted 3 progress billings corresponding the work accomplished but UP
paid only two of the billings due to its disallowance by COA. Despite the disallowance being
rescinded, UP still failed to pay the billing thus prompting Stern Builders to sue UP and to collect
unpaid billings and damages.
RTC favored Stern Builders and ORDERED petitioner to pay respondent the following:
A. P503,462.74 = 3rd billing, addtional accomplished work, retention money
B. P5,716,729 = actual damages
C. P10,000,000 = moral damages
D. P150,000& P1,500 = (appearances) atty's fees
E. Costs of suit

UP was not able to assail RTC Decison during the reglementary period. They were only able
to file a motion to counter the RTC Decision after 17 days. RTC denied the belated motion of UP
thereby making the writ of execution final and executory.
After several attempts to assail the final and executory nature of the RTC Decision on the is
suance of writ of execution dated October 4, 2002, the Court upholds the TRO on the writ due to t
he absence of an appropriation bill that would authorize the writ/garnishment of government fund
sthat could have also been the payment for the indebtedness of petitioner. But according to the
Court of Appeals, the act sought to be restrained had already been done thereby rendering Order i
Stern filed their motions for execution despite their previous motion being granted. RTC
granted the second
motion for execution and respectively served notices for garnishment on Landbank and DBP (UP's
depository banks) and it was granted thru Judge Dizon (RTC) thru the ex parte motion for issuance
of a release order just after the dismissal of UP's opposing motions.


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Whether funds of UP were the proper subject of garnishment in order to satisfy judgment
Whether UP's prayer for the deletion of awards enumerated could be granted despite the
finality of RTC Decision.

No. UPs funds, being government funds, are not subject to garnishment. All the funds going
into the possession of the UP constitute a special trust fund as mandated by Act 1870 and Sec. 1
of Executive Order No. 714 also known as Entitled Fiscal Control and Management of the Funds of
the University of the Philippines promulgated on Aug. 1, 1981, and from the yearly appropriations
laid down by Sec. 2 Act 1870 expanded in RA 9500 known as The University of the Philippines
Charter of 2008 making UP as a National University declared so by Congress. UP, as a government
instrumentality, is granted the power of immunity: Suability of the State did not necessarily men its
liability It is only giving the plaintiff the chance to prove, if it can, that it is liable.
Also, settlement of monetary claim was still subject to the primary jurisdiction of the COA. I
t must adjudicate private respondent's claim before execution should proceed as expressly provide
d in Sec 26 of PD 1445 where it defined the general jurisdiction and authority of the Commission.
Disbursement by public funds must be covered by the corresponding appropriation required by law
. The functions and public services rendered by the state cannot be paralyzed from their legitimate
and specific objects, as appopriated by law. (Republic v. Villasor)

2. The awards actual damages, moral damages and attorneys fees amounted only to an ipse dixit
assertions made but not proved due to the following specific circumstances:
(a) Stern Builders had no detailed expenses or losses constituting the P 5,716,729.0
0 [actual damages] in relation to the construction project or to other pecuniary hardships.
The omission of such expenses or losses directly indicated that Stern Builders did not prove
them at all, which then contravened Article 2199, Civil Code, the statutory basis for the aw
ard of actual damages, which entitled a person to an adequate compensation only for such
pecuniary loss suffered by him as he has duly proved.
(b) The grant of [moral damages] cannot be granted to Stern Builders, it being an ar
tificial person, is incapable of experiencing pain and moral sufferings manifested under the
Civil Code. It must also consider the basic principle that moral damages were not intended
to enrich the plaintiff at the expense of the defendant, but to restore the plaintiff to his stat
us quo ante as much as possible. The P10,000,000.00 allowed as moral damages not only t
o be factually baseless and legally indefensible, but also to be unconscionable, inequitable
and unreasonable.
(c) Under Article 2208 of the Civil Code, general rule is that a successful litigant can
not recover [attorneys fees] as part of the damages to be assessed against the losing party
because of the policy that no premium should be placed on the right to litigate.

The other item granted by RTC, [3rd billing obligation] of P503,462.74, shall stand subject to
action of the COA as stated therein.

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CA Decision set aside. Order for garnishment is hereby annulled. Stern Builders and
Servillano are ordered to redeposit amount of P16,370,191.74.
Costs of suit to be paid by private respondents. SO ORDERED.

Case #6
Agra vs. COA
GR No. 167807 Dec 6, 2011

On July 1, 1989, RA 6758 (The Compensation and Position Classification Act of 1989)
took effect. On October 2, 1989, pursuant to its authority to implement RA 6758, under section
28, the DBM issued Corporate Circular No. 10, known as the Implementing Rules and Regulation
of RA 6758 which states the allowances and benefits of those who are incumbents of positions
as of June 30, 1989.
A group of National Electrification Administration (NEA) employees who were hired after
October 31, 1989 claimed that they did not receive meal, rice and children allowances. Thus, on
July 23, 1989 they filed a civil action for mandamus alleging violation of their rights to equal
protection clause under the Constitution.

1. WON the immutability of final decision doctrine must prevail over the exclusive
jurisdiction of COA to audit and settle disbursements of funds
2. WON the NEA employees hired after June 30, 1989 are entitled to rice allowances.

The SCs consistency held in those cases that allowances or fringe benefits, whether or
not integrated into the standardized salaries prescribed by RA 6758 should continue to be
enjoyed by employees who were incumbents and were receiving those benefits as of July 1,
In consonance with stare decisis, there should be no more misgivings about the proper
application of section 12. In the present case, the payment of benefits should be reserved only
to the incumbents who were already enjoying them before its enactment. Withholding them
from others ensured that the compensation of the incumbents would not be diminished in the
course of the latter continued with the government agency.
As petitioners were hired after June 30, 1989, the COA was correct in disallowing the
grant of the benefit as they were clearly not entitled to it. Under section 12, of RA 6758 the only
requirement for the continuous grant of allowances and fringe benefits on top of the
standardized salary rate of the GOCCs are as follows: 1) the employee must be incumbent as of
July 1, 1989 and 2) the allowance or benefit was not consolidated in the standardized salary rate
as prescribed by RA no. 6758.
As regard to the refund, the SC ruled in favor of the petitioners and will not require them
to return the amounts anymore. This is because the officials and administrators of NEA had
believed that their employees were entitled with the allowances and this was covered by the

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Resolution No. 29 of the NEA Board of Administrators. Thus petitioners, received in good faith
the rice subsidy together with other allowances provided in the said resolution. For reasons of
equity and fairness, the court will no longer require refund from the public service.

Case #7
Banahaw vs. Pacana
G.R. No. 171673 May 30, 2011

Respondents in the case at bar are supervisory in rank and file employees of DXWG-
Iligan City radio station which is owned by petitioner Banahaw Broadcasting Corporation (BBC),
a corporation managed by Intercontinental Broadcasting Corporation (IBC). The DXWG
personnel filed with the Sub- regional arbitration a complaint for the illegal dismissal, unfair
labor practice, reimbursement of unpaid Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), benefits and
attorneys fees against IBC and BBC. Labor Arbiter Alug rendered his decision in favor pf the
DXWG personnel. A motion to dismiss, Release, Waiver and Quitclaim, was jointly filed by the
IBC and the DXWG personnel based on the latters admission that IBC is not their employer as it
does not own DXWG- Iligan City. The NLRC granted the case with respect to IBC.
Both BBC and respondents appealed to the NLRC anew. In their appeal, the DXWG
personnel reasserted their claim for the remaining CBA benefits awarded to them, and alleged
the error in the reckoning date of the computation of the monetary award. BBC challenged the
monetary award itself claiming that such benefits were only due to IBC not BBC, employees. In
the same Memorandum of Appeal, BBC incorporated a Motion for Recomputation of the
monetary award. The NLRC ordered the BBC to post the required bond within 10 days from
receipt of said order with a warning that non-compliance will cause the dismissal of the appeal
for non- perfection. Instead of complying with the Order to post for bond, BBC filed a Motion
for reconsideration, alleging this time that since it is wholly owned by the Republic of the
Philippines, it need not post an appeal bond. The NLRC denied the Motion for Reconsideration
of BBC, BBC filed with the CA a Petition for Certiorari but it was denied, hence this petition for

WON BBC is exempt from posting an appeal bond.

As a general rule, the government and all attached agencies with no legal personality
distinct from the former are exempt from posting appeal bonds whereas GOCCs are not
exempted. This is brought about the reason of the appeal bond which is to protect the
presumptive judgment creditor against the insolvency of the presumptive judgment debtor.
BBC was organized as a private corporation, suggested in 1980s and the ownership of which was
subsequently transferred to the government in a comprehensive agreement. It is also stated in
its Amended Articles of Incorporation that BBC has the following primary functions: To engage
in commercial radio and TV broadcasting and for this purpose, to establish, operate and

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maintain such stations, both terrestrial and satellite or interplanetary, as maybe necessary for
broadcasting on a network wide international basis
Therefore it is clear that BBCs function is purely commercial or proprietary and not
governmental. As such, BBC cannot be deemed entitled to an exemption from posting the
appeal bond.
Likewise, the NLRC did not commit error and grave abuse of discretion in dismissing the
appeal of BBC to perfect the appeal thus had the effect of rendering the judgement final and
executory. The Court of Appeals committed no error when it upheld the NLRCs decision to
dismiss the appeal of the petitioner.

Case #8
G.R. No. 182836 October 13, 2009

Hortillano is an employee of petitioner Continental Steel Manufacturing Corporation
(Continental Steel)
A member of respondent NagkakaisangManggagawang Centro Steel Corporation-Solidarity
of Trade Unions in the Philippines for Empowerment and Reforms (Union)
Hortillano wife had an unborn child. The premature baby @38th week of pregnancy died
9 January 2006 Hortillano claimed for : Paternity Leave, Bereavement Leave ,Death and
Accident Insurance for dependent, pursuant to the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA)
concluded between Continental and the Union, as stated in the CBA.
o Continental Steel granted paternity leave but denied Hortillano of bereavement
leave and other death benefits, consisting of the death and accident insurance.
o The Union resorted to the grievance machinery provided in the CBA.
o The Union argued that Hortillano was entitled to bereavement leave and other
death benefits pursuant to the CBA; maintained that Article X, Section 2 and Article
XVIII, Section 4.3 of the CBA did not specifically state that the dependent should
have first been born alive or must have acquired juridical personality so that his/her
subsequent death could be covered by the CBA death benefits.
Contentions of Continental Steel
The unborn child, a fetus, HAS NO legal personality. It claimed that there are
two elements for the entitlement to the benefits, namely: (1) death and (2) status as
legitimate dependent, none of which existed in Hortillanos case.
Only one with civil personality could die. Hence, the unborn child never died
because it never acquired juridical personality.
the fetus that was dead from the moment of delivery was not a person at all.
The fetus that was delivered dead could not be considered a dependent,
since it never needed any support, nor did it ever acquire the right to be supported.
Voluntary Arbitrator ruled that Hortillano was entitled to bereavement leave with pay and
death benefits.

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The fetus had the right to be supported by the parents from the very
moment he/she was conceived. The fetus was already a dependent, although he/she died
during the labor or delivery.
There was also no question that Hortillano and his wife were lawfully
married, making their dependent, unborn child, legitimate. CA affirmed and upheld Atty.
Montaos resolution. A dead fetus simply cannot be equated with anything less than "loss
of human life", especially for the expectant parents. Hence, bereavement leave and death
benefits are meant to assuage the employee and the latters immediate family, extend to
them solace and support, rather than an act conferring legal status or personality upon the
unborn child.
WoN a dead foetus never acquired a juridical personality.

The reliance of Continental Steel on Articles 40, 41 and 42 of the Civil Code for the legal
definition of death is misplaced.
1. Article 40 provides that a conceived child acquires personality only when it is born.
2. Article 41 defines when a child is considered born.
3. Article 42 plainly states that civil personality is extinguished by death.
Articles 40, 41 and 42 of the Civil Code on natural persons, must be applied in relation to
Article 37 of the same Code, the very first of the general provisions on civil personality, which reads:
Art. 37. Juridical capacity, which is the fitness to be the subject of legal relations, is inherent
in every natural person and is lost only through death. Capacity to act, which is the power to do acts
with legal effect, is acquired and may be lost.
The rights to bereavement leave and other death benefits in the instant case pertain directly
to the parents of the unborn child upon the latters death.
Death has been defined as the cessation of life. Life is not synonymous with civil personality.
One need not acquire civil personality first before he/she could die.
Even a child inside the womb already has life. No less than the Constitution recognizes the
life of the unborn from conception, that the State must protect equally with the life of the mother. If
the unborn already has life, then the cessation thereof even prior to the child being delivered,
qualifies as death.
Likewise, the unborn child can be considered a dependent under the CBA.
A legitimate child is a product of, and, therefore, implies a valid and lawful marriage.
Remove the element of lawful union and there is strictly no legitimate filiation between parents and
child. Article 164 of the Family Code cannot be more emphatic on the matter: "Children conceived
or born during the marriage of the parents are legitimate." (Angeles v. Maglaya)
Conversely, in Briones v. Miguel, All children conceived and born outside a valid marriage are
illegitimate, unless the law itself gives them legitimate status.
Bereavement leave and other death benefits are granted to an employee to give aid to, and
if possible, lessen the grief of, the said employee and his family who suffered the loss of a loved one.
It cannot be said that the parents grief and sense of loss arising from the death of their unborn
child, who, in this case, had a gestational life of 38-39 weeks but died during delivery, is any less
than that of parents whose child was born alive but died subsequently.

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CA decision affirming the Resolution Accredited Voluntary Arbitrator Atty. Allan S. Montao,
which granted to Rolando P. Hortillano bereavement leave pay and other death benefits
respectively, grounded on the death of his unborn child, are AFFIRMED.

Case #9
United Church V Bradford United Church
G.R. No. 171905 June 20, 2012
In 1989, Bradford United Church of Christ, Inc. (BUCCI) built a fence that said
toencroached the right of way allocated by United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP)
tothe Cebu Conference Inc. (CCI). UCCP favored CCI and the series of events then followed ledto
the breakup of BUCCI from UCCP. BUCCI then disaffiliated itself from UCCP and filed its
Amended Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws which provided for and effected its
disqualification from UCCP. SEC approved it on 2 July 1993. UCCP filed a complaint for rejection
of decision,alleging that separate incorporation and registration of BUCCI is not allowed under
the UCCPConstitution and By-laws. SEC dismissed UCCP's petition and defended the right of
BUCCI todisassociate itself from UCCP in recognition of its constitutional freedom to associate
anddisassociate. On appeal, CA affirmed previous decision of SEC. Before this court,
UCCPmaintains that it has the sole power to decide whether BUCCI could disaffiliate from it as
thisinvolves a purely ecclesiastical affair.

Whether or not the determination of the validity of disaffiliation of respondents is purely
anecclesiastical affair

No. The issue is not a purely ecclesiastical affair. An ecclesiastical affair is one
thatconcerns doctrine, creed or form of worship of the church, or the adoption and
enforcementwithin a religious association of needful laws and regulations for the government
of themembership, and the power of excluding from such associations those deemed unworthy
of membership.UCCP and BUCCI, being corporate entities and grantees of primary franchises,
aresubject to the jurisdiction of the SEC. Section 3 of Presidential Decree No. 902-A provides
thatSEC shall have absolute jurisdiction, supervision and control over all corporations. Even
withtheir religious nature, SEC may exercise jurisdiction over them in matters that are legal and
corporate.BUCCI, as a juridical entity separate and distinct from UCCP, possesses the freedom
todetermine its steps.

Case #10
Kulayanet al v. Tan
GR 18729 July 3, 2012


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Three members of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) were kidnapped
in the vicinity of the Provincial Capitol in Patikul, Sulu. Andres Notter, Eugenio Vagni, and Marie
Jean Lacaba, were purportedly inspecting a water sanitation project for the Sulu Provincial Jail
when they were seized by 3 armed men who were later confirmed to be members of the Abu
Sayaf Group (ASG). A Local Crisis Committee, later renamed Sulu Crisis Management Committee
(Committee) was then formed to investigate the kidnapping incident. The committee convened
under the leadership of respondent AbdusakurMahail Tan, the Provincial Governor of Sulu.
Governor Tan issued Proclamation No. 1 Series of 2009, declaring a state of Emergency
in the province of Sulu. The proclamation cited the kidnapping incident as a ground for the said
declaration, describing it as a terrorist act pursuant to the Human Security Act (RA 9372). It also
invoked section 465 of the Local Government Code of 1991 (RA 7160), which bestows on the
Provincial Governor the power to carry out emergency measures during man-made and natural
disasters and calamities, and to call upon the appropriate national law enforcement agencies to
suppress disorder and lawless violence. In the Proclamation, Tan called upon the PNP and the
Civilian Emergency Force (CEF) to set up checkpoints and chokepoints, conduct general search
and seizures including arrests and order actions necessary to insure public safety.
Petitioners, Jamar Kulayan et al, claimed that Proclamation no 1-09 was issued ultra
vires, and thus null and void, for violating sections 1 and 18, Article VII of the Constitution which
grants the President sole authority to exercise emergency powers as the Chief Executive of the
republic and the commander-in-chief of the armed forces.

W/N a Governor can exercise the calling-out powers of a President

It has already been established that there is one repository of executive powers, and
that is the President of the Republic. This means that when Section 1, Article VII of the
Constitution speaks of executive power, it is granted to the President and no one else. Corollary,
it is only the President, as Executive, who is authorized to exercise emergency powers as
provided under Section 23, Article VI of the Constitution, as well as what became known as the
calling-out powers under Section 7, Article VII thereof.
While the President is still a civilian, Article II Sec 3 of the Constitution mandates that
civilian authority is, at all times, supreme over the military, making the civilian president the
nations supreme military leader. The net effect of Art 11 Sec 3 when read with Art VII Sec 18 is
that a civilian President is the ceremonial, legal, and administrative head of the armed forces.
The Constitution does not require that the President must be possessed of military training and
talents, but as Commander-in-chief, he has the power to direct military operations and to
determine military strategy. Normally, he would be expected to delegate the actual command of
the armed forces to the military experts; but the ultimate power is his.
Given the foregoing, Governor Tan is not endowed with the power to call upon the
armed forces at his own bidding. In issuing the assailed proclamation, Governor Tan exceeded
his authority when he declared a state of emergency and called upon the Armed Forces, the
police, and his own Civilian Emergency Force. The calling-out powers contemplated under the
constitution I exclusive to the President. An exercise by another official, even if he is the local

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chief executive, is ultra vires and may not be justified by the invocation of Sec 465 of the Local
Government Code.

Case #11
MMDA v. Manila Bay Concerned Citizens
G.R. No.s 171947-48 December 18, 2008

January 29, 1999, concerned residents of Manila Bay filed a complaint before the RTC
Imus, Cavite against several government agencies for the clean-up, rehabilitation and protection
of the Manila Bay/ The complaint alleged that the water quality of Manila Bay is no longer
within the allowable standards set by law (esp. PD 1152, Philippine environment Code).

DENR testified for the petitioners and reported that the samples collected from the
beaches around Manila Bay is beyond the safe level for bathing standard of the DENR. MWSS
testified also about MWSS efforts to reduce pollution along the bay. Philippine Ports Authority
presented as evidence its Memorandum Circulars on the study on ship-generated waste
treatment and disposal as its LinisDagat project.

RTC ordered petitioners to Clean up and rehabilitate Manila Bay.

The petitioners appealed arguing that the Environment Code relate only to the cleaning
of the specific pollution incidents and do not cover cleaning in general. Raising the concerns of
lack of funds appropriated for cleaning, and asserting that the cleaning of the bay is not a
ministerial act which can be compelled by mandamus.

CA sustained the RTC stressing that RTC did not require the agencies to do tasks outside
of their usual basic functions.

(1) Whether PD 1152 relate only to the cleaning of specific pollution incidents.
(2) Whether the cleaning or rehabilitation of the Manila Bay is not ministerial act of
petitioners that can be compelled by mandamus.

(1) The cleaning of the Manila bay can be compelled by mandamus.

Petitioners obligation to perform their duties as defined by law, on one hand, and how
they are to carry out such duties, on the other, are two different concepts. While the
implementation of the MMDAs mandated tasks may entail a decision-making process, the
enforcement of the law or the very act of doing what the law exacts to be done is ministerial in
nature and may be compelled by mandamus.

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The MMDAs duty in the area of solid waste disposal, as may be noted, is set forth not
only in the Environment Code (PD 1152) and RA 9003, but in its charter as well. This duty of
putting up a proper waste disposal system cannot be characterized as discretionary, for, as
earlier stated; discretion presupposes the power or right given by law to public functionaries to
act officially according to their judgment or conscience.

(2) Secs. 17 and 20 of the Environment Code

Include Cleaning in General

The disputed sections are quoted as follows:

Section 17. Upgrading of Water Quality.Where the quality of water has deteriorated to a
degree where its state will adversely affect its best usage, the government agencies concerned
shall take such measures as may be necessary to upgrade the quality of such water to meet the
prescribed water quality standards.

Section 20. Clean-up Operations.It shall be the responsibility of the polluter to contain,
remove and clean-up water pollution incidents at his own expense. In case of his failure to do
so, the government agencies concerned shall undertake containment, removal and clean-up
operations and expenses incurred in said operations shall be charged against the persons
and/or entities responsible for such pollution.

Sec. 17 does not in any way state that the government agencies concerned ought to confine
themselves to the containment, removal, and cleaning operations when a specific pollution
incident occurs. On the contrary, Sec. 17 requires them to act even in the absence of a specific
pollution incident, as long as water quality has deteriorated to a degree where its state will
adversely affect its best usage. This section, to stress, commands concerned government
agencies, when appropriate, to take such measures as may be necessary to meet the
prescribed water quality standards. In fine, the underlying duty to upgrade the quality of water
is not conditional on the occurrence of any pollution incident.

Case #12
Republic of Indonesia vs. Vinzon
G.R. No. 154705 June 26, 2003

In august 1995 the petitioner/ republic of indonesia, represented by its counsellor,
sitipartinah into a maintenace agreement w/ respondent jamesvinzo, sole proprietor of vinzo
trade and services. The maintenance agreement state that respondent shall for a consideration,
maintain specified equipment at the embassy main building, embassy annex building and the
wismaduta, the official residence of petitioner ambassador soeratmin. The equipment covered

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by the maintenace agreement are air condition unit, gen sets, electrical facilities, water heater
and water motor pumps. It also stipulated that the agreement shall be effective for a period of
four years and will renew itself automatically unlesscancelled by either party by giving thirty
days prior written notice from the date of expiry.
That prior to the arrival of the new chief administration the petitioner was informed that
the renewal of the contract will be his discretion who is expected to arrivedfebruary 2000. In
march 2000, when counsellor kasim assumed office allegedly found respondents work and
services unsatisfactory and not in compliance with the standards sets in the maintenance
agreement and the indonesian embassy terminated the agreement in a letter dated august 31,
On the other hand, the respondent claims that the termination was arbitrary and
unlawful since there were various circumstances whicepurportetedly negated petitions alleged
dissatisfaction over his services. A) injuly 2000 counsellor kasim requested him to assign to the
embassy additional worker to assist one of his workers. B) counsellorkasim asked him to donate
a prize which he fullfilled and c) in a letter dated august 22, 2000 ambassador soeratmin
thanked him for sponsoring a prize and expressed his hope that their cordial relations will
continue in the coming year.

Won the petitioner is covered by state immunity

Yes, there is no dispute that the establishment of a diplomatic mission is an act of jure
imperi, and it encompasses its maintenace and upkeep. The maintenance agreement between
the indonesian embassy and jamesvinzon to maintain the premises furnishings and equipment
and the living quarters of its official was part of its pursur of a sovereign activity. What the
petition signed in the agreement is a meine stipulation that in the event they do waive their
immunity philippine laws apply.

Case #13
Gonzales v. Office of the President
GR 196231 SEPT 4, 2012

In the morning of August 23, 2010, news media scampered for a minute by minute coverage of
hostage drama that had slowly unfolded right at the very heart of the City of Manila. A
dismissed policeman amend with an assault riffle hijacked a bus pack with tourist and killed
most of its passenger in a 10 hours hostage drama was shown on the national television. The
hostage drama took place when disgruntled former police officer Police Senior Inspector (PSI)
Rolando Mendoza attempted to secure his reinstatement in the Police Force and to restore the
benefits of a lifelong and bemedaled services. During the negotiation he claimed that he was
illegally dismissed from the service and he wanted that the final decision apparently referring to
the case that led to his dismissal. The hostage drama ended with 8 of the victims died and the
hostage taken was also shot down by a PNP Sniper.

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Sometime in 2008 a formal change for grave misconduct was filed before PNP-NCR against PSI
Rolando Mendoza and 4 other policemen. A similar complaint was filed by a driver complainant,
Christian Kalaw before the office of the City Prosecutor, Manila, docketed as I.S # 08E-09512.
While still pending on July 24, 2008, the office of the Regional Director of the National Police
Commission turned over upon the request of Petitioner Emilio A. Gonzales III to the office of the
Deputy Ombudsman for appropriate administrative adjudication and subsequently a case of
grave misconduct against PSI Rolando Mendoza and its fellow officers, who filed their respective
position papers as directed. However on February 16, 2009 through the said case I.S. # 08E-
09512 was dismissed by the office of prosecutor and similarly, the Internal Affairs Service of the
PNP thru Issued resolution, the ombudsman approved the recommendation of petitioner Emilio
Gonzalez III finding PSI Rolando Mendoza and his fellow police officers guilty of Grave
On Nov. 5, 2009 they filed for motion for reconsideration followed by a supplement for motion
for reconsideration on Nov. 19, 2009. On April 5, 2010 a draft order was released for
appropriate action by Director EulogioCecilio who in turn signed and forwarded the said order
to the petitioner Gonzalez s Office on April 27, 2010 not more than 10 days after on May 6,
2010 the petitioner endorsed the order for final approval of ombudsman MerceditasGuttierez
that was remained at her office pending for final review until the fateful day of Aug. 23, 2010.
With the said incident the government created incident investigation and review committee
headed by DOJ Secretary Delima and Vice Chair by DILG Secretary Robredo. The IIRC made the
following findings that Deputy Ombudsman Gonzalez committed serious and in excusable
negligence and gross violation of their rules. The IIRC recommended that its findings with
respect to petitioner Gonzalez be referred to the Office of the President (OP) for further
determination of possible administrative offenses.
On October 2010, the Office of the President instituted formal charged against petitioner
Gonzalez for gross neglect of duty. The Office of the President notified him that a preliminary
clarificatory conference to the administrative change to him was to be conducted at the Office
of Deputy Executive Secretary for legal affairs on February 8, 2011 and on February 7, 2011 he
filed for objection to proceedings believing that he was already prejudged despite his absence
on the scheduled clarificatory conference the Office of the President push through with the
proceedings. On March 31, 2011 rendered the assailed decision finding Deputy Ombudsman
Emilio Gonzalez III guilty of gross neglect of duty and grave misconduct constituting betrayal of
public trust hereby meted for dismissal.
Won Deputy Ombudsman Gonzalez guilty for gross neglect of duty and grave misconduct
constituting betrayal of public trust.
Won the Office of the President has the power to dismiss the Deputy Ombudsman ,
1) NO, what had happened at QuirinoGranstand on that fateful night of August 23, 2010
cannot be solely attribute to petitioner Gonzalez. The failure to immediately act upon a
Partys request for an tally resolution of his case is not by itself, gross neglect of duty
amounting to betrayal of public trust. It must be noted that the petitioner took
considerable less time to act upon the draft resolution after it is submitted for his action

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compared to the time the said draft remained finding and unacted at the Office of the
Ombudsman even if there is inordinate delay in the resolution of PSI Mendoza and an
explained failure of the petitioner to supervise his subordinates, the same cannot be
considered a vicious and malevolent act warranting his removal for betrayal of public
2) YES, the President has the power to remove Deputy Ombudsman namely A) that the
removal of Deputy Ombudsman must be for any ground provided for the removal of the
ombudsman. B) that there must be observance of due process.

Case #14
Belgica v. Executive Secretary Ochoa et al
GR 208566 November 19, 2013

The NBI Investigation was spawned by sworn affidavits of six (6) whistle-blowers who
declared that JLN Corporation (Janet Lim Napoles) had swindled billions of pesos from the
public coffers for "ghost projects" using dummy NGOs. Thus, Criminal complaints were filed
before the Office of the Ombudsman, charging five (5) lawmakers for Plunder, and three (3)
other lawmakers for Malversation, Direct Bribery, and Violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt
Practices Act. Also recommended to be charged in the complaints are some of the lawmakers
chiefs -of-staff or representatives, the heads and other officials of three (3) implementing
agencies, and the several presidents of the NGOs set up by Napoles.
Whistle-blowers alleged that" at least P900 Million from royalties in the operation of the
Malampaya gas project off Palawan province intended for agrarian reform beneficiaries has
gone into a dummy NGO. Several petitions were lodged before the Court similarly seeking that
the "Pork Barrel System" be declared unconstitutional

G.R. No. 208493 SJS filed a Petition for Prohibition seeking that the "Pork Barrel
System" be declared unconstitutional, and a writ of prohibition be issued permanently
G.R. No. 208566 - Belgica, et al filed an Urgent Petition For Certiorari and Prohibition
With Prayer For The Immediate Issuance of Temporary Restraining Order and/or Writ of
Preliminary Injunction seeking that the annual "Pork Barrel System," presently embodied in the
provisions of the GAA of 2013 which provided for the 2013 PDAF, and the Executives lump-sum,
discretionary funds, such as the Malampaya Funds and the Presidential Social Fund, be declared
unconstitutional and null and void for being acts constituting grave abuse of discretion. Also,
they pray that the Court issue a TRO against respondents

UDK-14951 A Petition filed seeking that the PDAF be declared unconstitutional, and a
cease and desist order be issued restraining President Benigno Simeon S. Aquino III (President
Aquino) and Secretary Abad from releasing such funds to Members of Congress


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1. Whether or not the 2013 PDAF Article and all other Congressional Pork Barrel Laws
similar thereto are unconstitutional considering that they violate the principles
of/constitutional provisions on (a) separation of powers; (b) non-delegability of
legislative power; (c) checks and balances; (d) accountability; (e) political dynasties;
and (f) local autonomy.
2. Whether or not the phrases (under Section 8 of PD 910,116 relating to the Malampaya
Funds, and under Section 12 of PD 1869, as amended by PD 1993, relating to the
Presidential Social Fund, are unconstitutional insofar as they constitute undue
delegations of legislative power.

1. Yes, the PDAF article is unconstitutional. The post-enactment measures which govern
the areas of project identification, fund release and fund realignment are not related
to functions of congressional oversight and, hence, allow legislators to intervene
and/or assume duties that properly belong to the sphere of budget execution. This
violates the principle of separation of powers. Congressrole must be confined to
mere oversight that must be confined to: (1) scrutiny and (2) investigation and
monitoring of the implementation of laws. Any action or step beyond that will
undermine the separation of powers guaranteed by the constitution.

Thus, the court declares the 2013 pdaf article as well as all other provisions of law which
similarly allow legislators to wield any form of post-enactment authority in the implementation
or enforcement of the budget, unrelated to congressional oversight, as violative of the
separation of powers principle and thus unconstitutional.

2. Yes. Sec 8 of PD 910- the phrase and for such other purposes as may be hereafter
directed by the President constitutes an undue delegation of legislative power
insofar as it does not lay down a sufficient standard to adequately determine the
limits of the Presidents authority with respect to the purpose for which the
Malampaya Funds may be used. It gives the President wide latitude to use the
Malampaya Funds for any other purpose he may direct and, in effect, allows him to
unilaterally appropriate public funds beyond the purview of the law.

Section 12 of PD 1869, as amended by PD 1993- the phrases:

(b) "to finance the priority infrastructure development projects was declared constitutional. IT

(b) and to finance the restoration of damaged or destroyed facilities due to calamities, as may
be directed and authorized by the Office of the President of the Philippines was declared

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Case #15
Atong vs. COMELEC
G.R. No. 203766 April 2, 2013

Atongpaglaum, Inc. and 51 other parties were disqualified by the COMELEC in the May
2013 Party-list elections for various reasons but primarily for not being qualified as a
representatives for marginalized or underrepresented sectors.
Atongpaglaum et.al. then filed a petition for certiorari against COMELEC alleging grave abuse of
discretion on the part of COMELEC in disqualifying them.


No. The comelec merely followed the guidelines set in the cases of anfbagongbayani and banat.
However, the supreme court remanded the cases back to the comelec as the supreme court
now provides for new guidelines which abandoned some principles established in the two
aforestated cases.

I. parameters. In qualifying party-lists, the comelec must use the following

1. Three different groups may participate in the party list system
1.) National parties or org.
2.) Regional parties or org.
3.) Sectoral parties or org.
2. National parties or org. And regional parties or org. Do not need to organize long
sectoral lines and do not need to represent any marginalized and underrepresented
3. Political parties can participate in party-list elections provided they register under
the party-list system and do not field candidates in legislative district elections.
4. Sectoral parties or org. May either be marginalized or underrepresented or lacking
in well-defined political constituencies. It is enough that their political advocacy
pertains to the special interest and concerns of their sector.

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5. National, regional and sectoral parties or org. Shall not be disqualified if some of
their nominies are disqualified, provided that they have atleast one nominee who
remains qualified.

Case #16
BOC Employees vs. MargaritoTeves
G.R. No. 181704 December 6, 2011

On January 25, 2005, former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo signed into law R.A. No.
9335 which took effect on February 11, 2005.
RA [No.] 9335 was enacted to optimize the revenue-generation capability and collection of the
Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and the Bureau of Customs (BOC). The law intends to
encourage BIR and BOC officials and employees to exceed their revenue targets by providing a
system of rewards and sanctions through the creation of a Rewards and Incentives Fund (Fund)
and a Revenue Performance Evaluation Board (Board). It covers all officials and employees of
the BIR and the BOC with at least six months of service, regardless of employment status. The
Fund is sourced from the collection of the BIR and the BOC in excess of their revenue targets for
the year, as determined by the Development Budget and Coordinating Committee (DBCC).
Contending that the enactment and implementation of R.A. No. 9335 are tainted with
constitutional infirmities in violation of the fundamental rights of its members, petitioner
Bureau of Customs Employees Association (BOCEA) represented by its National President, Mr.
Romulo A. Pagulayan (Pagulayan), directly filed the present petition before this Court against
respondents Margarito B. Teves, in his capacity as Secretary of the Department of Finance
(DOF), Commissioner Napoleon L. Morales (Commissioner Morales), in his capacity as BOC
Commissioner, and Lilian B. Hefti, in her capacity as Commissioner of the Bureau of Internal
Revenue (BIR).

1. Whether or not there is undue delegation of legislative power to the Board;
2. Whether or not R.A. No. 9335 and its IRR violate the rights of BOCEAs members to:
(a) equal protection of laws,
(b) security of tenure and
(c) due process; and
3. Whether R.A. No. 9335 is a bill of attainder.
1. Two tests determine the validity of delegation of legislative power: (1) the completeness
test and, (2) the sufficient standard test. A law is complete when it sets forth therein the
policy to be executed, carried out or implemented by the delegate. It lays down a
sufficient standard when it provides adequate guidelines or limitations in the law to map

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out the boundaries of the delegates authority and prevent the delegation from running
riot. To be sufficient, the standard must specify the limits of the delegates authority,
announce the legislative policy and identify the conditions under which it is to be
RA [No.] 9335 adequately states the policy and standards to guide the President in fixing
revenue targets and the implementing agencies in carrying out the provisions of the law.
In sum, the Court finds that R.A. No. 9335, read and appreciated in its entirety, is complete in all
its essential terms and conditions, and that it contains sufficient standards as to negate BOCEAs
supposition of undue delegation of legislative power to the Board.

2. a. Equal protection simply provides that all persons or things similarly situated should be
treated in a similar manner, both as to rights conferred and responsibilities imposed. The
purpose of the equal protection clause is to secure every person within a states
jurisdiction against intentional and arbitrary discrimination, whether occasioned by the
express terms of a statute or by its improper execution through the states duly
constituted authorities.
The equal protection clause recognizes a valid classification, that is, a classification that has a
reasonable foundation or rational basis and not arbitrary. With respect to RA [No.] 9335, its
expressed public policy is the optimization of the revenue-generation capability and collection
of the BIR and the BOC. the law concerns only the BIR and the BOC because they have the
common distinct primary function of generating revenues for the national government through
the collection of taxes, customs duties, fees and charges.Both the BIR and the BOC are bureaus
under the DOF. They principally perform the special function of being the instrumentalities
through which the State exercises one of its great inherent functions taxation. Indubitably,
such substantial distinction is germane and intimately related to the purpose of the law. Hence,
the classification and treatment accorded to the BIR and the BOC under RA [No.] 9335 fully
satisfy the demands of equal protection.

b. RA No. 9335 in no way violates the security of tenure of officials and employees of the
BIR and the BOC. The guarantee of security of tenure only means that an employee
cannot be dismissed from the service for causes other than those provided by law and
only after due process is accorded the employee. In the case of RA [No.] 9335, it lays
down a reasonable yardstick for removal (when the revenue collection falls short of the
target by at least 7.5%) with due consideration of all relevant factors affecting the level
of collection. This standard is analogous to inefficiency and incompetence in the
performance of official duties, a ground for disciplinary action under civil service laws.
The action for removal is also subject to civil service laws, rules and regulations and
compliance with substantive and procedural due process.

c. the essence of due process is simply an opportunity to be heard, or as applied to
administrative proceedings, a fair and reasonable opportunity to explain ones side.39

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BOCEAs apprehension of deprivation of due process finds its answer in Section 7 (b) and
(c) of R.A. No. 9335.40 The concerned BIR or BOC official or employee is not simply given
a target revenue collection and capriciously left without any quarter. R.A. No. 9335 and
its IRR clearly give due consideration to all relevant factors41 that may affect the level of
collection. In the same manner, exemptions42 were set, contravening BOCEAs claim that
its members may be removed for unattained target collection even due to causes which
are beyond their control. Moreover, an employees right to be heard is not at all
prevented and his right to appeal is not deprived of him.43 In fine, a BIR or BOC official
or employee in this case cannot be arbitrarily removed from the service without
according him his constitutional right to due process.

3. R.A. No. 9335 is not a bill of attainder. A bill of attainder is a legislative act which inflicts
punishment on individuals or members of a particular group without a judicial trial.
Essential to a bill of attainder are a specification of certain individuals or a group of
individuals, the imposition of a punishment, penal or otherwise, and the lack of judicial
trial.R.A. No. 9335 does not possess the elements of a bill of attainder. It does not seek to
inflict punishment withouta judicial trial. R.A. No. 9335 merely lays down the grounds for
the termination of a BIR or BOC official or employee and provides for the consequences
thereof. The democratic processes are still followed and the constitutional rights of the
concerned employee are amply protected.

Case #17
David v. Arroyo
G.R. No. 171396 May 3, 2006

On February 24, 2006, President Arroyo issued PP No. 1017 declaring a state of
emergency, thus:

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, President of the Republic of the

Philippines and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, [calling-out power]
by virtue of the powers vested upon me by Section 18, Article 7 of the Philippine Constitution
which states that: The President. . . whenever it becomes necessary, . . . may call out (the)
armed forces to prevent or suppress. . .rebellion. . ., and in my capacity as their
Commander-in-Chief, do hereby command the Armed Forces of the Philippines, to maintain law
and order throughout the Philippines, prevent or suppress all forms of lawless violence as well
as any act of insurrection or rebellion ["take care" power] and to enforce obedience to all the
laws and to all decrees, orders and regulations promulgated by me personally or upon my
direction; and [power to take over] as provided in Section 17, Article 12 of the Constitution do
hereby declare a State of National Emergency.

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On the same day, PGMA issued G.O. No. 5 implementing PP1017, directing the members
of the AFP and PNP "to immediately carry out the necessary and appropriate actions and
measures to suppress and prevent acts of terrorism and lawless violence."

David, et al. assailed PP 1017 on the grounds that (1) it encroaches on the emergency
powers of Congress; (2) it is a subterfuge to avoid the constitutional requirements for the
imposition of martial law; and (3) it violates the constitutional guarantees of freedom of the
press, of speech and of assembly. They alleged direct injury resulting from illegal arrest and
unlawful search committed by police operatives pursuant to PP 1017.

During the hearing, the Solicitor General argued that the issuance of PP 1017 and GO 5
have factual basis, and contended that the intent of the Constitution is to give full discretionary
powers to the President in determining the necessity of calling out the armed forces. The
petitioners did not contend the facts stated b the Solicitor General.

Whether or not the PP 1017 and G.O. No. 5 is constitutional.


The operative portion of PP 1017 may be divided into three important provisions, thus:

First provision: by virtue of the power vested upon me by Section 18, Artilce VII do
hereby command the Armed Forces of the Philippines, to maintain law and order throughout
the Philippines, prevent or suppress all forms of lawless violence as well any act of insurrection
or rebellion
Second provision: and to enforce obedience to all the laws and to all decrees, orders
and regulations promulgated by me personally or upon my direction;
Third provision: as provided in Section 17, Article XII of the Constitution do hereby
declare a State of National Emergency.

PP 1017 is partially constitutional insofar as provided by the first provision of the decree.
First Provision: Calling Out Power.
The only criterion for the exercise of the calling-out power is that whenever it becomes
necessary, the President may call the armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence,
invasion or rebellion. (Integrated Bar of the Philippines v. Zamora)
President Arroyos declaration of a state of rebellion was merely an act declaring a
status or condition of public moment or interest, a declaration allowed under Section 4, Chap 2,
Bk II of the Revised Administration Code. Such declaration, in the words of Sanlakas, is
harmless, without legal significance, and deemed not written. In these cases, PP 1017 is more
than that. In declaring a state of national emergency, President Arroyo did not only rely on
Section 18, Article VII of the Constitution, a provision calling on the AFP to prevent or suppress
lawless violence, invasion or rebellion. She also relied on Section 17, Article XII, a provision on
the States extraordinary power to take over privately-owned public utility and business affected

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with public interest. Indeed, PP 1017 calls for the exercise of an awesome power. Obviously,
such Proclamation cannot be deemed harmless.
To clarify, PP 1017 is not a declaration of Martial Law. It is merely an exercise of
President Arroyos calling-out power for the armed forces to assist her in preventing or
suppressing lawless violence.

Second Provision: The "Take Care" Power.

The second provision pertains to the power of the President to ensure that the laws be
faithfully executed. This is based on Section 17, Article VII which reads:
SEC. 17. The President shall have control of all the executive departments, bureaus, and
offices. He shall ensure that the laws be faithfully executed.
This Court rules that the assailed PP 1017 is unconstitutional insofar as it grants
President Arroyo the authority to promulgate decrees. Legislative power is peculiarly within
the province of the Legislature. Section 1, Article VI categorically states that [t]he legislative
power shall be vested in the Congress of the Philippines which shall consist of a Senate and a
House of Representatives. To be sure, neither Martial Law nor a state of rebellion nor a state
of emergency can justify President Arroyos exercise of legislative power by issuing decrees.

Third Provision: The Power to Take Over

Distinction must be drawn between the Presidents authority to declarea state of
national emergency and to exercise emergency powers. To the first, Section 18, Article VII
grants the President such power, hence, no legitimate constitutional objection can be raised.
But to the second, manifold constitutional issues arise.
Generally, Congress is the repository of emergency powers. This is evident in the tenor
of Section 23 (2), Article VI authorizing it to delegate such powers to the President. Certainly, a
body cannot delegate a power not reposed upon it. However, knowing that during grave
emergencies, it may not be possible or practicable for Congress to meet and exercise its powers,
the Framers of our Constitution deemed it wise to allow Congress to grant emergency powers to
the President, subject to certain conditions, thus:
(1) There must be a war or other emergency.
(2) The delegation must be for a limited period only.
(3) The delegation must be subject to such restrictions as the Congress may prescribe.
(4) The emergency powers must be exercised to carry out a national policy declared by
Section 17, Article XII must be understood as an aspect of the emergency powers
clause. The taking over of private business affected with public interest is just another facet of
the emergency powers generally reposed upon Congress. Thus, when Section 17 states that the
the State may, during the emergency and under reasonable terms prescribed by it, temporarily
take over or direct the operation of any privately owned public utility or business affected with
public interest, it refers to Congress, not the President. Now, whether or not the President
may exercise such power is dependent on whether Congress may delegate it to him pursuant to
a law prescribing the reasonable terms thereof.

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Following our interpretation of Section 17, Article XII, invoked by President Arroyo in
issuing PP 1017, this Court rules that such Proclamation does not authorize her during the
emergency to temporarily take over or direct the operation of any privately owned public utility
or business affected with public interest without authority from Congress.
Let it be emphasized that while the President alone can declare a state of national
emergency, however, without legislation, he has no power to take over privately-owned public
utility or business affected with public interest. Nor can he determine when such exceptional
circumstances have ceased. Likewise, without legislation, the President has no power to point
out the types of businesses affected with public interest that should be taken over. In short,
the President has no absolute authority to exercise all the powers of the State under Section 17,
Article VII in the absence of an emergency powers act passed by Congress.

As of G.O. No. 5, it is constitutional since it provides a standard by which the AFP and
the PNP should implement PP 1017, i.e. whatever is necessary and appropriate actions and
measures to suppress and prevent acts of lawless violence. Considering that acts of
terrorism have not yet been defined and made punishable by the Legislature, such portion of
G.O. No. 5 is declared unconstitutional.

Case #18
Sema vs. COMELEC
G.R. No. 177597 July 16, 2008


The Ordinance appended the 1987 Constitution apportioned 2 legislative districts of the
Province of Maguindanao. The first legislative district of the Province of Maguindanao consists
of Cotabato City and 8 municipalities. Maguindanao forms part of ARMM (under Organic Act RA
6734, as amended by RA 9054). Although under the Ordinance, Cotabato City forms part of
Maguindanaos legislative district, it is not part of the ARMM but of Region XII, having voted
against its inclusion in the ARMM in the plebiscite in November 1989.

On August 28, 2006, the ARMM Regional Asembly, exercising its power to make provinces under
Sec 19 Art. VI of RA 9054, enacted MMA Act 201 creating the Province of ShariffKabunsuan
composed of the eight municipalities in the first district of Maguindanao.

The Act provided, Except as may be provided by national law, the existing legislative district,
which includes Cotabato as a part thereof, shall remain.

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Later, 3 new municipalities were carved out of the original municipalities constituting
ShariffKabunsuan bringing its total number of municipalities to 11. Thus, what was left of
Maguindanao were the municipalities constituting its second legislative district. Cotabato City,
although part of Maguindanaos first legislative district, is not part of the Province of

On October 29, 2006, the voters of Maguindanao ratified ShariffKabunsuans creation in a


On February 6, 2007, the SangguniangPanlungsod of Cotabato City passed Resolution No. 3999
requesting the COMELEC to clarify the status of Cotabato City in view of the conversion of the
First District of Maguindanao into a regular province" under MMA Act 201. On March 6, 2007
through Resolution No. 07-0407, COMELEC answered that Cotabato City is maintained as part of
ShariffKabunsuan in the first legislative district of Maguindanao. On March 29, in preparation
for the May 14 elections, COMELEC promulgated Resolution No. 7845 stating that
Maguindanaos first legislative district is composed only of Cotabato City because of the
enactment of MMA Act 201.

On May 10, 2007, the COMELEC issued Resolution No. 7902 renaming the legislative district in
question as ShariffKabunsuan Province with Cotabato City (formerly First District of
Maguindanao with Cotabato City)

Sema, a candidate in the elections for Representative of ShariffKabunsuan with Cotabato City
prayed for the nullification of Resolution No. 7902 and the exclusion from canvassing of the
votes casts in Cotabato City for that office. She contended that ShariffKabunsuan is entitled to
one representative in Congress under Sec. 5 (3), Art. VI to the Constitution. Sema asserted that
the COMELEC acted without or in excess of its jurisdiction in issuing Resolution No. 7902 which
maintained the status quo in Maguindanaos first legislative district despite the COMELECs
earlier directive in Resolution No. 7845 designating Cotabato City as the lone component of
Maguindanaos reapportioned first legislative district. Sema further claimed that in issuing
Resolution No. 7902, the COMELEC usurped Congress power to create or reapportion
legislative districts.

In its Comment, the COMELEC, through the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG), chose not to
reach the merits of the case and merely contended that (1) Sema wrongly availed of the writ of
certiorari to nullify COMELEC Resolution No. 7902 because the COMELEC issued the same in the
exercise of its administrative, not quasi-judicial, power and (2) Semas prayer for the writ of
prohibition in G.R. No. 177597 became moot with the proclamation of respondent Didagen P.
Dilangalen (respondent Dilangalen) on June 1, 2007 as representative of the legislative district
of ShariffKabunsuan Province with Cotabato City.

In his Comment, respondent Dilangalen countered that Sema is estopped from questioning
COMELEC Resolution No. 7902 because in her certificate of candidacy filed on 29 March 2007,

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Sema indicated that she was seeking election as representative of "ShariffKabunsuan including
Cotabato City."

Respondent Dilangalen added that COMELEC Resolution No. 7902 is constitutional because it
did not apportion a legislative district for ShariffKabunsuan or reapportion the legislative
districts in Maguindanao but merely renamed Maguindanaos first legislative district.
Respondent Dilangalen further claimed that the COMELEC could not reapportion
Maguindanaos first legislative district to make Cotabato City its sole component unit as the
power to reapportion legislative districts lies exclusively with Congress, not to mention that
Cotabato City does not meet the minimum population requirement under Section 5 (3), Article
VI of the Constitution for the creation of a legislative district within a city.


I. (1) whether Section 19, Article VI of RA 9054, delegating to the ARMM Regional
Assembly the power to create provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays, is
constitutional; and
(2) if in the affirmative, whether a province created by the ARMM Regional Assembly
under MMA Act 201 pursuant to Section 19, Article VI of RA 9054 is entitled to one
representative in the House of Representatives without need of a national law creating
a legislative district for such province.
II. whether COMELEC Resolution No. 7902 is valid for maintaining the status quo in the
first legislative district of Maguindanao (as "ShariffKabunsuan Province with Cotabato
City [formerly First District of Maguindanao with Cotabato City]"), despite the creation
of the Province of ShariffKabunsuan out of such district (excluding Cotabato City).


The creation of local government units is governed by Section 10, Article X of the
Constitution. Thus, the creation of any of the four local government units province, city,
municipality or barangay must comply with three conditions. First, the creation of a local
government unit must follow the criteria fixed in the Local Government Code. Second, such
creation must not conflict with any provision of the Constitution. Third, there must be a
plebiscite in the political units affected. Congress has delegated to provincial boards, and city
and municipal councils, the power to create barangays within their jurisdiction, subject to
compliance with the criteria established in the Local Government Code, and the plebiscite
requirement in Section 10, Article X of the Constitution. However, under the Local Government
Code, "only an Act of Congress" can create provinces, cities or municipalities. The question
arises whether the delegation to the ARMM Regional Assembly of the power to create
provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays conflicts with any provision of the Constitution.

There is no provision in the Constitution that conflicts with the delegation to regional legislative
bodies of the power to create municipalities and barangays, provided Section 10, Article X of the

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Constitution is followed. However, the creation of provinces and cities is another matter. The
Constitution provides, "Each city with a population of at least two hundred fifty thousand, or
each province, shall have at least one representative" in the House of Representatives. This is
also similar with the Ordinance appended to the Constitution. A province cannot be created
without a legislative district because it will violate Section 5 (3), Article VI of the Constitution as
well as Section 3 of the Ordinance appended to the Constitution. For the same reason, a city
with a population of 250,000 or more cannot also be created without a legislative district. For
Congress to delegate validly the power to create a province or city, it must also validly delegate
at the same time the power to create a legislative district. The threshold issue then is, can
Congress validly delegate to the ARMM Regional Assembly the power to create legislative
districts for the House of Representatives? The answer is in the negative.

The power to increase the allowable membership in the House of Representatives, and to
reapportion legislative districts, is vested exclusively in Congress. Congress exercises these
powers through a law that Congress itself enacts, and not through a law that regional or local
legislative bodies enact. The allowable membership of the House of Representatives can be
increased, and new legislative districts of Congress can be created, only through a national law
passed by Congress. An inferior legislative body, created by a superior legislative body, cannot
change the membership of the superior legislative body.

It is also to be noted that nothing in Section 20, Article X of the Constitution authorizes
autonomous regions, expressly or impliedly, to create or reapportion legislative districts for

On the other hand, Section 3, Article IV of RA 9054 amending the ARMM Organic Act, provides,
"The Regional Assembly may exercise legislative power except on the following
matters: (k) National elections." Since the ARMM Regional Assembly has no legislative power to
enact laws relating to national elections, it cannot create a legislative district whose
representative is elected in national elections. Whenever Congress enacts a law creating a
legislative district, the first representative is always elected in the "next national elections" from
the effectivity of the law. It is a self-evident inherent limitation on the legislative powers of
every local or regional legislative body that it can only create local or regional offices,
respectively, and it can never create a national office.

To allow the ARMM Regional Assembly to create a national office is to allow its legislative
powers to operate outside the ARMMs territorial jurisdiction. This violates Section 20, Article X
of the Constitution which expressly limits the coverage of the Regional Assemblys legislative
powers within its territorial jurisdiction.

Petitioner stated theFelwa case where the Court sustained the constitutionality of RA 4695
(creating the provinces of Benguet, Mountain Province, Ifugao, and Kalinga-Apayao and
providing for congressional representation in the old and new provinces) because (1) it validly
created legislative districts "indirectly" through a special law enacted by Congress creating a
province and (2) the creation of the legislative districts will not result in breaching the maximum

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number of legislative districts provided under the 1935 Constitution. Felwa does not apply to
the present case because in Felwa the new provinces were created by a national law enacted by
Congress itself. Here, the new province was created merely by a regional law enacted by the
ARMM Regional Assembly. This does not detract from the constitutional principle that the
power to create legislative districts belongs exclusively to Congress. It merely prevents any
other legislative body, except Congress, from creating provinces because for a legislative body to
create a province such legislative body must have the power to create legislative districts.

If, as Sema claims, MMA Act 201 apportioned a legislative district to ShariffKabunsuan upon its
creation, this will leave Cotabato City as the lone component of the first legislative district of
Maguindanao. Cotabato City cannot constitute a legislative district by itself because as of the
census taken in 2000, it had a population of only 163,849. To constitute Cotabato City alone as
the surviving first legislative district of Maguindanao will violate Section 5 (3), Article VI of the
Constitution which requires that each city to have at least one representative shall have a
population of at least two hundred fifty thousand.

Semas theory also undermines the composition and independence of the House of
Representatives. Neither the framers of the 1987 Constitution in adopting the provisions in
Article X on regional autonomy,37 nor Congress in enacting RA 9054, envisioned or intended
these disastrous consequences that certainly would wreck the tri-branch system of government
under our Constitution. Clearly, the power to create or reapportion legislative districts cannot
be delegated by Congress but must be exercised by Congress itself.

Section 3 of the Ordinance to the Constitution which states, "Any province that may hereafter
be created shall be entitled in the immediately following election to at least one Member,"
refers to a province created by Congress itself through a national law. The reason is that the
creation of a province increases the actual membership of the House of Representatives, an
increase that only Congress can decide.

Organic acts of autonomous regions cannot prevail over the Constitution. Section 20, Article X
of the Constitution expressly provides that the legislative powers of regional assemblies are
limited within its territorial jurisdiction and subject to the provisions of the Constitution and
national laws. The Preamble of the ARMM Organic Act (RA 9054) itself states that the ARMM
Government is established "within the framework of the Constitution." This follows Section 15,
Article X of the Constitution which mandates that the ARMM "shall be created within the
framework of this Constitution and the national sovereignty as well as territorial integrity of the
Republic of the Philippines."

The present case involves the creation of a local government unit that necessarily involves also
the creation of a legislative district. The Court will not pass upon the constitutionality of the
creation of municipalities and barangays that does not comply with the criteria established in
Section 461 of RA 7160, as mandated in Section 10, Article X of the Constitution, because the
creation of such municipalities and barangays does not involve the creation of legislative

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In summary, we rule that Section 19, Article VI of RA 9054, insofar as it grants to the ARMM
Regional Assembly the power to create provinces and cities, is void for being contrary to Section
5 of Article VI and Section 20 of Article X of the Constitution, as well as Section 3 of the
Ordinance appended to the Constitution. Thus, we rule that MMA Act 201, enacted by the
ARMM Regional Assembly and creating the Province of ShariffKabunsuan, is void. We hold that
COMELEC Resolution No. 7902, preserving the geographic and legislative district of the First
District of Maguindanao with Cotabato City, is valid as it merely complies with Section 5 of
Article VI and Section 20 of Article X of the Constitution, as well as Section 1 of the Ordinance
appended to the Constitution.

WHEREFORE, we declare Section 19, Article VI of Republic Act No. 9054 UNCONSTITUTIONAL
insofar as it grants to the Regional Assembly of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao
the power to create provinces and cities. Thus, we declare VOID Muslim Mindanao Autonomy
Act No. 201 creating the Province of ShariffKabunsuan. Consequently, we rule that COMELEC
Resolution No. 7902 is VALID.

Case #19
G.R. No. 166715 August 2008


This is a case is filed by petitioners invoking their rights as taxpayers that seeks to
prevent respondents from implementing and enforcing Republic Act 9335 (Attrition Act of 2005)
assailing its constitutionality. The law aims to encourage BIR an BOC officials and employees to
surpass their revenue targets by providing a system of a Rewards and Incentives Fund and a
Revenue Performance Evaluation Board covering all officials and employees of the BIR and BOC
at least six months of service, regardless of employment status. Petitionersclaim that this law: 1)
transforms the officials and employees of the BIR and the BOC into mercenaries and bounty
hunters as they will do their best only in consideration of such rewards, thus invites corruption
and undermines the constitutionally mandated duty of these officials and employees to serve
the people with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty and efficiency; 2) violates the
constitutional gurarantee of equal protection by limiting the scope only to the officials and
employees of the BIR and the BOC; 3) undully delegates the power to to fix revenue targets to
the President without sufficient standards; and 4) creating a congressional oversight committee
thatpermitsthe legislative to participate in the implementation and enforcement of the
lawviolates the doctrine of separation of powers.


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1. Whether or not the scope of the system of rewards and incentives limitation to
officials and employees of the BIR and the BOC violates the constitutional guarantee of
equal protection.
2. Whether or not there was an undue delegation of power to fix revenue targets to the
3. Whether or not the doctrine of separation of powers has been violated in the creation
of a congressional oversight committee provided on Section 12 of the Republic Act.
4. Whether or not RA 9335 constitutionality is affected by its nullified section 12.


1. The Court referred to the ruling of Victoriano v. Elizalde Rope Workers Union, which
declared that the guaranty of equal protection of the laws is not a guaranty of equality
in the application of the laws upon all citizens of the State. The Court has held that the
standard is satisfied if the classification or distinction is based on a reasonable
foundation or rational basis and is not palpably arbitrary. In relation to RA 9335, both
the BIR and the BOC principally perform the special function of being the
instrumentalities through which the State exercises one of its great inherent functions
taxation. Indubitably, such substantial distinction is germane and intimately related to
the purpose of the law. Hence, the classification and treatment accorded to the BIR and
the BOC under R.A. 9335 fully satisfy the demands of equal protection.

2. In order to determine the validity of delegation of legistlative power, the law must be
complete that it contains the policy to be executed, carried out or implemented by the
delegate; and sufficient that it lays down sufficient standards when it provides adequate
guidelines or limitations in the law to map out the boundaries of the delegates
authority, announce the legislative policy and identify the conditions under which it is to
be implemented. Provided in R.A. 9335 under Section 2 and Section 4 are the policies
and standards to guide the President in fixing revenue targets and the implementing
agencies in carrying out the provisions of the law. Moreover, the Rewards and Incentives
Fund under Section 4, provides that it shall be sourced from the collection of the BIR and
BOC in excess of their respective revenue targets of the year- which will be determined
by the DBCC. The revenue targets shall be based on the original estimated revenue
collection expected by the BIR and the BOC for a given fiscal year and will be stated in
the BESF submitted by the President to the Congress. Thus, the determination of the
revenue targets is not solely delegated to the President as it undertakes DBCC

3. The constitution imposes two basic and related Constraints on Congress. That it may not
vest itself, any of its committees or its members with either exceutive or judicial
power, and it must follow procedures specified under the Constitution, including
procedure for enactment of laws and presentment when exercising its legistlative
power. Section 12 of the act provides the creation of Joint Congressional Committee
which is composed of Members from the Senate and House of representatives and has

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the authorization to aprove the IRR formulated by the DOF, DBM, NEDA, BIR, BOC, and
CSC was held by the court as unconstitutional for it undermines the separation of
powers guaranteed by the constitution. The JCC will allow Congress or its Members to
overturn any directive or ruling by the members of the executive branch who are
charged with the implementation of the law. But becauseJCC became functus officio and
ceased to exist after it approved the IRR, the issue of alleged encroachment on the
executive function is therefore maybe considered moot and academic.

4. Court laid down rules in Tadtad v Secretary of the Department of Energy that The
general rule is that where part of the Statute is void as repugnant to the Constitution,
while another part is valid, the valid portion, if separable from the invalid, may stand and
be enforced. Section 13 of the Act provides the Separability clause which intends to
isolate and detach any invalid provision from the other provisions so that the latter may
continue in force and affect. Therefore, the petition was PARTLY GRANTED the declaring
Section 12 of the Act NULL and VOID but UPHELD remaining provisions of the Act in
force and effect.

Case #20
GR No. 201716 January 8, 2013


-For four (4) successive regular elections, namely, the 2001, 2004, 2007 and 2010 national and
localelections, Abundo vied for the position of municipal mayor of Viga, Catanduanes
In both the 2001 and 2007 runs, he emerged and was proclaimed as the winningmayor
In the 2004 electoral derby, however, the Viga municipal board of canvassers initially proclaimed
aswinner one JoseTorres
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 onemonth
-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 lost no time in seeking the formers disqualification to run, the corresponding
petition , predicatedon the three-consecutive term limit rule
On June 16, 2010, the COMELEC First Division issued a Resolution finding for Abundo, who in
themeantime bested Torres by 219 votes6 and was accordingly proclaimed 2010 mayor-elect of
On May 21, 2010, before the COMELEC could resolve the adverted disqualification case Torres
initiatedagainst Abundo, herein private respondent Ernesto R. Vega filed a complaint to unseat
Abundo on essentially the same grounds Torres raised in his petition todisqualify.
-RTC Ruling:

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declaredAbundo ineligible to serve as municipal mayor, disposing asfollows:

-Abundo have already served three consecutive mayoralty terms, to wit, 2001-2004, 2004-2007
and 2007-2010,and, hence, disqualified for another, i.e., fourth, consecutive term. Abundo
occupied the position of and actually served as Viga mayor for over a year of the remaining
term, i.e., from May 9, 2006 to June 30, 2007, to be exact. To the RTC, the year and a month
service constitutes a complete and full service of Abundos secondterm as mayor.
-Abundo appealed to the COMELEC but the COMELEC affirmed RTCs held that service of the
unexpired portion of a term by a protestant who is declared winner inan election protest is
considered as service for one full term within the contemplation of thethree- term limit rule.
Abundo sought but was denied reconsideration by theCOMELEC
first, there was no involuntary interruption of Abundos 2004-2007 term service which would be
an exception to the three-term limit rule as he is considered never to have lost title to
thedisputed office after he won in his election protest; and second, what the Constitution
prohibits is for an elective official to be in office for the same position for more than three
consecutive terms and not to the service of the term.
-Hence, the instant petition with prayer for the issuance of a temporary restraining order
(TRO)and/or preliminary injunction.
On July 12, 2012, Abundo filed his Most Urgent Manifestation and Motion to Convert the July 3,
2012 TROinto a Status Quo Ante Order (In View of the Unreasonable and Inappropriate
Progression ofEvents)
It is upon the foregoing backdrop of events that Abundo was dislodged from his post as
incumbent mayor of Viga, Catanduanes. To be sure, the speed which characterized Abundos
ouster despitethe supervening issuance by the Court of a TRO on July 3, 2012 is not lost on


Whether or not the Commission En Banc committed grave abuse of discretion

amounting to lack or excessof jurisdiction when it declared the arguments in Abundos motion
for reconsideration as mere rehash and reiterations of the claims he raised prior to the
promulgation of theResolution.
Whether or not the Commission En Banc committed grave abuse of discretion
amounting to lack or excessof jurisdiction when it declared that Abundo has consecutively
served for three terms despite the factthat he only served the remaining one year and one
month of thesecond.
Whether or not Abundo is deemed to have served three consecutiveterms


-A comparison of Abundos arguments in the latters Brief vis--vis those in his Motion
for Reconsideration(MR) reveals that the arguments in the MR are elucidations and
amplications of the same issues raised in the brief.
First, in his Brief, Abundo raised the sole issue of lack of jurisdiction of the RTC to considerthe
quo warranto case since the alleged violation of the three-term limit has already been rejected

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by the COMELEC First Division, while in his MR, Abundo raised the similar ground of the
conclusiveness of the COMELECs finding on the issue of his qualification to run for the
Second, in his Brief, Abundo assailed RTCs reliance on Aldovino, Jr., while in his MR, he
argued that the Courts pronouncement in Aldovino, Jr., which dealt with preventive
suspension, is not applicable to the instant case as it involves only a partial service of the term.
Abundo arguedin his Brief that his situation cannot be equated with the case of preventive
suspension as held in Aldovino, Jr., while in his MR, he argued before that the almost two years
which he did not sit as mayor during the 2004-2007 term is an interruption in the continuity of
his service for the full term.
-Thus, COMELEC did not err in ruling that the issues in the MR are a rehash of those in
theBrief. CoreIssue: Whether or not Abundo is deemed to have served three
-The pivotal determinative issue then is whether the service of a term less than the full
three years by an elected official arising from his being declared as the duly elected official upon
an election protest is considered as full service of the term for purposes of the application of
the three consecutive term limit for elective local officials.
Abundos three successive continuous mayorship was effectively broken during the
2004-2007 term when he was initially deprived of title and was veritably disallowed to serve
-The three-term limit rule for elective local officials, a disqualification rule, is found in
Section 8,Article X of the 1987 Constitution, which provides:
Sec. 8. The term of office of elective local officials, except barangay officials, which shall
be determined by law, shall be three years and no such official shall serve for more than
threeconsecutive terms. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time shall not be
considered as an interruption in the continuity of his service for the full term for which he was
Sec. 43(b) of Republic Act No. (RA) 7160. No local elective official shall serve for more
than three(3) consecutive terms in the same position. Voluntary renunciation of the office for
any length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in the continuity of service for the
full term for which the elective official concerned waselected.
-To constitute a disqualification to run for an elective local office pursuant to the
aforequotedconstitutional and statutory provisions, the following requisites must concur:
that the official concerned has been elected for three consecutive terms in the same
localgovernment post;
that he has fully served three consecutiveterms
Judging from extant jurisprudence, the three-term limit rule, as applied to the different
factual milieus, has its complicated side. We shall revisit and analyze the various holdings and
relevant pronouncements of theCourt on the matter.
-As stressed in Socrates v. Commission on Elections, the principle behind the three-term
limit rule covers only consecutive terms and that what the Constitution prohibits is a
consecutive fourth term. Put a bit differently, an elective local official cannot, following his third
consecutive term, seek immediate re-election for afourth term, albeit he is allowed to seek a

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fresh term for the same position after the election where he could have sought his fourth term
but prevented to do so by reason of the prohibition.
-There has, in fine, to be a break or interruption in the successive terms of the official
after his or her third term. An interruption usually occurs when the official does not seek a
fourth term, immediately following the third.
-Of course, the basic law is unequivocal that a voluntary renunciation
of the office for any length of time shall NOT be considered an interruption in the continuity of
servicefor the full term for which the elective official concerned was elected
Assumption of Office by Operation ofLaw
In Borja, Jr. v. Commission on Elections and Jose T. Capco, Jr.35 (1998) and Montebon v.
Commission on Elections36 (2008), the Court delved on the effects of assumption to office by
operation of law on the three- term limit rule. This contemplates a situation wherein an
elective local official fills by succession a higher local government post permanently left vacant
due to any of the following contingencies, i.e., when thesupposed incumbent refuses to assume
office, fails to qualify, dies, is removed from office, voluntarily resigns or is otherwise
permanently incapacitated to discharge the functions of his office.
Recall Election
In Adormeo, Ramon Talaga, Jr. (Talaga) was elected and served as mayor of Lucena City
during terms 1992-1995and 1995-1998. During the 1998 elections, Talaga lost to Bernard G.
Tagarao. However, before Tagaraos 1998-2001 term ended, a recall election was conducted in
May 2000 wherein Talaga won and served the unexpired term of Tagarao until June 2001. When
Talaga ran for mayor in 2001, his candidacy was challenged on the ground he had already served
as mayor for three consecutive terms for violation of the three term-limit rule. The Court held
therein that the remainder of Tagaraos term after the recall election during which Talaga served
as mayor should not be considered for purposes of applying the three-term limit rule.
Conversion of a Municipality into aCity
On the other hand, the conversion of a municipality into a city does not constitute an
interruption ofthe incumbent officials continuity of service.
Period of PreventiveSuspension
In 2009, in the case Aldovino Jr., the Court espoused the doctrine that the period during
which a localelected official is under preventive suspension cannot be considered as an
interruption of the continuity of his service. Strict adherence to the intent of the three-term
limit rule demands that preventive suspension should not be considered an interruption that
allows an elective officials stay in office beyond three terms. A preventive suspension cannot
simply be a term interruption because the suspended official continues to stay in office
although he is barred from exercising the functions and prerogatives of the office within
thesuspension period. The best indicator of the suspended officials continuity in office is the
absence of a permanent replacement and the lack of the authority to appoint one since no
vacancy exists
Romeo Lonzanida was elected and had served as municipal mayor of San Antonio,
Zambales in terms 1989-1992,1992- 1995 and 1995-1998. However, his proclamation relative to
the 1995 election was protested and was eventually declared by the RTC and then by COMELEC
null and void on the ground of failureofelections. On February 27, 1998, or about three

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months before the May 1998 elections, Lonzanida vacated the mayoralty post in light of a
COMELEC order and writ of execution it issued. Lonzanidas opponent assumed office for the
remainder of the term. In the May 1998 elections, Lonzanida again filed his certificate of
candidacy. His opponent, Efren Muli, filed a petition for disqualification on the ground that
Lonzanida had already served three consecutive termsin the same post. The Court, citing Borja
Jr., reiterated the two (2) conditions which must concur for the three- term limit to apply: 1)
that the official concerned has been elected for three consecutive terms in the same local
government post and 2) that he has fully served three consecutiveterms.

-To summarize, hereunder are the prevailing jurisprudence on issues affecting

consecutiveness of termsand/or involuntary interruption, viz:
When a permanent vacancy occurs in an elective position and the official merely assumed
theposition pursuant to the rules on succession under the LGC, then his service for the
unexpired portion ofthe term of the replaced official cannot be treated as one full term as
contemplated under the subject constitutional and statutory provision that service cannot be
counted in the application of anyterm limit(Borja,Jr.). If the official runs again for the same
position he held prior to his assumption of the higher office, then his succession to said position
is by operation of law and is considered an involuntary severance or interruption(Montebon).
An elective official, who has served for three consecutive terms and who did not seek the
elective position for what could be his fourth term, but later won in a recall election, had
aninterruption in the continuity of the officials service. For, he had become in the interim, i.e.,
from theend of the 3rd term up to the recall election, a private citizen (Adormeo andSocrates).
The abolition of an elective local office due to the conversion of a municipality to a citydoes not,
by itself, work to interrupt the incumbent officials continuity of service(Latasa).
Preventive suspension is not a term-interrupting event as the elective officers continued
stayand entitlement to the office remain unaffected during the period of suspension, although
he is barred from exercising the functions of his office during this period (Aldovino,Jr.).
When a candidate is proclaimed as winner for an elective position and assumes office, his term
is interrupted when he loses in an election protest and is ousted from office, thus disenabling
him from serving what would otherwise be the unexpired portion of his term of office had
theprotest been dismissed (Lonzanida and Dizon). The break or interruption need not be for a
full term ofthree years or for the major part of the 3-year term; an interruption for any length of
time, providedthe cause is involuntary, is sufficient to break the continuity of service (Socrates,
When an official is defeated in an election protest and said decision becomes final after said
official had served the full term for said office, then his loss in the election contest doesnot
constitute an interruption since he has managed to serve the term from start to finish. His full
service, despite the defeat, should be counted in the application of term limits because the
nullification of his proclamation came after the expiration of the term (Ong andRivera).

-The COMELEC ruled that Abundo did not lose title to the office as his victory in the
protest case confirmedhis entitlement to said office and he was only unable to temporarily
discharge the functions of the office during the pendency of the election protest.

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-The intention behind the three-term limit rule was not only to abrogate the
monopolization of politicalpower and prevent elected officials from breeding proprietary
interest in their position60 but also to enhance the peoples freedom of choice. In the words
of Justice Vicente V. Mendoza, while people should be protectedfrom the evils that a
monopoly of power may bring about, care should be taken that their freedom of choice is not
unduly curtailed.
-In the present case, the Court finds Abundos case meritorious and declares that the
two-year periodduring which his opponent, Torres, was serving as mayor should be considered
as an interruption, which effectively removed Abundos case from the ambit of the three-term
limit rule.
It bears to stress at this juncture that Abundo, for the 2004 election for the term starting
July 1, 2004to June 30, 2007, was the duly elected mayor. Otherwise how explain his victory in
his election protestagainst Torres and his consequent proclamation as duly elected mayor.
Accordingly, the first requisite for the application of the disqualification rule based on the three
term limit that the official has been electedis satisfied.
The facts of the case clearly point to an involuntary interruption during the July 2004-
June 2007 term.
There can be no quibbling that, during the term 2004-2007, and with the enforcement of the
decision of the election protest in his favor, Abundo assumed the mayoralty post only on May 9,
2006 and servedthe term until June 30, 2007 or for a period of a little over one year and one
month. Consequently, unlike Mayor Ong in Ong and Mayor Morales in Rivera, it cannot be said
that Mayor Abundo was able to serve fully the entire 20042007 term to which he was

term, as defined in Appari v. Court of Appeals, means, in a legal sense, a fixedand

definite period of time which the law describes that an officer may hold an office.It also means
the time during which the officer may claim to hold office as a matter of right, and fixes the
interval after which the several incumbents shall succeed one another.

In the present case, during the period of one year and ten months, or from June 30,
2004 until May 8, 2006, Abundo cannot plausibly claim, even if he wanted to, that he could hold
office of the mayor as a matter of right. Neither can he assert title to the same nor serve the
functions of the said elective office. Thereason is simple: during that period, title to hold such
office and the corresponding right to assume the functions thereof still belonged to his
opponent, as proclaimed election winner.Accordingly,
Abundo actually held the office and exercised the functions as mayor only upon his declaration,
following the resolution of the protest, as duly elected candidate in the May 2004 elections or
for only a little over one year and one month. Consequently, since the legally contemplated full
term for local elected officials isthree (3) years, it cannot be said that Abundo fully served the
term 2004-2007. The reality on the ground isthat Abundo actually served less.
Needless to stress, the almost two-year period during which Abundos opponent actually
served as Mayor is and ought to be considered an involuntary interruption of Abundos
continuity of service. An involuntaryinterrupted term, cannot, in the context of the

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disqualification rule, be considered as one term for purposes of counting the three-term
-Therefore we cannot subscribe to the argument that since respondent Abundo served
only a portion of theterm, his 2004-2007 term should not be considered for purposes of the
application of the three term limit rule.
When the framers of the Constitution drafted and incorporated the three term limit rule, it is
clear that reference is to the term, not the actual length of the service the public official may
render. Therefore,ones actual service of term no matter how long or how short is immaterial.
-We rule that the above pronouncement on preventive suspension does not apply to the
instant case. Verily, it is erroneous to say that Abundo merely was temporarily unable or
disqualified to exercise the functions of an elective post. For one, during the intervening period
of almost two years, reckoned from the start of the 2004- 2007 term, Abundo cannot be said to
have retained title to the mayoralty office as he was at that time not the duly proclaimed winner
who would have the legal right to assume and serve such elective office. For another, not having
been declared winner yet, Abundo cannot be said to have lost title to the office since one
cannot plausibly lose a title which, in the first place, he did not have. Thus, for all intents and
purposes, even if the belated declaration in the election protest accords him title to the elective
office from the start of the term, Abundo was not entitled to the elective office until the
election protest was finally resolved in his favor.
-there is no question that during the pendency of the election protest, Abundo ceased
from exercising power or authority over the good people of Viga, Catanduanes. Consequently,
the period during which Abundo was not serving as mayor should be considered as a rest period
or break in his service because, as earlier stated,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

As a final note, We reiterate that Abundos case differs from other cases involving the
effects of an election protest because while Abundo was, in the final reckoning, the winning
candidate, he was the one deprived of his right and opportunity to serve his constituents. To a
certain extent, Abundo was a victim of an imperfect election system. While admittedly the
Court does not possess the mandate to remedy such imperfections, the Constitution has
clothed it with enough authority to establish a fortress against the injustices it may bring. Also,
more than the injustice that may be committed against Abundo is the injustice that may likewise
be committed against the people of Viga, Catanduanes by depriving them of their right to
choose their leaders.Like the framers of the Constitution, We bear in mind that We cannot
arrogate unto ourselves the right to decide what the people want and hence, should, as much
as possible, allow the people to exercise their own sense of proportion and rely on their own
strength to curtail the power when it overreaches itself. For democracy draws strength from
the choice the people make which is the same choice We are likewise bound to protect.
WHEREFORE, the instant petition is PARTLY GRANTED, and the Decision of the Regional
Trial Court (RTC)of Virac, Catanduanes,are hereby REVERSED and SETASIDE.
Petitioner AbelardoAbundo, Sr. is DECLARED ELIGIBLE for the position of Mayor of Viga,
Catanduanes to whichhe was duly elected in the May 2010 elections and is accordingly ordered

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Case #21
Limkaichong v. Comelec
G.R. Nos. 178831-32 July 30, 2009

Jocelyn Limkaichong ran as a representative in the 1 stditrict of Negros Oriental. Olivia
Paras, her rival, and some other concerned citizens filed disqualification cases against
Limkaichong. Limkaichong is allegedly not a natural-born citizen of the Philippines because
when she was born, her father was still a Chinese and that her mom, though a Filipino, lost her
citizenship by virtue of her marriage to her dad. During the pendency of the case against
Limkaichong and COMELEC, election day came and votes were cast. Results came in and
Limkaichong won over her rival Paras. Comelec, after due hearing declared Limkaichong as
disqualified just about 2 days after counting of votes.
On the following days however, notwithstanding their proclamation disqualifying
Limkaichong, the COMELEC issued a proclamation announcing Limkaichong as the winner of the
recently conducted elections. This is in compliance with Resolution No. 8062 adopting the policy
guidelines of not suspending the proclamation of winning candidates with pending
disqualification cases which shall be without prejudice to the continuation of the hearing and
resolution of the involved cases. Paras countered the proclamation and she filed a petition
before the COMELEC. Limkaichong assailed Paras petition arguing that since she is now the
proclaimed winner, the COMELEC can no longer exercise jurisdiction over the matter. It should
be the HRET which should exercise jurisdiction from then on. COMELEC agreed with

1) Whether or not the citizenship of Limkaichong's parents may be questioned in an election
2) Whether or not the HRET should assume jurisdiction over the disqualification case.
3) Whether or not the 10-day prescriptive period under 1998 HRET Rules apply to
disqualification based on citizenship.

1) No. The proper proceeding in cancelling the naturalization certificate of one person should be
in accordance with Section 18 of CA No. 473. Clearly under the law and jurisprudence, it is the
State, through the Solicitor General or the representative designated by statute, that may
question in the appropriate denaturalization proceeding.

2) Yes. Limkaichong was proclaimed by the Provincial Board of Canvassers, she had taken her
oath of office, and she was allowed to officially assume office on July 23, 2007. Accordingly, the
House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal, and no longer the COMELEC, should now assume
the jurisdiction over the disqualification case. Section 17, Article VI of the 1987 Constitution and
in Section 2509 of the OEC underscore the exclusivity of the Electoral Tribunal's jurisdiction over
election contests relating to its members.

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3) No. The ten-day prescriptive period under the 1998 HRET Rules does not apply to
disqualification based on citizenship, because qualifications for public office are continuing
requirements and must be possessed not only at the time of appointment or election or
assumption of office but during the officer's entire tenure.

Case #22
Lewis et al vs. COMELEC
G.R. No. 162759 August 4, 2006

Petitioners are 'dual citizens' who retained/reacquired Philippine citizenship under RA
9225 known as the "Citizenship Retention and Re-acquisition Act of 2003 and they prayed that
they be allowed to avail themselves of the mechanism provided under the Overseas Absentee
Voting Act of 2003 (RA 9189) to vote and register as absentee voters. They had been availing
their right to suffrage long before the May 2004 national and local elections wherein they
sought registrations and certifications as "overseas absentee voters" only to be denied by the
COMELEC stating that Duals have yet no right to vote in such elections owing to their lack of the
one-year residence requirement under the Constitution. It further contends that 'duals'
renounced their Filipino citizenship, abandoned their domicile, and severed their legal ties to
the homeland as a consequence and for them to exercise the right to vote, they must possess
the qualifications provided for by Sec. 1, Article V of the Constitution.

w/n Petitioners, through RA 9225, can exercise their right to suffrage under RA 9189.

Yes. RA 9225 implicitly acknowledged 'duals' as more likely 'non-residents' wherein the
latter is granted under Sec 5 (1) the right to suffrage as that granted an absentee voter under RA
9189. Furthermore, those who retained/reacquired their citizenship under RA 9225 shall enjoy
full civil and political rights are already granted by Section 2 Article V of the Constitution
providing the exception to the residency requirement which was later strengthened under RA
9189. RA 9189 allows immigrants and permanent residents abroad to register as voter for as
long as he/she executes an affidavit to show that he/she has not abandoned his domicile in
pursuance of the Constitutional intent expressed in Sections 1 Article V of the Constitution and
Section 2 same article- that which later became RA 9189. 'Duals' may now exercise the right of
Suffrage through the absentee voting scheme and as overseas absentee voters defined in RA

Case #23
Pichay v ochoa
Gr no 196425

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On April 16, 2001, then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo issued Executive Order No. 12 (E.O.
12) creating the Presidential Anti-Graft Commission (PAGC) and vesting it with the power to
investigate or hear administrative cases or complaints for possible graft and corruption, among
others, against presidential appointees and to submit its report and recommendations to the
President. However, on November 15, 2010, President Benigno Simeon Aquino III issued
Executive Order No. 13 (E.O. 13), abolishing the PAGC and transferring its functions to the Office
of the Deputy Executive Secretary for Legal Affairs (ODESLA), more particularly to its newly-
established Investigative and Adjudicatory Division (IAD) which perform powers, functions and
duties the same as PAGC.
On April 6, 2011, respondent Cesar V. Purisima as Secretary of Finance filed before the
IAD-ODESLA a complaint affidavit against petitioner Prospero A. Pichay, Jr., Chairman of the
Board of Trustees of the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) for grave misconduct, as
well as the incumbent members of the LWUA Board of Trustees (BOT), which arose from the
purchase by the LWUA of 445,377 shares of stock of Express Savings Bank, Inc. Petitioner, along
with the other members of the BOT of LWUA, and was ordered to submit their respective
written explanations. In defense, Petitioner filed a Motion to Dismiss manifesting that the case
involving the same transaction is already pending before the Office of the Ombudsman. Alleging
that no other plain, speedy and adequate remedy is available, Pichay resorted to the instant
petition for certiorari where he claims that E.O. 13 is unconstitutional for usurping the power of
the Legislature to create a public office, to appropriate funds, and to delegate quasi-judicial
powers to administrative agencies; that it encroached upon the powers of the ombudsman; and
that it violates the guarantee of due process and equal protection clause.

1. Whether or not E.O. 13 is unconstitutional for usurping the Legislative power to create a
public office.
2. Whether or not there is usurpation of legislative power to appropriate public funds in
view of such reorganization.
3. Whether or not the IAD-ODESLA encroachers upon the powers and duties of the
4. Whether or not E.O. 13 violates Petitioners right to due process and equal protection of
the laws.


1. E.O 13 is constitutional. Section 31 of E.O. No. 291 (Administrative Code of 1987)

provides that the President has the continuing authority to reorganize the offices under
him to achieve simplicity, economy and efficiency. The Office of the President is capable
of being shaped and reshaped by the President in the manner he deems fit to carry out
his directives and policies. The transfer of PAGCs function and duties to a division
specially created within the ODESLA is befittingly within the prerogative of the President
under his continuing delegated legislative authority to organize his office. Since both

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ODESLA and PAGC belongs to the Office of the President, the reorganization is proper
and within the power of the President.
2. Under Section 78 of the R.A. No. 9970 or the General Appropriations Act of 2010, the
Presidents authority to direct changes in the organizational units in any departments is
recognized. It extends to the power of the President to reorganize the executive offices
and agencies under him, and modifying and realigning appropriations for that purpose.
Although there are no specific funds allocated for IAD-ODESLA, it may properly be
sourced from the Presidents own office budget appropriated by the Congress without
committing any misappropriation.
3. The primary jurisdiction of the Ombudsman to investigate and prosecute cases refers to
criminal cases cognizable by the Sandiganbayan. Since the case filed before IAD-ODESLA
is an administrative disciplinary case for grave misconduct, Petitioner may not prevent
the IAD-ODESLA from proceeding with its investigation. The function of IAD-ODESLA is
limited to fact-finding investigation whose findings and recommendations remain so
until acted by the President. Therefore, it commits no usurpation of the Ombudsmans
powers and duties.
4. The petitioner points out the the violation of the equal protection clause for limiting the
investigative power of IAD-ODESLA only to presidential appointees occupying upper-
level positions in the government. In Salumbides v. Office of the Ombudsman, the court
ruled that substantial distinctions exists between elective and appointive public officials.
The power to remove or discipline presidential appointees is lodged in the same
authority on which the power to appoint is vested, which is the President. Petitioner
holds an office appointed by the President as the Chairman of LWUA, it is well and
within his right to investigate matters that require his decision under his jurisdiction and
to discipline such, as the need may rise.
In administrative cases, to constitute the minimum requirement to due process is to give
the opportunity for the person charged to answer accusations filed against him. What
the law abhors is an absolute lack of opportunity to be heard. Since the petitioner was
issued an order requiring him to submit his written explanation with respect to the grave
misconduct filed against him, he cannot claim that he is denied of due process for it was
his failure submit such explanation.

Case #24
GR 196271 October 18, 2011

RA 6734 is the organic act that established the ARMM and scheduled the first regular
elections for the regional officials. RA 9054 reset the regular elections to the second
Monday of September 2001. RA No. 9140 again reset this to November 26, 2001. Finally,

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RA No. 9333 set the schedule of the ARMM regional elections to the 2nd Monday of
August 2005 and on the same date every 3 years thereafter.
Pursuant to RA No. 9333, the next ARMM regional elections should have been held
on August 8, 2011. COMELEC had begun preparations for these elections and had
accepted certificates of candidacies for the various regional offices to be elected.
However, on June 30, 2011, RA 10153 was enacted, again resetting the next ARMM
regular elections to May 2013 to coincide with the schedule of the regular national and
local elections of the country.
In these consolidated petitions filed directly with the Supreme Court, the petitioners
assailed the constitutionality of RA No. 10153.

WON the synchronization of elections to include election of ARMM regional officials is
mandated by the Constitution
WON the passage of RA No. 10153 violate the three-readings-on-separate-days rule
under Section 26(2), Article VI of the 1987 Constitution
WON it is constitutional to grant the President powers to appoint OICs in the ARMM

YES. The 1987 Constitution mandates the synchronization of elections.
o While the Constitution does not expressly state that Congress has to synchronize
national and local elections, the clear intent towards this objective can be
gleaned from the Transitory Provisions (Article XVIII) of the Constitution, which
show the extent to which the Constitutional Commission, by deliberately making
adjustments to the terms of the incumbent officials, sought to attain
synchronization of elections.
o The Constitutional Commission exchanges, read with the provisions of the
Transitory Provisions of the Constitution, all serve as patent indicators of the
constitutional mandate to hold synchronized national and local elections,
starting the second Monday of May 1992 and for all the following elections.
o In this case, the ARMM elections, although called regional elections, should be
included among the elections to be synchronized as it is a local election based
on the wording and structure of the Constitution.

NO. The passage of RA No. 10153 does not violate the three-readings-on-separate-days
requirement in Section 26(2), Article VI of the 1987 Constitution.
o The general rule that before bills passed by either the House or the Senate can
become laws they must pass through three readings on separate days, is subject
to the EXCEPTION when the President certifies to the necessity of the bills
immediate enactment.
o The Court, in Tolentino v. Secretary of Finance, explained the effect of the
Presidents certification of necessity in the following manner:

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The presidential certification dispensed with the requirement not only of

printing but also that of reading the bill on separate days.
The phrase "except when the President certifies to the necessity of its
immediate enactment, etc." in Art. VI, Section 26[2] qualifies the two
stated conditions before a bill can become a law:
[i] the bill has passed three readings on separate days and
[ii] it has been printed in its final form and distributed three days
before it is finally approved.

o In the present case, the records show that the President wrote to the Speaker of the
House of Representatives to certify the necessity of the immediate enactment of a
law synchronizing the ARMM elections with the national and local elections.
o Following our Tolentino ruling, the Presidents certification exempted both the House
and the Senate from having to comply with the three separate readings

YES, the grant of the power to appoint OICs in the ARMM is constitutional.
o During the oral arguments, the Court identified the three options open to
Congress in order to resolve the problem on who should sit as ARMM officials in
the interim [in order to achieve synchronization in the 2013 elections:
(1) allow the [incumbent] elective officials in the ARMM to remain in
office in a hold over capacity until those elected in the synchronized
elections assume office;
(2) hold special elections in the ARMM, with the terms of those elected to
expire when those elected in the [2013] synchronized elections assume
office; or
(3) authorize the President to appoint OICs, [their respective terms to last
also until those elected in the 2013 synchronized elections assume office.]

1st option: Holdover is unconstitutional since it would extend the terms of office
of the incumbent ARMM officials
Section 8. The term of office of elective local officials, except
barangay officials, which shall be determined by law, shall be three
years and no such official shall serve for more than three
consecutive terms. [emphases ours]

Since elective ARMM officials are local officials, they are

covered and bound by the three-year term limit prescribed by the
Constitution; they cannot extend their term through a
holdover. xxx.

Congress, in passing RA No. 10153, made it explicitly clear that it had the
intention of suppressing the holdover rule that prevailed under RA No.
9054 by completely removing this provision. The deletion is a policy

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decision that is wholly within the discretion of Congress to make in the

exercise of its plenary legislative powers; this Court cannot pass
upon questions of wisdom, justice or expediency of legislation, except
where an attendant unconstitutionality or grave abuse of discretion

3.2. 2nd option: Calling special elections is unconstitutional since COMELEC, on

its own, has no authority to order special elections
The power to fix the date of elections is essentially legislative in
nature. [N]o elections may be held on any other date for the positions of
President, Vice President, Members of Congress and local officials, except
when so provided by another Act of Congress, or upon orders of a body
or officer to whom Congress may have delegated either the power or the
authority to ascertain or fill in the details in the execution of that power.

Congress has acted on the ARMM elections by postponing the scheduled

August 2011 elections and setting another date May 13, 2011 for
regional elections synchronized with the presidential, congressional and
other local elections. By so doing, Congress itself has made a policy
decision in the exercise of its legislative wisdom that it shall not call
special elections as an adjustment measure in synchronizing the ARMM
elections with the other elections.

o In the same way that the term of elective ARMM officials cannot be extended
through a holdover, the term cannot be shortened by putting an expiration date
earlier than the three (3) years that the Constitution itself commands. This is
what will happen a term of less than two years if a call for special elections
shall prevail. In sum, while synchronization is achieved, the result is at the cost of
a violation of an express provision of the Constitution.

3.3. 3rd option: Grant to the President of the power to appoint ARMM OICs in the
interim is valid.
o The above considerations leave only Congress chosen interim measure RA No.
10153 and the appointment by the President of OICs to govern the ARMM during
the pre-synchronization period pursuant to Sections 3, 4 and 5 of this law as
the only measure that Congress can make. This choice itself, however, should be
examined for any attendant constitutional infirmity.

o The power to appoint is executive in nature, and the limitations on or

qualifications to the exercise of this power should be strictly construed; these
limitations or qualifications must be clearly stated in order to be recognized. The
appointing power is embodied in Section 16, Article VII of the Constitution, which

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Section 16. The President shall nominate and, with the consent of the
Commission on Appointments, appoint the heads of the executive
departments, ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls or officers
of the armed forces from the rank of colonel or naval captain, and other
officers whose appointments are vested in him in this Constitution. He
shall also appoint all other officers of the Government whose
appointments are not otherwise provided for by law, and those whom he
may be authorized by law to appoint. The Congress may, by law, vest the
appointment of other officers lower in rank in the President alone, in the
courts, or in the heads of departments, agencies, commissions, or boards.

o This provision classifies into four groups the officers that the President can
appoint. These are:
First, the heads of the executive departments; ambassadors; other public
ministers and consuls; officers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines,
from the rank of colonel or naval captain; and other officers whose
appointments are vested in the President in this Constitution;
Second, all other officers of the government whose appointments are not
otherwise provided for by law;
Third, those whom the President may be authorized by law to
appoint; and
Fourth, officers lower in rank whose appointments the Congress may by
law vest in the President alone.

o Since the Presidents authority to appoint OICs emanates from RA No. 10153, it
falls under the third group of officials that the President can appoint pursuant to
Section 16, Article VII of the Constitution. Thus, the assailed law facially rests on
clear constitutional basis.

Case #25
FrancisoJardeleza vs. Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P.A. Sereno
GR 213181 August 19, 2014


Following Justice Abads compulsory retirement, the JBC announced the application or
recommendations for the position left by the Associate Justice. Jardeleza, the incumbent Sol-
Gen at the time, was included in the list of candidates. However, he was informed through
telephone call from some Justices that the Chief Justice herself CJ Sereno, will be invoking Sec
2, Rule 10 of JBC-009 or the so-called unanimity rule against him. Generally, the rule is that
an applicant is included in the shortlist when s/he obtains affirmative vote of at least a majority
of all the members of the JBC. When Section 2, Rule 10 of JBC-009, however, is invoked because
an applicants integrity is challenged, a unanimous vote is required. Jardeleza was then directed

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to make himself available on June 30, 2014 before the JBC during which he would be informed
of the objections to his integrity.
Jardeleza wrote a letter-petition asking the SC to exercise its supervisory power and
direct the JBC to, among others, give Jardeleza a written notice and sworn written statements of
his oppositors or any documents in the JBC hearings, and to disallow CJ Sereno from
participating in the voting process for nominees on June 30, 2014.
During the June 30, 2014 meeting of the JBC, Justice Carpio appeared and disclosed a
confidential information which, to CJ Sereno, characterized Jardelezas integrity as dubious.
Jardeleza demanded that CJ Sereno execute a sworn statement specifying her objections and
that he be afforded the right to cross-examine her in a public hearing. He also requested
deferment of the JBC proceedings, as the SC en banc has yet to decide in his letter-petition.
However, the JBC continued its deliberations and proceeded to vote for the nominees to
be included in the shortlist. Thereafter, the JBC released the shortlist of 4 nominees. It was
revealed later that there were actually 5 nominees who made it to the JBC shortlist, but 1
nominee could not be included because of the invocation of the unanimity rule. Jardeleza
filed for certiorari and mandamus via Rule 65 with prayer for TRO to compel the JBC to include
him in the list of nominees on the grounds that the JBC and CJ Sereno acted with grave abuse of
discretion in excluding him, despite having garnered a sufficient number of votes to qualify for
the position.


1. W/N the right to due process is demandable as a matter of right in JBC proceedings
2. W/N the Supreme Court has jurisdiction over the case
3.W/N a writ of mandamus is available against the JBC
4. W/N a writ of certiorari under Sec 1, Rule 65 of the Rules of Court is available against the
JBC (which is not exercising quasi-judicial functions).


1. W/N the right to due process is demandable as a matter of right in JBC proceedings

Yes. While it is true that the JBC proceedings are sui generis, it does not mean that an
applicants access to the rights afforded under the due process clause is discretionary on the
part of JBC.
The Court does not brush aside the unique and special nature of JBC proceedings.
Notwithstanding being a class of its own, the right to be heard and to explain ones self is
availing. In cases where an objection to an applicants qualifications is raised, the observance of
due process neither contradicts the fulfillment of the JBCs duty to recommend. This holding is
not an encroachment on its discretion in the nomination process. Actually, its adherence to the
precepts of due process supports and enriches the exercise of its discretion. When an applicant,
who vehemently denies the truth of the objections, is afforded the chance to protest, the JBC is
presented with a clearer understanding of the situation it faces, thereby guarding the body from

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making an unsound and capricious assessment of information brought before it. The JBC is not
expected to strictly apply the rules of evidence in its assessment of an objection against an
applicant. Just the same, to hear the side of the person challenged complies with the dictates of
fairness because the only test that an exercise of discretion must surmount is that of soundness.
Consequently, the Court is compelled to rule that Jardeleza should have been included in
the shortlist submitted to the President for the vacated position of Associate Justice Abad. This
consequence arose not from the unconstitutionality of Section 2, Rule 10 of JBC-009 per se, but
from the violation by the JBC of its own rules of procedure and the basic tenets of due process.
By no means does the Court intend to strike down the unanimity rule as it reflects the JBCs
policy and, therefore, wisdom in its selection of nominees. Even so, the Court refuses to turn a
blind eye on the palpable defects in its implementation and the ensuing treatment that
Jardeleza received before the Council. True, Jardeleza has no vested right to a nomination, but
this does not prescind from the fact that the JBC failed to observe the minimum requirements
of due process.

2. W/N the Supreme Court has jurisdiction over the case

Yes. Jardelezas allegations in his petitions merits the exercise of the Courts supervisory
authority over the JBC. Under Sec 8, Art VIII of the Constitution, the JBC shall function under
the supervision of the SC. It follows that such supervisory authority covers the overseeing of
whether the JBC complies with its own rules or not.

3. W/N a writ of mandamus is available against the JBC

No. The JBCs duty to nominate is discretionary and it may not be compelled to do something.
Mandamus lies to compel the performance, when refused, of a ministerial duty, but not to
compel the performance of a discretionary duty. Mandamus will not issue to control or review
the exercise of discretion of a public officer where the law imposes upon said public officer the
right and duty to exercise his judgment in reference to any matter in which he is required to
act. It is his judgment that is to be exercised and not that of the court.

4. W/N a writ of certiorari under Sec 1, Rule 65 of the Rules of Court is available against
the JBC (which is not exercising quasi-judicial functions)
Yes. Under the expanded jurisdiction or expanded power of judicial review vested to the SC by
the 1987 Constitution, a petition for certiorari is a proper remedy to question the act of any
branch or instrumentality of the government on the ground of grave abuse of discretion

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amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction by any branch or instrumentality of the government,

even if the latter does not exercise judicial, quasi-judicial or ministerial functions.

Case #26
GR 209287 July 1, 2014

On September 25, 2013, Sen. Jinggoy Estrada disclosed that he and several senators
were allotted additional P50M as incentive for voting in favor of CJ Coronas

DBM Sec. Abad responded by issuing a statemebt saying the funds released were from
the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) of the DBM, which was formulated to
increase spending for infra & other projects for the acceleration of the countrys
economic expansion.

Further, press releases were posted in the DBM website expounding that releases of the
DAP is sourced from the following savings:
o Personnel services savings which were appropriated but will expire at yearend
(kaya palatinipidkamingmgaempleyadong GOCCs by GCG during Penoys time! Grrr! Lahatng
bonuses and benefits naming hino hold!)
o Unreleased allotments for programs earlier released to government agencies;
o Unobligated allotments of slow-moving programs.

Petitioners now assail the constitutionality of DAP as well as other DBM issuances and
Natioanl Budget circulars, including the implementing circular NBC No. 541 entitled
Adoption of Operational Efficiency Measure Withdrawal of Agencies Unobligated
Allotments as of June 30, 2012, alleging that NBC No. 541, which directed the
withdrawal of unobligated allotments of government agencies and offices with low
levels of obligations, both for continuing and current allotments.

WON the DAP violates Sec. 29, Art. VI of the 1987 Constitution, which provides: "No
money shall be paid out of the Treasury except in pursuance of an appropriation made
by law?

WON the DAP, NBC No. 541, and all other executive issuances implementing the DAP
violate Sec. 25(5), Art. VI of the 1987 Constitution insofar as:
o They treat the unreleased appropriations and unobligated allotments withdrawn
from government agencies as "savings" as the term is used in Sec. 25(5), in
relation to the provisions of the GAAs of 2011, 2012 and 2013;

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o They authorize the disbursement of funds for projects or programs not provided
in the GAAs for the Executive Department; and

WON the DAP violates:

o the Equal Protection Clause,
o the system of checks and balances, and
o the principle of public accountability considering that it authorizes the release of
funds without the request of legislators?

WONthe Doctrine of Operative Fact is applicable?

No.The SC agreed with the OSGs position that no law was necessary for the adoption and
implementation of the DAP because it was not a fund nor an appropriation but savings. The
DAP as a program is an administrative system of prioritizing spending and that the adoption
of the DAP was by virtue of the authority of the President as the Chief Executive to ensure
that laws were faithfully executed.
o The DAP was a government policy or strategy designed to stimulate the economy
through accelerated spending. In the context of the DAPs adoption and
implementation being a function pertaining to the Executive during the Budget
Execution Stage to faithfully execute the laws, Congress did not need to legislate to
adopt or implement the DAP. Congress could appropriate but would have nothing
more to do during the Budget Execution Stage.

o The President, in keeping with his duty to faithfully execute the laws, had sufficient
discretion during the execution of the budget to adapt the budget to changes in the
countrys economic situation. He could adopt a plan like the DAP for the purpose. He
could pool the savings and identify the PAPs to be funded under the DAP.

o The pooling of savings pursuant to the DAP, and the identification of the projects to
be funded under the DAP did not involve appropriation because the money had
been already set apart from the public treasury by Congress through the GAAs. In
such actions, the Executive did not usurp the power vested in Congress under
Section 29(1), Article VI of the Constitution.

No. The transfer of appropriated funds, to be valid under Section 25(5), must be made upon
a concurrence of the following requisites, namely:

There is a law authorizing the President etc within their respective offices;

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o Section 25(5) is not a self-executing provision of the Constitution. The GAA

should expressly authorize the transfer of funds.
In the 2011 GAA, the provision that gave the President and the other high
officials the authority to transfer funds was Section 59, as follows:
Section 59. Use of Savings. The President etc enjoying fiscal
autonomy, are hereby authorized to augment any item in this
Act from savings in other items of their respective appropriations.
In the 2012 GAA, the empowering provision was Section 53, to wit:
Section 53. Use of Savings. The Presidentetc. enjoying fiscal
autonomy, are authorized to augment any item in this Act from
savings in other items of their respective appropriations.
The above provisos were textually unfaithful to the
Constitution for not carrying the phrase "for their
respective offices" contained in Section 25(5), supra.
The impact of the phrase "for their respective offices" was
to authorize only transfers of funds within their offices
The provisions carried a different phrase ("to augment any
item in this Act"), and the effect was that the 2011 and
2012 GAAs thereby literally allowed the transfer of funds
from savings to augment any item in the GAAs even if the
item belonged to an office outside the Executive.
To that extent ,2011 and 2012 GAAs contravened the

The funds to be transferred are savings generated from the appropriations for their
respective offices

o The petitioners claim that the funds used in the DAP were not actual savings
within the context of Section 25(5), supra, and the relevant provisions of the
GAAs. The SC partially agreed with the petitioners.
The definition of "savings" in the GAAs, particularly for 2011, 2012 and 2013,
reflected this interpretation and made it operational, viz:
Savings refer to portions or balances of any programmed
appropriation in this Act free from any obligation or encumbrance
which are:
(i) still available after the completion or final discontinuance or
abandonment of the work, activity or purpose for which the
appropriation is authorized;
(ii) from appropriations balances arising from unpaid compensation
and related costs pertaining to vacant positions and leaves of
absence without pay; and

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(iii) from appropriations balances realized from the implementation

of measures resulting in improved systems and efficiencies and
thus enabled agencies to meet and deliver the required or
planned targets, programs and services approved in this Act at a
lesser cost.

In ascertaining the meaning of savings, certain principles should be borne in

First: Congress wields the power of the purse and decides how the
budget will be spent; what PAPs to fund; and the amounts of money
to be spent for each PAP.
Second:The Executive is tasked to enforce the laws, to faithfully
execute the GAA, spend it according to the provisions, faithfully
implement the PAPs, and to limit the expenditures, unless exigencies
result to deficiencies and augmentation is authorized, subject to the
conditions provided by law.
Third: The Presidents power to augment under the GAA is a
concession of the Congress that flexibility is necessary for budget
execution. In making the Presidents power to augment operative
under the GAA, Congress recognizes the need for flexibility in budget
execution as it delegates a fraction of its power to the Executive.
Congress does not thereby allow the Executive to override its
authority over the purse as to let the Executive exceed its delegated
Fourth: Savings should be actual - real or substantial, something that
exists presently in fact.
The power to augment is to be used when the funds purpose
have been satisfied or ceased to exist.
Unallotted or unreleased appropriations have not yet ripened
into categories from which savings can be generated.

The purpose of the transfer is to augment an item in the general appropriations

law for their respective offices.

For valid transfer of funds,purpose of the transfer should be "to augment an

item in the general appropriations law for the respective offices." The term
"augment" means to enlarge or increase in size, amount, or degree.

By providing that the President etc. may be authorized to augment any

item in the GAA "for their respective offices," Section 25(5), has delineated
borders between their offices, such that funds appropriated for one office are
prohibited from crossing over to another office even in the guise of
augmentation of a deficient item or items.

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Such transfers of funds are cross-border transfers or cross-border

augmentations which are constitutionally prohibited.

The records show that funds of P143,700,000.00 to P250,000,000.00 were

transferred under the DAP respectively to the COA and the House of
Representatives. Those transfers of funds, which constituted cross-border
augmentations for being from the Executive to the COA and the House of

Also, the President "made available" to the "Commission on Elections the

savings of his department upon [its] request for funds" This was another
instance of a cross-border augmentation.

o Sourcing the DAP from unprogrammed funds despite the original revenue targets not
having been exceeded was invalid.
The unprogrammed funds, as standby appropriations, were to be released only
when there were revenues in excess of what the programmed appropriations
Release of unprogrammed funds because there was an excess revenue as to one
source while all others were merely on target or even deficient, would be an
unsound fiscal management measure because it would disregard the budget plan
and foster budget deficits, in contravention of the Governments surplus budget

No. The denial of equal protection of any law should be an issue to be raised only by the
legislators who may have been discriminated against in the release of funds under the
DAP. Only such affected legislators could properly and fully bring to the fore when and
how the denial of equal protection occurred, and explain why there was a denial in their

Yes. Although the OSG rightly contends that the Executive was authorized to spend, such
authority did not translate to unfettered discretion that allowed the President to
substitute his own will for that of Congress.

No. DAP constituted an assumption by the Executive of Congress power of

appropriation. The DAP and its implementing issuances were policies and acts that the
Executive could properly adopt and do in the execution of the GAAs to the extent that
they sought to implement strategies to ramp up or accelerate the economy of the

Yes. Doctrine of operative fact was applicable.The doctrine recognizes the existence of
the law or executive act prior to the determination of its unconstitutionality as an
operative fact that produced consequences that cannot always be erased, ignored or
disregarded. In short, it nullifies the void law or executive act but sustains its effects. It

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provides an exception to the general rule that a void or unconstitutional law produces
no effect.

We find the doctrine of operative fact applicable to the adoption and implementation of
the DAP. Its application to the DAP proceeds from equity and fair play. The consequences
resulting from the DAP and its related issuances could not be ignored or could no longer
be undone.

As Justice Brion has clarified, the doctrine of operative fact can apply only to the PAPs
that can no longer be undone, and whose beneficiaries relied in good faith on the
validity of the DAP, but cannot apply to the authors, proponents and implementors of
the DAP, unless there are concrete findings of good faith in their favor by the proper
tribunals determining their criminal, civil, administrative and other liabilities.

The SC PARTIALLY GRANTS the petitions for certiorari and prohibition; and DECLARES the
following acts and practices under the Disbursement Acceleration Program, National Budget
Circular No. 541 and related executive issuances UNCONSTITUTIONAL for being in violation of
Section 25(5), Article VI of the 1987 Constitution and the doctrine of separation of powers,
(a) The withdrawal of unobligated allotments from the implementing agencies, and the
declaration of the withdrawn unobligated allotments and unreleased appropriations as savings
prior to the end of the fiscal year and without complying with the statutory definition of savings
contained in the General Appropriations Acts;
(b) The cross-border transfers of the savings of the Executive to augment the appropriations of
other offices outside the Executive; and
(c) The funding of projects, activities and programs that were not covered by any appropriation
in the General Appropriations Act.
The Court further DECLARES VOID the use of unprogrammed funds despite the absence of a
certification by the National Treasurer that the revenue collections exceeded the revenue
targets for non-compliance with the conditions provided in the relevant General Appropriations

Case #27
GR No. 169042 October 5, 2011


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DPWH Secretary created a committee to investigate alleged anomalous transactions

involving the repairs and/or purchase of spare parts of DPWH service vehicles during the
previous year. The committee designated the DPWH Internal Audit Services (IAS) to conduct the
actual investigation.

In the course of the investigation, the DPWH IAS discovered that several emergency repairs
and/or purchase of spare parts of hundreds of DPWH service vehicles, which were approved
and paid by the government, did not actually take place, resulting to government losses of
approximately P143 million during the ten-month covered period. Thus, the DPWH IAS filed
complaints before the Office of the Ombudsman charging several high ranking officials and
employees of DPWH including the petitioner, the respondents, and other private individuals
who purportedly benefited from the anomalous transactions.

After conducting preliminary investigation, the Ombudsman filed with Sandiganbayan several
information charging a number of DPWH officials and employees with plunder, estafa through
falsification of official/commercial documents and violation of Section 3(e) of RA 3019. On the
other hand, the Ombudsman granted the respondents request for immunity in exchange for
their testimonies and cooperation in the prosecution of the cases filed.

Does the Ombudsmans grant of immunity to the respondents valid?

Yes. In the exercise of his investigatory and prosecutorial powers endowed by the
Constitution and RA No. 6770, the Ombudsman is generally no different from an ordinary
prosecutor in determining who must be charged. He also enjoys some latitude of discretion in
determining what constitutes sufficient evidence to support a finding of probable cause and
degree of participation of those involved or the lack thereof. His findings and conclusions on
these matters are not ordinarily subject to review by the courts except when he gravely abuses
his discretion, where in this particular case, the petitioner has failed to establish.

Case #28
MACALINTAL vs. Presidential Electoral Tribunal
GR 191618 June 7, 2011

Atty. Macalintal, in this MR,rehashes his arguments that Section 4, Article VII of the
Constitution does not provide for the creation of the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET)
and that the PET violates Section 12, Article VIII of the Constitution.
Petitioner cites the concurring opinion of Justice Teresita J. Leonardo-de Castro in
Barok C. Biraogo v. The Philippine Truth Commission of 2010 that the Philippine Truth

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Commission (PTC) is a public office which cannot be created by the president, the power
to do so being lodged exclusively with Congress.
In parallel, petitioner submits that if the President, as head of the Executive Department,
cannot create the PTC, the Supreme Court, likewise, cannot create the PET in the
absence of an act of legislature.

WON the creation of the Presidential Electoral Tribunal is Constitutional.

No. Judicial power granted to the Supreme Court by the same Constitution is
unqualified and absolute. Under the doctrine of necessary implication, the additional
jurisdiction bestowed by the last paragraph of Section 4, Article VII of the Constitution to
decide presidential and vice-presidential elections contests includes the means necessary to
carry it into effect.
o Judicial powers are granted by Section 1, Article VIII of the Constitution which
provides that the power "shall be vested in one Supreme Court and in such lower
courts as may be established by law and expanded to include "the duty of the
courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally
demandable and enforceable, and to determine whether or not there has been a
grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part
of any branch or instrumentality of the Government." The power was expanded,
but it remained absolute.
o The Court reiterates that the PET is authorized by the last paragraph of Section 4,
Article VII of the Constitution as supported by the discussions of the Members of
the Constitutional Commission, which drafted the present Constitution.The
explicit reference by the framers of our Constitution to constitutionalizing what
was merely statutory before is not diluted by the absence of a phrase, line or
word, mandating the Supreme Court to create a Presidential Electoral Tribunal.
o The Constitution cannot contain the specific wording required by petitioner in
order for him to accept the constitutionality of the PET.

o When the Supreme Court, as PET, resolves a presidential or vice-presidential

election contest, it performs what is essentially a judicial power with full. The
power wielded by PET is a derivative of the plenary judicial power allocated to
courts of law, expressly provided in the Constitution.

o If the logic of petitioner is to be followed, all Members of the Court, sitting in the
Senate and House Electoral Tribunals would violate the constitutional
proscription found in Section 12, Article VIII. Section 17, Article VI, explicitly
provides that three Supreme Court Justices shall sit in the Senate and House
Electoral Tribunals, respectively, effectively exempts the Justices-Members
thereof from the prohibition in Section 12, Article VIII.

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o PET, as intended by the framers of the Constitution, is to be an institution

independent, but not separate, from the judicial department, i.e., the Supreme
Court. McCulloch v. State of Maryland proclaimed that "[a] power without the
means to use it, is a nullity." The vehicle for the exercise of this power, as
intended by the Constitution and specifically mentioned by the Constitutional
Commissioners during the discussions on the grant of power to this Court, is the
PET. Thus, a microscopic view, like the petitioner's, should not constrict an
absolute and constitutional grant of judicial power

o Finally, petitioners application of the Courts decision in Biraogo v. Philippine

Truth Commission to the present case is an unmitigated quantum leap.
The decision therein held that the Philippine Truth Commission (PTC)
finds justification under Section 17, Article VII of the Constitution. A
plain reading of the constitutional provisions, i.e., last paragraph of
Section 4 and Section 17, both of Article VII on the Executive Branch,
reveals that the two are differently worded and deal with separate
powers of the Executive and the Judicial Branches of government.
And as previously adverted to, the basis for the constitution of the PET
was, in fact, mentioned in the deliberations of the Members of the
Constitutional Commission during the drafting of the present

Case #29
A.C. No. 7399 August 25, 2009

Petitioner Antero Pobre filed a case against respondent Senator/Lawyer Miriam
Defensor-Santiago on the grounds that an excerpt of her speech that she delivered on the
Senate floor was disrespectful on the part of Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban and other
members of the court and constituted direct contempt of court. Pobre seek for the disbarment
and disciplinary action of Santiago. The excerpt is as follows:
xxx I am not angry. I am irate. I am foaming in the mouth. I am homicidal. I am suicidal. I
am humiliated, debased, degraded. And I am not only that, I feel like throwing up to be living
my middle years in the country of this nature. I am nauseated. I spit on the face of Chief Justice
Artemio Panganiban and his cohorts in the Supreme Court, I am no longer interested in the
position [of Chief Justice] if I was to be surrounded by idiots. I would rather be in another
environment but not in the Supreme Court of idiots. xxx
Senator Santiago did not deny the statements and it was made in discharge of her duty
as a member of the Congress. She argued that her statements were covered by the
constitutional provision of Article VI, Section 11 of the Constitution which provides for
parliamentary immunity. This provision states that No member shall be questioned nor be held

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liable in any other place for any speech or debate in the Congress or in any committee thereof.
This fundamental immunity is meant to enable and encourage a representative of the public to
discharge his public trust with firmness and success. She also said that the statements were
made to expose the anomalies with regard to the selection process of the Judicial Bar Council
for the next Chief Justice.

Whether or not Miriam Defensor Santiago can claim that her statements is covered by
Article VI, Section 11 and whether or not she can be charged for her comments on the

Her speech is not subject to disciplinary action or disbarment under the rules of court.
The court wanted to impose proper disciplinary sanction but the factual and legal circumstance
of the case deter the court from doing so.

Case #30
GR 191644 February 19, 2013

In March 1, Hon. Alberto C. Agra was appointed by PGMA as Acting Secretary of Justice
in place of outgoing Secretary Devenadera who was running for Congress in May 2010.

However, in March 5, 2010, Agra was also appointed as Acting Solicitor General in
concurrent capacity.

The petition was filed on April 7, 2010 by petitioner as a taxpayer alleging that the
appointments were prohibited under:
o Section 13 Art VII
Prohibits the President, Vice-President, the Members of the Cabinet, and
their deputies or assistants from holding any other office or employment
during their tenureunless otherwise provided in the Constitution), and
o Section 7, paragraph (2), Article IX-B
Bans any appointive official from holding any other office or employment
in the Government or any subdivision, agency or instrumentality thereof,
including government-owned or controlled corporations or their
subsidiaries, unless otherwise allowed by law or the primary functions of
his position.

During the pendency of the suit, PeNoy appointed Atty. Jose Cadiz as Solicitor General
and the latter commenced his duties.

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Respondents contendthat Agras concurrent designations were only in a temporary

capacity, the only effect of which was to confer additional duties to him. Thus, as the
Acting Solicitor General and Acting Secretary of Justice, Agra was not holding both
offices in the strict constitutional sense (which must be regular and permanent and not a
mere designation).

WON petitioner has locus standi
WON the case is moot and academic by virtue of the appointment of Cadiz as SolGen
WON the designation of Agra as the Acting Secretary of Justice, concurrently with his
position of Acting Solicitor General, violated the constitutional prohibition against dual
or multiple offices for the Members of the Cabinet and their deputies and assistants

Yes. This case is of transcendental importance, since it obviously has far-reaching
implications, and there is a need to promulgate rules that will guide the bench, bar, and
the public in future analogous cases. The SC took a liberal stance in allowing the petition
and resolving the controversy.

Yes. However, the Court did not desist from resolving an issue even if a supervening
event has rendered it moot and academic, if any of the following recognized exceptions
are present, namely:
o There was a grave violation of the Constitution;
o The case involved a situation of exceptional character and was of paramount
public interest;
o The constitutional issue raised required the formulation of controlling principles
to guide the Bench, the Bar and the public; and
o The case was capable of repetition, yet evading review.

Yes. Being designated as the Acting Secretary of Justice concurrently with his position of
Acting Solicitor General comes under the cover of Section 13, Article VII. Agra could not
validly hold any other office or employment during his tenure as the Acting Solicitor
General, because the Constitution has not otherwise so provided.
o It does not even matter if the appointment was merely in acting capacity since
the law did not distinguish if the nature of the position was permanent or
o To hold an office means to possess or to occupy the office, or to be in possession
and administration of the office, which implies nothing less than the actual
discharge of the functions and duties of the office.
o Agras concurrent designations as Acting Secretary of Justice and Acting Solicitor
General did not come within the definition of an ex officio capacity (by virtue of
the office or the official position). Had either of his concurrent designations been

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in an ex officio capacity in relation to the other, the Court might now be ruling in
his favor.
o The OSG are neither required by the primary functions nor included by the
powers of the DOJMEANING, one position was not derived from the other.