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POLICE POWER council by law.

With this class we are not here directly


concerned. The second branch of the clause is much more
DELA CRUZ vs. PARAS independent of the specific functions of the council which are
Facts: enumerated by law. It authorizes such ordinances as shall seem
 Assailed was the validity of an ordinance which prohibit the necessary and proper to provide for the health and safety,
operation of night clubs. Petitioners contended that the promote the prosperity, improve the morals, peace, good order,
ordinance is invalid, tainted with nullity, the municipality being comfort, and convenience of the municipality and the
devoid of power to prohibit a lawful business, occupation or inhabitants thereof, and for the protection of property therein.' It
calling. Petitioners at the same time alleging that their rights to is a general rule that ordinances passed by virtue of the implied
due process and equal protection of the laws were violated as power found in the general welfare clause must be reasonable,
the licenses previously given to them was in effect withdrawn consonant with the general powers and purposes of the
without judicial hearing. corporation, and not inconsistent with the laws or policy of the
 RA 938, as amended, was originally enacted on June 20, 1953. It State." If night clubs were merely then regulated and not
is entitled: "An Act Granting Municipal or City Boards and prohibited, certainly the assailed ordinance would pass the test
Councils the Power to Regulate the Establishments, of validity. In the two leading cases above set forth, this Court
Maintenance and Operation of Certain Places of Amusement had stressed reasonableness, consonant with the general
within Their Respective Territorial Jurisdictions.' powers and purposes of municipal corporations, as well as
The first section reads, "The municipal or city board or council of consistency with the laws or policy of the State. It cannot be said
each chartered city shall have the power to regulate by that such a sweeping exercise of a lawmaking power by Bocaue
ordinance the establishment, maintenance and operation of could qualify under the term reasonable. The objective of
night clubs, cabarets, dancing schools, pavilions, cockpits, bars, fostering public morals, a worthy and desirable end can be
saloons, bowling alleys, billiard pools, and other similar places of attained by a measure that does not encompass too wide a
amusement within its territorial jurisdiction: field. Certainly the ordinance on its face is characterized by
On May 21, 1954, the first section was amended to include not overbreadth. The purpose sought to be achieved could have
merely "the power to regulate, but likewise "Prohibit ... " The title, been attained by reasonable restrictions rather than by an
however, remained the same. It is worded exactly as RA 938. absolute prohibition. The admonition in Salaveria should be
 As thus amended, if only the said portion of the Act was heeded: "The Judiciary should not lightly set aside legislative
considered, a municipal council may go as far as to prohibit the action when there is not a clear invasion of personal or property
operation of night clubs. The title was not in any way altered. It rights under the guise of police regulation." It is clear that in the
was not changed one bit. The exact wording was followed. The guise of a police regulation, there was in this instance a clear
power granted remains that of regulation, not prohibition. invasion of personal or property rights, personal in the case of
 Petitioners contended that RA 938 which prohibits the operation those individuals desirous of patronizing those night clubs and
of night clubs would give rise to a constitutional question. The property in terms of the investments made and salaries to be
lower court upheld the constitutionality and validity of earned by those therein employed.
Ordinance No. 84 and dismissed the cases. Hence this petition
for certiorari by way of appeal. The decision now under review refers to Republic Act No. 938 as
amended. It was originally enacted on June 20, 1953. It is
Issue: Whether ordinance is valid entitled: "AN ACT GRANTING MUNICIPAL OR CITY BOARDS AND
COUNCILS THE POWER TO REGULATE THE ESTABLISHMENT,
Held: MAINTENANCE AND OPERATION OF CERTAIN PLACES OF
NO. Reliance on the police power is insufficient to justify the AMUSEMENT WITHIN THEIR RESPECTIVE TERRITORIAL
enactment of the assailed ordinance. It must be declared null JURISDICTIONS.' Its first section insofar as pertinent reads: "The
and void. municipal or city board or council of each chartered city shall
have the power to regulate by ordinance the establishment,
Police power is granted to municipal corporations in general maintenance and operation of night clubs, cabarets, dancing
terms as follows: "General power of council to enact ordinances schools, pavilions, cockpits, bars, saloons, bowling alleys, billiard
and make regulations. - The municipal council shall enact such pools, and other similar places of amusement within its territorial
ordinances and make such regulations, not repugnant to law, as jurisdiction: ... " Then on May 21, 1954, the first section was
may be necessary to carry into effect and discharge the powers amended to include not merely "the power to regulate, but
and duties conferred upon it by law and such as shall seem likewise "Prohibit ... " The title, however, remained the same. It is
necessary and proper to provide for the health and safety, worded exactly as Republic Act No. 938. It is to be admitted that
promote the prosperity, improve the morals, peace, good order, as thus amended, if only the above portion of the Act were
comfort, and convenience of the municipality and the considered, a municipal council may go as far as to prohibit the
inhabitants thereof, and for the protection of property therein." It operation of night clubs. If that were all, then the appealed
is practically a reproduction of the former Section 39 of decision is not devoid of support in law. That is not all, however.
Municipal Code. An ordinance enacted by virtue thereof, The title was not in any way altered. It was not changed one
according to Justice Moreland, speaking for the Court in the whit. The exact wording was followed. The power granted
leading case of United States v. Abendan "is valid, unless it remains that of regulation, not prohibition. There is thus support
contravenes the fundamental law of the Philippine Islands, or an for the view advanced by petitioners that to construe Republic
Act of the Philippine Legislature, or unless it is against public Act No. 938 as allowing the prohibition of the operation of night
policy, or is unreasonable, oppressive, partial, discriminating, or clubs would give rise to a constitutional question. The
in derogation of common right. Where the power to legislate Constitution mandates: "Every bill shall embrace only one
upon a given subject, and the mode of its exercise and the subject which shall be expressed in the title thereof. " Since there
details of such legislation are not prescribed, the ordinance is no dispute as the title limits the power to regulating, not
passed pursuant thereto must be a reasonable exercise of the prohibiting, it would result in the statute being invalid if, as was
power, or it will be pronounced invalid." done by the Municipality of Bocaue, the operation of a night
club was prohibited. There is a wide gap between the exercise
In another leading case, United States v. of a regulatory power "to provide for the health and safety,
Salaveria, the ponente this time being Justice Malcolm, where promote the prosperity, improve the morals, in the language of
the present Administrative Code provision was applied, it was the Administrative Code, such competence extending to all "the
stated by this Court: "The general welfare clause has two great public needs, to quote from Holmes, and to interdict any
branches: One branch attaches itself to the main trunk of calling, occupation, or enterprise. In accordance with the well-
municipal authority, and relates to such ordinances and settled principle of constitutional construction that between two
regulations as may be necessary to carry into effect and possible interpretations by one of which it will be free from
discharge the powers and duties conferred upon the municipal constitutional infirmity and by the other tainted by such grave

1
defect, the former is to be preferred. A construction that would Held:
save rather than one that would affix the seal of doom certainly Yes. It is a valid exercise of police power under the general
commends itself. We have done so before We do so again. welfare clause.

The conclusion reached by this Court is not to be interpreted as Municipal governments exercise this power under the general
a retreat from its resolute stand sustaining police power welfare clause. Pursuant thereto they are clothed with authority
legislation to promote public morals. The commitment to such an to "enact such ordinances and issue such regulations as may be
Ideal forbids such a backward step. Legislation of that character necessary to carry out and discharge the responsibilities
is deserving of the fullest sympathy from the judiciary. conferred upon it by law, and such as shall be necessary
Accordingly, the judiciary has not been hesitant to lend the governments to embark on a philanthropic orgy of inordinate
weight of its support to measures that can be characterized as dole-outs for maintain peace and order, improve public morals,
falling within that aspect of the police power. Reference is made promote the prosperity motives political or otherwise and
by respondents to Ermita-Malate Hotel and Motel Operators general welfare of the municipality and the inhabitants thereof,
Association, Inc. v. City Mayor of Manila. 28 There is a and insure the protection of property therein.
misapprehension as to what was decided by this Court. That was
a regulatory measure. Necessarily, there was no valid objection The police power of a municipal corporation is broad, and has
on due process or equal protection grounds. It did not prohibit been said to
motels. It merely regulated the mode in which it may conduct be commensurate with, but not to exceed, the duty to provide
business in order precisely to put an end to practices which for the real needs of the people in their health, safety, comfort,
could encourage vice and immorality. This is an entirely different and convenience as consistently as may be with private rights. It
case. What was involved is a measure not embraced within the extends to all the great public needs, and, in a broad sense
regulatory power but an exercise of an assumed power to includes all legislation and almost every function of the
prohibit. Moreover, while it was pointed out in the aforesaid municipal government. It covers a wide scope of subjects, and,
Ermita-Malate Hotel and Motel Operators Association, Inc. while it is especially occupied with whatever affects the peace,
decision that there must be a factual foundation of invalidity, it security, health, morals, and general welfare of the community,
was likewise made clear that there is no need to satisfy such a it is not limited thereto, but is broadened to deal with conditions
requirement if a statute were void on its face. That it certainly is which exists so as to bring out of them the greatest welfare of the
if the power to enact such ordinance is at the most dubious and people by promoting public convenience or general prosperity,
under the present Local Government Code non-existent. and to everything worthwhile for the preservation of comfort of
the inhabitants of the corporation. Thus, it is deemed inadvisable
to attempt to frame any definition which shall absolutely
BINAY vs. DOMINGO indicate the limits of police power.
Doctrine: the power of municipal corporations is broad and has
been said to be commensurate with but not to exceed the duty COA is not attuned to the changing of the times. Public purpose
to provide for the real needs of the people in their health, safety, is not unconstitutional merely because it incidentally benefits a
comfort and convenience, and consistently as may be with limited number of persons. As correctly pointed out by the Office
private rights, x x x Ordinance is not unconstitutional merely of the Solicitor General, "the drift is towards social welfare
because it incidentally benefits a limited number of persons x x x legislation geared towards state policies to provide adequate
The support for the poor has long been an accepted exercise of social services (Section 9, Art. II, Constitution), the promotion of
the police power in the promotion of the common good. the general welfare (Section 5, Ibid) social justice (Section 10,
Ibid) as well as human dignity and respect for human rights.
Facts: (Section 11, Ibid."
 On September 27, 1988, petitioner Municipality, through its
Council, approved Resolution No. 60 which confirms the The care for the poor is generally recognized as a public duty.
ongoing burial assistance program initiated by the Office The support for the poor has long been an accepted exercise of
of the Mayor. Qualified beneficiaries, under the Burial police power in the promotion of the common good.
Assistance Program, are bereaved families of Makati
whose gross family income does not exceed two thousand There is no violation of the equal protection clause in classifying
pesos (P2,000.00) a month. The beneficiaries, upon paupers as subject of legislation. Paupers may be reasonably
fulfillment of other requirements, would receive the amount classified. Different groups may receive varying treatment.
of five hundred pesos (P500.00) cash relief from the Precious to the hearts of our legislators, down to our local
Municipality of Makati. councilors, is the welfare of the paupers. Thus, statutes have
 Metro Manila Commission approved Resolution No. 60. been passed giving rights and benefits to the disabled,
Thereafter, the municipal secretary certified a emancipating the tenant farmer from the bondage of the soil,
disbursement fired of four hundred thousand pesos housing the urban poor, etc.
(P400,000.00) for the implementation of the Burial
Assistance Program. Resolution No. 60, re-enacted under Resolution No. 243, of the
 Resolution No. 60 was referred to respondent COA for its Municipality of Makati is a paragon of the continuing program
expected allowance in audit. Based on its preliminary of our government towards social justice. The Burial Assistance
findings, respondent COA disapproved Resolution No. 60 Program is a relief of pauperism, though not complete. The loss
and disallowed in audit the disbursement of finds for the of a member of a family is a painful experience, and it is more
implementation thereof. painful for the poor to be financially burdened by such death.
 Two letters for reconsideration filed by petitioners Mayor Resolution No. 60 vivifies the very words of the late President
Jejomar Binay, were denied by respondent. Ramon Magsaysay 'those who have less in life, should have more
 Bent on pursuing the Burial Assistance Program the in law." This decision, however must not be taken as a precedent,
Municipality of Makati, through its Council, passed or as an official go-signal for municipal governments to embark
Resolution No. 243, re-affirming Resolution No. 60 However, on a philanthropic orgy of inordinate dole-outs for motives
the Burial Assistance Program has been stayed by COA political or otherwise.
Decision No. 1159. Petitioner, through its Mayor, was
constrained to file this special civil action of certiorari
praying that COA Decision No. 1159 be set aside as null and TANO vs. SOCRATES
void. Facts:
 On Dec 15, 1992, the Sangguniang Panglungsod ng Puerto
Issue: WON Resolution no. 60 is constitutional Princesa enacted an ordinance banning the shipment of
all live fish and lobster outside Puerto Princesa City from

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January 1, 1993 to January 1, 1998. Subsequently the Anito Group of Companies which owns and operates
Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Provincial Government of several hotels and motels in Metro Manila.
Palawan enacted a resolution prohibiting the catching,  December 23, 1992 - The RTC granted the motion to
gathering, possessing, buying, selling, and shipment of a intervene. The RTC also notified the Solicitor General of the
several species of live marine coral dwelling aquatic proceedings pursuant to then Rule 64, Section 4 of the Rules
organisms for 5 years, in and coming from Palawan waters. of Court. On the same date, MTDC moved to withdraw as
 Petitioners filed a special civil action for certiorari and plaintiff.
prohibition, praying that the court declare the said  December 28, 1992 - The RTC granted MTDC's motion to
ordinances and resolutions as unconstitutional on the withdraw.
ground that the said ordinances deprived them of the due  During the pre-trial conference, the WLC, TC and STDC
process of law, their livelihood, and unduly restricted them agreed to submit the case for decision without trial as the
from the practice of their trade, in violation of Section 2, case involved a purely legal question.
Article XII and Sections 2 and 7 of Article XIII of the 1987  October 20, 1993 - The RTC rendered a decision declaring
Constitution. the Ordinance null and void.
 The CA however, reversed the decision of the RTC and
Issue: Are the challenged ordinances unconstitutional? affirmed the Ordinance’s constitutionality.
 TC, WLC and STDC come to the SC via petition for review
Held: on certiorari. In their petition and Memorandum, petitioners
No. The Supreme Court found the petitioners contentions in essence repeat the assertions they made before the
baseless and held that the challenged ordinances did not suffer Court of Appeals. They contend that the assailed
from any infirmity, both under the Constitution and applicable Ordinance is an invalid exercise of police power.
laws. There is absolutely no showing that any of the petitioners
qualifies as a subsistence or marginal fisherman. Besides, Section Issue: Whether or not the Ordinance is an invalid exercise of
2 of Article XII aims primarily not to bestow any right to police power?
subsistence fishermen, but to lay stress on the duty of the State
to protect the nation’s marine wealth. The so called “preferential Held:
right” of subsistence or marginal fishermen to the use of marine YES. The Ordinance is an invalid exercise of police power.
resources is not at all absolute.
The test of a valid ordinance is well established. A long line of
In accordance with the Regalian Doctrine, marine resources decisions including City of Manila has held that for an ordinance
belong to the state and pursuant to the first paragraph of to be valid, it must not only be within the corporate powers of
Section 2, Article XII of the Constitution, their “exploration, the local government unit to enact and pass according to the
development and utilization...shall be under the full control and procedure prescribed by law, it must also conform to the
supervision of the State. following substantive requirements: (1) must not contravene the
Constitution or any statute; (2) must not be unfair or oppressive;
In addition, one of the devolved powers of the LCG on (3) must not be partial or discriminatory; (4) must not prohibit but
devolution is the enforcement of fishery laws in municipal waters may regulate trade; (5) must be general and consistent with
including the conservation of mangroves. This necessarily public policy; and (6) must not be unreasonable.
includes the enactment of ordinances to effectively carry out
such fishery laws within the municipal waters. In light of the The Ordinance prohibits two specific and distinct business
principles practices, namely wash rate admissions and renting out a room
of decentralization and devolution enshrined in the LGC and the more than twice a day. The ban is evidently sought to be rooted
powers granted therein to LGUs which unquestionably involve in the police power as conferred on local government units by
the exercise of police power, the validity of the questioned the Local Government Code through such implements as the
ordinances cannot be doubted. general welfare clause.

Police power, while incapable of an exact definition, has been


WHITE LIGHT CORP. vs. CITY OF MANILA purposely veiled in general terms to underscore its
Facts: comprehensiveness to meet all exigencies and provide enough
 December 3, 1992 – Mayor Lim signed into a law the room for an efficient and flexible response as the conditions
Ordinance. The Ordinance is an ordinance prohibiting short warrant. Police power is based upon the concept of necessity of
time admission in hotels, motels, lodging houses, pension the State and its corresponding right to protect itself and its
houses and similar establishments in the City of Manila. people. Police power has been used as justification for numerous
 December 15, 1992 - The Malate Tourist and Development and varied actions by the State.
Corporation (MTDC) filed a complaint for declaratory relief
with prayer for a writ of preliminary injunction and/or That the Ordinance prevents the lawful uses of a wash rate
temporary restraining order (TRO) with the Regional Trial depriving patrons of a product and the petitioners of lucrative
Court (RTC) of Manila, Branch 9 impleading as defendant, business ties in with another constitutional requisite for the
herein respondent City of Manila represented by Mayor legitimacy of the Ordinance as a police power measure. It must
Lim. appear that the interests of the public generally, as distinguished
 MTDC prayed that the Ordinance, insofar as it includes from those of a particular class, require an interference with
motels and inns as among its prohibited establishments, be private rights and the means must be reasonably necessary for
declared invalid and unconstitutional. MTDC claimed that the accomplishment of the purpose and not unduly oppressive
as owner and operator of the Victoria Court in Malate, of private rights. It must also be evident that no other alternative
Manila it was authorized by Presidential Decree (P.D.) No. for the accomplishment of the purpose less intrusive of private
259 to admit customers on a short time basis as well as to rights can work. More importantly, a reasonable relation must
charge customers wash up rates for stays of only three exist between the purposes of the measure and the means
hours. employed for its accomplishment, for even under the guise of
 December 21, 1992 - petitioners White Light Corporation protecting the public interest, personal rights and those
(WLC), Titanium Corporation (TC) and Sta. Mesa Tourist and pertaining to private property will not be permitted to be
Development Corporation (STDC) filed a motion to arbitrarily invaded.
intervene and to admit attached complaint-in-intervention
on the ground that the Ordinance directly affects their Lacking a concurrence of these requisites, the police measure
business interests as operators of drive-in hotels and motels shall be struck down as an arbitrary intrusion into private rights.
in Manila. The three companies are components of the As held in Morfe v. Mutuc, the exercise of police power is subject

3
to judicial review when life, liberty or property is affected.
However, this is not in any way meant to take it away from the Issue: (1) Whether respondent has the mandatory legal duty to
vastness of State police power whose exercise enjoys the enforce Ordinance No. 8027 and order the removal of the
presumption of validity. Pandacan Terminals (YES) (2) Whether the MOU and the
resolutions ratifying it can amend or repeal the Ordinance (NO)
Similar to the Comelec resolution requiring newspapers to
donate advertising space to candidates, this Ordinance is a Held:
blunt and heavy instrument. The Ordinance makes no distinction (1) Yes.
between places frequented by patrons engaged in illicit Under Rule 65, Section 3 of the Rules of Court, a petition for
activities and patrons engaged in legitimate actions. Thus, it mandamus may be filed when any tribunal, corporation, board,
prevents legitimate use of places where illicit activities are rare officer or person unlawfully neglects the performance of an act
or even unheard of. A plain reading of section 3 of the which the law specifically enjoins as a duty resulting from an
Ordinance shows it makes no classification of places of office, trust or station. Mandamus is an extraordinary writ that is
lodging thus deems them all susceptible to illicit patronage and employed to compel the performance, when refused, of a
subjects them without exception to the unjustified prohibition. ministerial duty that is already imposed on the respondent and
there is no other plain, speedy and adequate remedy in the
The promotion of public welfare and a sense of morality among ordinary course of law. The petitioner should have a well-
citizens deserves the full endorsement of the judiciary provided defined, clear and certain legal right to the performance of the
that such measures do not trample rights this Court is sworn to act and it must be the clear and imperative duty of respondent
protect. The notion that the promotion of public morality is a to do the act required to be done.
function of the State is as old as Aristotle.
When a mandamus proceeding concerns a public right and its
Even as the implementation of moral norms remains an object is to compel a public duty, the people who are interested
indispensable complement to governance, that prerogative is in the execution of the laws are regarded as the real parties in
hardly absolute, especially in the face of the norms of due interest and they need not show any specific interest. Besides, as
process of liberty. And while the tension may often be left to the residents of Manila, petitioners have a direct interest in the
courts to relieve, it is possible for the government to avoid the enforcement of the city ordinances. Respondent never
constitutional conflict by employing more judicious, less drastic questioned the right of petitioners to institute this proceeding.
means to promote morality.
The Local Government Code imposes upon respondent the
duty, as city mayor, to "enforce all laws and ordinances relative
SOCIAL JUSTICE SOCIETY vs. ATIENZA to the governance of the city." One of these is Ordinance No.
March 7, 2002 8027. As the chief executive of the city, he has the duty to
Doctrine: The Local Government Code imposes upon the City enforce Ordinance No. 8027 as long as it has not been repealed
Mayor the duly to “enforce all laws and ordinances relative to by the Sanggunian or annulled by the courts. He has no other
the governance of the city”. As chief executive of the city, he choice. It is his ministerial duty to do so. In Dimaporo v. Mitra, Jr.,
has the duty to enforce an ordinance as long as it has not been we stated the reason for this:
repealed by the Sanggunian or annulled by the courts. He has These officers cannot refuse to perform their duty on the ground
no choice; it is his ministerial duty to do so [Social Justice Society of an alleged invalidity of the statute imposing the duty. The
v. Mayor Atienza, G.R. No. 156052, March 7, 2007]. reason for this is obvious. It might seriously hinder the transaction
of public business if these officers were to be permitted in all
Facts: cases to question the constitutionality of statutes and ordinances
 Nov 20, 2001: Sangguniang Panlungsod of Manila enacted imposing duties upon them and which have not judicially been
Ordinance No. 8027, which was approved by the declared unconstitutional. Officers of the government from the
respondent Mayor. highest to the lowest are creatures of the law and are bound to
 Ordinance No. 8027 reclassified the area described therein obey it.
from industrial to commercial and directed the owners and
operators of businesses disallowed under the (2) No.
reclassification to cease and desist from operating their We need not resolve this issue. Assuming that the terms of the
businesses within six months from the date of effectivity of MOU were inconsistent with Ordinance No. 8027, the resolutions
the ordinance. Among the businesses situated in the area which ratified it and made it binding on the City of Manila
are the so-called Pandacan Terminals of the oil companies expressly gave it full force and effect
Caltex, Petron, Shell. only until April 30, 2003. Thus, at present, there is nothing that
 June 26, 2002: City of Manila and the DOE entered into a legally hinders respondent from enforcing Ordinance No. 8027.
memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the oil
companies in which they agreed that the scaling down of Ordinance No. 8027 was enacted right after the Philippines,
the Pandacan Terminals was the most viable and along with the rest of the world, witnessed the horror of the
practicable option. Under the MOU, the City of Manila and September 11, 2001 attack on the Twin Towers of the World Trade
the DOE committed, among others, to enable the OIL Center in New York City. The objective of the ordinance is to
COMPANIES to continuously operate in compliance with protect the residents of Manila from the catastrophic
legal requirements, within the limited area resulting from devastation that will surely occur in case of a terrorist attack25
the joint operations and the scale down program. on the Pandacan Terminals. No reason exists why such a
 The Sangguniang Panlungsod ratified the MOU in protective measure should be delayed.
Resolution No. 97. In the same resolution, the Sanggunian
declared that the MOU was effective only for a period of
six months starting July 25, 2002. Thereafter, on January 30, SOCIAL JUSTICE SOCIETY vs. ATIENZA
2003, the Sanggunian adopted Resolution No. 13 February 13, 2008
extending the validity of Resolution No. 97 to April 30, 2003 Facts:
and authorizing Mayor Atienza to issue special business  The Social Justice Society sought to compel respondent
permits to the oil companies. Resolution No. 13, s. 2003 also Hon. Jose L. Atienza, Jr., then mayor of the City of Manila,
called for a reassessment of the ordinance. to enforce Ordinance No. 8027 that was enacted by the
 Petitioners filed an original action for mandamus praying Sangguniang Panlungsod of Manila in 2001.
that Mayor Atienza be compelled to enforce Ordinance  Ordinance No. 8027 reclassified the area described therein
No. 8027 and order the immediate removal of the terminals from industrial to commercial and directed the owners and
of the oil companies. operators of businesses disallowed under the

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reclassification to cease and desist from operating their
businesses within six months from the date of effectivity of This police power was also provided for in RA 409 or the Revised
the ordinance. Among the businesses situated in the area Charter of the City of Manila. Specifically, the Sanggunian has
are the so-called Pandacan Terminals of the oil. the power to reclassify land within the jurisdiction of the city.
 In 2002, the City of Manila and DOE entered into a MOU
with the oil companies. They agreed that scaling down of (3) YES
the Pandacan Terminals was the most viable and Ordinance No. 8027 is a valid police power measure because
practicable option. The Sangguniang Panlungsod ratified there is a concurrence of lawful subject and lawful method. It
the MOU in Resolution No. 97. In the same resolution, the was enacted for the purpose of promoting sound urban
Sanggunian declared that the MOU was effective only for planning, ensuring health, public safety and general welfare of
a period of six months starting 25 July 2002, which period the residents of Manila. The Sanggunian was impelled to take
was extended up to 30 April 2003. measures to protect the residents of Manila from catastrophic
 This is the factual backdrop of the Supreme Court’s 7 March devastation in case of a terrorist attack on the Pandacan
2007 Decision. The SC ruled that respondent had the Terminals. Towards this objective, the Sanggunian reclassified the
ministerial duty under the Local Government Code (LGC) area defined in the ordinance from industrial to commercial.
to enforce all laws and ordinances relative to the
governance of the city, including Ordinance No. 8027. The means adopted by the Sanggunian was the enactment of
After the SC promulgated its Decision, Chevron, Petron and a zoning ordinance which reclassified the area where the depot
Shell (herein after referred to as oil companies) and the RP, is situated from industrial to commercial. A zoning ordinance is
represented by the DOE, sought to intervene and ask for a defined as a local city or municipal legislation which logically
reconsideration of the decision. arranges, prescribes, defines and apportions a given political
 The oil companies thereafter assailed the validity of subdivision into specific land uses as present and future
Ordinance No. 8027 in the RTC of Manila. projection of needs. As a result of the zoning, the continued
 In 2006, the city council of Manila enacted Ordinance No. operation of the businesses of the oil companies in their present
8119, also known as the Manila Comprehensive Land Use location will no
Plan and Zoning Ordinance of 2006 and was approved by longer be permitted. The power to establish zones for industrial,
respondent on June 16, 2006. The oil companies also commercial and residential uses is derived from the police
assailed Ordinance No. 8119’s validity. power itself and is exercised for the protection and benefit of the
residents of a locality. Consequently, the enactment of
Issue: Ordinance No. 8027 is within the power of the Sangguniang
(1) Whether Mandamus Will Lie to Compel Respondent Mayor Panlungsod of the City of Manila and any resulting burden on
to Enforce Ordinance No. 8027 (YES) those affected cannot be said to be unjust.
(2) Whether the City of Manila Has the Power to Enact
Ordinance No. 8027 (YES) (4) YES.
(3) Whether the Enactment of Ordinance No. 8027 Is A Another reason that militates against the DOE’s assertions is that
Legitimate Exercise of Police Power (YES) Section 4 of Article X of the Constitution confines the
(4) Whether the DOE Cannot Exercise the Power of Control Presidential’s power over LGUs to one of general supervision.
Over LGUs (YES) Consequently, the Chief Executive or his or her alter egos,
cannot exercise the power of control over them. The President
Held: and his or her alter egos, the department heads, cannot
(1) YES. interfere with the activities of local governments, so long as they
Indeed, the Courts will not interfere by mandamus proceedings act within the scope of their authority. Accordingly, the DOE
with the legislative [or executive departments] of the cannot substitute its own discretion for the discretion exercised
government in the legitimate exercise of its powers, except to by the sanggunian of the City of Manila. In local affairs, the
enforce mere ministerial acts required by law to be performed wisdom of local officials must prevail as long as they are acting
by some officer thereof. Since this is the function of a writ of within the parameters of the Constitution and the law.
mandamus, which is the power to compel "the performance of
an act which the law specifically enjoins as a duty resulting from
office, trust or station." A party need not go first to the DILG in SOCIAL JUSTICE SOCIETY vs. LIM
order to compel the enforcement of an ordinance. This November 25, 2014
suggested process would be unreasonably long, tedious and Facts:
consequently injurious to the interests of the local government  Challenged in these consolidated petitions is the validity of
unit (LGU) and its constituents whose welfare is sought to be Ordinance No. 81873 entitled "AN ORDINANCE AMENDING
protected. Besides, petitioners’ resort to an original action for ORDINANCE NO. 8119, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS ‘THE MANILA
mandamus before this Court is undeniably allowed by the COMPREHENSIVE LAND USE PLAN AND ZONING
Constitution. ORDINANCE OF 2006,’ BY CREATING A MEDIUM INDUSTRIAL
ZONE (1-2) AND HEAVY INDUSTRIAL ZONE (1-3) AND
(2) YES. PROVIDING FOR ITS ENFORCEMENT" enacted by the
Ordinance No. 8027 was passed by the Sangguniang Sangguniang Panlungsod of Manila on 14 May 2009.
Panlungsod of Manila in the exercise of its police power. Police  The ordinance created a medium industrial zone (1-2) and
power is the plenary power vested in the legislature to make heavy industrial zone (1-3) effectively lifted the prohibition
statutes and ordinances to promote the health, morals, peace, against owners and operators of businesses, including
education, good order or safety and general welfare of the herein intervenors Chevron Philippines, Inc. (Chevron),
people. This power flows from the recognition that salus populi Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corporation (Shell), and Petron
est suprema lex (the welfare of the people is the supreme law). Corporation (Petron), collectively referred to as the oil
companies.
While police power rests primarily with the national legislature,  The new Ordinance repealed, amended, rescinded or
such power may be delegated. Section 16 of the LGC, known as otherwise modified Ordinance No. 8027, Sec. 23 of
the general welfare clause, encapsulates the delegated police Ordinance No. 8119, and all other Ordinances or provisions
power to local governments. LGUs like the City of Manila exercise inconsistent therewith thereby allowing, once again the
police power through their respective legislative bodies, in this operation of oil depots.
case, the  Petitioners Social Justice Society Officers, Mayor Atienza,
Sangguniang Panlungsod or the city council. Specifically, the et.al. filed a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 assailing the
Sanggunian can enact ordinances for the general welfare of the validity of Ordinance No. 8187. Their contentions are as
city. follows: (a) It is an invalid exercise of police power because

5
it does not promote the general welfare of the people; (b) the residents of Manila are not safe. It therefore became
The conditions at the time the Court declared Ordinance necessary to remove these terminals to dissipate the threat.
No. 8027 constitutional in G.R. No. 156052 exist to this date;
(c)It is violative of Section 15 and 16, Article II of the 1987 According to respondent:
Constitution as well as health and environment related Such a public need became apparent after the 9/11 incident
municipal laws and international conventions and treaties, which showed that what was perceived to be impossible to
such as: Clean Air Act; Environment Code; Toxic and happen, to the most powerful country in the world at that, is
Hazardous Wastes Law; Civil Code provisions on nuisance actually possible. The destruction of property and the loss of
and human relations; Universal Declaration of Human thousands of lives on that fateful day became the impetus for a
Rights; and Convention on the Rights of the Child (d) public need. In the aftermath of the 9/11 tragedy, the threats of
Despite the finality of the Decision in G.R. No. 156052, and terrorism continued [such] that it became imperative for
notwithstanding that the conditions and circumstances governments to take measures to combat their effects.
warranting the validity of the Ordinance remain the same,
the Manila City Council passed a contrary Ordinance, Both law and jurisprudence support the constitutionality and
thereby refusing to recognize that "judicial decisions validity of Ordinance No. 8027. Without a doubt, there are no
applying or interpreting the laws or the Constitution form impediments to its enforcement and implementation. Any delay
part of the legal system of the Philippines; is unfair to the inhabitants of the City of Manila and its leaders
 On the other hand, the respondents Mayor Lim, et.al. and who have categorically expressed their desire for the relocation
the intervenors oil companies contend that: (a) It is the of the terminals. Their power to chart and control their own
function of the Sangguniang Panlungsod to enact zoning destiny and preserve their lives and safety should not be
ordinances, for which reason, it may proceed to amend or curtailed by the intervenors’ warnings of doomsday scenarios
repeal Ordinance No. 8119 without prior referral to the and threats of economic disorder if the ordinance is enforced.
Manila Zoning Board of Adjustment and Appeals (MZBAA)
as prescribed under Section 80 (Procedure for Re-Zoning) The same best interest of the public guides the present decision.
and the City Planning and Development Office (CPDO) The Pandacan oil depot remains a terrorist target even if the
pursuant to Section 81 (Amendments to the Zoning contents have been lessened. In the absence of any convincing
Ordinance) of Ordinance No. 8119, especially when the reason to persuade this Court that the life, security and safety of
action actually originated from the Sangguniang the inhabitants of Manila are no longer put at risk by the
Panlungsod itself; (b) the Sangguniang Panlungsod may, in presence of the oil depots, we hold that Ordinance No. 8187 in
the later ordinance, expressly repeal all or part of the relation to the Pandacan Terminals is invalid and
zoning ordinance sought to be modified; (c) the provision unconstitutional.
repealing Section 23 of Ordinance No. 8119 is not violative
of Section 26, Article VI of the 1987 Constitution, which The Local Government Code of 1991 expressly provides that the
requires that every bill must embrace only one subject and Sangguniang Panlungsod is vested with the power to "reclassify
that such shall be expressed in the title; (d) petitions are land within the jurisdiction of the city" subject to the pertinent
based on unfounded fears; that the assailed ordinance is a provisions of the Code. It is also settled that an ordinance may
valid exercise of police power; that it is consistent with the be modified or repealed by another ordinance. These have
general welfare clause and public policy, and is not been properly applied in G.R. No. 156052, where the Court
unreasonable; that it does not run contrary to the upheld the position of the Sangguniang Panlungsod to reclassify
Constitution, municipal laws, and international the land subject of the Ordinance and declared that the mayor
conventions; and that the petitioners failed to overcome has the duty to enforce Ordinance No. 8027, provided that it has
the presumption of validity of the assailed ordinance not been repealed by the Sangguniang Panlungsod or
otherwise annulled by the courts. In the same case, the Court
Issue: Whether the Ordinance No. 8187 is unconstitutional also used the principle that the Sanguniang Panlungsod is in the
best position to determine the needs of its Constituents – that the
Held: YES removal of the oil depots from the Pandacan area is necessary
In striking down the contrary provisions of the assailed Ordinance "to protect the residents of Manila from catastrophic devastation
relative to the continued stay of the oil depots, we follow the in case of a terrorist attack on the Pandacan Terminals." Do all
same line of reasoning used in G.R. No. 156052, to wit: Ordinance these principles equally apply to the cases at bar involving the
No. 8027 was enacted "for the purpose of promoting sound same subject matter to justify the contrary provisions of the
urban planning, ensuring health, public safety and general assailed Ordinance? –– The SC held in the negative
welfare" of the residents of Manila. The Sanggunian was impelled
to take measures to protect the residents of Manila from The SC summarized the position of the Sangguniang Panlungsod
catastrophic devastation in case of a terrorist attack on the on the matter subject of these petitions. In 2001, the Sanggunian
Pandacan Terminals. Towards this objective, the Sanggunian found the relocation of the Pandacan oil depots necessary.
reclassified the area defined in the ordinance from industrial to Hence, the enactment of Ordinance No. 8027.
commercial.
In 2009, when the composition of the Sanggunian had already
The following facts were found by the Committee on Housing, changed, Ordinance No. 8187 was passed in favor of the
Resettlement and Urban Development of the City of Manila retention of the oil depots. In 2012, again when some of the
which recommended the approval of the ordinance: (1) the previous members were no longer re-elected, but with the Vice-
depot facilities contained 313.5 million liters of highly flammable Mayor still holding the same seat, and pending the resolution of
and highly volatile products which include petroleum gas, these petitions, Ordinance No. 8283 was enacted to give the oil
liquefied petroleum gas, aviation fuel, diesel, gasoline, kerosene depots until the end of January 2016 within which to transfer to
and fuel oil among others; (2) the depot is open to attack another site. Former Mayor Lim stood his ground and vetoed the
through land, water or air; (3) it is situated in a densely populated last ordinance.
place and near Malacañang Palace; and (4) in case of an
explosion or conflagration in the depot, the fire could spread to In its Comment, the 7th Council (2007-2010) alleged that the
the neighboring communities. assailed Ordinance was enacted to alleviate the economic
condition of its constituents.
The ordinance was intended to safeguard the rights to life,
security and safety of all the inhabitants of Manila and not just of The fact remains, however, that notwithstanding that the
a particular class. The depot is perceived, rightly or wrongly, as a conditions with respect to the operations of the oil depots
representation of western interests which means that it is a existing prior to the enactment of Ordinance No. 8027 do not
terrorist target. As long as it there is such a target in their midst, substantially differ to this day, as would later be discussed, the

6
position of the Sangguniang Panlungsod on the matter has of the property whether it is of public dominion or not. Article 420
thrice changed, largely depending on the new composition of of the Civil Code defines property of public dominion as one
the council and/or political affiliations. The foregoing, thus, shows “intended for public use.”
that its determination of the "general welfare" of the city does
not after all gear towards the protection of the people in its true The Court has also ruled that property of public dominion, being
sense and meaning, but is, one way or another, dependent on outside the commerce of man, cannot be the subject of an
the personal preference of the members who sit in the council auction sale. Properties of public dominion, being for public use,
as to which particular sector among its constituents it wishes to are not subject to levy, encumbrance or disposition through
favor. public or private sale. Any encumbrance, levy on execution or
auction sale of any property of public dominion is void for being
Now that the City of Manila, through the mayor and the city contrary to public policy. Essential public services will stop if
councilors, has changed its view on the matter, favoring the properties of public dominion are subject to encumbrances,
city’s economic related benefits, through the continued stay of foreclosures and auction sale. This will happen if the City of
the oil terminals, over the protection of the very lives and safety Parañaque can foreclose and compel the auction sale of the
of its constituents, it is imperative for this Court to make a final 600-hectare runway of the MIAA for non-payment of real estate
determination on the basis of the facts on the table as to which tax.
specific right of the inhabitants of Manila should prevail. For, in
this present controversy, history reveals that there is truly no such
thing as "the will of Manila" insofar as the general welfare of the MCIAA vs. MARCOS
people is concerned. Facts:
 Mactan Cebu International Airport Authority (MCIAA) was
created by virtue of Republic Act 6958. Since the time of its
TAXING POWER creation, MCIAA enjoyed the privilege of exemption from
payment of realty taxes in accordance with Section 14 of
MIAA vs. CA its Charter. However, on 11 October 1994, the Office of the
Facts: Treasurer of Cebu, demanded for the payment of realty
 MIAA received Final Notices of Real Estate Tax Delinquency taxes on several parcels of land belonging to the petitioner.
from the City of Parañaque for the taxable years 1992 to  Petitioner objected to such demand for payment as
2001. MIAA’s real estate tax delinquency was estimated at baseless and unjustified and asserted that it is an
P624 million. The City of Parañaque, through its City instrumentality of the government performing
Treasurer, issued notices of levy and warrants of levy on the governmental functions, which puts limitations on the
Airport Lands and Buildings. The Mayor of the City of taxing powers of local government units.
Parañaque threatened to sell at public auction the Airport  The City refused to cancel and set aside petitioner’s realty
Lands and Buildings should MIAA fail to pay the real estate tax account, insisting that the MCIAA is a government-
tax delinquency. controlled corporation whose tax exemption privilege has
 MIAA filed a petition sought to restrain the City of been withdrawn by virtue of Sections 193 and 234 of the
Parañaque from imposing real estate tax on, levying Local Government Code (LGC), and not an instrumentality
against, and auctioning for public sale the Airport Lands of the government but merely a government owned
and Buildings. corporation performing proprietary functions. MCIAA paid
 The City of Parañaque contended that Section 193 of the its tax account “under protest” when City is about to issue
Local Government Code expressly withdrew the tax a warrant of levy against the MCIAA’s properties.
exemption privileges of “government-owned and-  MCIAA filed a Petition of Declaratory Relief with the RTC
controlled corporations” upon the effectivity of the Local contending that the taxing power of local government
Government Code. Thus, MIAA cannot claim that the units do not extend to the levy of taxes or fees on an
Airport Lands and Buildings are exempt from real estate tax. instrumentality of the national government. It contends that
 MIAA argued that Airport Lands and Buildings are owned by the nature of its powers and functions, it has the footing
by the Republic. The government cannot tax itself. The of an agency or instrumentality of the national
reason for tax exemption of public property is that its government; which claim the City rejects. The trial court
taxation would not inure to any public advantage, since in dismissed the petition, citing that close reading of the LGC
such a case the tax debtor is also the tax creditor. provides the express cancellation and withdrawal of tax
exemptions of Government Owned and Controlled
Issue: Whether or not the City of Parañaque can impose real tax, Corporations.
levy against and auction for public sale the Airport Lands and
Buildings. Issue: Whether the City of Cebu has the power to impose taxes
on petitioner
Held:
MIAA is Not a Government-Owned or Controlled Held: YES
Corporation. The Airport Lands and Buildings of MIAA are As a general rule, the power to tax is an incident of sovereignty
property of public dominion and therefore owned by the State and is unlimited in its range, acknowledging in its very nature no
or the Republic of the Philippines. No one can dispute that limits, so that security against its abuse is to be found only in the
properties of public dominion mentioned in Article 420 of the Civil responsibility of the legislature which imposes the tax on the
Code, like “roads, canals, rivers, torrents, ports and bridges constituency who are to pay it. Since taxes are what we pay for
constructed by the State,” are owned by the State. The term civilized society, or are the lifeblood of the nation, the law frowns
“ports” includes seaports and airports. The MIAA Airport Lands against exemptions from taxation and statutes granting tax
and Buildings constitute a “port” constructed by the State. exemptions are thus construed strictissimi juris against the
taxpayers and liberally in favor of the taxing authority. A claim of
Under Article 420 of the Civil Code, the MIAA Airport Lands and exemption from tax payment must be clearly shown and based
Buildings are properties of public dominion and thus owned by on language in the law too plain to be mistaken.
the State or the Republic of the Philippines. The Airport Lands and
Buildings are devoted to public use because they are used by There can be no question that under Section 14 RA 6958 the
the public for international and domestic travel and petitioner is exempt from the payment of realty taxes imposed
transportation. The fact that the MIAA collects terminal fees and by the National Government or any of its political subdivisions,
other charges from the public does not remove the character of agencies, and instrumentalities. Nevertheless, since taxation is
the Airport Lands and Buildings as properties for public use. The the rule and exemption is the exception, the exemption may thus
charging of fees to the public does not determine the character be withdrawn at the pleasure of the taxing authority.

7
The terms "Republic of the Philippines" and "National
The LGC, enacted pursuant to Section 3, Article X of the Government" are not interchangeable. The former is boarder
constitution provides for the exercise by LGUs of their power to and synonymous with "Government of the Republic of the
tax, the scope thereof or its limitations, and the exemption from Philippines" which the Administrative Code of the 1987 defines as
taxation. Section 133 of the LGC prescribes the common the "corporate governmental entity though which the functions
limitations on the taxing powers of LGUs: (o) Taxes, fees or of the government are exercised through at the Philippines,
charges of any kind on the national government, its agencies including, saves as the contrary appears from the context, the
and instrumentalities and LGUs. Among the "taxes" enumerated various arms through which political authority is made effective
in the LGC is real property tax. Section 234 of LGC provides for in the Philippines, whether pertaining to the autonomous reason,
the exemptions from payment of GOCCs, except as provided the provincial, city, municipal or barangay subdivision or other
therein. On the other hand, the LGC authorizes LGUs to grant tax forms of local government." These autonomous regions,
exemption privileges. Reading together Section 133, 232 and provincial, city, municipal or barangay subdivisions" are the
234 of the LGC, we conclude that as a general rule, as laid down political subdivision. On the other hand, "National Government"
in Secs 133 the taxing powers of LGUs cannot extend to the levy refers "to the entire machinery of the central government, as
of inter alia, "taxes, fees, and charges of any kind of the National distinguished from the different forms of local Governments." The
Government, its agencies and instrumentalties, and LGUs"; National Government then is composed of the three great
however, pursuant to Sec 232, provinces, cities, municipalities in departments the executive, the legislative and the judicial. An
the Metropolitan Manila Area may impose the real property tax "agency" of the Government refers to "any of the various units of
except on, inter alia, "real property owned by the Republic of the the Government, including a department, bureau, office
Philippines or any of its political subdivisions except when the instrumentality, or government-owned or controlled corporation,
beneficial used thereof has been granted to a taxable person." or a local government or a distinct unit therein;" while an
"instrumentality" refers to "any agency of the National
As to tax exemptions or incentives granted to or presently Government, not integrated within the department framework,
enjoyed by natural or juridical persons, including government- vested with special functions or jurisdiction by law, endowed with
owned and controlled corporations, Section 193 of the LGC some if not all corporate powers, administering special funds,
prescribes the general rule, viz., they are withdrawn upon the and enjoying operational autonomy; usually through a charter.
effectivity of the LGC, except upon the effectivity of the LGC, This term includes regulatory agencies, chartered institutions and
except those granted to local water districts, cooperatives duly government-owned and controlled corporations".
registered under R.A. No. 6938, non stock and non-profit hospitals
and educational institutions, and unless otherwise provided in If Section 234(a) intended to extend the exception therein to the
the LGC. The latter proviso could refer to Section 234, which withdrawal of the exemption from payment of real property
enumerates the properties exempt from real property tax. But taxes under the last sentence of the said section to the agencies
the last paragraph of Section 234 further qualifies the retention and instrumentalities of the National Government mentioned in
of the exemption in so far as the real property taxes are Section 133(o), then it should have restated the wording of the
concerned by limiting the retention only to those enumerated latter. Yet, it did not Moreover, that Congress did not wish to
there-in; all others not included in the enumeration lost the expand the scope of the exemption in Section 234(a) to include
privilege upon the effectivity of the LGC. Moreover, even as the real property owned by other instrumentalities or agencies of the
real property is owned by the Republic of the Philippines, or any government including government-owned and controlled
of its political subdivisions covered by item (a) of the first corporations is further borne out by the fact that the source of
paragraph of Section 234, the exemption is withdrawn if the this exemption is Section 40(a) of P.D. No. 646, otherwise known
beneficial use of such property has been granted to taxable as the Real Property Tax Code.
person for consideration or otherwise.
Note that as a reproduced in Section 234(a), the phrase "and
Since the last paragraph of Section 234 unequivocally withdrew, any government-owned or controlled corporation so exempt by
upon the effectivity of the LGC, exemptions from real property its charter" was excluded. The justification for this restricted
taxes granted to natural or juridical persons, including GOCCs, exemption in Section 234(a) seems obvious: to limit further tax
except as provided in the said section, and the petitioner is, exemption privileges, especially in light of the general provision
undoubtedly, a government-owned corporation, it necessarily on withdrawal of exemption from payment of real property taxes
follows that its exemption from such tax granted it in Section 14 in the last paragraph of property taxes in the last paragraph of
of its charter, R.A. No. 6958, has been withdrawn. Any claim to Section 234. These policy considerations are consistent with the
the contrary can only be justified if the petitioner can seek refuge State policy to ensure autonomy to local governments 33 and
under any of the exceptions provided in Section 234, but not the objective of the LGC that they enjoy genuine and
under Section 133, as it now asserts, since, as shown above, the meaningful local autonomy to enable them to attain their fullest
said section is qualified by Section 232 and 234. In short, the development as self-reliant communities and make them
petitioner can no longer invoke the general rule in Section 133. effective partners in the attainment of national goals. 34 The
power to tax is the most effective instrument to raise needed
It must show that the parcels of land in question, which are real revenues to finance and support myriad activities of local
property, are any one of those enumerated in Section 234, either government units for the delivery of basic services essential to
by virtue of ownership, character, or use of the property. Most the promotion of the general welfare and the enhancement of
likely, it could only be the first, but not under any explicit provision peace, progress, and prosperity of the people. It may also be
of the said section, for one exists. In light of the petitioner's theory relevant to recall that the original reasons for the withdrawal of
that it is an "instrumentality of the Government", it could only be tax exemption privileges granted to government-owned and
within be first item of the first paragraph of the section by controlled corporations and all other units of government were
expanding the scope of the terms Republic of the Philippines" to that such privilege resulted in serious tax base erosion and
embrace "instrumentalities" and "agencies." distortions in the tax treatment of similarly situated enterprises,
and there was a need for this entities to share in the requirements
This view does not persuade us. In the first place, the petitioner's of the development, fiscal or otherwise, by paying the taxes and
claim that it is an instrumentality of the Government is based on other charges due from them.
Section 133(o), which expressly mentions the word
"instrumentalities"; and in the second place it fails to consider the The crucial issues then to be addressed are: (a) whether the
fact that the legislature used the phrase "National Government, parcels of land in question belong to the Republic of the
its agencies and instrumentalities" "in Section 133(o),but only the Philippines whose beneficial use has been granted to the
phrase "Republic of the Philippines or any of its political petitioner, and (b) whether the petitioner is a "taxable person". It
subdivision "in Section 234(a). may be reasonable to assume that the term "lands" refer to
"lands" in Cebu City then administered by the Lahug Air Port and

8
includes the parcels of land the respondent City of Cebu seeks  Bayantel wrote the office of the City Assessor seeking the
to levy on for real property taxes. This section involves a "transfer" exclusion of its real properties in the city from the roll of
of the "lands" among other things, to the petitioner and not just taxable real properties. With its request having been
the transfer of the beneficial use thereof, with the ownership denied, Bayantel interposed an appeal with the Local
being retained by the Republic of the Philippines. Board of Assessment Appeals (LBAA). And, evidently on its
firm belief of its exempt status, Bayantel did not pay the real
This "transfer" is actually an absolute conveyance of the property taxes assessed against it by the Quezon City
ownership thereof because the petitioner's authorized capital government.
stock consists of "the value of such real estate owned and/or  Quezon City Treasurer sent out notices of delinquency
administered by the airports." Hence, the petitioner is now the followed by the issuance of several warrants of levy against
owner of the land in question and the exception in Sec 234(c) of Bayantel's properties preparatory to their sale at a public
the LGC is inapplicable. Petitioner cannot claim that it was never auction
a "taxable person" under its Charter. It was only exempted from  Bayantel filed with the RTC of Quezon City a petition for
the payment of real property taxes. The grant of the privilege prohibition with an urgent application for a temporary
only in respect of this tax is conclusive proof of the legislative restraining order (TRO)
intent to make it a taxable person subject to all taxes, except
real property tax. Issue: In declaring the real properties of respondent exempt from
real property taxes notwithstanding the fact that the tax
Finally, even if the petitioner was originally not a taxable person exemption granted to Bayantel in its original franchise had been
for purposes of real property tax, in light of the forgoing withdrawn by the [LGC] Whether or not Bayantel's real properties
disquisitions, it had already become even if it be conceded to in Quezon City are exempt from real property taxes under its
be an "agency" or "instrumentality" of the Government, a taxable legislative franchise; Bayantel's franchise being national in
person for such purpose in view of the withdrawal in the last character, the "exemption" thus granted under Section 14 of
paragraph of Section 234 of exemptions from the payment of Rep. Act No. 3259 applies to all its real or personal properties
real property taxes, which, as earlier adverted to, applies to the found anywhere within the Philippine archipelago.
petitioner. Accordingly, the position taken by the petitioner is
untenable. Reliance on Basco vs. Pagcor is unavailing since it Held:
was decided before the effectivity of the LGC. Besides, nothing Real properties of Bayantel, save those exclusive of its franchise,
can prevent Congress from decreeing that even are subject to realty taxes. Ultimately, therefore, the inevitable
instrumentalities or agencies of the government performing result was that all realties which are actually,... directly and
governmental functions may be subject to tax. Where it is done exclusively used in the operation of its franchise are "exempted"
precisely to fulfill a constitutional mandate and national policy, from any property tax.
no one can doubt its wisdom.
Bayantel's franchise being national in character, the "exemption"
thus granted under Section 14 of Rep. Act No. 3259 applies to all
CITY GOVERNMENT OF QC vs. BAYAN TELECOMMUNICATIONS its real or personal properties found anywhere within the
Facts: Philippine archipelago.
 Respondent Bayan Telecommunications, Inc. (Bayantel) is
a legislative franchise holder under Republic Act (Rep. Act) However, with the LGC's taking effect, the realty tax exemption
No. 3259... to establish and operate radio stations for heretofore enjoyed by Bayantel under its original franchise, but
domestic telecommunications, radiophone, broadcasting subsequently withdrawn by force of Section 234 of the LGC, has
and... telecasting. been restored by Section 14 of Rep. Act No. 7633.
 Rep. Act No. 7160, otherwise known as the "Local
Bayantel is only "liable to pay the same taxes, as any other
Government Code of 1991" (LGC), took effect. Section 232
persons or corporations on all its real or personal properties,
of the Code grants local government units within the Metro
exclusive of its franchise."... there can really be no dispute that
Manila Area the power to levy tax on real properties... the
the power of the Quezon City Government to tax is limited by
same Code... withdrew any exemption from realty tax
Section 232 of the LGC which expressly provides that "a province
heretofore granted to or enjoyed by all persons, natural or
or city or municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area may
juridical barely few months after the LGC took effect,
levy an annual... ad valorem tax on real property such as land,
Congress enacted Rep. Act No. 7633, amending Bayantel's
building, machinery, and other improvement not hereinafter
original franchise contained the following tax provision:
specifically exempted." Under this law, the Legislature
 SEC. 11. The grantee, its successors or assigns shall be liable
highlighted its power to thereafter exempt certain realties from
to pay the same taxes on their real estate, buildings and
the taxing power of local... government units. An interpretation
personal property, exclusive of this franchise, as other
denying Congress such power to exempt would reduce the
persons or corporations are now or hereafter may be
phrase "not hereinafter specifically exempted" as a pure jargon,
required by law to pay.
without meaning whatsoever. Needless to state, such absurd
 In addition thereto, the grantee, its successors or assigns
situation is unacceptable.
shall pay a franchise tax equivalent to three percent (3%)
of all gross receipts of the telephone or other
Admittedly, Rep. Act No. 7633 was enacted subsequent to the
telecommunications businesses transacted under this
LGC. Perfectly aware that the LGC has already withdrawn
franchise by the grantee, its successors or assigns and the...
Bayantel's former exemption from realty taxes, Congress opted
said percentage shall be in lieu of all taxes on this franchise
to pass Rep. Act No. 7633 using... exactly the same defining
or earnings thereof. Provided, That the grantee, its
phrase "exclusive of this franchise" which was the basis for
successors or assigns shall continue to be liable for income
Bayantel's exemption from realty taxes prior to the LGC.
taxes payable under Title II of the National Internal Revenue
Code .... xxx. [Emphasis... supplied]
In plain language, Section 11 of Rep. Act No. 7633 states that
 It is undisputed that within the territorial boundary of
"the grantee, its successors or assigns shall be liable to pay the
Quezon City, Bayantel owned several real properties on
same taxes on their real... estate, buildings and personal
which it maintained various telecommunications facilities.
property, exclusive of this franchise, as other persons or
 Government of Quezon City enacted City Ordinance
corporations are now or hereafter may be required by law to
imposing a real property tax on all real properties in Quezon
pay." The Court views this subsequent piece of legislation as an
City, and, reiterating in its Section 6, the withdrawal of express and real intention on the part of Congress to once...
exemption from real property tax under Section 234 of the
again remove from the LGC's delegated taxing power, all of the
LGC

9
franchisee's (Bayantel's) properties that are actually, directly and The issue of non-compliance with the prescribed procedure in
exclusively used in the pursuit of its franchise. the enactment of the Manila Revenue Code is another matter.
(allegations: No written notices of public hearing, no publication
of the ordinance, no minutes of public hearing, no posting, no
DRILON vs. LIM translation into Tagalog)
Facts:
 The principal issue in this case is the constitutionality of Judge Palattao however found that all the procedural
Section 187 of the Local Government Code. The Secretary requirements had been observed in the enactment of the
of Justice (on appeal to him of four oil companies and a Manila Revenue Code and that the City of Manila had not been
taxpayer) declared Ordinance No. 7794 (Manila Revenue able to prove such compliance before the Secretary only
Code) null and void for non-compliance with the because he had given it only five days within which to gather
procedure in the enactment of tax ordinances and for and present to him all the evidence (consisting of 25 exhibits)
containing certain provisions contrary to law and public later submitted to the trial court. We agree with the trial court
policy. that the procedural requirements have indeed been observed.
 The RTC revoked the Secretary’s resolution and sustained Notices of the public hearings were sent to interested parties as
the ordinance. It declared Sec 187 of the LGC as evidenced. The minutes of the hearings are found in Exhibits M,
unconstitutional because it vests on the Secretary the M-1, M-2, and M-3. Exhibits B and C show that the proposed
power of control over LGUs in violation of the policy of local ordinances were published in the Balita and the Manila Standard
autonomy mandated in the Constitution. The Secretary on April 21 and 25, 1993, respectively, and the approved
argues that the annulled Section 187 is constitutional and ordinance was published in the July 3, 4, 5, 1993 issues of the
that the procedural requirements for the enactment of tax Manila Standard and in the July 6, 1993 issue of Balita, as shown
ordinances as specified in the Local Government Code by Exhibits Q, Q-1, Q-2, and Q-3.
had indeed not been observed. (Petition originally
dismissed by the Court due to failure to submit certified true The only exceptions are the posting of the ordinance as
copy of the decision but reinstated it anyway.) approved, but this omission does not affect its validity,
considering that its publication in three successive issues of a
Issue: Whether or not the lower court has jurisdiction to consider newspaper of general circulation will satisfy due process. It has
the constitutionality of Sec 187 of the LGC also not been shown that the text of the ordinance has been
translated and disseminated, but this requirement applies to the
Held: approval of local development plans and public investment
Yes. Section 187 authorizes the Secretary of Justice to review only programs of the local government unit and not to tax
the constitutionality or legality of the tax ordinance and, if ordinances.
warranted, to revoke it on either or both of these grounds. When
he alters or modifies or sets aside a tax ordinance, he is not also
permitted to substitute his own judgment for the judgment of the BATANGAS CITY vs. PILIPINAS SHELL PETROLEUM CORP.
local government that enacted the measure. Secretary Drilon Facts:
did set aside the Manila Revenue Code, but he did not replace  Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corporation operates an oil
it with his own version of what the Code should be. What he refinery and depot in Tabagao, Batangas City, which
found only was that it was illegal. All he did in reviewing the said manufactures and produces petroleum products that are
measure was determine if the petitioners were performing their distributed nationwide.
functions in accordance with law, that is, with the prescribed  In 2002, respondent was only paying the amount of
procedure for the enactment of tax ordinances and the grant of P98,964.71 for fees and other charges which include the
powers to the city government under the Local Government amount for the Mayor’s Permit.
Code. As we see it, that was an act not of control but of mere  However, on February 20, 2001, petitioner, sent a notice of
supervision. assessment to respondent demanding the payment of
P92,373,720.50 and P312,656,253.04 as business taxes for its
An officer in control lays down the rules in the doing of an act. If manufacture and distribution of petroleum products.
they are not followed, he may, in his discretion, order the act  In addition, respondent was also required and assessed to
undone or re-done by his subordinate or he may even decide to pay the amount of P4,299,851.00 as Mayor’s Permit Fee
do it himself. Supervision does not cover such authority. The based on the gross sales of its Tabagao Refinery.
supervisor or superintendent merely sees to it that the rules are  Respondent filed a protest contending among others that
followed, but he himself does not lay down such rules, nor does it is not liable for the payment of the local business tax.
he have the discretion to modify or replace them.  Their protest was denied, and was told that under Section
14 of the Batangas City Tax Code of 2002, they are
Significantly, a rule similar to Section 187 appeared in the Local empowered to withhold the issuance of the Mayor’s Permit
Autonomy Act. That section allowed the Secretary of Finance to for failure of respondent to pay the business taxes
suspend the effectivity of a tax ordinance if, in his opinion, the  On June 17, 2002, respondent filed a Petition for Review
tax or fee levied was unjust, excessive, oppressive or pursuant to Section 195 of the LGC of 1991 before the
confiscatory. Determination of these flaws would involve the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Batangas City. Trial ensued.
exercise of judgment or discretion and not merely an  In the interim, respondent paid under protest the Mayor’s
examination of whether or not the requirements or limitations of Permit Fees for When respondent applied for the issuance
the law had been observed; hence, it would smack of control of the Mayor’s Permit in 2004, it offered the amount of
rather than mere supervision. That power was never questioned P150,000.00 as compromise Mayor’s Permit Fee without
before this Court but, at any rate, the Secretary of Justice is not prejudice.
given the same latitude under Section 187. All he is permitted to  RTC sustained the business taxes but withheld the
do is ascertain the constitutionality or legality of the tax measure, imposition of Mayor’s Permit Fee
without the right to declare that, in his opinion, it is unjust,  Motion for Partial Reconsideration. Denied, so Shell filed a
excessive, oppressive or confiscatory. He has no discretion on this Petition for Review with TRO and WPI with CTA.
matter. In fact, Secretary Drilon set aside the Manila Revenue  CTA Second Division granted the said application for TRO
Code only on two grounds, to with the inclusion therein of certain and WPI.
ultra vires provisions and non-compliance with the prescribed  In the CTA Decision, They granted respondent’s petition.
procedure in its enactment. These grounds affected the legality, o It held that Shell is not subject to the business
not the wisdom or reasonableness, of the tax measure. taxes on the manufacture and distribution of
petroleum products because of the express

10
limitation provided under Section 133(h) of the  Additionally, Section 133(h) of the LGC makes plain that
LGC the prohibition with respect to petroleum products
 CTA ordered Batangas City to stop imposing business tax extends not only to excise taxes thereon, but all "taxes,
on the manufacture and distribution of petroleum product, fees or charges."
and to refund the Mayor’s Permit fees that they found  The earlier reference in paragraph 143(h) to excise taxes
Excessive. comprehends a wider range of subject of taxation: all
 Batangas city filed an MR which was denied by the CTA En articles already covered by excise taxation under the
Banc. Hence, this petition. NIRC, such as alcohol products, tobacco products,
mineral products, automobiles, and such non-essential
Issue: WON an LGU is empowered under the LGC to impose goods as jewelry, goods made of precious metals,
business taxes on persons or entities engaged in the business of perfumes, and yachts and other vessels intended for
manufacturing and distribution of petroleum products. –– NO. pleasure or sports. In contrast, the later reference to
"taxes, fees and charges" pertains only to one class of
Held: articles of the many subjects of excise taxes, specifically,
"petroleum products."
Batangas City:  While LGUs are authorized to burden all such other class
Any activity that involves the production or of goods with "taxes, fees and charges," excepting
manufacture and the distribution or selling of any kind excise taxes, a specific prohibition is imposed barring the
or nature as a means of livelihood or with a view to levying of any other type of taxes with respect to
profit can be taxed by the LGUs. petroleum products
They posit that the authority granted to them by  The specific exemption in Sec 133 prevails over sec 143.
Section 143(h) of the LGC is so broad that it practically Strictly speaking, as long as the subject matter of the
covers any business that the sanggunian concerned taxing powers of the LGUs is the petroleum products per
may deem proper to tax, even including businesses se or even the activity or privilege related to the
which are already subject to excise, value-added or petroleum products, such as manufacturing and
percentage tax under the National Internal Revenue distribution of said products, it is covered by the said
Code (NIRC). limitation and thus, no levy can be imposed
COURT:  Second, Article 232(h) of the Implementing Rules and
 At the outset, it must be emphasized that although the Regulations (IRR) of the LGC of 1991defines with more
power to tax is inherent in the State, the same is not true particularity the capacity of a municipality to impose
for LGUs because although the mandate to impose taxes on businesses. However, it admits of certain
taxes granted to LGUs is categorical and long exceptions, specifically, that businesses engaged in the
established in the 1987 Philippine Constitution, the same production, manufacture, refining, distribution or sale of
is not all encompassing as it is subject to limitations as oil, gasoline, and other petroleum products, shall not be
explicitly stated in Section 5, Article X of the 1987 subject to any local tax imposed by Article 232
Constitution

 The rule governing the taxing power of provinces, cities, CITY OF LAPU-LAPU vs. PEZA
municipalities and barangays is summarized in Icard v. Facts:
City Council of Baguio:  These are consolidated petitions for review on certiorari the
City of Lapu-Lapu and the Province of Bataan separately
o It is settled that a municipal corporation filed against the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA).
unlike a sovereign state is clothed with no  In G.R. No. 184203, the City of Lapu-Lapu (the City) assails
inherent power of taxation. The charter or the Court of Appeals’ decision dated January 11, 2008 and
statute must plainly show an intent to resolution dated August 6, 2008, dismissing the City’s
confer that power or the municipality, appeal for being the wrong mode of appeal. The City
cannot assume it. And the power when appealed the Regional Trial Court, Branch 111, Pasay City’s
granted is to be construed in strictissimi decision finding the PEZA exempt from payment of real
juris. Any doubt or ambiguity arising out of property taxes.
the term used in granting that power must  In G.R. No. 187583, the Province of Bataan (the Province)
be resolved against the municipality. assails the Court of Appeals’ decision dated August 27,
 Section 133 provides for the common limitations on 2008 and resolution dated April 16, 2009, granting the
the taxing powers of LGUs. Among the common PEZA’s petition for certiorari. The Court of Appeals ruled
limitations on the taxing powers of LGUs under Section that the Regional Trial Court, Branch 115, Pasay City gravely
133 of the LGC is paragraph (h) which states: abused its discretion in finding the PEZA liable for real
property taxes to the Province of Bataan.
SECTION 133. Common Limitations on the Taxing
Powers of Local Government Units. – Unless otherwise Issue: Whether the PEZA is exempt from payment of real property
provided herein, the exercise of taxing powers of taxes?
provinces, cities, municipalities, and barangays shall
not extend to the levy of the following: Held:
The PEZA is exempt from payment of real property taxes. The
(h) Excise taxes on articles enumerated under the PEZA is an instrumentality of the national government
National Internal Revenue Code, as amended, and
taxes, fees or charges on petroleum products. An instrumentality is “any agency of the National Government,
not integrated within the department framework, vested with
 From the foregoing, Section 133(h) clearly specifies special functions or jurisdiction by law, endowed with some if not
the two kinds of taxes which cannot be imposed by all corporate powers, administering special funds, and enjoying
LGUs: (1) excise taxes on articles enumerated under operational autonomy, usually through a charter.
the NIRC, as amended; and (2) taxes, fees or charges
on petroleum products. With the PEZA as an attached agency to the Department of
 While the power to impose business taxes is granted to Trade and Industry, the 13-person PEZA Board is chaired by the
LGUs in Section 143 of the LGC, the same is subject to Department Secretary. Among the powers and functions of the
the said limitation. PEZA is its ability to coordinate with the Department of Trade and
Industry for policy and program formulation and

11
implementation. In strategizing and prioritizing the development functions, and responsibilities under Presidential Decree No. 66
of special economic zones, the PEZA coordinates with the not inconsistent with the Special Economic Zone Act of 1995.
Department of Trade and Industry.
The non-profit character of the EPZA under Presidential Decree
The PEZA also administers its own funds and operates No. 66 is not inconsistent with any of the powers, functions, and
autonomously, with the PEZA Board formulating and approving responsibilities of the PEZA. The EPZA’s non-profit character,
the PEZA’s annual budget. Appointments and other personnel including the EPZA’s exemption from real property taxes, must be
actions in the PEZA are also free from departmental interference, deemed assumed by the PEZA.
with the PEZA Board having the exclusive and final authority to
promote, transfer, assign and reassign officers of the PEZA. In addition, the Local Government Code exempting
instrumentalities of the national government from real property
As an instrumentality of the national government, the PEZA is taxes was already in force when the PEZA’s charter was enacted
vested with special functions or jurisdiction by law. Congress in 1995. It would have been redundant to provide for the PEZA’s
created the PEZA to operate, administer, manage and develop exemption in its charter considering that the PEZA is already
special economic zones in the Philippines. Special economic exempt by virtue of Section 133(o) of the Local Government
zones are areas with highly developed or which have the Code.
potential to be developed into agro-industrial, industrial
tourist/recreational, commercial, banking, investment and As for the EPZA, Commonwealth Act No. 470 or the Assessment
financial centers. Law was in force when the EPZA’s charter was enacted. Unlike
the Local Government Code, Commonwealth Act No. 470 does
Being an instrumentality of the national government, the PEZA not contain a provision specifically exempting instrumentalities
cannot be taxed by local government units. of the national government from payment of real property
taxes. It was necessary to put an exempting provision in the
Although a body corporate vested with some corporate powers, EPZA’s charter.
the PEZA is not a government-owned or controlled corporation
taxable for real property taxes. Real properties under the PEZA’s title are owned by the Republic
of the Philippines
The law created the PEZA’s charter. Under the Special Economic
Zone Act of 1995, the PEZA was established primarily to perform Under Section 234(a) of the Local Government Code, real
the governmental function of operating, administering, properties owned by the Republic of the Philippines are exempt
managing, and developing special economic zones to attract from real property taxes.
investments and provide opportunities for preferential use of
Filipino labor. Even the PEZA’s lands and buildings whose beneficial use have
been granted to other persons may not be taxed with real
Under its charter, the PEZA was created a body corporate property taxes. The PEZA may only lease its lands and buildings
endowed with some corporate powers. However, it was not to PEZA-registered economic zone enterprises and entities. These
organized as a stock or non-stock corporation. Nothing in the PEZA-registered enterprises and entities, which operate within
PEZA’s charter provides that the PEZA’s capital is divided into economic zones, are not subject to real property taxes. Under
shares. The PEZA also has no members who shall share in the Section 24 of the Special Economic Zone Act of 1995, no taxes,
PEZA’s profits. whether local or national, shall be imposed on all business
establishments operating within the economic zones.
The PEZA does not compete with other economic zone
authorities in the country. The government may even subsidize
the PEZA’s operations. Under Section 47 of the Special Economic EMINENT DOMAIN
Zone Act of 1995, “any sum necessary to augment [the PEZA’s]
capital outlay shall be included in the General Appropriations CITY GOVERNMENT OF QC vs. ERICTA
Act to be treated as an equity of the national government.” Doctrine: In Quezon City v. Ericta, 122 SCRA 759, the ordinance
requiring owners of commercial cemeteries to reserve 6% of their
The PEZA, therefore, need not be economically viable. It is not a burial lots for burial grounds of paupers was held invalid; it was
government-owned or controlled corporation liable for real not an exercise of the police power, but of eminent domain.
property taxes.
Facts:
The PEZA’s predecessor, the EPZA, was declared non-profit in  Section 9 of Ordinance No. 6118, S-64, entitled
character with all its revenues devoted for its development, "ORDINANCE REGULATING THE ESTABLISHMENT,
improvement, and maintenance. Consistent with this non-profit MAINTENANCE AND OPERATION OF PRIVATE MEMORIAL
character, the EPZA was explicitly declared exempt from real TYPE CEMETERY OR BURIAL GROUND WITHIN THE
property taxes under its charter. Section 21 of Presidential JURISDICTION OF QUEZON CITY AND PROVIDING PENALTIES
Decree No. 66. FOR THE VIOLATION THEREOF" provides:
"Sec. 9. At least six (6) percent of the total area of the
The Special Economic Zone Act of 1995, on the other hand, does memorial park cemetery shall be set aside for charity burial
not specifically exempt the PEZA from payment of real property of deceased persons who are paupers and have been
taxes. residents of Quezon City for at least 5 years prior to their
death, to be determined by competent City Authorities.
Nevertheless, we rule that the PEZA is exempt from real property The area so designated shall immediately be developed
taxes by virtue of its charter. A provision in the Special Economic and should be open for operation not later than six months
Zone Act of 1995 explicitly exempting the PEZA is from the date of approval of the application."
unnecessary. The PEZA assumed the real property exemption of  For several years, the aforequoted section of the
the EPZA under Presidential Decree No. 66. Ordinance was not enforced by city authorities but seven
years after the enactment of the ordinance, the Quezon
Section 11 of the Special Economic Zone Act of 1995 mandated City Council passed the following resolution: "RESOLVED by
the EPZA “to evolve into the PEZA in accordance with the the council of Quezon assembled, to request, as it does
guidelines and regulations set forth in an executive order issued hereby request the City Engineer, Quezon City, to stop any
for this purpose.” President Ramos then issued Executive Order further selling and/or transaction of memorial park lots in
No. 282 in 1995, ordering the PEZA to assume the EPZA’s powers, Quezon City where the owners thereof have failed to
donate the required 6% space intended for paupers burial."

12
 Respondent Himlayang Pilipino filed a petition for this particular taking. Moreover, the questioned ordinance was
declaratory relief, prohibition and mandamus with passed after Himlayang Pilipino, Inc. had incorporated, received
preliminary injunction seeking to annul Section 9 of the necessary licenses and permits, and commenced operating.
Ordinance in question –– alleging that the same is contrary The sequestration of 6% of the cemetery cannot even be
to the Constitution, the Quezon City Charter, the Local considered as having been impliedly acknowledged by the
Autonomy Act, and the Revised Administrative Code. private respondent when it accepted the permits to commence
 The respondent court rendered the decision declaring operations.
Section 9 of Ordinance null and void.
 MR denied, the City Government and City Council filed the
instant petition –– arguing that the taking of the CITY OF CEBU vs. SPOUSES APOLONIO
respondent's property is a valid and reasonable exercise of Facts:
police power and that the land is taken for a public use as  On 17 September 1993, Petitioner City of Cebu filed a
it is intended for the burial ground of paupers. They further complaint for eminent domain against respondents
argue that the Quezon City Council is authorized under its spouses Apolonio and Blasa Dedamo. The petitioner
charter, in the exercise of local police power, "to make alleged that they needed the parcels of land owned by
such further ordinances and resolutions not repugnant to the respondents for public purpose because they are
law as may be necessary to carry into effect and discharge planning to construct a public road which will serve as an
the powers and duties conferred by this Act." access or relief road of Gorordo Avenue to extend to the
 While, Himlayang Pilipino, Inc. contends that the taking or General Maxilum Avenue and the back of Magellan
confiscation of property is obvious because the questioned International Hotel Roads in Cebu City.
ordinance permanently restricts the use of the property  However, the respondents filed a motion to dismiss the
such that it cannot be used for any reasonable purpose complaint because the purpose of expropriation was not
and deprives the owner of all beneficial use of his property. for public purpose but for the benefit of the Cebu Holdings,
 The respondent also stresses that the general welfare Inc. They alleged that the petitioner could simply buy
clause is NOT available as a source of power for the taking directly the property from them at its fair market value just
of the property in this case because it refers to "the power like what they did with the neighboring lots and the price
of promoting the public welfare by restraining and offered was very low. They also alleged that they have no
regulating the use of liberty and property." other land in Cebu City.
 From this, a pre-trial was conducted. On 23 August 1994,
Issue: Whether or not Section 9 of the ordinance is a valid the petitioner filed a motion for the issuance of a writ of
exercise of police possession pursuant to Section 19 of R.A. No. 7160. The
power motion was granted by the trial court on 21 September
1994. The parties executed an agreement and submitted
Held: NO. to the trial wherein they declared that they have partially
There is no reasonable relation between the setting aside of at settled the case in consideration of the stipulations in the
least 6% of the total area of all private cemeteries for charity agreement.
burial grounds of deceased paupers and the promotion of  Pursuant to the said agreement, the trial court appointed
health, morals, good order, safety, or the general welfare of the Palermo M. Lugo, Alfredo Cisneros and Herbert E. Buot to
people. The ordinance is actually a taking without be the commissioners to determine the just compensation
compensation of a certain area from a private cemetery to of the lots sought to be expropriated. The commissioner’s
benefit paupers who are charges of the municipal corporation. report contained that the plaintiff is directed to pay a just
Instead of building or maintaining a public cemetery for this compensation costs P24,865.930.00 to the respondents.
purpose, the city passes the burden to private cemeteries.  But the petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration on the
ground that the commissioner’s report was inaccurate
The expropriation without compensation of a portion of private since it included an area which was not subject to
cemeteries is not covered by Section 12(t) of Republic Act 537, expropriation. Then the commissioners submit an
the Revised Charter of Quezon City which empowers the city amendment which made the just compensation costs
council to prohibit the burial of the dead within the center of P20,826,339.50 which was later approved by the trial court.
population of the city and to provide for their burial in a proper
place subject to the provisions of general law regulating burial  Petitioner elevated the case to the Court of Appeals
grounds and cemeteries. When the Local Government Code, alleging that the lower court erred in fixing the amount of
Batas Pambansa Blg. 337 just compensation at P20,826,339.50. They also alleged that
provides in Section 177 (q) that a Sangguniang Panlungsod may just compensation should be based on the prevailing
"provide for the burial of the dead in such place and in such market price of the property at the commencement of the
manner as prescribed by law or ordinance" it simply authorizes expropriation proceedings. However, the Court of Appeals
the city to provide its own city owned land or to buy or was not convinced and affirmed the lower court’s decision.
expropriate private properties to construct public cemeteries.  The petitioner filed with a petition for review to the SC. They
This has been the law and practice in the past. It continues to asserted that just compensation should be determined on
the present. Expropriation, however, requires payment of just September 17, 1993, as of the date of the filing of the
compensation. The questioned ordinance is different from laws complaint and not at the time the property was actually
and regulations requiring owners of subdivisions to set aside taken in 1994.
certain areas for streets, parks, playgrounds, and other public
facilities from the land they sell to buyers of subdivision lots. The Issue: Whether just compensation should be determined as of
necessities of public safety, health, and convenience are very the date of the filing of the complaint.
clear from said requirements which are intended to insure the
development of communities with salubrious and wholesome Held:
environments. The beneficiaries of the regulation, in turn, are No. Just compensation should not be determined as of the date
made to pay by the subdivision developer when individual lots of the filing of the complaint.
are sold to homeowners.
Eminent domain is a fundamental State power that is
As a matter of fact, the petitioners rely solely on the general inseparable from sovereignty. It is the Governments right to
welfare clause or on implied powers of the municipal appropriate, in the nature of a compulsory sale to the State,
corporation, not on any express provision of law as statutory basis private property for public use or purpose. However, the
of their exercise of power. The clause has always received broad Government must pay the owner thereof just compensation as
and liberal interpretation, but we CANNOT STRETCH it to cover consideration therefor.

13
zonal value of P5,000/sq.m. or to cause the return of the
In this case, the applicable law as to the point of determining the expropriated property.
just compensation is Section 19 of R.A. No. 7160, which expressly
provides that just compensation shall be determined as of the The RTC Bulacan ruled in favor of the Santos heirs declaring its 26
time of actual taking. The Section reads as follows: February 1979 Decision to be unenforceable on the ground of
prescription in accordance with Sec. 6, Rule 39 of the 1964/1997
SECTION 19. Eminent Domain. –– A local government unit may, ROC which states that a final and executory judgment or order
through its chief executive and acting pursuant to an ordinance, may be executed on motion within 5 years from the date of its
exercise the power of eminent domain for public use, or purpose entry. RTC denied petitioner’s Motion to Permit Deposit and
or welfare for the benefit of the poor and the landless, upon ordered the return of the expropriated property to the heirs of
payment of just compensation, pursuant to the provisions of the Santos.
Constitution and pertinent laws: Provided, however, That the
power of eminent domain may not be exercised unless a valid Issue:
and definite offer has been previously made to the owner, and 1. Whether the petitioner may appropriate the property
such offer was not accepted: Provided, further, That the local 2. Whether the respondents are entitled to the return of the
government unit may immediately take possession of the property in question
property upon the filing of the expropriation proceedings and
upon making a deposit with the proper court of at least fifteen Held:
percent (15%) of the fair market value of the property based on 1. The right of eminent domain is usually understood to be an
the current tax declaration of the property to be ultimate right of the sovereign power to appropriate any
expropriated: Provided finally, That, the amount to be paid for property within its territorial sovereignty for a public purpose.
the expropriated property shall be determined by the proper Fundamental to the independent existence of a State, it requires
court, based on the fair market value at the time of the taking of no recognition by the Constitution, whose provisions are taken
the property. as being merely confirmatory of its presence and as being
regulatory, at most, in the due exercise of the power. In the
The SC justifies that although the general rule in determining just hands of the legislature, the power is inherent, its scope
compensation in eminent domain is the value of the property as matching that of taxation, even that of police power itself, in
of the date of the filing of the complaint, the rule admits of an many respects. It reaches to every form of property the State
exception: where this Court fixed the value of the property as of needs for public use and, as an old case so puts it, all separate
the date it was taken and not at the date of the interests of individuals in property are held under a tacit
commencement of the expropriation proceedings. agreement or implied reservation vesting upon the sovereign the
right to resume the possession of the property whenever the
Moreover, both of the parties agreed to be bound by the report public interest so requires it.
of the commission, so they need to comply on the agreement in
good faith. Also, the petitioner was too late to question the The ubiquitous character of eminent domain is manifest in the
valuation without violating the principle of equitable estoppel. nature of the expropriation proceedings. Expropriation
And lastly, Section 4, Rule 67 of the Rules of Court cannot prevail proceedings are not adversarial in the conventional sense, for
over R.A. 7160, which is a substantive law. the condemning authority is not required to assert any
conflicting interest in the property. Thus, by filing the action, the
Therefore, the petition was denied. condemn or in effect merely serves notice that it is taking title
and possession of the property, and the defendant asserts title
or interest in the property, not to prove a right to possession, but
REPUBLIC vs. CA to prove a right to compensation for the taking.
Facts:
Petitioner (PIA) instituted expropriation proceedings covering a Obviously, however, the power is not without its limits: first, the
total of 544,980 square meters of contiguous land situated along taking must be for public use, and second, that just
MacArthur Highway, Malolos, Bulacan, to be utilized for the compensation must be given to the private owner of the
continued broadcast operation and use of radio transmitter property. These twin proscriptions have their origin in the
facilities for the “Voice of the Philippines” project. recognition of the necessity for achieving balance between the
State interests, on the one hand, and private rights, upon the
Petitioner made a deposit of P517,558.80, the sum provisionally other hand, by effectively restraining the former and affording
fixed as being the reasonable value of the property. On 26 protection to the latter. In determining “public use,” two
February 1979, or more than 9 years after the institution of the approaches are utilized - the first is public employment or
expropriation proceedings, the trial court issued this order the actual use by the public, and the second is public
condemning the property and ordering the plaintiff to pay the advantage or benefit. It is also useful to view the matter as being
defendants the just compensation for the property. subject to constant growth, which is to say that as society
advances, its demands upon the individual so increases, and
It would appear that the National Government failed to pay the each demand is a new use to which the resources of the
respondents the just compensation pursuant to the foregoing individual may be devoted.
decision. The respondents then filed a manifestation with a
motion seeking payment for the expropriated property. In The expropriated property has been shown to be for the
response, the court issued a writ of execution for the continued utilization by the PIA, a significant portion thereof
implementation thereof. being ceded for the expansion of the facilities of the Bulacan
State University and for the propagation of the Philippine
Meanwhile, Pres. Estrada issued Proc. No. 22 transferring 20 carabao, themselves in line with the requirements of public
hectares of the expropriated land to the Bulacan State purpose. Respondents question the public nature of the
University. utilization by petitioner of the condemned property, pointing out
that its present use differs from the purpose originally
Despite the court’s order, the Santos heirs remained unpaid and contemplated in the 1969 expropriation proceedings. The
no action was on their case until petitioner filed its manifestation argument is of no moment. The property has assumed a public
and motion to permit the deposit in court of the amount character upon its expropriation. Surely, petitioner, as
P4,664,000 by way of just compensation. the condemn or and as the owner of the property, is well within
its rights to alter and decide the use of that property, the only
The Santos heirs submitted a counter-motion to adjust the limitation being that it be for public use, which, decidedly, it is.
compensation from P6/sq.m. as previously fixed to its current

14
in bringing the action to compel payment against herein
2. NO. In insisting on the return of the expropriated property, petitioner would militate against them. Consistently with the rule
respondents would exhort on the pronouncement in Provincial that one should take good care of his own concern,
Government of Sorsogon vs. Vda. deVillaroya where the unpaid respondents should have commenced the proper action upon
landowners were allowed the alternative remedy of recovery of the finality of the judgment which, indeed, resulted in a
the property there in question. It might be borne in mind that permanent deprivation of their ownership and possession of the
the case involved the municipal government of Sorsogon, to property.
which the power of eminent domain is not inherent, but merely
delegated and of limited application. The grant of the power of The constitutional limitation of “just compensation” is considered
eminent domain to local governments under Republic Act No. to be the sum equivalent to the market value of the property,
7160 cannot be understood as being the pervasive and all- broadly described to be the price fixed by the seller in open
encompassing power vested in the legislative branch of market in the usual and ordinary course of legal action and
government. For local governments to be able to wield the competition or the fair value of the property as between one
power, it must, by enabling law, be delegated to it by the who receives, and one who desires to sell, it fixed at the time of
national legislature, but even then, this delegated power of the actual taking by the government. Thus, if property is taken
eminent domain is not, strictly speaking, a power of eminent, but for public use before compensation is deposited with the court
only of inferior, domain or only as broad or confined as the real having jurisdiction over the case, the final compensation must
authority would want it to be. include interests on its just value to be computed from the time
the property is taken to the time when compensation is actually
Thus, in Valdehueza vs. Republic where the private landowners paid or deposited with the court. In fine, between the taking of
had remained unpaid ten years after the termination of the the property and the actual payment, legal interests accrue in
expropriation proceedings, this Court ruled - order to place the owner in a position as good as (but not better
than) the position he was in before the taking occurred.
“The points in dispute are whether such payment can still be
made and, if so, in what amount. Said lots have been the The Bulacan trial court, in its 1979 decision, was correct in
subject of expropriation proceedings. By final and executory imposing interests on the zonal value of the property to be
judgment in said proceedings, they werecondemned for public computed from the time petitioner instituted condemnation
use, as part of an airport, and ordered sold to the government. x proceedings and “took” the property in September 1969. This
x x It follows that both by virtue of the judgment, long final, in the allowance of interest on the amount found to be the value of
expropriation suit, as well as the annotations upon their the property as of the time of the taking computed, being an
title certificates, plaintiffs are not entitled to recover effective forbearance, at 12% per annum should help eliminate
possession of their expropriated lots - which are still devoted to the issue of the constant fluctuation and inflation of the value of
the public use for which they were expropriated - but only to the currency over time. Article 1250 of the Civil Code, providing
demand the fair market value of the same. that, in case of extraordinary inflation or deflation, the value of
the currency at the time of the establishment of the obligation
"Said relief may be granted under plaintiffs' prayer for: `such shall be the basis for the payment when no agreement to the
other remedies, which may be deemed just and equitable under contrary is stipulated, has strict application only to contractual
the premises." obligations. In other words, a contractual agreement is needed
for the effects of extraordinary inflation to be taken into account
The Court proceeded to reiterate its pronouncement in Alfonso to alter the value of the currency.
vs. Pasay City where the recovery of possession of property
taken for public use prayed for by the unpaid landowner was All given, the trial court of Bulacan in issuing its order, dated 01
denied even while no requisite expropriation proceedings were March 2000, vacating its decision of 26 February 1979 has acted
first instituted. The landowner was merely given the relief of beyond its lawful cognizance, the only authority left to it being
recovering compensation for his property computed at its to order its execution. Verily, private respondents, although not
market value at the time it was taken and appropriated by the entitled to the return of the expropriated property, deserve to be
State. paid promptly on the yet unpaid award of just compensation
already fixed by final judgment of the Bulacan RTC on 26
The judgment rendered by the Bulacan RTC in 1979 on the February 1979 at P6.00 per square meter, with legal interest
expropriation proceedings provides not only for the payment of thereon at 12% per annum computed from the date of "taking"
just compensation to herein respondents but likewise adjudges of the property, i.e., 19 September 1969, until the due amount
the property condemned in favor of petitioner over which shall have been fully paid.
parties, as well as their privies, are bound. Petitioner has
occupied, utilized and, for all intents and purposes, exercised
dominion over the property pursuant to the judgment. The RECLASSIFICATION OF LANDS
exercise of such rights vested to it as the condemnee indeed has
amounted to at least a partial compliance or satisfaction of the DAR vs. SARANGGANI AGRICULTURAL CO.
1979 judgment, thereby preempting any claim of bar by Facts:
prescription on grounds of non-execution. In arguing for the  The Sangguniang Bayan of Alabel, Sarangani passed
return of their property on the basis of non-payment, Resolution No. 97-08 adopting a 10 year comprehensive
respondents ignore the fact that the right of the expropriatory development plan of the municipality and its land use. On
authority is far from that of an unpaid seller in ordinary sales, to January 30, 1998, pursuant to Municipal Zoning Ordinance
which the remedy of rescission might perhaps apply. An in rem No. 08, Series of 1997, and to accelerate the development
proceeding, condemnation acts upon the property. After and urbanization of Alabel, the Sangguniang Bayan of
condemnation, the paramount title is in the public under a new Alabel passed Resolution No. 98-03 reclassifying lots that
and independent title; thus, by giving notice to all claimants to were located within the built-up areas, based on the 1995-
a disputed title, condemnation proceedings provide a judicial 2005 Land Use Plan of the municipality, from agricultural to
process for securing better title against all the world than may be non-agricultural uses
obtained by voluntary conveyance.  Later, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Sarangani
approved Resolution No. 98-018 or the “Resolution
Respondents, in arguing laches against petitioner did not take Adopting the Ten-Year Municipal Comprehensive
into account that the same argument could likewise apply Development Plan (MCDP 1995-2205) and the Land Use
against them. Respondents first instituted proceedings for Development Plan and Zoning Ordinance of the
payment against petitioner on 09 May 1984, or five years after Municipality of Alabel, Sarangani Per Resolution No. 97-08
the 1979 judgment had become final. The unusually long delay and Municipal Ordinance No. 97-08, S. of 1997 of the

15
Sangguniang Bayan of Alabel.” A portion of the area filed by individual landowners on their landholdings, the exercise
involving 376.5424 hectares, however, was covered by the of such authority should be confined to compliance with the
CARP commercial farms deferment scheme requirements and limitations under existing laws and regulations,
 The Zoning Certification issued by the office of the such as the allowable percentage of agricultural [area] to be
Municipal Planning and Development Council (MPDC) reclassified, ensuring sufficient food production, areas non-
showed that respondents’ properties located at Barangay negotiable for conversion and those falling under
Maribulan, Alabel were among those reclassified from environmentally critical areas or highly restricted for conversion
agricultural and pasture land to residential, commercial under the NIPAS law. Definitely, the DAR’s power in such cases
institutional, light industrial and open space in the 1995- may not be exercised in such a manner as to defeat the very
2005 land use plan of Alabel. purpose of the LGU concerned in reclassifying certain areas to
 The respondent then field an application for land use achieve social and economic benefits in pursuit of its mandate
conversion of certain parcels of land. Meanwhile, towards the general welfare. Precisely, therefore, the DAR is
members of the Sarangani Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries required to use the comprehensive land use plans and
Association, Inc. (SARBAI) sent a letter-petition to the DAR accompanying ordinances of the local Sanggunian as primary
Secretary oppposing the application for land use references in evaluating applications for land use conversion
conversion filed by SACI. SARBAI alleged that its members filed by individual landowners. In this case, petitioners have
were merely forced to sign the waiver of rights, considering already complied with the standard requirements laid down
that the commercial farm deferment period ended on under the applicable rules and regulations of the DAR.
June 15, 1998. Later, the PLUTC agreed to recommend the
disapproval of a portion of a property which was still viable The conversion of agricultural lands into non-agricultural uses
for agriculture. The conversion was deferred subject to the shall be strictly regulated and may be allowed only when the
submission of certain requirements. conditions prescribed under R.A. No. 6657 are present. In this
 Later, the DAR Secretary denied SACI’s application for land regard, the Court agrees with the ratiocination of the CA that
use conversion. DAR’s scope of authority in assessing land use conversion
 On November 9, 2000, DAR Secretary Horacio R. Morales, applications is limited to examining whether the requirements
Jr. denied SACI’s application for land use conversion. SACI prescribed by law and existing rules and regulations have been
appealed to the Office of the President. The Office of the complied with. This holds true in the present case where,
President dismissed the appeal and affirmed in toto the because of the creation of the Province of Sarangani and in
challenged DAR Orders. Respondents’ motion for view of its thrust to urbanize, particularly its provincial capital
reconsideration was denied, so they filed with the Court of which is the Municipality of Alabel, the local government has
Appeals a petition for review raising substantially the same reclassified certain portions of its land area from agricultural to
issues. non-agricultural. Thus, to reiterate, in accordance with E.O. No.
 The CA granted the petition and ordred DAR to issue a 72, Series of 1993, and subject to the limitations prescribed by
conversion order. As to the deferred portion, DAR was law, DAR should utilize the comprehensive land use plans in
directed to expedite the processing and evaluation of evaluating the land use conversion application of respondents
petitioner’s application. whose lands have already been reclassified by the local
government for non-agricultural uses.
Issue: Whether a notice of coverage is an indispensable
requirement for the acquisition of land This is not to say, however, that every property of respondents
which is included in the comprehensive land use plan of the
Held: No, Under the circumstances, a notice of coverage is not Municipality of Alabel shall be automatically granted non-
an indispensable requirement before DAR can acquire the coverage. As mentioned earlier, said application is subject to
subject lots or commercial farms, which are covered by a the limitations and conditions prescribed by law. One such
deferment period under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform limitation that is present here is that a portion of respondents’
Law (CARL) or R.A. No 6657 upon its effectivity on June 15, 1998 property of 376.5424 hectares, a portion totaling 154.622 [or
154.1622] hectares which are planted to bananas and
Issue: Whether the DAR should use the comprehensive land use coconuts, are covered by CARL’s ten-year deferment scheme,
plans and ordinance of the local sanggunian as primary which has expired on June 15, 1998. By law, these lands are
reference subject to redistribution to CARP beneficiaries upon the lapse of
the ten-year period, counted from the date of the effectivity of
Held: Yes, Section 20 of Republic Act No. 7160, otherwise known the CARL or R.A. No. 6657 on June 15, 1988, which was way
as the Local Government Code of 1991, empowers the local before the creation of the Province of Sarangani and the
government units to reclassify agricultural lands. Memorandum eventual reclassification of the agricultural lands into non-
Circular No. 54 “Prescribing the Guidelines Governing Section 20 agricultural in the Municipality of Alabel where respondents’
of R.A. No. 7160 Otherwise Known as the Local Government properties are located.
Code of 1991 Authorizing Cities and Municipalities to Reclassify
Agricultural Lands Into Non-Agricultural Uses” issued by President In short, the creation of the new Province of Sarangani, and the
Ramos on June 8, 1993 specified the scope and limitations on reclassification that was effected by the Municipality of Alabel
the power of the cities and municipalities to reclassify agricultural did not operate to supersede the applicable provisions of R.A.
lands into other uses. It provided that all ordinances authorizing No. 6657.
reclassification of agricultural lands shall be subject to the review
and approval of the province in the case of component cities or Moreover, Section 20 of the LGC of 1991 on the reclassification
municipalities, or by the HLURB for highly urbanized or of lands explicitly states that “[n]othing in this section shall be
independent component cities in accordance with Executive construed as repealing, amending or modifying in any manner
Order No. 72, Series of 1993. the provisions of R.A. No. 6657.” Thus, where the law speaks in
clear and categorical language, there is no room for
Hence, with regard to agricultural lands that have been interpretation. There is only room for application.
reclassified for non-agricultural uses by the local government unit
concerned, the CA is correct in declaring that DAR should refer
to the comprehensive land use plans and the ordinances of the CLOSURE AND OPENING OF ROADS
Sanggunian in assessing land use conversion applications, thus:
Construing Sec. 20 of the Local Government Code and the SANGALANG vs. IAC
subsequent administrative issuances implementing the same, we Doctrine: Undoubtedly, the MMC Ordinance represents a
are of the opinion that while the DAR retains the responsibility for legitimate exercise of police power. The petitioners have not
approving or disapproving applications for land use conversion shown why the court should hold otherwise other than for the

16
supposed “non-impairment” guaranty of the Constitution, easements based on the “deed restrictions” but chiefly because
which, as we declared, is secondary to the more compelling the National Government itself, through the Metro Manila
interests of general welfare. The Ordinance has not been shown Commission (MCC), had reclassified Jupiter
to be capricious or arbitrary or unreasonable to warrant the Street into a “high density commercial (C-3) zone,” pursuant to
reversal of the judgments so appealed. its Ordinance No. 81-01. Hence no cause of action.

Facts: It is not that the court is saying that restrictive easements,


 The mother case (GR 71169) is a petition to hold the vendor especially the easements herein in question, are invalid or
itself, Ayala Corporation, liable for tearing down the ineffective. As far as the Bel-Air subdivision itself is concerned,
perimeter wall along Jupiter Street that had theretofore they are valid and enforceable. But they are, like all contracts,
closed its commercial section from the residences of Bel-Air subject to the overriding demands, needs, and interests of the
Village and ushering in, as a consequence, the full greater number as the State may determine in the legitimate
“commercialization” of Jupiter Street, in violation of the exercise of police power. Our jurisdiction guarantees sanctity of
very restrictions it had authored. contract and is said to be the “law between the contracting
 The other cases (the rest of the consolidated) are efforts to parties,” but while it is so, it cannot contravene “law, morals,
enforce the “deed restrictions” in question against specific good customs, public order, or public policy.” Above all, it
residents (private cannot be raised as a deterrent to police power, designed
 respondents in the petitions) of Jupiter Street (and Reposo precisely to promote health, safety, peace, and enhance the
Street, in one case). The private respondents are alleged to common good, at the expense of contractual rights, whenever
have converted their residences into commercial necessary.
establishments (restaurant, bakery and coffee shop,
advertising firm, and a construction company) in violation Undoubtedly, the MMC Ordinance represents a legitimate
of said restrictions. exercise of police power. The petitioners have not shown why
 CA dismissed all five appeals on the basis primarily of its the court should hold otherwise other than for the supposed
ruling in Bel-Air Village, Inc. v. Hy-Land Realty Development “non-impairment” guaranty of the Constitution, which, as we
Corp, et al.” in which the appellate court explicitly rejected declared, is secondary to the more compelling interests of
claims under the same “deed restrictions” as a result of general welfare. The Ordinance has not been shown to be
Ordinance No. 81 enacted by the Government of the capricious or arbitrary or unreasonable to warrant the reversal of
Municipality of Makati, as well as Comprehensive Zoning the judgments so appealed.
Ordinance No. 8101 promulgated by the Metropolitan
Manila Commission, which two ordinances allegedly
allowed the use of Jupiter Street both for residential and MMDA vs. BEL AIR VILLAGE ASSOCIATION
commercial purposes. It was likewise held that these twin Facts:
measures were valid as a legitimate exercise of police  Petitioner MMDA is a government agency tasked with the
power. delivery of basic services in Metro Manila. Respondent Bel-
Air Village Association, Inc. (BAVA) is a non-stock, non-profit
Issue: Whether IAC may reverse the decision of the trial court corporation whose members are homeowners in Bel-Air
Village, a private subdivision in Makati City.
Held: YES  Respondent received from petitioner, through its
Chairman, a notice requesting respondent to open
AS TO THE MOTHER CASE: Neptune Street to public vehicular traffic. respondent
The questioned zoning ordinances: instituted against petitioner before the RTC for injunction.
 This Court finds as inaccurate the CA’s holding that such After due hearing, the trial court denied issuance of a
measures, had “in effect, [made] Jupiter Street...a street preliminary injunction.
which could be used not only for residential purposes,” and  Respondent questioned the denial before the Court of
that “[i]t lost its character as a street for the exclusive Appeals. The appellate court conducted an ocular
benefit of those residing in Bel-Air Village completely.” inspection of Neptune Street and it issued a writ of
 Among other things, there is a recognition under both preliminary injunction enjoining the implementation of the
Ordinances Nos. 81 and 81-01 that Jupiter Street lies as the MMDA’s proposed action finding that the MMDA has no
boundary between Bel-Air Village and Ayala Corporation’s authority to order the opening of Neptune Street, a private
commercial section. And since 1957, it had been subdivision road.
considered as a boundary – not as part of either the  Petitioner MMDA claims that it has the authority to open
residential or commercial zones of Ayala Corp’s real estate Neptune Street to public traffic because it is an agent of
development projects. Hence, it cannot be said to have the state endowed with police power in the delivery of
been “for the exclusive benefit” of Bel-Air Villages. basic services in Metro Manila. One of these basic services
is traffic management which involves the regulation of the
The perimeter wall then standing on the commercial side of use of thoroughfares to insure the safety, convenience and
Jupiter Street the destruction of which opened the street to the welfare of the general public.
public. Petitioners contend that the opening had opened the
floodgates to commercialization. The wall was for the protection Issue: Whether MMDA exercises police power
of the peace and privacy of Bel-Air Village and that Ayala Corp
had committed itself to maintain it. If liability existed, Ayala’s Held:
liability, it had been overtaken by the passage of Ordinances It bears stressing that police power is lodged primarily in the
Nos. 81 and 82-01, opening Jupiter Street to commerce. National Legislature. It cannot be exercised by any group or
body of individuals not possessing legislative power. The National
As before ruled, Jupiter Street lies as a mere boundary; not only Legislature, however, may delegate this power to the President
for the exclusive use of either block but in favor of both and administrative boards as well as the lawmaking bodies of
commercial and residential blocks. municipal corporations or local government units. A local
government is a “political subdivision of a nation or state which
Ayala Corp cannot be liable for damages. (No commitment on is constituted by law and has substantial control of local affairs.”
the part of Ayala as evidenced by the records) The Local Government Code of 1991 defines a local
government unit as a “body politic and corporate”– one
AS TO THE REST OF THE CASES: endowed with powers as a political subdivision of the National
The court exculpate the private respondents, not only because Government and as a corporate entity representing the
of the fact that Jupiter Street is not covered by the restrictive inhabitants of its territory. Local government units are the

17
provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays. They are also the has no power to enact ordinances for the welfare of the
territorial and political subdivisions of the state. community.

Our Congress delegated police power to the local government


units in the Local Government Code of 1991. This delegation is LUCENA GRAND CENTRAL TERMINAL vs. JAC LINER, INC.
found in Section 16 of the same Code, known as the general Facts:
welfare clause.  Respondent JAC Liner, Inc., a common carrier operating
buses which ply various routes to and from Lucena City,
Local government units exercise police power through their assailed City Ordinance Nos. 1631 and 1778 as
respective legislative bodies. The legislative body of the unconstitutional on the ground that these constituted an
provincial government is the sangguniang panlalawigan, that of invalid exercise of police power, an undue taking of private
the city government is the sangguniang panlungsod, that of the property, and a violation of the constitutional prohibition
municipal government is the sangguniang bayan, and that of against monopolies.
the barangay is the sangguniang barangay. The Local  Ordinance No. 1631: AN ORDINANCE GRANTING THE
Government Code of 1991 empowers the sangguniang LUCENA GRAND CENTRAL TERMINAL, INC., A FRANCHISE TO
panlalawigan, sangguniang panlungsod and sangguniang CONSTRUCT, FINANCE, ESTABLISH, OPERATE AND MAINTAIN
bayan to “enact ordinances, approve resolutions and A COMMON BUS-JEEPNEY TERMINAL FACILITY IN THE CITY OF
appropriate funds for the general welfare of the [province, city LUCENA
or municipality, as the case may be], and its inhabitants pursuant  Ordinance No. 1778: AN ORDINANCE REGULATING THE
to Section 16 of the Code and in the proper exercise of the ENTRANCE TO THE CITY OF LUCENA OF ALL BUSES, MINI-
corporate powers of the [province, city municipality] provided BUSES AND OUT-OF-TOWN PASSENGER JEEPNEYS AND FOR
under the Code x x x.” The same Code gives the sangguniang THIS PURPOSE, AMENDING ORDINACE NO. 1420, SERIES OF
barangay the power to “enact ordinances as may be necessary 1993, AND ORDINANCE NO. 1557, SERIES OF 1995
to discharge the responsibilities conferred upon it by law or  The above-mentioned ordinances, by granting an
ordinance and to promote the general welfare of the exclusive franchise for twenty five years, renewable for
inhabitants thereon.” another twenty five years, to Lucena Grand Central
Terminal, Inc., its successors or assigns, for the construction
Metro-wide services” are those “services which have metro-wide and operation of one common bus and jeepney terminal
impact and transcend local political boundaries or entail huge facility in Lucena City, to be located outside the city
expenditures such that it would not be viable for said services to proper, were professedly aimed towards alleviating the
be provided by the individual local government units comprising traffic congestion alleged to have been caused by the
Metro Manila.” There are seven (7) basic metro-wide services existence of various bus and jeepney terminals within the
and the scope of these services cover the following: (1) city.
development planning; (2) transport and traffic management;  Further, the subject ordinances prohibit the operation of all
(3) solid waste disposal and management; (4) flood control and bus and jeepney terminals within Lucena, including those
sewerage management; (5) urban renewal, zoning and land use already existing, and allow the operation of only one
planning, and shelter services; (6) health and sanitation, urban common terminal located outside the city proper, the
protection and pollution control; and (7) public safety. franchise for which was granted to petitioner. The
common carriers plying routes to and from Lucena City are
The implementation of the MMDA’s plans, programs and thus compelled to close down their existing terminals and
projects is undertaken by the local government units, national use the facilities of petitioner.
government agencies, accredited people’s organizations, non-  Respondent, who had maintained a terminal within the
governmental organizations, and the private sector as well as by city, was one of those affected by the ordinances.
the MMDA itself. For this purpose, the MMDA has the power to  The petitioner via petition for review, sought the wisdom of
enter into contracts, memoranda of agreement and other Supreme Court, assailing the Decision and Resolution of the
cooperative arrangements with these bodies for the delivery of Court of Appeals.
the required services within Metro Manila.
Issue: Whether the City of Lucena properly exercised its police
It will be noted that the powers of the MMDA are limited to the power when it enacted City Ordinance Nos. 1631 and 1778
following acts: formulation, coordination, regulation,
implementation, preparation, management, monitoring, setting Held:
of policies, installation of a system and administration. As with the State, the local government may be considered as
having properly exercised its police power only if the following
There is no syllable in R. A. No. 7924 that grants the MMDA police requisites are met: (1) the interests of the public generally, as
power, let alone legislative power. Even the Metro Manila distinguished from those of a particular class, require the
Council has not been delegated any legislative power. Unlike interference of the State, and (2) the means employed are
the legislative bodies of the local government units, there is no reasonably necessary for the attainment of the object sought to
provision in R. A. No. 7924 that empowers the MMDA or its Council be accomplished and not unduly oppressive upon
to “enact ordinances, approve resolutions and appropriate individuals. Otherwise stated, there must be a concurrence of a
funds for the general welfare” of the inhabitants of Metro Manila. lawful subject and lawful method.
The MMDA is, as termed in the charter itself, a “development
authority.” It is an agency created for the purpose of laying down The questioned ordinances having been enacted with the
policies and coordinating with the various national government objective of relieving traffic congestion in the City of Lucena,
agencies, people’s organizations, non-governmental involve public interest warranting the interference of the
organizations and the private sector for the efficient and State. The first requisite for the proper exercise of police power is
expeditious delivery of basic services in the vast metropolitan thus present
area. All its functions are administrative in nature. It is thus
beyond doubt that the MMDA is not a local government unit or a But the ordinances go beyond what is reasonably necessary to
public corporation endowed with legislative power. It is not even solve the traffic problem. Additionally, since the compulsory use
a “special metropolitan political subdivision” as contemplated of the terminal operated by petitioner would subject the users
in Section 11, Article X of the Constitution. thereof to fees, rentals and charges, such measure is unduly
oppressive, as correctly found by the appellate court.
Clearly then, the MMC under P. D. No. 824 is not the same entity
as the MMDA under R. A. No. 7924. Unlike the MMC, the MMDA Bus terminals per se do not, however, impede or help impede
the flow of traffic. How the outright proscription against the

18
existence of all terminals, apart from that franchised to entertainment and which tend to disturb the community,
petitioner, can be considered as reasonably necessary to solve annoy the inhabitants, and adversely affect the social and
the traffic problem, this Court has not been enlightened. moral welfare of the community, such as but not limited to:
1. Sauna Parlors; 2. Massage Parlors; 3. Karaoke Bars; 4.
The true role of Constitutional Law is to effect an equilibrium Beerhouses; 5. Night Clubs; 6. Day Clubs; 7. Super Clubs; 8.
between authority and liberty so that rights are exercised within Discotheques; 9. Cabarets ; 10. Dance Halls; 11. Motels; and
the framework of the law and the laws are enacted with due 12. Inns
deference to rights.  One of the argument of MDTC among many is that the
Ordinance was invalid and unconstitutional for the reason
As for petitioner’s claim that the challenged ordinances have that the City Council has no power to prohibit the
actually been proven effective in easing traffic congestion: operation of motels as Section 458 (a) 4 iv of the Local
Whether an ordinance is effective is an issue different from Government Code grants to the City Council only the
whether it is reasonably necessary. It is its reasonableness, not its power to regulate the establishment, operation and
effectiveness, which bears upon its constitutionality. If the maintenance of hotels, motels, inns, pension houses,
constitutionality of a law were measured by its effectiveness, lodging houses and other similar establishments.
then even tyrannical laws may be justified whenever they  Petitioners City of Manila and Lim maintained that the City
happen to be effective. Council had the power to "prohibit certain forms of
entertainment in order to protect the social and moral
Hence, Ordinance No. 1631 is valid, having been issued in the welfare of the community" as provided for in Section 458
exercise of the police power of the City Government of Lucena (a) 4 (vii) of the Local Government Code.
insofar as the grant of franchise to the Lucena Grand Central  Petitioners likewise asserted that the Ordinance was
Terminal, Inc., to construct, finance, establish, operate and enacted by the City Council of Manila to protect the social
maintain common bus-jeepney terminal facility in the City of and moral welfare of the community in conjunction with its
Lucena. police power as found in Article III, Section 18(kk) of
Republic Act No. 409, otherwise known as the Revised
Sec. 4(c) of Ordinance No. 1631 is illegal and ultra vires because Charter of the City of Manila (Revised Charter of Manila)
it contravenes the provisions of Republic Act No. 7160, otherwise which reads, thus: Section 18. Legislative powers. — The
known as “The Local Government Code”. Municipal Board shall have the following legislative powers:
(kk)To enact all ordinances it may deem necessary and
City Ordinance No. 1778 is null and void, the same being also an proper for the sanitation and safety, the furtherance of the
ultra vires act of the City Government of Lucena arising from an prosperity, and the promotion of the morality, peace, good
invalid, oppressive and unreasonable exercise of the police order, comfort, convenience, and general welfare of the
power. city and its inhabitants, and such others as may be
necessary to carry into effect and discharge the powers
Affirming the decision of the Court of Appeals, the petition of and duties conferred by this chapter; and to x penalties for
Lucena Grand Central Terminal, Inc. is DENIED by the SC. the violation of ordinances which shall not exceed two
hundred pesos ne or six months' imprisonment, or both such
fine and imprisonment, for a single offense.
REQUISITES FOR VALID ORDINANCE  Respondent Judge Laguio issued an ex-parte temporary
restraining order against the enforcement of the
CITY OF MANILA vs. LAGUIO Ordinance. Eventually, the Decision was rendered
Facts: declaring the said ordinance null and void.
 Private respondent Malate Tourist Development
Corporation (MTDC) is a corporation engaged in the Issue: Whether or not the Ordinance is valid?
business of operating hotels, motels, hostels and lodging
houses. It built and opened Victoria Court in Malate which Held: NO. The Ordinance is not valid.
was licensed as a motel although duly accredited with the The Ordinance was passed by the City Council in the exercise of
Department of Tourism as a hotel. its police power, an enactment of the City Council acting as
 June 28, 1993 - MTDC filed a Petition for Declaratory Relief agent of Congress. Local government units, as agencies of the
with Prayer for a Writ of Preliminary Injunction and/or State, are endowed with police power in order to effectively
Temporary Restraining Order (RTC Petition) with the lower accomplish and carry out the declared objects of their creation.
court impleading as defendants, herein petitioners City of These delegated police power is found in Section 16 of the
Manila, Hon. Alfredo S. Lim (Lim), Hon. Joselito L. Atienza, Code, known as the general welfare clause, viz: SECTION 16.
and the members of the City Council of Manila (City General Welfare. — Every local government unit shall exercise
Council). the powers expressly granted, those necessarily
 MTDC prayed that the Ordinance, insofar as it includes implied therefrom, as well as powers necessary, appropriate, or
motels and inns as among its prohibited establishments, be incidental for its efficient and effective governance, and those
declared invalid and unconstitutional. which are essential to the promotion of the general welfare.
 March 9, 1993 – The City Council enacted the Ordinance Within their respective territorial jurisdictions, local government
and it was approved by Mayor Lim on March 30, 1993. units shall ensure and support, among other things, the
 The said Ordinance is entitled — AN ORDINANCE preservation and enrichment of culture, promote health and
PROHIBITING THE ESTABLISHMENT OR OPERATION OF safety, enhance the right of the people to a balanced ecology,
BUSINESSES PROVIDING CERTAIN FORMS OF AMUSEMENT, encourage and support the development of appropriate and
ENTERTAINMENT, SERVICES AND FACILITIES IN THE ERMITA- self-reliant scientific and technological capabilities, improve
MALATE AREA, PRESCRIBING PENALTIES FOR VIOLATION public morals, enhance economic prosperity and social justice,
THEREOF, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES. promote full employment among their residents, maintain
SECTION 1. Any provision of existing laws and ordinances to peace and order, and preserve the comfort and convenience
the contrary notwithstanding, no person, partnership, of their inhabitants.
corporation or entity shall, in the Ermita- Malate area
bounded by Teodoro M. Kalaw Sr. Street in the North, Taft Local government units exercise police power through their
Avenue in the East, Vito Cruz Street in the South and Roxas respective legislative bodies; in this case, the sangguniang
Boulevard in the West, pursuant to P.D. 499 be allowed or panlungsod or the city council. The Code empowers the
authorized to contract and engage in, any business legislative bodies to "enact ordinances, approve resolutions and
providing certain forms of amusement, entertainment, appropriate funds for the general welfare of the
services and facilities where women are used as tools in province/city/municipality and its inhabitants pursuant to

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Section 16 of the Code and in the proper exercise of the human frailty, may take place in the most innocent of places
corporate powers of the province/city/municipality provided that it may even take place in the substitute establishments
under the Code." The inquiry in this Petition is concerned with the enumerated under Section 3 of the Ordinance. If the awed logic
validity of the exercise of the Ordinance were to be followed, in the remote instance
of such delegated power. that an immoral sexual act transpires in a church cloister or a
court chamber, we would behold the spectacle of the City of
The police power of the City Council, however broad and far- Manila ordering the closure of the church or court concerned.
reaching, is subordinate to the constitutional limitations thereon; Every house, building, park, curb, street or even vehicles for that
and is subject to the limitation that its exercise must be matter will not be exempt from the prohibition. Simply because
reasonable and for the public good. In the case at bar, the there are no "pure" places where there are impure men. Indeed,
enactment of the Ordinance was an invalid exercise of even the Scripture and the Tradition of Christians churches
delegated power as it is unconstitutional and repugnant to continually recall the presence and universality of sin in man's
general laws. history.

To successfully invoke the exercise of police power as the The problem, it needs to be pointed out, is not the establishment,
rationale for the enactment of the Ordinance, and to free it from which by its nature cannot be said to be injurious to the health
the imputation of constitutional infirmity, not only must it appear or comfort of the community and which in itself is amoral, but the
that the interests of the public generally, as distinguished from deplorable human activity that may occur within its premises.
those of a particular class, require an interference with private While a motel may be used as a venue for immoral sexual
rights, but the means adopted must be reasonably necessary for activity, it cannot for that reason alone be punished. It cannot
the accomplishment of the purpose and not unduly oppressive be classified as a house of ill-repute or as a nuisance per se on a
upon individuals. It must be evident that no other alternative for mere likelihood or a naked assumption. If that were so and if that
the accomplishment of the purpose less intrusive were allowed, then the Ermita-Malate area would not only be
of private rights can work. A reasonable relation must exist purged of its supposed social ills, it would be extinguished of its
between the purposes of the police measure and the means soul as well as every human activity, reprehensible or not, in its
employed for its accomplishment, for even under the guise of every nook and cranny would be laid bare to the estimation of
protecting the public interest, personal rights and those the authorities.
pertaining to private property will not be permitted to be
arbitrarily invaded. The Ordinance seeks to legislate morality but fails to address the
core issues of morality. Try as the Ordinance may to shape
Lacking a concurrence of these two requisites, the police morality, it should not foster the illusion that it can make a moral
measure shall be struck down as an arbitrary intrusion into private man out of it because immorality is not a thing, a building or
rights — a violation of the due process clause. establishment; it is in the hearts of men. The City Council instead
should regulate human conduct that occurs inside the
The Ordinance was enacted to address and arrest the social ills establishments, but not to the detriment of liberty and privacy
purportedly spawned by the establishments in the Ermita-Malate which are covenants, premiums and blessings of democracy.
area
which are allegedly operated under the deceptive veneer of While petitioners' earnestness at curbing clearly objectionable
legitimate, licensed and tax-paying nightclubs, bars, karaoke social ills is commendable, they unwittingly punish even the
bars, girlie houses, cocktail lounges, hotels and motels. proprietors and operators of "wholesome," "innocent"
Petitioners insist that even the Court in the case of Ermita-Malate establishments. In the instant case, there is a clear invasion of
Hotel and Motel Operators Association, Inc. v. City Mayor of personal or property rights, personal in the case of those
Manila had already taken judicial notice of the "alarming individuals desirous of owning, operating and patronizing those
increase in the rate of prostitution, adultery and fornication in motels and property in terms of the investments made and the
Manila traceable in great part to existence of motels, which salaries to be paid to those therein employed. If the City of
provide a necessary atmosphere for clandestine entry, presence Manila so desires to put an end to prostitution, fornication and
and exit and thus become the ideal haven for prostitutes and other social ills, it can instead impose reasonable regulations
thrill seekers." such as daily inspections of the establishments for any violation
of the conditions of their licenses or permits; it may exercise its
The object of the Ordinance was, accordingly, the promotion authority to suspend or revoke their licenses for these violations;
and protection of the social and moral values of the community. and it may even impose increased license fees. In other words,
Granting for the sake of argument that the objectives of the there are other means to reasonably accomplish the desired
Ordinance are within the scope of the City Council's police end.
powers, the means employed for the accomplishment thereof
were unreasonable and unduly oppressive. SOCIAL JUSTICE SOCIETY vs. ATIENZA (2008)

It is undoubtedly one of the fundamental duties of the City of SAMAHAN NG MGA PROGRESIBONG KABATAAN vs. QC
Manila to make all reasonable regulations looking to the Facts:
promotion of the moral and social values of the community.  Following the campaign of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte
However, the worthy aim of fostering public morals and the to implement a nationwide curfew for minors, several local
eradication of the community's social ills can be achieved governments in Metro Manila started to strictly implement
through means less restrictive of private rights; it can be attained their curfew ordinances on minors through police
by reasonable restrictions rather than by an absolute prohibition. operations which were publicly known as part of "Oplan
The closing down and transfer of businesses or their conversion Rody.
into businesses "allowed" under the Ordinance have no  Among those local governments that implemented curfew
reasonable relation to the accomplishment of its purposes. ordinances were respondents: (a) Navotas City, through
Otherwise stated, the prohibition of the enumerated Pambayang Ordinansa Blg. 99-02, dated August 26, 1999,
establishments will not per se protect and promote the social entitled "Nagtatakda ng 'Curfew' ng mga Kabataan na
and moral welfare of the community; it will not in itself eradicate Wala Pang Labing Walong (18) Taong Gulang sa Bayan ng
the alluded social ills of prostitution, adultery, fornication nor will Navotas, Kalakhang Maynila," as amended by
it arrest the spread of sexual disease in Manila. Pambayang Ordinansa Blg. 2002-13, dated June 6, 2002
(Navotas Ordinance); (b) City of Manila, through
That these are used as arenas to consummate illicit sexual affairs Ordinance No. 8046 entitled "An Ordinance Declaring the
and as venues to further the illegal prostitution is of no moment. Hours from 10:00 P.M. to 4:00A.M. of the Following Day as
We lay stress on the acrid truth that sexual immorality, being a 'Barangay Curfew Hours' for Children and Youths Below

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Eighteen (18) Years of Age; Prescribing Penalties Therefor; its traditional ambit of settling actual controversies involving
and for Other Purposes" dated October 14, 2002 (Manila rights that were legally demandable and enforceable."
Ordinance); and (c) Quezon City, through Ordinance No.
SP-2301, Series of 2014, entitled "An Ordinance Setting for a In this case, petitioners question the issuance of the Curfew
[sic] Disciplinary Hours in Quezon City for Minors from 10:00 Ordinances by the legislative councils of Quezon City, Manila,
P.M. to 5:00A.M., Providing Penalties for Parent/Guardian, and Navotas in the exercise of their delegated legislative powers
for Violation Thereof and for Other Purposes" dated July 31, on the ground that these ordinances violate the Constitution,
2014 (Quezon City Ordinance; collectively, Curfew specifically, the provisions pertaining to the right to travel of
Ordinances). minors, and the right of parents to rear their children. They also
 Petitioners, spearheaded by the Samahan ng mga claim that the Manila Ordinance, by imposing penalties against
Progresibong Kabataan (SPARK)- an association of young minors, conflicts with RA 9344, as amended, which prohibits the
adults and minors that aims to forward a free and just imposition of penalties on minors for status offenses. It has been
society, in particular the protection of the rights and held that "[t]here is grave abuse of discretion when an act is (1)
welfare of the youth and minors[10] - filed this present done contrary to the Constitution, the law or jurisprudence or (2)
petition, arguing that the Curfew Ordinances are executed whimsically, capriciously or arbitrarily, out of malice, ill
unconstitutional because they: (a) result in arbitrary and will or personal bias."[31] In light of the foregoing, petitioners
discriminatory enforcement, and thus, fall under the void correctly availed of the remedies of certiorari and prohibition,
for vagueness doctrine; (b) suffer from overbreadth by although these governmental actions were not made pursuant
proscribing or impairing legitimate activities of minors to any judicial or quasi-judicial function.
during curfew hours; (c) deprive minors of the right to liberty
and the right to travel without substantive due process; and Since petitions for certiorari and prohibition are allowed as
(d) deprive parents of their natural and primary right in remedies to assail the constitutionality of legislative and
rearing the youth without substantive due process. In executive enactments, the next question to be resolved is
addition, petitioners assert that the Manila Ordinance whether or not petitioners' direct resort to this Court is justified
contravenes RA 9344, as amended by RA 10630. Petitioners
posit that the Curfew Ordinances encourage arbitrary and The doctrine of hierarchy of courts "[r]equires that recourse must
discriminatory enforcement as there are no clear provisions first be made to the lower-ranked court exercising concurrent
or detailed standards on how law enforcers should jurisdiction with a higher court. The Supreme Court has original
apprehend and properly determine the age of the alleged jurisdiction over petitions for certiorari, prohibition, mandamus,
curfew violators. quo warranto, and habeas corpus. While this jurisdiction is shared
 They further argue that the law enforcer's apprehension with the Court of Appeals [(CA)] and the [Regional Trial Courts],
depends only on his physical assessment, and, thus, a direct invocation of this Court's jurisdiction is allowed when
subjective and based only on the law enforcer's visual there are special and important reasons therefor, clearly and
assessment of the alleged curfew violator. especially set out in the petition
 they contend that the lists of exemptions do not cover the
range and breadth of legitimate activities or reasons as to Hence, petitioners' direct resort to the Court is justified. C.
why minors would be out at night, and, hence, proscribe or Requisites of Judicial Review.
impair the legitimate activities of minors during curfew
A. Void for Vagueness. Before resolving the issues pertaining to
hours.
 Petitioners likewise proffer that the Curfew Ordinances: (a) the rights of minors to travel and of parents to rear their children,
this Court must first tackle petitioners' contention that the Curfew
are unconstitutional as they deprive minors of the right to
liberty and the right to travel without substantive due Ordinances are void for vagueness. In particular, petitioners
submit that the Curfew Ordinances are void for not containing
process and (b) fail to pass the strict scrutiny test, for not
being narrowly tailored and for employing means that bear sufficient enforcement parameters, which leaves the enforcing
authorities with unbridled discretion to carry out their provisions.
no reasonable relation to their purpose. They argue that the
prohibition of minors on streets during curfew hours will not They claim that the lack of procedural guidelines in these
per se protect and promote the social and moral welfare issuances led to the questioning of petitioners Ronel and Mark
of children of the community. Petitioners claim that the Leo, even though they were already of legal age. They maintain
Manila Ordinance... contravenes RA 9344's express that the enforcing authorities apprehended the suspected
command that no penalty shall be imposed on minors for curfew offenders based only on their physical appearances and,
curfew violations. thus, acted arbitrarily. Meanwhile, although they conceded that
the Quezon City Ordinance requires enforcers to determine the
 Lastly, petitioners submit that there is no compelling State
interest to impose curfews contrary to the parents' age of the child, they submit that nowhere does the said
ordinance require the law enforcers to ask for proof or
prerogative to impose them in the exercise of their natural
and primary right in the rearing of the youth, and that even identification of the child to show his age.[47] The arguments are
untenable.
if a compelling interest exists, less restrictive means are
available to achieve the same.
B. Right of Parents to Rear their Children. Petitioners submit that
the Curfew Ordinances are unconstitutional because they
Issue: Whether or not the Curfew Ordinances are
deprive parents of their natural and primary right in the rearing
unconstitutional.
of the youth without substantive due process. In this regard, they
assert that this right includes the right to determine whether
minors will be required to go home at a certain time or will be
Held:
allowed to stay late outdoors. Given that the right to impose
The petition is partly granted.
curfews is primarily with parents and not with the State, the
Under the 1987 Constitution, judicial power includes the duty of latter's interest in imposing curfews cannot logically be
compelling.[57] Petitioners' stance cannot be sustained.
the courts of justice not only "to settle actual controversies
involving rights which are legally demandable and
C. Right to Travel. Petitioners further assail the constitutionality of
enforceable," but also "to determine whether or not there has
the Curfew Ordinances based on the minors' right to travel. They
been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of
claim that the liberty to travel is a fundamental right, which,
jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the
therefore, necessitates the application of the strict scrutiny test.
Government."
Further, they submit that even if there exists a compelling State
interest, such as the prevention of juvenile crime and the
Case law explains that the present Constitution has "expanded
the concept of judicial power, which up to then was confined to protection of minors from crime, there are other less restrictive
means for achieving the government's interest.[78] In addition,

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they posit that the Curfew Ordinances suffer from overbreadth
by proscribing or impairing legitimate activities of minors during
curfew hours.[79] Petitioner's submissions are partly meritorious.

At the outset, the Court rejects petitioners' invocation of the


overbreadth doctrine, considering that petitioners have not
claimed any transgression of their rights to free speech or any
inhibition of speech-related conduct.

In sum, while the Court finds that all three Curfew Ordinances
have passed the first prong of the strict scrutiny test - that is, that
the State has sufficiently shown a compelling interest to promote
juvenile safety and prevent juvenile crime in the concerned
localities, only the Quezon City Ordinance has passed the
second prong of the strict scrutiny test, as it is the only issuance
out of the three which provides for the least restrictive means to
achieve this interest. In particular, the Quezon City Ordinance
provides for adequate exceptions that enable minors to freely
exercise their fundamental rights during the prescribed curfew
hours, and therefore, narrowly drawn to achieve the State's
purpose. Section 4 (a) of the said ordinance, i.e., "[t]hose
accompanied by their parents or guardian", has also been
construed to include parental permission as a constructive form
of accompaniment and hence, an allowable exception to the
curfew measure; the manner of enforcement, however, is left to
the discretion of the local government unit. In fine, the Manila
and Navotas Ordinances are declared unconstitutional and
thus, null and void, while the Quezon City Ordinance is declared
as constitutional and thus, valid in accordance with this Decision.
For another, the Court has determined that the Manila
Ordinance's penal provisions imposing reprimand and
fines/imprisonment on minors conflict with Section 57-A of RA
9344, as amended. Hence, following the rule that ordinances
should always conform with the law, these provisions must be
struck down as invalid.

WHEREFORE, the petition is PARTLY GRANTED. The Court hereby


declares Ordinance No. 8046, issued by the local government of
the City of Manila, and Pambayang Ordinansa Blg. No. 99-02, as
amended by Pambayang Ordinansa Blg. 2002-13 issued by the
local government of Navotas City, UNCONSTITUTIONAL and,
thus, NULL and VOID; while Ordinance No. SP-2301, Series of 2014,
issued by the local government of the Quezon City is declared
CONSTITUTIONAL and, thus, VALID in accordance with this
Decision.

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