7 Camid vs. Office of the President Gr. No.161414 January 17, 2005
7 Camid vs. Office of the President Gr. No.161414 January 17, 2005...
Sultan Osop B. Camid, petitioner, Vs. The Office Of The President, Department Of The Interior And Local Government, Autonomous Region In Muslim Mindanao, Department Of Finance, Department Of Budget And Management, Commission On Audit, And The Congress Of The Philippines (House Of Representatives And Senate) G.R. No. 161414 January 17, 2005 FACTS: In 1965, an Executive Order issued by Pres. Macapagal creating the Municipality of Andong, Lanao del Sur was declared by the SC as void as promulgated in its Pelaez v. Auditor General ruling. Camid alleges that although no person has been appointed, elected or qualified to serve any of the elective local government positions in Andong, has metamorphosed into a full-blown municipality with a complete set of officials appointed to handle essential services for the municipality and its constituents. It has a high school, post office, DECS office and 17 “barangay units” with respective chairmen. Furthermore, its land area was recognized by the CENRO to have been created through the voided EO 107 as well included in the as a municipality by the Provincial Statistics Office of Marawi City. In Nov. 23, 2003, the DILG issued a certification which enumerates 18 municipalities as as “existing” municipalities” even though its creation were voided in the same ruling that voided Andong’s creation as a municipality. Camid as as a current resident of Andong, suing as a private citizen and taxpayer, alleges that said certification results in an unequal treatment to the detriment of Andong as similarly situated municipalities were recognized by DILG. He further alleges that Andong is already a “de facto municipal corporation” similar to Municipality of San Andress in the case of Municipality of San Narciso v. Hon. Mendez. Furthermore, he alleges that Andong is covered by Section 442(d) of the LGC of 1991 which states that “Existing municipal districts organized pursuant to presidential issuances or executive orders and which have their respective sets of elective municipal officials holding office at the time of the effectivity of (the) Code shall henceforth be considered as regular municipalities.” ISSUE: 1. Whether or not Andong is already a “de facto municipal corporation”? 2. Whether a municipality whose creation by executive fiat was previously voided by this Court may attain recognition in the absence of any curative or reimplementing statute RULING: 1. The SC did not rule on this issue as Camid failed to make a factual demonstration of the continuous exercise by the municipal corporation of its corporate powers, as well as the acquiescence thereto by the other instrumentalities of the state. Proper factual ascertainment is important in the determination if a municipality is a de facto municipal corporation. It has been opined that municipal corporations may exist by prescription where it is shown that the community has claimed and exercised corporate functions, with the knowledge and acquiescence of the legislature, and without interruption or objection for period long enough to afford title by prescription. These municipal corporations have exercised their powers for a long period without objection on the part of the government that although no charter is in existence, it is presumed that they were duly incorporated in the first place and that their charters had been lost. 2. No. The power to create political subdivisions is a function of the legislature. It can legislate curative laws, which in essence are retrospective, and aimed at giving "validity to acts done that would have been invalid under existing laws, as if existing laws have been complied with," are validly accepted in this jurisdiction, subject to the usual qualification against impairment of vested rights. Thus Pelaez and its offspring cases ruled that the President has no power to create municipalities, yet limited its nullificatory effects to the particular municipalities challenged in
actual cases before this Court. However, with the promulgation of the Local Government Code in 1991, the legal cloud was lifted over the municipalities similarly created by executive order but not judicially annulled. The de facto status of such municipalities as San Andres, Alicia and Sinacaban was recognized by this Court, and Section 442(b) of the Local Government Code deemed curative whatever legal defects to title these municipalities had labored under. Note: 1. There subsequent legislation was enacted to reconstitute the 18 municipalities. 2. The constituent barrios of Andong revert back into their original municipalities, namely the municipalities of Lumbatan, Butig and Tubaran.