Constitutional Law 1 - File No. 8
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CONSTITUTIONAL LAW 1 FILE No. 8
PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT i)
Qualifications (Sections 2 and 3)
Section 2. No person may be elected President unless he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, a registered voter, able to read and write, at least forty years of age on the day of the election, and a resident of the Philippines for at least ten years immediately preceding such election. Section 3. There shall be a Vice-President who shall have the same qualifications and term of office and be elected with, and in the same manner, as the President. He may be removed from office in the same manner as the President. The Vice-President may be appointed as a Member of the Cabinet. Such appointment requires no confirmation.
At least 40 years old on the day of election Natural-born citizen of the Philippines
At least 40 years old on the day of election Natural-born citizen of the Philippines
Able to read and write
Able to read and write
Resident of the Philippines for at
Resident of the Philippines for at
least 10 years immediately preceding the election
least 10 years immediately preceding the election
Term of 6 years
Term of 6 years
Unless otherwise provided by law, term of office commence at noon of June 30 next following the election
Unless otherwise provided by law, term of office commence at noon of June 30 next following the election
Single term only; not eligible for any re-election Any person who has succeeded as President, and served as such for more than 4 years shall NOT be qualified for election to the same office at any time.
Term limitation: 2 successive terms.
Section 2, Article VII, of the 1987 Constitution expresses: "No person may be elected President unless he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, a registered voter, able to read and write, at least forty years of age on the day of the election, and a resident of the Philippines for at least ten years immediately preceding such election." The term "natural-born citizens," is defined to include "those who are citizens of the Philippines from birth without having to perform any act to acquire or perfect their Philippine citizenship." The date, month and year of birth of FPJ appeared to be 20 August 1939 during the regime of the 1935 Constitution. Through its history, four modes of acquiring citizenship - naturalization, jus soli, res judicata and jus sanguinis – had been in vogue. Only two, i.e., jus soli and jus sanguinis, could qualify a person to being a “natural-born” citizen of the Philippines. With the adoption of the 1935 Constitution and the reversal of Roa in Tan Chong vs. Secretary of Labor (1947), jus sanguinis or blood relationship would now become the primary basis of citizenship by birth. “Section 1, Article III, 1935 Constitution. The following are citizens of the Philippines -
“(1) Those who are citizens of the Philippine Islands at the time of the adoption of this Constitution “(2) Those born in the Philippines Islands of foreign parents who, before the adoption of this Constitution, had been elected to public office in the Philippine Islands. “(3) Those whose fathers are citizens of the Philippines. “(4) Those whose mothers are citizens of the Philippines and upon reaching the age of majority, elect Philippine citizenship. “(5) Those who are naturalized in accordance with law.” (Tecson vs. COMELEC, GR 161434, March 3, 2004). ii) Election and Term of Office (Sections 4 and 5) Section 4. The President and the Vice-President shall be elected by direct vote of the people for a term of six years which shall begin at noon on the thirtieth day of June next following the day of the election and shall end at noon of the same date, six years thereafter. The President shall not be eligible for any re-election. No person who has succeeded as President and has served as such for more than four years shall be qualified for election to the same office at any time. No Vice-President shall serve for more than two successive terms. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in the continuity of the service for the full term for which he was elected. Unless otherwise provided by law, the regular election for President and Vice-President shall be held on the second Monday of May. The returns of every election for President and VicePresident, duly certified by the board of canvassers of each province or city, shall be transmitted to the Congress, directed to the President of the Senate. Upon receipt of the certificates of canvass, the President of the Senate shall, not later than thirty days after the day of the election, open all the certificates in the presence of the Senate and the House of Representatives in joint public session, and the Congress, upon determination of the authenticity and due execution thereof in the manner provided by law, canvass the votes. The person having the highest number of votes shall be proclaimed elected, but in case two or more shall have an
equal and highest number of votes, one of them shall forthwith be chosen by the vote of a majority of all the Members of both Houses of the Congress, voting separately. The Congress shall promulgate its rules for the canvassing of the certificates. The Supreme Court, sitting en banc, shall be the sole judge of all contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of the President or Vice-President, and may promulgate its rules for the purpose. Section 5. Before they enter on the execution of their office, the President, the Vice-President, or the Acting President shall take the following oath or affirmation: "I do solemnly swear [or affirm] that I will faithfully and conscientiously fulfill my duties as President [or VicePresident or Acting President] of the Philippines, preserve and defend its Constitution, execute its laws, do justice to every man, and consecrate myself to the service of the Nation. So help me God." [In case of affirmation, last sentence will be omitted]. 1. Regular – second Monday of May, every six years; 2.
Special Requisites: a. death, permanent disability, removal from office resignation of both the President and the Vice President.
b. vacancies occur more than eighteen months before the next regular presidential election; c. a law passed by Congress calling for a special election to elect a President and Vice President to be held not earlier than 45 days nor later than 60 days from the time of such call (Sec. 10, Art VII). - Congress as canvassing board - Supreme Court as Electoral Tribunal CASES
The term of office of the Senators who would be elected would be six years, to commence at noon on the thirtieth day of June next following their election and to end at noon of 30 June 2001. Protestant Santiago filed a certificate of candidacy for Senator in the 8 May 1995 election, campaigned for such office, and submitted herself to be voted upon. She filed her certificate of candidacy for the Senate without any qualification, condition, or reservation. In so doing, she entered into a political contract with the electorate that if elected, she would assume the office of Senator, discharge its functions and serve her constituency as such for the term for which she was elected. The term of office of the Senators elected in the 8 May 1995 election is six years, the first three of which coincides with the last three years of the term of the President elected in the 11 May 1992 synchronized elections. The latter would be Protestant Santiago's term if she would succeed in proving in the instant protest. that she was the true winner in the 1992 elections.In assuming the office of Senator then, the Protestant has effectively abandoned or withdrawn this protest. Such abandonment or withdrawal operates to render moot the instant protest. Another reason why this case should now be dismissed is the fact that the Protestant has decided to waive the revision of the remaining unrevised ballots from 4,017 precincts out of the 17,527 precincts of the designated three pilot areas. This is an unabashed reversal from her original stand in her Motion and Manifestation dated 18 October 1993. Until the present, however, the Protestant has not informed the Tribunal whether after the completion of the revision of the ballots from her pilot areas, she still intends to present evidence in connection therewith. This failure then, is nothing short of a manifest indication that she no longer intends to do so. All told, a dismissal of this election protest is inevitable (Defensor-Santiago vs. Ramos, PET Case No. 001, Feb. 13, 1996). iii)
Privileges (Section 6)
Section 6. The President shall have an official residence. The salaries of the President and Vice-President shall be determined by law and shall not be decreased during their tenure. No increase in said compensation shall take effect until after the expiration of the term of the incumbent during which such increase was approved. They shall not receive during their tenure any other emolument from the Government or any other source.
Official residence Salary Official salaries are determines by law. Salaries cannot be decreased during the TENURE of the President and the Vice-President Increases take effect only after the expiration of the TERM of the incumbent during which the increase was approved. Prohibited from receiving any other emolument from the government of any other source during their TENURE. Presidential Immunity CASES •
It is elementary that incumbent Presidents are immune from suit or from being brought to court during the period of their incumbency and tenure (In re: Bermudez, 145 SCRA 160).
The rationale for the grant to the President of the privilege of immunity from suit is to assure the exercise of Presidential duties and functions free from any hindrance or distraction, considering that being the Chief Executive of the Government is a job that, aside from requiring all of the office-holder's time, also demands undivided attention. But this privilege of immunity from suit, pertains to the President by virtue of the office and may be invoked only by the holder of the office; not by any other person in the President's behalf Thus, an accused in a criminal case in which the President is complainant cannot raise the presidential privilege as a defense to prevent the case from proceeding against such accused. Moreover, there is nothing in our laws that would prevent the President from waiving the privilege. Thus, if so minded the President may shed the protection afforded by the privilege and submit to the court's jurisdiction. The choice of whether to exercise the privilege or to waive it is solely the President's prerogative. It is a decision that cannot be assumed and imposed by any other person (Beltran vs. Makasiar, 167 SCRA 393).
Issue: Is the President's right to safeguard certain information, using his "executive privilege" confidentiality power, entirely immune from judicial review? No. The Court held that neither the doctrine of separation of powers, nor the generalized need for
confidentiality of high-level communications, without more, can sustain an absolute, unqualified, presidential privilege. The Court granted that there was a limited executive privilege in areas of military or diplomatic affairs, but gave preference to "the fundamental demands of due process of law in the fair administration of justice." Therefore, the president must obey the subpoena and produce the tapes and documents. Nixon resigned shortly after the release of the tapes (US vs. Nixon, 418 US 683, 41 L.Ed. 2D 1039). •
The President's absolute immunity is a functionally mandated incident of his unique office, rooted in the constitutional tradition of the separation of powers and supported by the Nation's history. Because of the singular importance of the President's duties, diversion of his energies by concern with private lawsuits would raise unique risks to the effective functioning of government. While the separation-of-powers doctrine does not bar every exercise of jurisdiction over the President, a court, before exercising jurisdiction, must balance the constitutional weight of the interest to be served against the dangers of intrusion on the authority and functions of the Executive Branch. The exercise of jurisdiction is not warranted in the case of merely private suits for damages based on a President's official acts. Pp. 748-754.
The President's absolute immunity extends to all acts within the "outer perimeter" of his duties of office. A rule of absolute immunity for the President does not leave the Nation without sufficient protection against his misconduct. There remains the constitutional remedy of impeachment, as well as the deterrent effects of constant scrutiny by the press and vigilant oversight by Congress. Other incentives to avoid misconduct may include a desire to earn reelection, the need to maintain prestige as an element of Presidential influence, and a President's traditional concern for his historical stature (Nixon vs. Fitzgerald, 457 US 731).
The court explained that the President, like other officials, is subject to the same laws that apply to all citizens, that no case had been found in which an official was granted immunity from suit for his unofficial acts, and that the rationale for official immunity is inapposite where only personal, private conduct by a President is at issue. Moreover, immunities for acts clearly within official capacity are grounded in the nature of the function performed, not the identity of the actor who performed it. The separation of powers doctrine does not require federal courts to stay all private actions against the President until he leaves office. Even accepting the unique importance of the Presidency in the
constitutional scheme, it does not follow that that doctrine would be violated by allowing this action to proceed. The doctrine provides a self executing safeguard against the encroachment or aggrandizement of one of the three co equal branches of Government at the expense of another (Clinton vs. Jones, 520 US 681, May 27, 1997). •
Incumbent Presidents are immune from suit or from being brought to court during the period of their incumbency and tenure" but not beyond. Considering the peculiar circumstance that the impeachment process against the petitioner has been aborted and thereafter he lost the presidency, petitioner Estrada cannot demand as a condition sine qua non to his criminal prosecution before the Ombudsman that he be convicted in the impeachment proceedings. As to the scope of immunity that can be claimed by petitioner as a non-sitting President. The cases filed against petitioner Estrada are criminal in character. They involve plunder, bribery and graft and corruption. By no stretch of the imagination can these crimes, especially plunder which carries the death penalty, be covered by the alleged mantle of immunity of a non-sitting president. Petitioner cannot cite any decision of this Court licensing the President to commit criminal acts and wrapping him with post-tenure immunity from liability. It will be anomalous to hold that immunity is an inoculation from liability for unlawful acts and conditions. The rule is that unlawful acts of public officials are not acts of the State and the officer who acts illegally is not acting as such but stands in the same footing as any trespasser (Estrada vs. Arroyo, GR 146738, March 2, 2001).
Section 3 (7) of Article XI of the Constitution conveys two uncomplicated ideas: first, it tells us that judgment in impeachment cases has a limited reach. . .i.e., it cannot extend further than removal from office and disqualification to hold any office under the Republic of the Philippines, and second, it tells us the consequence of the limited reach of a judgment in impeachment proceedings considering its nature, i.e., that the party convicted shall still be liable and subject to prosecution, trial and punishment according to law. No amount of manipulation will justify petitioner’s non sequitur submission that the provision requires that his conviction in the impeachment proceedings is a condition sine qua non to his prosecution, trial and punishment for the offenses he is now facing before the respondent Ombudsman. Petitioner contends that the private and public prosecutors’ walk out from the impeachment proceedings “should be considered failure to prosecute... amounts to an acquittal for purposes of applying the rule against double jeopardy.” However, the Court
rules that without ruling on the nature of impeachment proceedings, it rejects petitioner’s submission. Double jeopardy attaches only: (1) upon a valid complaint; (2) before a competent court; (3) after arraignment; (4) when a valid plea has been entered; and (5) when the defendant was acquitted or convicted or the case was dismissed or otherwise terminated without the express consent of the accused. Assuming arguendo that the first four requisites of double jeopardy were complied with, petitioner failed to satisfy the fifth requisite for he was not acquitted nor was the impeachment proceeding dismissed without his express consent. Petitioner stubbornly clings to the contention that he is entitled to absolute immunity from suit, and oes a step further and avers that even a non-sitting President enjoys immunity from suit during his term of office. Petitioner, however, fails to distinguish between term and tenure. The term means the time during which the officer may claim to hold the office as of right, and fixes the interval after which the several incumbents shall succeed one another. The tenure represents the term during which the incumbent actually holds office. The tenure may be shorter than the term for reasons within or beyond the power of the incumbent. From the deliberations, the intent of the framers is clear that the immunity of the president from suit is concurrent only with his tenure and not his term (Estrada vs. Arroyo, GR 146738, Motion for Recon., April 3, 2001). iv)Prohibitions and inhibitions (Section 13) Section 13. The President, Vice-President, the Members of the Cabinet, and their deputies or assistants shall not, unless otherwise provided in this Constitution, hold any other office or employment during their tenure. They shall not, during said tenure, directly or indirectly, practice any other profession, participate in any business, or be financially interested in any contract with, or in any franchise, or special privilege granted by the Government or any subdivision, agency, or instrumentality thereof, including governmentowned or controlled corporations or their subsidiaries. They shall strictly avoid conflict of interest in the conduct of their office. Prohibited from:
Holding any office or employment during their tenure, UNLESS: otherwise provided in the Constitution (e.g. VP can be appointed a
Cabinet Member, Sec. of Justice sits on Judicial and Bar Council); or the positions are ex-officio and they do not receive any salary of other emoluments therefore (e.g. Sec. of Finance is head of Monetary Board).
Practicing, directly or indirectly, any other profession during their tenure; Participating in any business; Being financially interested in any contract with, or in any franchise, or special privilege granted by the government or any subdivision, agency or instrumentality thereof, including GOCC’s or their subsidiaries. v) Presidential Succession (Section 7,8,9,10 and 12)
Section 7. The President-elect and the Vice President-elect shall assume office at the beginning of their terms. If the President-elect fails to qualify, the Vice President-elect shall act as President until the President-elect shall have qualified. If a President shall not have been chosen, the Vice Presidentelect shall act as President until a President shall have been chosen and qualified. If at the beginning of the term of the President, the President-elect shall have died or shall have become permanently disabled, the Vice President-elect shall become President. Where no President and Vice-President shall have been chosen or shall have qualified, or where both shall have died or become permanently disabled, the President of the Senate or, in case of his inability, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, shall act as President until a President or a Vice-President shall have been chosen and qualified. The Congress shall, by law, provide for the manner in which one who is to act as President shall be selected until a President or a Vice-President shall have qualified, in case of
death, permanent disability, or inability of the officials mentioned in the next preceding paragraph. Section 8. In case of death, permanent disability, removal from office, or resignation of the President, the VicePresident shall become the President to serve the unexpired term. In case of death, permanent disability, removal from office, or resignation of both the President and VicePresident, the President of the Senate or, in case of his inability, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, shall then act as President until the President or Vice-President shall have been elected and qualified. The Congress shall, by law, provide who shall serve as President in case of death, permanent disability, or resignation of the Acting President. He shall serve until the President or the Vice-President shall have been elected and qualified, and be subject to the same restrictions of powers and disqualifications as the Acting President. Section 9. Whenever there is a vacancy in the Office of the Vice-President during the term for which he was elected, the President shall nominate a Vice-President from among the Members of the Senate and the House of Representatives who shall assume office upon confirmation by a majority vote of all the Members of both Houses of the Congress, voting separately. Section 10. The Congress shall, at ten o'clock in the morning of the third day after the vacancy in the offices of the President and Vice-President occurs, convene in accordance with its rules without need of a call and within seven days, enact a law calling for a special election to elect a President and a Vice-President to be held not earlier than forty-five days nor later than sixty days from the time of such call. The bill calling such special election shall be deemed certified under paragraph 2, Section 26, Article V1 of this Constitution and shall become law upon its approval on third reading by the Congress. Appropriations for the special election shall be charged against any current appropriations and shall be exempt from the requirements of paragraph 4, Section 25, Article V1 of this Constitution. The convening of the Congress cannot be suspended nor the special election postponed. No special election shall be called if the vacancy occurs within eighteen months before the date of the next presidential election.
Section 12. In case of serious illness of the President, the public shall be informed of the state of his health. The members of the Cabinet in charge of national security and foreign relations and the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, shall not be denied access to the President during such illness. 1. Vacancies at the beginning of the term. Vacancy President-elect fails to qualify or to be chosen President-elect dies or is permanently disabled. Both President and VP-elect are not chosen or do not qualify or both die, or both become permanently disabled.
Successor VP-elect will be Acting President until someone is qualified / chosen as President. VP becomes President. 1) Senate President or 2) In case of his inability, the Speaker of the House shall act as President until a President or a VP shall have been chosen and qualified. In case of death or disability of (1) and (2) Congress shall determine, by law, who will be the acting President.
2. Vacancies after the office is initially filled: Vacancy President dies, is permanently disabled, is impeached, or resigns. Both President and VicePresident die, become permanently disabled, are impeached, or resign.
Successor Vice-President becomes President for the unexpired term. 1. Senate President or 2. In case of his inability, the Speaker of the House shall act as President until the President or VP shall have been elected and qualified.
Vacancy in office of Vice-President during the term for which he was elected: a) President will nominate new VP from any member of either House of Congress. b) Nominee shall assume office upon confirmation by majority vote of ALL members of both Houses, voting separately. (Nominee forfeits seat in Congress).
Election of President and Vice-President after vacancy during term. a) Congress shall convene 3 days after the vacancy in the office of both the President and the VP, without need of a call. The convening o Congress cannot be suspended. b) Within 7 days after convening, Congress shall enact a law calling for a special election to elect a President and a VP. The special election cannot be postponed. c) The special election shall be held not earlier than 45 days not later than 60 days from the time of the enactment of the law. d) The 3 readings for the special law need not be held on separate days. e) The law shall be deemed enacted upon its approval on third reading. BUT: No special election shall be called if the vacancy occurs within 18 months before the date of the next presidential election. 4.
5. Temporary Disability of the President: The temporary inability of the President to discharge his duties may be raised in either of two ways: a) By the President himself, when he sends a written declaration to the Senate President and the Speaker of the House. In this case, the VicePresident will be Acting President until the President transmits a written declaration to the contrary. b) When a majority of the Cabinet members transmit to the Senate President and the Speaker their written declaration. The VP will immediately be Acting President. ii. BUT: If the President transmits a written declaration that he is not disabled, he reassumes his position. iii. If within 5 days after the President reassumes his position, the majority of the Cabinet retransmits their written declaration, Congress shall decide the issue. In the event, Congress shall reconvene within 48 hours if it is not in session, without need of a call.
iv. Within 10 days after Congress is required to assemble, or 12 days if Congress is not in session, a 2/3 majority of both Houses, voting separately, is needed to find the President temporarily disabled, in which case, the VP will be Acting President. 6. a)
Presidential illness: If the President is seriously ill, the public must be informed thereof. b) Even during such illness, the National Security Adviser, the Secretary of Foreign Affairs, and the Chief of Staff of the AFP re entitled to access to the President. vi)Removal of the President CASES
Petitioner denies he resigned as President or that he suffers from a permanent disability. Hence, he submits that the office of the President was not vacant when respondent Arroyo took her oath as President. The issue then is whether the petitioner resigned as President or should be considered resigned as of January 20, 2001 when respondent took her oath as the 14 th President of the Public. Resignation is not a high level legal abstraction. It is a factual question and its elements are beyond quibble: there must be an intent to resign and the intent must be coupled by acts of relinquishment.78 The validity of a resignation is not government by any formal requirement as to form. It can be oral. It can be written. It can be express. It can be implied. As long as the resignation is clear, it must be given legal effect. n sum, we hold that the resignation of the petitioner cannot be doubted. It was confirmed by his leaving Malacanang. In the press release containing his final statement, (1) he acknowledged the oathtaking of the respondent as President of the Republic albeit with reservation about its legality; (2) he emphasized he was leaving the Palace, the seat of the presidency, for the sake of peace and in order to begin the healing process of our nation. He did not say he was leaving the Palace due to any kind inability and that he was going to re-assume the presidency as soon as the disability disappears: (3) he expressed his gratitude to the people for the opportunity to serve them. Without doubt, he was referring to the
past opportunity given him to serve the people as President (4) he assured that he will not shirk from any future challenge that may come ahead in the same service of our country. Petitioner's reference is to a future challenge after occupying the office of the president which he has given up; and (5) he called on his supporters to join him in the promotion of a constructive national spirit of reconciliation and solidarity. Certainly, the national spirit of reconciliation and solidarity could not be attained if he did not give up the presidency. The press release was petitioner's valedictory, his final act of farewell. His presidency is now in the part tense (Estrada vs. Arroyo, GR 146738, March 2, 2001). •
Congress has the ultimate authority under the Constitution to determine whether the President is incapable of performing his functions in the manner provided for in section 11 of Article VII. The recognition of respondent Arroyo as our de jure president made by Congress is unquestionably a political judgment. It is significant that House Resolution No. 176 cited as the bases of its judgment such factors as the “people’s loss of confidence on the ability of former President Joseph Ejercito Estrada to effectively govern” and the “members of the international community had extended their recognition of Her Excellency, Gloria MacapagalArroyo as President of the Republic of the Philippines” and it has a constitutional duty “of fealty to the supreme will of the people x x x.” This political judgment may be right or wrong but Congress is answerable only to the people for its judgment. Its wisdom is fit to be debated before the tribunal of the people and not before a court of justice. Needles to state, the doctrine of separation of power constitutes an inseparable bar against this court’s interposition of its power of judicial review to review the judgment of Congress rejecting petitioner’s claim that he is still the President, albeit on leave and that respondent Arroyo is merely an acting President (Estrada vs. Arroyo, GR 146738, Motion for Recon., April 3, 2001).
b. PRESIDENTIAL POWERS i) Executive Power
Power to enforce and administer laws. President shall have control of all executive departments, bureaus and offices. He shall ensure that
laws are faithfully executed (Sec. 17, Art. VII). Section 17. The President shall have control of all the executive departments, bureaus, and offices. He shall ensure that the laws be faithfully executed. Until and unless a law is declared unconstitutional, the President has a duty to execute it regardless of his doubts as to its validity (faithful execution clause) (Sec.1 and 17, Art. VII). Section 1. The executive power shall be vested in the President of the Philippines. CASES •
The Organic Act vests "the supreme executive power" in the Governor- General of the Philippine Islands. In addition to specified functions,he is given "general supervision and control of all the departments and bureaus of the government of the Philippine Islands as far as is not inconsistent with the provisions of this act. "He is also made "responsible for the faithful execution of the laws of the Philippine Islands and of the United States operative within Philippine Islands."The authority of the GovernorGeneral is made secure by the important proviso "that all executive functions of Government must be directly under the Governor-General or within one of the executive departments under the supervision and control of the Governor-General. "(Organic Act, secs. 21, 22.) By the Administrative Code, "the Governor-General, as chief Executive of the Islands, is charged with the executive control of the Philippine Government, to be exercised in person or through the Secretaries of Departments, or other proper agency, according to law." It may finally be inferred from the books that the appointment of public officials is generally looked upon as properly an executive function. The power of appointment can hardly be considered a legislative power. Appointments may be made by the Legislature of the courts, but when so made be taken as an incident to the discharge of functions properly within their respective spheres. The Organic Act of August 29, 1916, included what follows on the subject of appointments. The governor-General "shall, unless otherwise herein provided, appoint, by and with the consent of the Philippine
Senate, such officers as may now be appointed by the GovernorGeneral,or such as he is authorized by law to appoint." (Organic Act, sec. 21.) The exception to the general grant is that the Philippine Legislature "shall provide for the appointment and removal of the heads of the executive departments by the Governor-General." (Organic Act, sec. 22.) Each House of the Philippine Legislature may also elect a presiding officer, a clerk, a sergeant at arms, and such other officers and assistants as may be required. (Organic Act, sec. 18.) The Philippine Legislature is authorized to choose two Resident commissioners to the United States. (Organic Act, sec. 20.) The Administrative Code provides the following: "In addition to his general supervisory authority, the Governor-General shall have such specific powers and duties as are expressly conferred or imposed onhim by law and also, in particular, the powers and duties set forth," including th special powers and duties "(a) To nominate and appoint officials, conformably to law, to positions in the service of the Government of the Philippine Islands. (b) To remove officials from office conformably to law and to declare vacant the offices held by such removed officials. For disloyalty to the Government of theUnited States, the Governor-General may at any time remove a personfrom any position of trust or authority under the Government of the Philippine Islands." (Sec. 64 [a], [b].) The Administrative Code lists the officers appointable by the Governor-General (Sec. 66.) (Springer vs. Government, 50 Phil 259). •
Article VII of the Constitution begins in its section 1 with the declaration the "The Executive power shall be vested in a President of the Philippines." All executive authority is thus vested in him, and upon him devolves the constitutional duty of seeing that the laws are "faithfully executed." (Art. VII, sec. 11, subsec. 1, last clause.) In the fulfillment of this duty which he cannot evade, he is granted specific and express powers and functions. (Art. VII, sec. 11.) In addition to these specific and express powers and functions, he may also exercise those necessarily implied and included in them. The National Assembly may not enact laws which either expressly or impliedly diminish the authority conferred upon the President of the Constitution. The Constitution provides that the President "shall have control of all the executive departments, bureaus, and offices" (Art. VII, sec. 11 , first clause) and shall "exercise general supervision over all location governments as may be provided by law" (Ibid, second clause). This power of control and supervision is an important constitutional grant. The President in the exercise of the executive
power under the Constitution may act through the heads of the executive departments. The heads of the executive departments are his authorized assistants and agents in the performance of his executive duties, and their official acts, promulgated in the regular course of business, are presumptively his acts. The power of removal which the President may exercise directly and the practical necessities of efficient government brought about by administrative centralization easily make the President the head of the administration. Independently of any statutory provision authorizing the President to conduct an investigation of the nature involved in this proceeding, and in view of the nature and character of the executive authority with which the President of the Philippines is invested, the constitutional grant to him of power to exercise general supervision over all local governments and to take care that the laws be faithfully executed must be construed to authorized him to order an investigation of the act or conduct of the petitioner herein. Supervision is not a meaningless thing. It is an active power. It is certainly not without limitation, but it at least implies authority to inquire into facts and conditions in order to render the power real and effective. If supervision is to be conscientious and rational, and not automatic and brutal, it must be founded upon a knowledge of actual facts and conditions disclosed after careful study and investigation (Planas vs. Gil, 67 Phil 259). •
The President has the exclusive power to remove executive branch officials, and does not need the approval of the Senate or any other legislative body. Chief Justice William Howard Taft, writing for the Court, noted that the Constitution does mention the appointment of officials, but is silent on their dismissal. An examination of the notes of the Constitutional Convention, however, showed that this silence was intentional: the Convention did discuss the dismissal of executive-branch staff, and believed it was implicit in the Constitution that the President did hold the exclusive power to remove his staff, whose existence was an extension of the President's own authority (Myers, Administratrix vs. US, 272 US 52). ii) Legislative Powers CASES
Proclamation No. 1716 was issued by the late President Ferdinand E. Marcos on February 17, 1978 in the due exercise of
legislative power vested upon him by Amendment No. 6 introduced in 1976. Being a valid act of legislation, said Proclamation may only be amended by an equally valid act of legislation. Proclamation No. 164 is obviously not a valid act of legislation. After the so-called bloodless revolution of February 1986, President Corazon Aquino took the reigns of power under a revolutionary government. On March 24, 1986, she issued her historic Proclamation No. 3, promulgating the Provisional Constitution, or more popularly referred to as the Freedom Constitution. Under Article II, Section 1 of the Freedom Constitution, the President shall continue to exercise legislative power until a legislature is elected and convened under a new constitution. Then came the ratification of the draft constitution, to be known later as the 1987 Constitution. When Congress was convened on July 26, 1987, President Aquino lost this legislative power under the Freedom Constitution. Proclamation No. 164, amending Proclamation No. 1716 was issued on October 6, 1987 when legislative power was already solely on Congress. Because this unauthorized act by the then president constitutes a direct derogation of the most basic principle in the separation of powers between the three branches of government enshrined in our Constitution, we cannot simply close our eyes and rely upon the principle of the presumption of validity of a law. There is a long standing principle that every statute is presumed to be valid. However, this rests upon the premise that the statute was duly enacted by legislature. This presumption cannot apply when there is clear usurpation of legislative power by the executive branch (Municipality of San Juan vs. CA, Sept. 29, 1997). •
Petitioner claims that A.O. No. 308 is not a mere administrative order but a law and hence, beyond the power of the President to issue. While Congress is vested with the power to enact laws, the President executes the laws. The executive power is vested in the President. It is generally defined as the power to enforce and administer the laws. It is the power of carrying the laws into practical operation and enforcing their due observance. Thus, he is granted administrative power over bureaus and offices under his control to enable him to discharge his duties effectively. Administrative power is concerned with the work of applying policies and enforcing orders as determined by proper governmental organs. 21 It enables the President to fix a uniform standard of administrative efficiency and check the official conduct of his agents. 22 To this end, he can issue administrative orders, rules and regulations. Prescinding from these precepts, we hold that A.O. No. 308 involves a subject that is not appropriate to be covered by an administrative order. An
administrative order is an ordinance issued by the President which relates to specific aspects in the administrative operation of government. It must be in harmony with the law and should be for the sole purpose of implementing the law and carrying out the legislative policy (Ople vs. Torres, GR 127685, July 23, 1998). iii)Residual Powers Whatever is not judicial, whatever is not legislative is residual power exercised by the President (Marcos v. Manglapus, 178 SCRA 760) CASES •
As stated above, the Constitution provides that "[t]he executive power shall be vested in the President of the Philippines." [Art. VII, Sec. 1]. However, it does not define what is meant by "executive power" although in the same article it touches on the exercise of certain powers by the President, i.e., the power of control over all executive departments, bureaus and offices, the power to execute the laws, the appointing power, the powers under the commander-in-chief clause, the power to grant reprieves, commutations and pardons, the power to grant amnesty with the concurrence of Congress, the power to contract or guarantee foreign loans, the power to enter into treaties or international agreements, the power to submit the budget to Congress, and the power to address Congress [Art. VII, Secs. 14-23]. The inevitable question then arises: by enumerating certain powers of the President did the framers of the Constitution intend that the President shall exercise those specific powers and no other? Corollarily, the powers of the President cannot be said to be limited only to the specific powers enumerated in the Constitution. In other words, executive power is more than the sum of specific powers so enumerated. Faced with the problem of whether or not the time is right to allow the Marcoses to return to the Philippines, the President is, under the Constitution, constrained to consider these basic principles in arriving at a decision. More than that, having sworn to defend and uphold the Constitution, the President has the obligation under the Constitution to protect the people, promote their welfare and advance the national interest.
To the President, the problem is one of balancing the general welfare and the common good against the exercise of rights of certain individuals. The power involved is the President's residual power to protect the general welfare of the people. It is founded on the duty of the President, as steward of the people. To paraphrase Theodore Roosevelt, it is not only the power of the President but also his duty to do anything not forbidden by the Constitution or the laws that the needs of the nation demand. It is a power borne by the President's duty to preserve and defend the Constitution. It also may be viewed as a power implicit in the President's duty to take care that the laws are faithfully executed [see Hyman, The American President, where the author advances the view that an allowance of discretionary power is unavoidable in any government and is best lodged in the President (Marcos vs. Manglapus, 177 SCRA 668). Power to Determine National Policy CASES •
To avert a nationwide strike of steel workers in April 1952, which he believed would jeopardize national defense, the President issued an Executive Order directing the Secretary of Commerce to seize and operate most of the steel mills. Under prior decisions of this Court, there is doubt as to the right to recover in the Court of Claims on account of properties unlawfully taken by government officials for public use. The Court held that the Executive Order was not authorized by the Constitution or laws of the United States, and it cannot stand. There is no statute which expressly or impliedly authorizes the President to take possession of this property as he did here. In its consideration of the Taft-Hartley Act in 1947, Congress refused to authorize governmental seizures of property as a method of preventing work stoppages and settling labor disputes. Authority of the President to issue such an order in the circumstances of this case cannot be implied from the aggregate of his powers under Article II of the Constitution. The Order cannot properly be sustained as an exercise of the President's military power as Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. Nor can the Order be sustained because of the several provisions of Article II which grant executive power to the President. The power here sought to be exercised is the lawmaking power, which the Constitution vests in
the Congress alone, in both good and bad times. Even if it be true that other Presidents have taken possession of private business enterprises without congressional authority in order to settle labor disputes, Congress has not thereby lost its exclusive constitutional authority to make the laws necessary and proper to carry out all powers vested by the Constitution "in the Government of the United States, or any Department or Officer thereof (Youngstown Co. vs. Sawyer, 343 US 579 ).” Prosecution of Crimes CASES •
Petitioner's argument lacks appeal for it lies on the faulty assumption that the decision whom to prosecute is a judicial function, the sole prerogative of courts and beyond executive and legislative interference. In truth, the prosecution of crimes appertains to the executive department of government whose principal power and responsibility is to see that our laws are faithfully executed. A necessary component of this power to execute our laws is the right to prosecute their violators. The right to prosecute vests the prosecutor with a wide range of discretion the discretion of whether, what and whom to charge, the exercise of which depends on a smorgasbord of factors which are best appreciated by prosecutors. We thus hold that it is not constitutionally impermissible for Congress to enact R.A. No. 6981 vesting in the Department of Justice the power to determine who can qualify as a witness in the program and who shall be granted immunity from prosecution. Section 9 of Rule 119 does not support the proposition that the power to choose who shall be a state witness is an inherent judicial prerogative. Under this provision, the court, is given the power to discharge a state witness only because it has already acquired jurisdiction over the crime and the accused. The discharge of an accused is part of the exercise of jurisdiction but is not a recognition of an inherent judicial function. Moreover, the Rules of Court have never been interpreted to be beyond change by legislation designed to improve the administration of our justice system (Webb vs. De Leon, 247 SCRA 652).