Power of Judicial Review
Political Law Jurisprudence...
POWER OF JUDICIAL REVIEW ANGARA Jose A. Angara, and the VS. ELECTORAL respondents, Pedro Ynsua, Miguel COMMISSION Castillo and Dionisio Mayor, were candidates voted for the position of member of the National Assembly for the first district of the Province of Tayabas. The provincial board of canvassers, proclaimed Angara as memberelect of the National Assembly so he took his oath of office. The National Assembly in session assembled, passed Res. 8: which confirmed the elected members whose election were not protested to (specifically applicable to Angara) The Electoral Commission on the other had passed a Res. that prescribed the period within to file protests Ynsua filed before the Electoral Commission a "Motion of Protest" against Angara’s election being the only protest filed after the passage of Res. 8 and praying he be declared elected member of the National Assembly for the first district of Tayabas Angara filed a MTD because Ynsua’s protest had prescribed Ynsua claimed that there is no legal or constitutional provision barring the presentation of a protest against the election of a member of the National Assembly after confirmation
DOES THE SC HAVE JURISDICTION OVER THE EC AND THE SUBJECT MATTER OF THE CONTROVERSY? YES
Here is then presented an actual controversy involving as it does a conflict of a grave constitutional nature between the National Assembly on the one hand, and the Electoral Commission on the other. Although the Electoral Commission may not be interfered with, when and while acting within the limits of its authority, it does not follow that it is beyond the reach of the constitutional mechanism adopted by the people and that it is not subject to constitutional restrictions. The Electoral Commission is not a separate department of the government, and even if it were, conflicting claims of authority under the fundamental law between department powers and agencies of the government are necessarily determined by the judiciary in justifiable and appropriate cases. HAS THE EC ACTED WITHOUT OR IN EXCESS OF ITS JURISDICTION IN ASSUMING THE COGNIZANCE OF THE PROTEST FILED THE ELECTION OF THE YNSUA NOTWITHSTANDING THE PREVIOUS CONFIRMATION OF SUCH ELECTION BY RESOLUTION OF THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY? NO
Under the practice prevailing under the Jones Law, each House fixed the time when election protests should be filed. As a matter of formality, after the time fixed by its rules for the filing of protests had already expired, each House passed a resolution confirming the returns with no protest. Under the 1935 Consti, the purpose was to transfer in its totality all the powers previously exercised by the legislature in matters pertaining to contested elections of its members, to an independent and impartial tribunal. It was to be devoid of partisan considerations which prompted the people, acting through their delegates to the Convention, to provide for this body known as the EC. With this end in view, a composite body in which both the majority and minority parties are equally represented to off-set partisan influence in its deliberations was created, and further endowed with judicial temper by including in its membership 3 SC justices. When, therefore, the National Assembly passed its resolution of December 3, 1935, confirming the election of the petitioner to the National Assembly, the EC had not yet met; neither does it appear that said body had actually been organized. If Resolution 8 of the National Assembly confirming non-protested elections of members of the National Assembly had the effect of limiting or tolling the time for the presentation of protests, the result would be that the National Assembly — on the hypothesis that it still retained the incidental power of regulation in such cases — had already barred the presentation of protests before the Electoral Commission had had time to organize itself and deliberate on the mode and method to be followed in a matter entrusted to its exclusive jurisdiction by the Constitution. This result was not and could not have been contemplated, and should be avoided. a.
EC – DISMISSED MTD TIMELINE in 1935:
That the government established by the Constitution follows fundamentally the theory of separation of power into the legislative, the executive and the judicial. That the system of checks and balances and the overlapping of functions and duties often makes difficult the delimitation of the powers granted.
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Nov. 15, 1935 – Commonwealth Government was inaugurated Nov. 25, 1935– Legislature convened Dec. 3, 1935 – Confirmation of Angara’s election Dec. 4, 1935 – Designation of legislative members to the EC Dec. 6, 1935– Designation of justices to the EC Dec. 9, 1935– Ynsua files his protest
The pleadings do not show when the Electoral Commission was formally organized but it does appear that on December 9, 1935, the Electoral Commission met for the first time and approved a resolution fixing said date as the last day for the filing of election protest.
That in cases of conflict between the several departments and among the agencies thereof, the judiciary, with the Supreme Court as the final arbiter, is the only constitutional mechanism devised finally to resolve the conflict and allocate constitutional boundaries. That judicial supremacy is but the power of judicial review in actual and appropriate cases and controversies, and is the power and duty to see that no one branch or agency of the government transcends the Constitution, which is the source of all authority. That the Electoral Commission is an independent constitutional creation with specific powers and functions to execute and perform, closer for purposes of classification to the legislative than to any of the other two departments of the governments. That the Electoral Commission is the sole judge of all contests relating to the election, returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly. That under the organic law prevailing before the present Constitution went into effect, each house of the legislature was respectively the sole judge of the elections, returns, and qualifications of their elective members. That the present Constitution has transferred all the powers previously exercised by the legislature with respect to contests relating to the elections, returns and qualifications of its members, to the Electoral Commission. That such transfer of power from the legislature to the Electoral Commission was full, clear and complete, and carried with it ex necesitate rei the implied power inter alia to prescribe the rules and regulations as to the time and manner of filing protests. That the avowed purpose in creating the Electoral Commission was to have an independent constitutional organ pass upon all contests relating to the election, returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly, devoid of partisan influence or consideration, which object would
be frustrated if the National Assembly were to retain the power to prescribe rules and regulations regarding the manner of conducting said contests. That section 4 of article VI of the Constitution repealed not only section 18 of the Jones Law making each house of the Philippine Legislature respectively the sole judge of the elections, returns and qualifications of its elective members, but also section 478 of Act No. 3387 empowering each house to prescribe by resolution the time and manner of filing contests against the election of its members, the time and manner of notifying the adverse party, and bond or bonds, to be required, if any, and to fix the costs and expenses of contest. m. That confirmation by the National Assembly of the election is contested or not, is not essential before such member-elect may discharge the duties and enjoy the privileges of a member of the National Assembly. n. That confirmation by the National Assembly of the election of any member against whom no protest had been filed prior to said confirmation, does not and cannot deprive the Electoral Commission of its incidental power to prescribe the time within which protests against the election of any member of the National Assembly should be filed. l.
The EC was acting within the legitimate exercise of its constitutional prerogative in assuming to take cognizance of the protest filed by Ynsua against the election of Angara, and that the resolution of the National Assembly of December 3, 1935 can not in any manner toll the time for filing protests against the elections, returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly, nor prevent the filing of a protest within such time as the
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rules of the EC might prescribe. PETITION DENIED JUDICIAL SUPREMACY The Constitution is a definition of the powers of government. Who is to determine the nature, scope and extent of such powers? The Constitution itself has provided for the instrumentality of the judiciary as the rational way. And when the judiciary mediates to allocate constitutional boundaries, it does not assert any superiority over the other departments; it does not in reality nullify or invalidate an act of the Legislature, but only asserts the solemn and sacred obligation assigned to it by the Constitution to determine conflicting claims of authority under the Constitution and to establish for the parties in an actual controversy the rights which that instrument secures and guarantees to them. This is in truth all that is involved in what is termed "judicial supremacy" which properly is the power of judicial review under the Constitution. JUDICIAL REVIEW LIMITED TO ACTUAL LITIGATION; WISDOM, JUSTICE OR EXPEDIENCY OF LEGISLATION Even then, this power of judicial review is limited to actual cases and controversies to be exercised after full opportunity of argument by the parties, and limited further to the constitutional question raised or the very lis mota presented. Any attempt at abstraction could only lead to dialectics and barren legal questions and to sterile conclusions unrelated to actualities. Narrowed as its function is in this manner, the judiciary does not pass upon questions of wisdom, justice or expediency of legislation. More than that, courts accord the presumption of constitutionality to legislative enactments not only because the Legislature is presumed to abide by the Constitution but also because the judiciary in the determination of actual cases and controversies must
reflect the wisdom and justice of the people as expressed through their representatives in the executive and legislative departments of the government.
The election of 1800 proved to be a disaster for the Federalist party. Their candidate for the Presidency, John Adams, was denied reelection, and control of both Houses of Congress fell to the Jeffersonians. The Federalists sought to entrench themselves in the federal judiciary.
JURISDICTION OVER THE ELECTORAL COMMISSION The nature of the present controversy shows the necessity of a final constitutional arbiter to determine the conflict of authority between two agencies created by the Constitution. If the conflict were left undecided and undetermined, a void would be created in our constitutional system which may in the long run prove destructive of the entire framework. Natura vacuum abhorret, so must we avoid exhaustion in our constitutional system. Upon principle, reason and authority, the Supreme Court has jurisdiction over the Electoral Commission and the subject matter of the present controversy for the purpose of determining the character, scope and extent of the constitutional grant to the Electoral Commission as "the sole judge of all contests relating to the election, returns and qualifications of the members of the National Assembly." HAS THE APPLICANT A RIGHT TO THE COMMISSION HE DEMANDS?
Mr. Marbury, then, since his commission was signed by the president, and sealed by the secretary of state, was appointed; and as the law creating the office, gave the officer a right to hold for five years, independent of the executive, the appointment was not revocable, but vested in the officer legal rights, which are protected by the laws of his country. To withhold his commission, therefore, is an act deemed by the court not warranted by law, but violative of a vested legal right.
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After the election, but before March 4 of the following year, the date on which the Constitution prescribed that Thomas Jefferson would take the oath of office, Oliver Ellsworth, then Chief Justice, conveniently resigned for reasons of ill health, allowing President Adams to name a new Chief Justice. He did by appointing his Secretary of State, John Marshall, an arch political enemy of Jefferson’s, though a cousin of the President-Elect. Marshall also retained his post in the Adams administration until it went out of office. The Federalist-controlled Congress also obliged by passing legislation creating some 58 additional judgeships to be filled by the party faithful. On Feb. 3, 1801, it passed a law creating federal circuit courts designed to relieve Supreme Court Justices from the burdensome task of “riding circuit” in their dual capacity as appellate judges. These 16 vacancies were promptly filled by Adams delivered before March 4. The men named to these vacancies are historically referred to as “the midnight judges” because of the late hour at which their commissions were delivered. Two weeks after it had passed the circuit court legislation, Congress passed an act that provided 42 justices of the peace for the District of Columbia. President Adams sent his nominations for this second wave of judicial appointments to the Senate, and they were confirmed on March 3. The commissions for these judgeships were signed by the President and the Seal of
IF HE HAS A RIGHT, AND THAT RIGHT HAS BEEN VIOLATED, DO THE LAWS OF HIS COUNTRY AFFORD HIM A REMEDY?
By the constitution, the president is invested with certain important political powers, in the exercise of which he is to use his own discretion, and is accountable only to his country in his political character, and to his own conscience. To aid him in the performance of these duties, he is authorized to appoint certain officers, who act by his authority, and in conformity with his orders. In such cases, these acts are his acts; and whatever opinion may be entertained of the manner in which executive discretion may be used, still there exists, and can exist, no power to control that discretion. The subjects are political: they respect the nation, not individual rights, and being entrusted to the executive, the decision of the executive is conclusive. This officer, as his duties were prescribed by that act, is to conform precisely to the will of the president: he is the mere organ by whom that will is communicated. The acts of such an officer, as an officer, can never be examinable by the courts. But when the legislature proceeds to impose on that officer other duties; when he is directed peremptorily to perform certain acts; when the rights of individuals are dependent on the performance of those acts; he is so far the officer of the law; is amenable to the laws for his conduct; and cannot, at his discretion, sport away the vested rights of others. Where the heads of departments are the political or confidential agents of the executive, merely to execute the will of the president, merely to execute the will of the president, or rather to act in cases in which the executive possesses a constitutional or legal discretion, nothing can be more perfectly clear, than that their acts are only politically examinable. But where a specific duty is assigned by law, and individual rights depend upon the performance of that duty, it seems equally clear, that the individual who conducts himself injured, has a right to resort to the laws of his country for a remedy. The power of nominating to the senate, and the power of appointing the person nominated, are political powers, to be exercised by the president, according to his own discretion. When he has made an appointment, he has exercised his whole power, and his discretion, has been completely applied to the case. If, by law, the officer be removable at the will of the president, then a new appointment may be immediately made, and the rights of the officer are terminated. But as a fact which has existed, cannot be made never to have existed, the appointment cannot be annihilated; and consequently, if the officer is by law not removable at the will of the president, the rights he has acquired are protected by the law, and are not resumable by the president. They cannot be extinguished by executive authority, and he has the privilege of asserting them in like manner, as if they had been derived from any other source. The question whether a right has vested or not, is, in its nature, judicial and must be tried by the judicial authority. That by signing the commission of Mr. Marbury, the President, appointed him a justice of peace for the county of Washington’ and that the seal of the United States, is conclusive testimony of the verity of the signature, and the completion of the appointment; and that the appointment conferred on him a legal right to the office for the space of 5 years. WHETHER HE IS ENTITLED TO THE REMEDY FOR WHICH HE APPLIES? NO
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the United States affixed by Marshall as Secretary of State late the same day, but Adams’ term expired before all the commissions could be delivered John Marshall’s brother, James, who returned four undelivered certificates to the Secretary of State’s office. Upon entering office, James Madison, the new Secretary of State, under instructions from President Jefferson, refused to deliver these four remaining commissions, whereupon William Marbury, one of the four designated but uncertified judges, brought suit to recover his commission directly with the Supreme Court to vindicate his right to the commission under section 13 of the Judiciary Act of 1789 by issuing a writ of mandamus directing Secretary of State Madison to deliver the certificate. FUNCTIONS OF JUDICIAL REVIEW a. Legitimizing function b. Checking function c. Symbolic or Educational function SALONGA VS. PANO A rash of bombings occurred in the MM area in the 1980. On Sept. 1980, Victor Burns Lovely almost killed himself and injured his younger brother, Romeo as a result of an explosion of a small bomb inside his room. Found in his possession were several pictures taken at the birthday party of former Cong. Raul Daza held at the latter’s residence. Jovito Salonga and his wife were among those whose likeness appeared in the group pictures together with other guests including Lovely. Bombs again exploded in MM. The younger brother of Lovely, Romeo, was presented during the conference. In his interview he had stated that he drove
It is not by the office of the persons to whom the writ is directed, but the nature of the thing to be done, that the propriety or impropriety of issuing a mandamus. Where the head of a department acts in a case, in which executive discretion is to be exercised; in which he is the mere organ of executive will; any application to a court would be rejected without hesitation. Where he is directed by law to do a certain act, affecting the absolute rights of individuals, in the performance of which he is not placed under the particular direction of the president. This, then is a plain case for mandamus. It is emphatically, the province and duty of the judicial department, to say what the law is. If the legislature shall do what is expressly forbidden, such act, notwithstanding the express prohibition, is in reality effectual. The complaint must be discharged.
WHETHER SALONGA MAY BE PROSECUTED UNDER THE AMENDED INFORMATION? NO.
The respondents admit that no evidence was presented directly linking Salonga to actual acts of violence or terrorism. There is no proof of his direct participation in any overt acts of subversion. He is tagged as a leader of subversive organizations for 2 reasons: 1. his house was used as a “contact point”; 2. he mentioned some kind of violent struggle in the Philippines being most likely should reforms be not instituted by Pres. Marcos immediately. A PI is imperative upon the fiscal or the judge to relieve the accused of the pain of going through trial once it is ascertained that the evidence is insufficient to sustain a prima facie case or that no probable cause exists to form a sufficient belief as to the guilt of the accused. The judge or the fiscal should not go on with the prosecution in the hope that some credible evidence might later turn up during trial for this would be a flagrant violation of a basic right. The court had already deliberated on this case, a consensus on the Court’s judgment had been arrived at. Insofar was the absence of a prima facie case to warrant the filing of subversion charges, such decision was rendered moot and academic by the action of the prosecution. Pursuant to the instructions of the Min. of
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Lovely to Salonga’s house twice. The day after, news contained almost identical headlines stating in effect that Salonga had been linked to the various bombings in MM.
Justice, the prosecution restudied its evidence and decided to seek the exclusion of Salonga as one of the accused in the information.
More bombs were reported to have exploded. Minutes after the President had finished delivering his speech before an international conference, a small bomb exploded. Within the next 24 hours, arrest search seizure orders where issued against persons who were apparently implicated by Victor Lovely. One of them was Salonga. Lovely offered himself to be a state witness. Salonga was then confined at Manila Med. Center wherein he was placed under arrest without specifying the charge or charges against him. He was transferred in an army prison camp at Fort Bonifacio. Subsequently, he was released for humanitarian reasons from
THE SETTING ASIDE OR DECLARING VOID OF INTRUSIONS OF STATE AUTHORITY INTO AREAS RESERVED BY THE BILL OF RIGHTS FOR THE INDIVIDUAL AS CONSTITUTIONALLY PROTECTED SPHERES WHERE EVEN THE AWESOME POWERS OF THE GOVERNMENT MAY NOT ENTER AT WILL IS NOT THETOTALITY OF THE COURT’S FUNCTIONS.
The fiscal points out however that he is not precluded from filing new charges for the same acts because Salonga has not been arraigned and double jeopardy does not apply.
THE COURT ALSO HAS THE DUTY TO FORMULATE GUIDING AND CONTROLLING CONSTITUTIONAL PRINCIPLES, PRECEPTS, DOCTRINES OR RULES. IT HAS THE SYMBOLIC FUNCTION OF EDUCATING BENCH AND BAR ON THE EXTENT OF PROTECTION GIVEN BY CONSTITUTIONAL GUARANTEES. The prosecution has taken the initiative of dropping the charges against Salonga for miserably failing to establish a prima facie case. The court will not validate the filing of an information based on the kind of evidence against Salonga found in the records.
military custody and placed under house arrest in the custody of Mrs. Salonga still without the benefit of any investigation or charges. Complaint was filed against Salonga accusing him of violating RA No. 1700 in relation to Art. 142, RPC. He was allowed to leave the country before the date of preliminary investigation to attend a series of church conferences and comprehensive medical examinations (victim of a bombing where he suffered serious disabilities). An amended complaint was filed against him. Salonga filed a motion to dismiss the charges for failure of the prosecution to establish a prima facie case against him. The motion was
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denied and the judge ordered for the filing of an information for violation of the Revised Anti-Subversion Act. JAVIER COMELEC
In the elections of November 12, 1963, petitioner Paterno Javier and respondent Felix Lomugdang ran and were voted for the position of municipal mayor of Culasi, Antique. During the canvassing, it was found that in the election return for Precinct No. 4, respondent Lomugdang was credited with 23 votes only, whereas in the tally board of the same precinct, he appeared to have obtained 83 votes. BEI Members filed a verified petition with the Municipal Board of Canvassers, requesting permission to correct the election return. COMELEC Rep instructed the BOC to suspend the canvassing in precinct No. 4. BOC did not heed the petition. Respondent Lomugdang filed a for judicial recounting of the votes in Precinct No. 4 in the CFI. BOC proceeded with the canvassing of the returns and proclaimed petitioner Paterno Javier as elected mayor. In view of this proclamation, the case for recounting filed in the Court of First Instance, was dismissed. COMELEC resolution: holding that as the canvass of the votes cast for the office of mayor in the election return of Precinct No. 4 was made in disregard of a lawful order of the duly authorized representative of the Commission, the proclamation
WHETHER THE COMELEC CAN ISSUE ORDER
While it is true that the discrepancy here appears in the figures in the election return and the tally board, nevertheless, in the face of the verified unanimous petition of the board of inspectors informing the board of canvassers that a clerical mistake was committed in the process of transferring the figures from the official count in the tally board to the election return, and praying for the correction thereof, a ground sufficient to justify the correction or amendment of such return under Section 154 of the Election Code. Even in the Resolution of COMELEC containing specific instructions for the guidance of all boards of canvassers is enjoined to suspend the canvass of votes cast in an affected precinct where the entry of votes in the election return is on its face clearly falsified or not legible. Here, the falsity of the figure on the election return, brought about by error or clerical mistake, was not only clear on its face but attested to as a fact by all the members of the board of election inspectors of the precinct. The directive of the Commission representative directing, under the circumstances, the suspension of the proclamation being in order, the continuation of the canvass and consequent proclamation of petitioner, in violation of said directive, is null and void.
The canvass and proclamation were made in violation of the lawful order of the Commission on Elections. Where an election return has been amended by court order or the election return from a certain precinct has been wrongfully or erroneously excluded by the board of canvassers, the COMELEC has the power to order a new canvass of the returns even after a proclamation had already been made. The underlying theory therefore is the ministerial duty of the board of canvassers to base th e proclamation on the election returns of all the precincts of the municipality. Where the board of canvassers, with knowledge that the return from one precinct is undoubtedly vitiated by clerical mistake, continued the canvass and proclaimed a winner based on the result of such canvass, the proclamation cannot be said to have been in faithful discharge of its ministerial duty under the law.
Under Section 167 of the Revised Election Code, running for a public office is not the only instance when a member is disqualified from acting in the board of canvassers. The provision does not exclude absence or incapacity for any lawful cause as grounds for their substitution by registered voters belonging to the party of the replaced member. The defiance by the srcinal members of the board of canvassers of the lawful order and instruction of the Commission on Elections is a valid cause for their removal and substitution by qualified persons.
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of petitioner Paterno Javier was null and void. So, petitioner's proclamation as mayor-elect by the BOC was annulled. The members of the Board of Canvassers were suspended, and Atty. Del Castillo was authorized to appoint any qualified persons to act in place of the suspended members of said board, and to hold another canvass of the votes cast for the office of mayor of all the precincts, after the true count of votes in Precinct No. 4 had been determined. The candidates were also directed to file the necessary petition in court to determine the true result of the votes cast in said precinct. Paterno Javier’s contentions: 1. COMELEC gravely abused its discretion in issuing the resolution for the reason that,
upon his proclamation, the Commission had lost jurisdiction to annul such proclamation or the results of the election; after it had canvassed the election returns and the winners were proclaimed, the municipal board of canvassers became functus officio and can no longer be suspended; COMELEC cannot authorize its representative, Atty. Tomas del Castillo, to appoint new members of the board of canvassers its composition being specifically designated by law and may be substituted only for causes and in the manner provided in the law.
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JUSTIICIABLE QUESTION VS. POLITICAL QUESTION AVELINO Senate session, Senator VS. CUENCA Lorenzo M. Tañada requested that his right to speak on the next session day to formulate charges against the then Senate President Jose Avelino (SPA) be reserved. His request was approved. Senator Tañada and Senator Prospero Sanidad filed with the Secretary of the Senate a resolution enumerating charges against then SPA and ordering the investigation. SPA has been delaying the session first by delaying his appearance at the session hall; second, when he did not dispense with the roll call; third, when he did not dispense with the reading of the minutes. Senator Tañada repeatedly stood up to claim his right to deliver his speech but the SPA continuosly ignored him; then, when Sen David moved for adjournment, SPA suddenly recognized him and adjourned the session and banged the gavel and abandoning the Chair. Senator Arranz, Senate President Pro-tempore, urged by those senators present took the Chair and proceeded with the session. Senate President Pro-tempore Arranz suggested that respondent be designated to preside over the session which suggestion was carried
Does the Court have jurisdiction over the subject-matter?
NO. In view of the separation of powers, the political nature of the controversy and the constitutional grant to the Senate of the power to elect its own president, which power should not be interfered with, nor taken over, by the judiciary. We refused to take cognizance of the Vera case even if the rights of the electors of the suspended senators were alleged affected without any immediate remedy. Selection of the presiding officer affect only the Senators themselves who are at liberty at any time to choose their officers, change or reinstate them. Anyway, if, as the petition must imply to be acceptable, the majority of the Senators want petitioner to preside, his remedy lies in the Senate Session Hall — not in the Supreme Court. The Court will not sally into the legitimate domain of the Senate on the plea that our refusal to intercede might lead into a crisis, even a resolution. No state of things has been proved that might change the temper of the Filipino people as a peaceful and law-abiding citizen. And we should not allow ourselves to be stampeded into a rash action inconsistent with the calm that should characterized judicial deliberations.
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unanimously. Senator Tañada was able to deliver his privilege speech. Thereafter Senator Sanidad read aloud the complete text of said Resolution (No. 68), and submitted his motion for approval and the same was unanimously approved. Senator Sanidad introduced Resolution No. 67, entitled "Resolution declaring vacant the position of the President of the Senate and designated the Honorable Mariano Jesus Cuenco Acting President of the Senate." Put to a vote, the said resolution was unanimously approved. Senator Cuenco took the oath.President of the Philippines recognized the respondent as acting president of the Philippines Senate.
President Ferdinand Marcos issued PD 991 calling for a national referendum for the Citizens Assemblies ("barangays") to resolve the issues of martial law, the I. assembly, its replacement, the powers of such replacement, the period of its existence, the length of the period for tile exercise by the President of his present powers. Twenty days after, the President issued another related decree, PD 1031 amending the previous PD 991, by declaring the provisions of PD 229, providing for the manner of voting and canvass of votes in "barangays"
WHETHER THE QUESTION ON THE REFERENDUM-PLEBISCITE IS A POLITICAL QUESTION?
The petitioners possess locus standi to challenge the constitutional premise of PD Nos. 991, 1031, and 1033. The valid source of a stature PD are of such nature-may be contested by one who will sustain a direct injuries as a in result of its enforcement. At the instance of taxpayers, laws providing for the disbursement of public funds may be enjoined, upon the theory that the expenditure of public funds by an officer of the State for the purpose of executing an unconstitutional act constitutes a misapplication of such funds. The breadth of PD 991 carries all appropriation for the effective implementation of its purposes. The amending process both as to proposal and ratification, raises a judicial question. This is especially true in cases where the power of the Presidency to initiate the of normally exercised by the legislature, is seriously doubted. Under the terms of the 1973 Constitution, the power to propose amendments to the constitution resides in the interim National Assembly in the period of transition. After that period, and the regular National Assembly in its active session, the power to propose amendments becomes ipso facto the prerogative of the regular National Assembly (Sec. 1, pars. 1 and 2 of Art. XVI, 1973 constitution). The normal course has not been followed. Rather than calling the National Assembly to constitute itself into a constituent
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(Citizens Assemblies) applicable to the national referendum-plebiscite. Quite relevantly, PD 1031 repealed Section 4, of PD 991. On the same date, the President issued PD 1033, stating the questions to be submitted to the people in the referendum-plebiscite. The Decree recites in its "whereas" clauses that the people's continued opposition to the convening of the National Assembly evinces their desire to have such body abolished and replaced thru a constitutional amendment, providing for a legislative body, which will be submitted directly to the people in the referendum-plebiscite. SANIDAD commenced this action for Prohibition with Preliminary Injunction seeking to enjoin the COMELEC from holding and conducting the Referendum Plebiscite; to declare without force and effect PD Nos. 991 and 1033, insofar as they propose amendments to the Constitution, as well as PD 1031, insofar as it directs the COMELEC to supervise, control, hold, and conduct the Referendum-Plebiscite. Petitioners contend that under the 1935 and 1973 Constitutions there is no grant to the incumbent President to exercise the constituent power to propose amendments to the new Constitution. As a consequence, the Referendum-Plebiscite on October 16 has no constitutional or legal basis. The Solicitor General principally maintains that petitioners have no standing to sue; the issue raised is political in nature, beyond judicial
assembly the incumbent President undertook the proposal of amendments and submitted the proposed amendments thru Presidential Decree 1033 to the people in a Referendum-Plebiscite on October 16. Unavoidably, the regularity of the procedure for amendments, written in lambent words in the very Constitution sought to be amended, raises a contestable issue. The implementing PDs, which commonly purport to have the force and effect of legislation are assailed as invalid, thus the issue of the validity of said Decrees is plainly a justiciable one, within the competence of this Court to pass upon. Section 2(2), Article X of the new Constitution provides: "All cases involving the constitutionality of a treaty, executive agreement, or law may shall be heard and decided by the Supreme Court en banc and no treaty, executive agreement, or law may be declared unc onstitutional without the concurrence of at least ten Members. ..." The Supreme Court has the last word in the construction not only of treaties and statutes, but also of the Constitution itself The amending, like all other powers organized in the Constitution, is in form a delegated and hence a limited power, so that the Supreme Court is vested with that authorities to determine whether that power has been discharged within its limits. Political questions are neatly associated with the wisdom, of the legality of a particular act . Where the vortex of the c ontroversy refers to the legality or validity of the contested act , that matter is definitely justiciable or non-political. What is in the heels of the Court is not the wisdom of the act of the incumbent President in proposing amendments to the Constitution, but his constitutional authority to perform such act or to assume the power of a constituent assembly. Whether the amending process confers on the President that power to propose amendments is therefore a downright justiciable question. If the Constitution provides how it may be amended, the judiciary as the interpreter of that Constitution, can declare whether the procedure followed or the authority assumed was valid or not. Whether, therefore, the constitutional provision has been followed or not is the proper subject of inquiry, not by the people themselves of course who exercise no power of judicial but by the Supreme Court in whom the people themselves vested that power, a power which includes the competence to determine whether the constitutional norms for amendments have been observed or not.
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cognizance of this Court; at this state of the transition period, only the incumbent President has the authority to exercise constituent power; the referendum-plebiscite is a step towards normalization. GONZALES COMELEC
Senate and the House of Representatives passed the following resolutions: R. B. H. (Resolution of Both Houses) No. 1, proposing that Section 5, Article VI, of the Constitution of the Philippines, be amended so as to increase the membership of the House of Representatives from a maximum of 120, as provided in the present Constitution, to a maximum of 180, to be apportioned among the several provinces as nearly as may be according to the number of their respective inhabitants, although each province shall have, at least, one (1) member; R. B. H. No. 2, calling a convention to propose amendments to said Constitution, the convention to be composed of two (2) elective delegates from each representative district, to be "elected in the general elections to be held on the second Tuesday of November, 1971;" and R. B. H. No. 3, proposing that Section 16, Article VI, of the same Constitution, be
Whether a Resolution of Congress acting as a constituent assembly violates the Constitution and reviewable by the SC?-YES —
As early as Angara vs. Elector al Commission, SC declared that "the judicial department is the only constitutional organ which can be called upon to determine the proper allocation of powers between the several departments and among the integral or constituent units thereof." It is true that in Mabanag vs. Lopez Vito , this Court characterizing the issue submitted thereto as a political one, declined to pass upon the question whether or not a given number of votes cast in Congress in favor of a proposed amendment to the Constitution — which was being submitted to the people for ratification — satisfied the three-fourths vote requirement of the fundamental law. The force of this precedent has been weakened, however, by Suanes vs. Chief Accountant of the Senate, Avelino vs. Cuenco, Tañada vs. Cuenco, and Macias. Thus we rejected the theory, advanced in these four (4) cases, that the issues therein raised were political questions the determination of which is beyond judicial review. The power to amend the Constitution or to propose amendments is not included in the general grant of legislative powers to Congress. It is part of the inherent powers of the people — as the repository of sovereignty in a republican state, such as ours — to make, and, hence, to amend their own Fundamental Law. Congress may propose amendments to the Constitution merely because the same explicitly grants such power. Hence, when exercising the same, it is said that Senators and Members of the House of Representatives act, not as members of Congress, but as component elements of a constituent assembly. When acting as such, the members of Congress derive their authority from the Constitution, unlike the people, when performing the same function, for their authority does not emanate from the Constitution — they are the very source of all powers of government, including the Constitution itself. Since, when proposing, as a constituent assembly, amendments to the Constitution, the members of Congress derive their authority from the Fundamental Law, it follows, necessarily, that they do not have the final say on whether or not their acts are within or beyond constitutional limits. Otherwise, they could brush aside and set the same at naught, contrary to the basic tenet that ours is a government of laws, not of men, and to the rigid nature of our Constitution. Such rigidity is stressed by the fact that, the Constitution expressly confers upon the Supreme Court, the power to declare a treaty unconstitutional, despite the eminently political character of
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amended so as to authorize Senators and members of the House of Representatives to become delegates to the aforementioned constitutional convention, without forfeiting their respective seats in Congress. Subsequently, Congress passed a bill, which, upon approval by the President, became Republic Act No. 4913, providing that the amendments to the Constitution proposed in the aforementioned Resolutions No. 1 and 3 be submitted, for approval by the people, at the general elections.
treaty-making power. In short, the issue whether or not a Resolution of Congress — acting as a constituent assembly — violates the Constitution essentially justiciable, not political, and, hence, subject to judicial review, and, to the extent that this view may be inconsistent with the stand taken in Mabanag vs. Lopez Vito , the latter should be deemed modified accordingly. The Members of the Court are unanimous on this point.
Petitioners: Miranda (mayor of IS A PLEBISCITE NECESSARY? YES Santiago City), Afiado (President of the Liga ng mga Bgy ng Santiago 1. On the issue of locus standi: the constitutionality of a law can be challenged by one who will sustain a City), Dirige, Cabuyadao, Babaran direct injury as a result of its enforcement. Petitioner Miranda was the mayor of Santiago City when he (residents of Santiago City) filed the petition in his own right as mayor and not on behalf of the city. Hence, he did not need the Respondents: Aguirre (Exec consent of the city council of Santiago City. It is also indubitable that the change of status of the city Sec), Velasco (Sec of Local Govt) et of Santiago from independent component city to a mere component city will affect his powers as al mayor. RA 7720: converted the 2. On the issue of the court should back off from assuming jurisdiction over the case at bar on the ground municipality of Santiago, Isabela that it involved a political question. The case involves a JUSTICIABLE ISSUE, not a POLITICAL into an independent component QUESTION. City. This was ratified by the people of Santiago in a plebiscite on July 4, 1994. Political Question Justiciable Issue In 1998, RA 8528 (amending RA A question of policy. It refers to those questions In Casibang vs Aquino… 7720) was passed converting City which, under the Constitution, are to be decided by A purely justiciable issue implies a given right, legally of Santiago, Isabela from an INDEPENDENT COMPONENT CITY the people in their sovereign capacity; or in regard demandable and enforceable, an act or omission to which full discretionary authority has been violative of such right, and a remedy granted and to a COMPONENT CITY. In effect, delegated to the legislative or executive branch of sanctioned by law, for said breach of right. the law downgraded Santiago City from an independent component the government. It is concerned with issues The case falls here. The petitioners claim that
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city to a mere component. This dependent upon the wisdom, not legality of a under Sec 10 Art X of the 1987 Consti, they meant that the city mayor will be have a right to approve or disapprove RA 8528 particular measure. placed under the administrative in a plesbiscite before it can be enforced. It supervision of the provincial ought to be self-evident that WON petitioners governor. It also meant that have the said right is a LEGAL and not a resolution and ordinances of the political question. For WON laws passed by city council of Santiago will have to Congress comply with the requirements of the be reviewed by the Provincial Board of Isabela. In addition, Constitution, pose questions that this Court taxes that will be collected by the alone can decide. city will now have to be shared with the province. 3. The power to create, divide, merge abolish or substantially alter boundaries of local government unit Thus, the petitioners assailed the belongs to Congress. However, this power must also be in accord with the mandate of the constitutionality of such law on the Constitution. The issue depends on WON the reclassification falls within the ambit of “create, divide, ground that it was not submitted merge, abolish, or substantially alter” … A close analysis of the Constitutional provision for ratification of the people of Santiago City in a proper plebiscite. Sec 10 Art X: No province, city, municipality or bgy may be created, divded, merged, abolished or ts Respondents argue that RA 8528 boundary substantially altered except in accordance with the criteria established in the local govt code and need not be ratified in a plebiscite subject to approval by a majority of the votes cast ina plebiscite in the political units directly affected” because it merely RECLASSIFIED Santiago City from an independent … reveals that such provisions refers to a MATERIAL CHANGE in the political and economic rights of the component city to a component local govt units. It is precisely for this reason that the Constitution requires the approval of the people in city. It allegedly did not involve any ‘creation, division, merger, the political units directly affected. abolition or substantial alteration of boundaries of local govt units”. PETITION IS GRANTED. RA 8528 is declared unconstitutional and the writ of prohibition is issued commanding respondents to desist from implementing said law. They also argue that; the petitioners do not have locus standi, the court has no jurisdiction of the case, it being a political question, REQUISITES OF JUDICIAL REVIEW DAVID VS. ARROYO Requisites of Judicial Review The concept of judicial review as enunciated in Marbury v. Madison rests on the extraordinary simple foundation -The Constitution is the supreme law. It was ordained by the people, the ultimate source of all political authority. It confers limited powers on the national government. x x x If the government consciously or unconsciously oversteps these limitations there must be some authority competent to hold it in control, to thwart its unconstitutional attempt, and thus to vindicate and preserve inviolate the will of the people as expressed in the Constitution. This power the courts exercise. This is the beginning and the end of the theory of judicial review . 4 But the power of judicial review does not repose upon the courts a "self-starting capacity." Courts may exercise such power only when the following requisites are present: 1
first, there must be an actual case or controversy-- An actual case or controversy involves a conflict of legal right, an opposite legal
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claims susceptible of judicial resolution. It is "definite and concrete, touching the legal relations of parties having adverse legal interest;" a real and substantial controversy admitting of specific relief. second, petitioners have to raise a question of constitutionality; third, the constitutional question must be raised at the earliest opportunity; and fourth, the decision of the constitutional question must be necessary to the determination of the case itself. There is no question that the issues being raised affect the public’s interest, involving as they do the people’s basic right s to freedom of expression, of assembly and of the press. Moreover, the Court has the duty to formulate guiding and controlling constitutional precepts, doctrines or rules. It has the symbolic function of educating t he bench and the bar, and in the present petitions, the military and the police, on the extent of the protection given by constitutional guarantees.35 And lastly, r espondents’ contested ac tions are capable of repetition. Certainly, the petitions are subject to judicial review.
Mootness v. Ripeness A moot and academic case is one that ceases to present a justiciable controversy by virtue of supervening events, so that a declaration thereon would be of no practical use or value. Generally, courts decline jurisdiction over such case or dismiss it on ground of mootness. The Court holds that President Arroyo’s issuance of PP 1021 did not render the present petitions moot and academic. During the eight (8) days that PP 1017 was operative, the police officers, according to petitioners, committed illegal acts in implementing it. Are PP 1017 and G.O. No. 5 constitutional or valid? Do they justify these alleged illegal acts? These are the vital issues that must be resolved in the present petitions. It must be stressed that " an unconstitutional act is not a law, it confers no rights, it imposes no duties, it affords no protection; it is in legal contemplation, inoperative ." The "moot and academic" principle is not a magical formula that can automatically dissuade the courts in resolving a case. Courts will decide cases, otherwise moot and academic, if: first, there is a grave violation of the Constitution; second, the exceptional character of the situation and the paramount public interest is involved; third, when constitutional issue raised requires formulation of controlling principles to guide the bench, the bar, and the public; and fourth, the case is capable of repetition yet evading review. REQUISTES OF JUDICIAL REVIEW: ACTUAL CASE / CONTROVERSY: MOOTNESS VS. RIPENESS DAVID VS. ARROYO GONZALES Petitioner: Ramon Gonzales (in HAS THE ISSUE BECOME MOOT AND ACADEMIC? YES VS. NARVASA his capacity as citizen and taxpayer) An action is considered "moot" when it no longer presents a justiciable controversy because the issues involved Respondents: Andres Narvsa have become academic or dead. Under E.O. No. 43, the PCCR was instructed to complete its task on or before (Chairman of the Preparatory June 30, 1999. However, on February 19, 1999, the President issued Executive Order No. 70 (E.O. No. 70), Commission on Constitutional which extended the time frame for the completion of the commission's work, viz — Reforms), Ronaldo Zamora SECTION 6. Section 8 is hereby amended to read as follows: (Exec Sec), Commission on Audit, Robert Aventajado (Presidential Time Frame. The Commission shall commence its work on 01 January 1999 and complete the same on or before 31 December 1999. The Commission shall submit its report Consultant on Council of Economic and recommendations to the President within fifteen (15) working days from 31 Advisers) In this petition for prohibition and December 1999. mandamus filed on December 9, The PCCR submitted its recommendations to the President on December 20, 1999 and was dissolved by the President on the same day. It had likewise spent the funds allotted to Thus, it. the PCCR 1999, petitioner Ramon A.
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Gonzales, in his capacity as a citizen and taxpayer, assails the constitutionality of the creation of the Preparatory Commission on Constitutional Reform (PCCR) and of the positions of presidential consultants, advisers and assistants. He seeks to enjoin the PCCR and the presidential consultants, advisers and assistants from acting as such, and to enjoin Executive Secretary Ronaldo B. Zamora from enforcing their advice and recommendations. In addition, petitioner seeks to enjoin the Commission on Audit from passing in audit expenditures for the PCCR and the presidential consultants, advisers and assistants. Finally, petitioner prays for an order compelling respondent Zamora to furnish petitioner with information
has ceased to exist, having lost its raison d'etre. Subsequent events have overtaken the petition and the Court has nothing left to resolve.
Other issues to take note of: Petitioner was considered by the court as not have legal standing because he has not suffered nor is he in danger of suffering some actual or threatened injury as a result of the allegedly illegal conduct of govt. Petitioner was obliged and allowed to inspect the requested documents. But the court reminded him that in the final analysis, it is for the courts to determine, on a case to case basis, whether the matter at issue is of interest or importance, as it relates to or affects the public.
on certain matters.
(What is the PCCR? The Preparatory Commission on Constitutional Reform (PCCR) was created by President Estrada on November 26, 1998 by virtue of Executive Order No. 43 (E.O. No. 43) in order "to study and recommend proposed amendments and/or revisions to the 1987 Constitution, and the manner of implementing the same)
Petitioner disputes the constitutionality of the PCCR on two grounds. First, he contends that it is a public office which only the legislature can create by way of
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a law. Secondly, petitioner asserts that by creating such a body the President is intervening in a process from which he is totally excluded by the Constitution — the amendment of the fundamental charter. It is alleged by respondents that, with respect to the PCCR, this case has become moot and academic. REQUISITES FOR JUDICIAL REVIEW: ACTUAL CASE OR CONTOVERSY: STANDING OF A PARTY PASCUAL Pascual, the Provincial Governor of WHETHER PASCUAL HAD THE LEGAL CAPACITY TO ASSAIL THE VALIDITY OF THE VS. SECRETARY Rizal, instituted an action for APPROPRIATION? YES. declaratory relief with injunction LC: since public interest is involved in this case, the Provincial Governor of Rizal and the provincial fiscal who assailing RA 920 “An Act Appropriating represents him therein, "have the requisite personalities" to question the constitutionality of the disputed item of Funds for Public Works” "for the RA 920; that "the legislature is without power appropriate public revenues for anything but a public purpose", construction, reconstruction, repair, that the instructions and improvement of the feeder roads in question, if such roads where private property, extension and improvement" of Pasig would not be a public purpose; that, being subject to a condition: feeder road terminal; that, at the time of the passage and approval of said Act, upon the condition that the Government of the Republic of the Philippines will use the parcels of land hereby the feeder roads were "nothing but donated for street purposes only and for no other purposes whatsoever; projected and planned subdivision roads, not yet constructed, which "do which is onerous, the donation in question is a contract; that said donation or contract is "absolutely forbidden not connect any government property by the Constitution" and consequently "illegal", for Article 1409 of the Civil Code of the Philippines, declares in or any important premises to the main existence and void from the very beginning contracts "whose cause, objector purpose is contrary to law, morals highway"; that the Antonio Subdivision . . . or public policy"; that the legality of said donation may not be contested, however, by petitioner herein, (as well as the lands on which said because his "interest are not directly affected" thereby; and that, accordingly, the appropriation in question feeder roads were to be construed) "should be upheld" and the case dismissed. were private properties of Jose C. Zulueta, who, at the time of the SC: As regards the legal feasibility of appropriating public funds for a public purpose, the principle according to passage and approval of said Act, was a Ruling Case Law, is this: member of the Senate of the It is a general rule that the legislature is without power to appropriate public revenue for anything but a public Philippines. purpose. It is the essential character of the direct object of the expenditure which must determine its validity as justifying a tax, and not the magnitude of the interest to be affected nor the degree to which the general Zulueta offered to donate said advantage of the community, and thus the public welfare, may be ultimately benefited by their promotion. projected feeder roads; that the offer Incidental to the public or to the state, which results from the promotion of private interest and was accepted by the council, subject to the prosperity of private enterprises or business, does not justify their aid by the use public the condition "that the donor would money. submit a plan of the said roads and agree to change the names of two of Referring to the P85,000.00 appropriation for the projected feeder roads in question, the legality thereof them"; that no deed of donation in depended upon whether said roads were public or private property when the bill, which, latter on, became RA favor of the municipality of Pasig was, 920, was passed by Congress, or, when said bill was approved by the President and the disbursement of said however, executed. sum became effective. Inasmuch as the land on which the projected feeder roads were to be constructed
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Inasmuch as the projected feeder roads in question were private property at the time of the passage and approval of RA 920, the appropriation made, for the construction, reconstruction, repair, extension and improvement of said projected feeder roads, was illegal and, therefore, void ab initio"; that said appropriation was made by Congress because its members were made to believe that the projected feeder roads in question were "public roads and not private streets of a private subdivision"'; that, "in order to give a semblance of legality, Zulueta executed while he was a member of the Senate of the Philippines, an alleged deed of donation in favor of the Government which was accepted by the then Executive Secretary; that being subject to an onerous condition, said donation partook of the nature of a contract;
belonged then to Zulueta, the result is that said appropriation sought a private purpose, and hence, was null and void. The validity of a statute may be contested only by one who will sustain a direct injury in consequence of its enforcement. Yet, there are many decisions nullifying, at the instance of taxpayers, laws providing for the disbursement of public funds, upon the theory that "the expenditure of public funds by an officer of the State for the purpose of administering an unconstitutional act constitutes a misapplication of such funds," which may be enjoined at the request of a taxpayer. The general ruleis that not only persons individually affected , but also [exception:]taxpayers, have sufficient interest in preventing the illegal expenditure of moneys raised by taxation and may therefore question the constitutionality of statutes requiring expenditure of public moneys. Pascual is not merely a taxpayer. The Province of Rizal, which he represents officially as its Provincial Governor, is our most populated political subdivision,and, the taxpayers therein bear a substantial portion of the burden of taxation, in the Philippines.
that, such, said donation violated the provision of our fundamental law prohibiting members of Congress from being directly or indirectly financially interested in any contract with the Government, and, hence, is unconstitutional, as well as null and void ab initio.
BUGNAY CONSTRUCTION LARON
Respondents moved to dismiss the petition on the ground that Pascual had no legal capacity to sue. The City of Dagupan awarded a lease contract in favor of respondent P and M Agro-Development Corporation (P and M) over a city lot called the Magsaysay Market Area. By reason of P and M's failure to comply with the conditions of the contract, the City filed an action to rescind the lease contract.
WHETHER RAVANZO HAD THE LEGAL PERSONALITY TO ASSAIL THE CONTRACT OF LEASE? NO.
THE LEASE CONTRACT ENTERED INTO BETWEEN PETITIONER AND THE CITY SHOWS THAT NO PUBLIC FUNDS HAVE BEEN OR WILL BE USED IN THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE MARKET BUILDING-- The terms of the contract reveal that petitioner shall finance the project, the capital investment to be recovered from the rental fees due from the stallholders. There is regrettable vacuity in respondent Ravanzo's insistence that he is suing for "Injunction with Prayer for Preliminary Injunction and Temporary Restraining Order" whereas P and M's action is for "Injunction with Prayer
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This case was decided in favor of the City on the basis of a "Joint Manifestation" of both parties. Upon motion of the City, a writ of execution was issued ordering the immediate delivery of the possession of the premises to the movant City. Thereafter P and M filed a MR, through counsel, private respondent Ravanzo. However, it was only when the incident was resolved by the court which set aside the decision previously rendered on the ground that the joint manifestation on which it was based is not in the nature of a compromise agreement for the following reasons: (1) the joint manifestation was not signed by the party plaintiff; (2) the said pleading did not pray that a decision be rendered based thereon; (3) if the parties really intended it to be a compromise agreement, they should have entitled it as such; (4) the parties agreed that the joint manifestation is without prejudice to the continuance of the case, which is contrary to the very nature of a compromise agreement in that it terminates the case upon the court's approval thereof ; (5) the joint manifestation did not specify the "proposed terms and conditions" offered by P and M, hence it cannot be a valid basis for a judgment on compromise which requires that the terms and conditions be spelled out clearly in order that the court may determine whether they are in accordance with law, public policy, public order, and good customs; and (6) the alleged proposals are subject to the review of the proper government
for Preliminary Injunction, Annulment of Contract and Temporary Restraining Order" which actions, so he claims, seek distinct and different reliefs. Indeed, it is empty verbiage to deny that in Case No. D -8696 Ravanzo is actually asking for the declaration of the nullity of the lease contract executed by the City and petitioner, which is also what is prayed for by P and M in Case No. D-8664. Undeniably, whatever judgment may be rendered in Case No. D-8664 (P&M) will necessarily constitute res judicata in Case No. D-8696 (Ravanzo). And, it is too entrenched a rule brooking no dissent that a party cannot, by varying the form of action or adopting a different method of presenting his case, escape theation of the principle that one and the same cause of action shall not be twice litigated. As to the taxpayer’s suit to confer standing:only when the act complained of directly involves an illegal disbursement of public funds raised by taxation win the taxpayer's suit be allowed. The essence of a taxpayer's right to institute such an action hinges on the existence of that requisite pecuniary or monetary interest. Accordingly, there was that absence of the requisite pecuniary or monetary interest. Objections to a taxpayer's suit for lack of sufficient personality standing or interest are procedural matters. Considering the importance to the public of a suit assailing the constitutionality of a tax law, and in keeping with the Court's duty, specially explicated in the 1987 Constitution, to determine whether or not the other branches of the Government have kept themselves within the limits of the Constitution and the laws and that they have not abused the discretion given to them, the Supreme Court may brush aside technicalities of procedure and take cognizance of the suit. However, for the above rule to apply, it is exigent that the taxpayer-plaintiff sufficiently show that he would be benefited or injured by the judgment or entitled to the avails of the suit as a real p arty in interest. Before he can invoke the power of judicial review, he must specifically prove that he has sufficient interest in preventing the illegal expenditure of money raised by taxation and that he will sustain a direct injury as a result of the enforcement of the questioned statute or contract. It is not sufficient that he has merely a general interest common to an members of the public.
No disbursement of public funds, legal or otherwise, being involved in the challenged transaction, the locus stand claimed by Ravanzo is non-existent.
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agencies, which is not allowed in a judgment on compromise wherein only the court may determine the legality thereof. The City's MR was denied. During the pendency of the resolution on the MR filed by P and M, the Sangguniang Panlungsod of the City of Dagupan adopted Resolution "Authorizing the City Mayor to Enter Into a Contract of Lease with Bugnay Construction over that Parcel of Lot owned by the City of Dagupan. Pursuant to said resolution, Bugnay entered into a contract of lease with the City over the Magsaysay Market Area, for a period of twenty (20) years to begin from the date when the stallholders in the area aforementioned shall be relocated, with the obligation to turn over, without demand, the entire market building and all attached appurtenances to the lessor City upon the expiration of the lease period. Upon the fulfillment of the condition for the commencement of the term of the lease, i.e., the relocation of the stallholders in the area, petitioner immediately started its construction work. P and M filed an action for "Injunction with Prayer for Preliminary Injunction and Temporary Restraining Order, Annulment of Contract, and Damages" against the City. In its complaint, P and M averred that inasmuch as Civil Case was still pending, its lease contract with the City continued to exist, hence the lease contract executed by the City with Bugnay is allegedly null and void ab initio and an ultra vires act. P and M consequently prayed that petitioner be
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enjoined from continuing with the construction of the market building. Private respondent Ravanzo, Jr., professedly in his capacity as a resident and taxpayer of Dagupan City, filed with RTC in Dagupan City the present action for "Injunction with Preliminary Injunction and Temporary Restraining Order and Damages" against the City of Dagupan. As party plaintiff and on the basis of the very same facts alleged in Civil Case of P and M, Ravanzo attacked the legality of the contract of lease entered into between the City and Bugnay alleging thirty (30) reasons in his complaint why the contract should be declared null and void The City and its Acting Mayor filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds that plaintiff Ravanzo is not the real party in interest; the complaint states no cause of action; there is another action pending between the same parties involving the same subject matter, issues, purpose and prayer; and, in effect, there was forum-shopping.
types of standing: citizen Tatad vs. Garcia
Francisco S. Tatad, John H. Osmena and Rodolfo G. Biazon are members of the Philippine Senate and are suing in their capacities as
Whether Tatad et al has standing to file the instant suit? YES.
Senators and as taxpayers. Respondent Jesus B. Garcia, Jr. is the The prevailing doctrines in taxpayer's suits are to allow taxpayers to question contracts entered incumbent Secretary of the Department of Transportation and into by the national government or government-owned or controlled corporations allegedly in Communications (DOTC), while private respondent EDSA LRT contravention of the law (Kilosbayan, Inc. v. Guingona) and to disallow the same when only Corporation, Ltd. is a private corporation organized under the laws of
municipal contracts are involved (Bugnay Construction and Development Corporation v. Laron).
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For as long as the ruling in Kilosbayan on locus standi is not reversed, we have no choice but to
Petitioners are assailing the grant of ownership of EDSA LRT III to EDSA
follow it and uphold the legal standing of petitioners as taxpayers to institute the present action.
LRT Corporation, a foreign corporation. The Build-Lease-Transfer scheme for the construction of the railway was also assailed as illegal. OSG claimed that Tatad et al are not the real parties-in-interest and have no legal standing to institute the present petition types of standing: associational IBP vs. Zamora
In view of the alarming increase in violent crimes in Metro Manila, the Whether the Integrated Bar of the Philippines has legal standing to petition for the President, in a verbal directive, ordered the PNP and the Marines to conduct joint visibility patrols for the purpose of crime prevention and
annulment of the LOI and to assail the constitutionality of the declaration of deployment of the Philippine Marines? NO.
suppression. The Secretary of National Defense, the Chief of Staff of In the case at bar, the IBP primarily anchors its standing on its alleged responsibility to uphold and the Secretary of the I nterior and Local Government were tasked to the rule of law and the Constitution. Apart from this declaration, however, the IBP asserts no execute and implement the said order. In compliance with the other basis in support of its locus standi. The mere invocation by the IBP of its duty to preserve presidential mandate, the PNP Chief, through Police Chief the rule of law and nothing more, while undoubtedly true, is not sufficient to clothe it with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (the “AFP”), the Chief of the PNP
Superintendent Edgar B. Aglipay, formulated Letter of Instruction
standing in this case. This is too general an interest which is shared by other groups and the
02/2000 (the “LOI”) which detailed the manner by which the joint
whole citizenry. Based on the standards, the IBP has failed to present a specific and substantial
visibility patrols, called Task ForceTu lu n g an, would be conducted. interest in the resolution of the case. Its fundamental purpose which, under Section 2, Rule 139Task Force Tulungan was placed under the leadership of the Police A of the Rules of Court, is to elevate the standards of the law profession and to improve the administration of justice is alien to, and cannot be affected by the deployment of the Marines. Chief of Metro Manila. It should also be noted that the interest of the National President of the IBP who signed the Subsequently, the President confirmed his previous directive on the
petition, is his alone, absent a formal board resolution authorizing him to file the present
deployment of the Marines in a Memorandum, dated 24 January 2000, action. To be sure, members of the BAR, those in the judiciary included, have varying opinions addressed to the Chief of Staff of the AFP and the PNP Chief. In the Memorandum, the President expressed his desire to improve the
on the issue.
peace and order situation in Metro Manila through a more effective
Moreover, the IBP, assuming that it has duly authorized the National President to file the
crime prevention program including increased police patrols. The petition, has not shown any specific injury which it has suffered or may suffer by virtue of the President further stated that to heighten police visibility in the questioned governmental act. Indeed, none of its members, whom the IBP purportedly metropolis, augmentation from the AFP is necessary. Invoking his represents, has sustained any form of injury as a result of the operation of the joint visibility powers as Commander-in-Chief under Section 18, Article VII of the Constitution, the President directed the AFP Chief of Staff and PNP
patrols. Neither is it alleged that any of its members has been arrested or that their civil liberties have been violated by the deployment of the Marines. What the IBP projects as
Chief to coordinate with each other for the proper deployment and
injurious is the supposed “militarization” of law enforcement which might threaten Philippine
utilization of the Marines to assist the PNP in preventing or suppressing democratic institutions and may cause more harm than good in the long run. Not only is the criminal or lawless violence. Finally, the President declared that the presumed “injury” not personal in character, it is likewise too vague, highly speculative and uncertain to satisfy the requirement of standing. Since petitioner has not successfully
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services of the Marines in the anti-crime campaign are merely
established a direct and personal injury as a consequence of the questioned act, it does not
temporary in nature and for a reasonable period only, until such time possess the personality to assail the validity of the deployment of the Marines. This Court, when the situation shall have improved. however, does not categorically rule that the IBP has absolutely no standing to raise constitutional issues now or in the future. The IBP must, byway of allegations and proof, satisfy The selected areas of deployment under the LOI are: Monumento this Court that it has sufficient stake to obtain judicial resolution of the controversy. Circle, North Edsa (SM City), Araneta Shopping Center, Greenhills, SM Megamall, Makati Commercial Center, LRT/MRT Stations and the NAIA and Domestic Airport.
(Having stated the foregoing, it must be emphasized that this Court has the discretion to take cognizance of a suit which does not satisfy the requirement of legal standing when paramount interest is involved. In not a few cases, the Court has adopted a liberal attitude on the locus
The Integrated Bar of the Philippines (the “IBP”) filed the instant
standi of a petitioner where the petitioner is able to craft an issue of transcendental significance to the people Thus, when the issues raised are of paramount importance to the public, the Philippine Marines, null and void and unconstitutional. Asserting itself Court may brush aside technicalities of procedure. In this case, a reading of the petition shows as the official organization of Filipino lawyers tasked with the bounden that the IBP has advanced constitutional issues which deserve the attention of this Court in duty to uphold the rule of law and the Constitution, the IBP questions view of their seriousness, novelty and weight as precedents. Moreover, because peace and the validity of the deployment and utilization of the Marines to assist order are under constant threat and lawless violence occurs in increasing tempo, undoubtedly petition to annul LOI 02/2000 and to declare the deployment of the
the PNP in law enforcement.
aggravated by the Mindanao insurgency problem, the legal controversy raised in the petition almost certainly will not go away. It will stare us in the face again. It therefore, behooves the Court to relax the rules on standing and to resolve the issue now, rather than later.)
types of standing: taxpayers ITF vs. COMELEC On January 24, 2003, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo issued
Whether the petitioners’ legal standing should be recognizedpheld? and u YES.
Executive Order No. 172, which allocated the sum of P2.5 billion to fund the AES for the May 10, 2004 elections. Upon the request of Comelec, she authorized the release of anadditional P500 million.
Our nation’s political and economic future virtually hangs in the balance, pending the outcome
of the 2004 elections. Hence, there can be no serious doubt that the subject matter of this case is "a matter of public concern and imbued with public interest". In other words, it is of
On January 28, 2003, the Commission issued an "Invitation to Apply for Eligibility and to Bid".
"paramount public interest" and "transcendental importance." This fact alone would justify relaxing the rule on legal standing, following the liberal policy of this Court whenever a case
involves "an issue of overarching significance to our society." Petitioners’ legal standing should The instant suit is a Petition for Certiorari under Rule 65 seeking to therefore be recognized and upheld. declare null and void Resolution No. 6074 of the Commission on Elections (Comelec), which awarded Phase II of the Modernization Project of the Commission to Mega Pacific Consortium (MPC).
Moreover, this Court has held that taxpayers are allowed to sue when there is a claim of "illegal disbursement of public funds," or if public money is being "deflected to any improper purpose";
or when petitioners seek to restrain respondent from "wasting public funds through the Out of the 57 bidders, the BAC found MPC and the Total Information enforcement of an invalid or unconstitutional law." In the instant case, individual petitioners, Management Corporation (TIMC) eligible. For technical evaluation, suing as taxpayers, assert a material interest in seeing to it that public funds are properly and
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they were referred to the BAC’s Technical Working Group (TWG) and
lawfully used. In the Petition, they claim that the bidding was defective, the winning bidder not
the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).
a qualified entity, and the award of the Contract contrary to law and regulation. Accordingly, they seek to restrain respondents from implementing the Contract and, necessarily, from
In its Report on the Evaluation of the Technical Proposals on Phase II,
making any unwarranted expenditure of public funds pursuant thereto. Thus, we hold that DOST said that both MPC and TIMC had obtained a number of failed petitioners possess locus standi. marks in the technical evaluation. Notwithstanding these failures, Comelec en banc, on April 15, 2003, promulgated Resolution No. 6074 awarding the project to MPC. The Commission publicized this Resolution and the award of the project to MPC on May 16, 2003.
Jumamil vs. Café In 1989, petitioner Jumamil filed before the Regional Trial Court (RTC)
Whether Jumamil has the legal standing to bring the petition for declaratory relief?
of Panabo, Davao del Norte a petition for declaratory relief with prayer for preliminary injunction and writ of restraining order against public Legal standing or locus standi is a party’s personal and substantial interest in a case such that he respondents Mayor Jose J. Cafe and the members of the Sangguniang has sustained or will sustain direct injury as a result of the governmental act being challenged. It Bayan of Panabo, Davao del Norte. He questioned the constitutionality calls for more than just a generalized grievance. The term “interest” means a material interest, of a Municipal Resolution enacting an Appropriation Ordinance fr the an interest in issue affected by the decree, as distinguished from mere interest in the question construction of stalls around a proposed terminal fronting the Panabo involved, or a mere incidental interest. Unless a person’s constitutional rights are adversely Public Market which was destroyed by fire.
affected by the statute or ordinance, he has no legal standing. Jumamil brought the petition in
Petitioner prays for the reversal of the decision of the Court of Appeals
his capacity as taxpayer of the Municipality of Panabo, Davao del Norte and not in his personal capacity. He was questioning the official acts of the the mayor and the members of the
(CA) and a declaration of the unconstitutionality, illegality and nullity of Sanggunian in passing the ordinances and entering into the lease contracts with private the questioned resolutions/ordinances and lease contracts entered respondents. A taxpayer need not be a party to the contract to challenge its validity. Parties into by the public and private respondents
suing as taxpayers must specifically prove sufficient interest in preventing the illegal expenditure of money raised by taxation. The expenditure of public funds by an officer of the
From the adverse decision, (i.e. the petitioners were not parties in the
State for the purpose of executing an unconstitutional act constitutes a misapplication of such
agreement for the award of the market stalls by the public respondents, in the public market of Panabo, Davao, and since the
funds. The resolutions being assailed were appropriations ordinances. Jumamil alleged that these ordinances were “passed for the business, occupation, enjoyment and benefit of private
petitioners were not parties to the award of the market stalls and
respondents” (that is, allegedly for the private benefit of respondents) because even before
whose rights are never affected by merely stating that they are taxpayers, they have no legal interest in the controversy and they
they were passed, Mayor Cafe and private respondents had already entered into lease
are not, therefore, entitled to bring an action for declaratory relief) petitioner again appealed to the Court of Appeals.
contracts for the construction and award of the market stalls. Private respondents admitted they deposited P40,000 each with the municipal treasurer, which amounts were made available to the municipality during the construction of the stalls. The deposits, however, were needed to ensure the speedy completion of the stalls after the public market was gutted by a series of fires. Thus, the award of the stalls was necessarily limited only to those who advanced their personal funds for their construction. Jumamil did not seasonably allege his interest in
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preventing the illegal expenditure of public funds or the specific injury to him as a result of the enforcement of the questioned resolutions and contracts. It was only in the “Remark to Comment” he filed in the Supreme Court did he first assert that “he (was) willing to engage in
business and (was) interested to occupy a market stall.” Such claim was obviously an afterthought. Whether the rule on locus standi should be relaxed? Objections to a taxpayer's suit for lack of sufficient personality, standing or interest are procedural matters. Considering the importance to the public of a suit assailing the constitutionality of a tax law, and in keeping with the Court's duty, specially explicated in the 1987 Constitution, to determine whether or not the other branches of the Government have kept themselves within the limits of the Constitution and the laws and that they have not abused the discretion given to them, the Supreme Court may brush aside technicalities of procedure and take cognizance of the suit. There being no doctrinal definition of transcendental importance, the following determinants formulated by former Supreme Court Justice Florentino P. Feliciano are instructive: (1) the character of the funds or other assets involved in the case; (2) the presence of a clear case of disregard of a constitutional or statutory prohibition by the public respondent agency or instrumentality of the government; and (3) the lack of any other party with a more direct and specific interest in raising the questions being raised. But, even if the Court disregards Jumamil’s lack of legal standing, this petition must still fail. The subject resolutions/ordinances appropriated a total of P2,280,000 for the construction of the public market stalls. Jumamil alleged that these ordinances were discriminatory because, even prior to their enactment, a decision had already been made to award the market stalls to the private respondents who deposited P40,000 each and who were either friends or relatives of the mayor or members of the Sanggunian. Jumamil asserted that “there (was) no publication or invitation
to the public that this contract (was) available to all who (were) interested to own a stall and (were) willing to deposit P40,000.” Respondents, however, counter that the “public respondents’ act of entering into this agreement was authorized by the Sangguniang Bayan of Panabo per Resolution 180 dated 10 October 1988” and that “all the people interested were invited to participate in investing their savings.” Jumamil failed to prove the subject ordinances
and agreements to be discriminatory. Considering that he was asking the Court to nullify the acts of the local political department of Panabo, Davao del Norte, he should have clearly established that such ordinances operated unfairly against those who were not notified and who were thus not given the opportunity to make their deposits. His unsubstantiated allegation that the public was not notified did not suffice. Furthermore, there was the time-honored
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presumption of regularity of official duty, absent any showing to the contrary.
types of standing: legislative PHILCONSA Enriquez
vs. House Bill No. 10900, the General Appropriation Bill of 1994 (GAB of
1994), was passed and approved by both houses of Congress on December 17, 1993. As passed, it imposed conditions and limitations
Whether the petitioners have standing to sue? YES. When issues of constitutionality are raised, the Court can exercise its power of judicial review
on certain items of appropriations in the proposed budget previously only if the following requisites are compresent: (1) the existence of an actual and appropriate submitted by the President. It also authorized members of Congress to case; (2) a personal and substantial interest of the party raising the constitutional question; (3) propose and identify projects in the "pork barrels" allotted to them and the exercise of judicial review is pleaded at the earliest opportunity; and (4) the constitutional question is the lis mota of the case. to realign their respective operating budgets. On December 30, 1993, the President signed the bill into law. On the same day, the President delivered his Presidential Veto Message, specifying the provisions of the bill he vetoed and on which he imposed certain conditions. No step was taken in either House of Congress to override the vetoes. The Philippine Constitution Association, Exequiel B. Garcia and Ramon A. Gonzales as taxpayers, prayed for a writ of prohibition to declare as
The legal standing of the Senate, as an institution, was recognized inGonzales v. Macaraig . We rule that a member of the Senate, and of the House of Representatives for that matter, has the legal standing to question the validity of a presidential veto or a condition imposed on an item in an appropriation bill. Where the veto is claimed to have been made without or in excess of the authority vested on the President by the Constitution, the issue of an impermissible intrusion of the Executive into
the domain of the Legislature arises. To the extent the power of Congress are impaired, so is the power of each member thereof, since his office confers a right to participate in the exercise Development Fund, the special provision in Article I entitled of the powers of that institution. An act of the Executive which injures the institution of Realignment of Allocation for Operational Expenses, and Article XLVIII Congress causes a derivative but nonetheless substantial injury, which can be questioned by a on the Appropriation for Debt Service or the amount appropriated unconstitutional and void: (a) Article XLI on the Countrywide
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under said Article XLVIII in excess of the P37.9 Billion allocated for the
member of Congress. In such a case, any member of Congress can have a resort to the courts.
Department of Education, Culture and Sports; and (b) the veto of the This is, then, the clearest case of the Senate as a whole or individual Senators as such having a President of the Special Provision of Article XLVIII of the GAA of 1994. substantial interest in the question at issue. It could likewise be said that there was the requisite injury to their rights as Senators. It would then be futile to raise anylocus standi issue. Any intrusion into the domain appertaining to the Senate is to be resisted. Similarly, if the situation were reversed, and it is the Executive Branch that could allege a transgression, its officials could likewise file the corresponding action. What cannot be denied is that a Senator has standing to maintain inviolate the prerogatives, powers and privileges vested by the Constitution in his office. It is true that the Constitution provides a mechanism for overriding a veto (Art. VI, Sec. 27 ). Said remedy, however, is available only when the presidential veto is based on policy or political considerations but not when the veto is claimed to be ultra vires. In the latter case, it becomes the duty of the Court to draw the dividing line where the exercise of executive power ends and the bounds of legislative jurisdiction begin. types of standing: governmental People vs. Vera
CFI of Manila on 8 January 1934, rendered a judgment of conviction
Whether the People of the Philippines, through the Solicitor General and Fiscal of the City of
sentencing Cu Unjieng to indeterminate penalty ranging from 4 years and 2 months of prision correccional to 8 years of prision mayor, to pay
Manila, is a proper party in the present case? YES.
the costs and with reservation of civil action to the offended party, HSBC.
The unchallenged rule is that the person who impugns the validity of a statute must have a personal and substantial interest in the case such that he has sustained, or will sustained, direct injury as a result of its enforcement. It goes without saying that if Act 4221 really violates the
Cu Unjieng filed a motion for reconsideration and four successive motions for new trial which were denied. Thereafter, Unjieng filed an
constitution, the People of the Philippines, in whose name the present action is brought, has a substantial interest in having it set aside. Of greater import than the damage caused by the
application for probation before the trial court, under the provisions of
illegal expenditure of public funds is the mortal wound inflicted upon the fundamental law by
Act 4221 of the defunct Philippine Legislature. Cu Unjieng states in his
the enforcement of an invalid statute. Hence, the well-settled rule that the state can challenge
petition, inter alia, that he is innocent of the crime of which he was the validity of its own laws. convicted, that he has no criminal record and that he would observe good conduct in the future. The Fiscal of the City of Manila filed an opposition to the granting of probation to Cu Unjieng. The private prosecution also filed an opposition alleging, among other things, that Act 4221, assuming that it has not been repealed by section 2 of Article XV of the Constitution, is nevertheless violative of section 1, subsection (1), Article III of the
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Constitution guaranteeing equal protection of the laws for the reason that its applicability is not uniform throughout the Islands and because section 11 of the said Act endows the provincial boards with the power to make said law effective or otherwise in their respective or otherwise in their respective provinces. The private prosecution also filed a supplementary opposition elaborating on the alleged unconstitutionality on Act 4221, as an undue delegation of legislative power to the provincial boards of several provinces (sec. 1, Art. VI, Constitution). constitutionality is the very lis mota of the case Arceta Mangrobang
vs. For resolution are two consolidated petitions under Rule 65 of the
Whether the constitutionality of BP 22 can be questioned on the ground that it is the very lis
Rules of Court, for certiorari, prohibition and mandamus, with prayers mota presented in the case? NO. for a temporary restraining order. Both assail the constitutionality of When the issue of unconstitutionality of a legislative act is raised, it is the established doctrine the Bouncing Checks Law, also known as Batas Pambansa Bilang 22. Petitioner Ofelia V. Arceta prays that the Metropolitan Trial Court
that the Court may exercise its power of judicial review only if the following requisites are present: (1) an actual and appropriate case and controversy exists; (2) a personal and
(MeTC) of Navotas, Metro Manila, Branch 54, cease and desist from
substantial interest of the party raising the constitutional question; (3) the exercise of judicial
hearing Criminal Case No. 1599-CR for violation of B.P. Blg. 22, and
review is pleaded at the earliest opportunity; and (4) the constitutional question raised is the
then dismiss the case against her.
very lis mota of the case. Only when these requisites are satisfied may the Court assume jurisdiction over a question of unconstitutionality or invalidity of an act of Congress. With due regard to counsel’s spirited advocacy in both cases, we are unable to agree that the abovecited
requisites have been adequately met. Nor do we find the constitutional question herein raised to be the verylis mota presented in the controversy below. Every law has in its favor the presumption of constitutionality, and to justify its nullification, there must be a clear and unequivocal breach of the Constitution, and not one that is doubtful, speculative or argumentative. We have examined the contentions of the petitioners carefully; but they still have to persuade us that B.P. Blg. 22 by itself or in its implementation transgressed a provision of the Constitution. Even the thesis of petitioner that the present economic and financial crisis should be a basis to declare the Bouncing Checks Law constitutionally infirm deserves but scant consideration. As we stressed inLozano, it is precisely during trying times that there exists a most compelling reason to strengthen faith and confidence in the financial system and any practice tending to destroy confidence in checks as currency substitutes should be deterred, to prevent havoc in the trading and financial communities. Further, while indeed the metropolitan trial courts may be burdened immensely
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by bouncing checks cases now, that fact is immaterial to the alleged invalidity of the law being assailed. effect of declaration of unconstitutionality of a law Norton
vs. This suit was brought to enforce payment of twenty-nine bonds for
$1,000 each issued by the Board of Commissioners of Shelby County in payment of a subscription by the county to stock in the Mississippi
Whether the Board of Commissioners had authority to perform the function of the County
River Railroad Company.
The adjudication by the Supreme Court of Tennessee that the constitution did not permit the
The Board of Commissioners was constituted by an Act of the
appointment of commissioners to take the place of the justices of the peace for the county, and perform the duties of the county court, stands unimpaired, and as such is binding upon us.
Tennessee Legislature whereby the Board was authorized to perform Upon the construction of the constitution and laws of a state, this Court, as a general rule, the functions of the County Court, in particular to subscribe to the follows the decisions of her highest court, unless they conflict with or impair the efficacy of capital stock of the Mississippi River Ra ilroad Company.
some principle of the federal Constitution, or of a federal statute, or a rule of commercial or
This act was subsequently held by the Supreme Court of Tennessee to
general law. In these cases no principle of the federal Constitution, or of any federal law, is invaded, and no rule of general or commercial law is disregarded. The determination made
be unconstitutional and invalid, and the board created by it to have had no legal existence. The board, however, before it was so held had
relates to the existence of an inferior tribunal of the state , and that depending upon the constitutional power of the legislature of the state to create it and supersede a preexisting organized and had performed the functions of the County Court until institution. November, 1869, and, among other things, had subscribed in the name of the county to stock of the Mississippi River Railroad Company and had issued bonds in payment therefor, of which bonds those in suit
It would lead to great confusion and disorder if a state tribunal, adjudged by the state supreme court to be an unauthorized and illegal body, should be held by the federal courts, disregarding
the decision of the state court, to be an authorized and legal body, and thus make the claims and rights of suitors depend, in many instances, not upon settled law, but upon the contingency
The ruling of the Supreme Court of Tennessee came on account of a
of litigation respecting them being before a state or a federal court. new constitution which came into force in Tennessee, which contained the following provisions: It follows that in the disposition of the case before us, we must hold that there was no lawful authority in the board to make the subscription to the Mississippi River Railroad Company, and "But the credit of no county, city, or town shall be given or loaned to or in aid of any person, company, association or corporation, exceptupon
to issue the bonds of which those in suit are a part.
an election to be first held by the qualified voters of such county, city,
While acts of a de facto incumbent of an office lawfully created by law and existing are often
or town, and the assent of three-fourths of the votes cast at said
held to be binding from reasons of public policy, the acts of a person assuming to fill and
election, nor shall any county, city, or town become a stockholder with others in any company, association, or corporation exceptupon a like
perform the duties of an office which does not exist de jure can have no validity whatever in law.
election and the assent of a like majority." " A large part of the payments of principal and interest above referred
An unconstitutional act is not a law; it confers no rights; it imposes no duties; it affords no protection; it creates no office; it is in legal contemplation as inoperative as though it had
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to was made after this constitution came into force.
never been passed.
The court below ordered a verdict for the county, and from the
The action of a minority of the justices of the peace of the County Court of Shelby County,
judgment entered on such verdict this writ of error was taken.
Tennessee, prior to May 5, 1870, did not operate as a ratification by the county court of the previously invalid subscription of the county to stock in the Mississippi River Railroad Company, and on and after that day, on which the new Constitution of Tennessee took effect, no ratification could be made without previous assent of three-fourths of the voters of the county. "An officer de facto is one whose acts, though not those of a lawful officer, the law, upon principles of policy and justice, will hold valid, so far as they involve the interests of the public and third persons, where the duties of the office ar e exercised:" First. Without a known appointment or election, but under such circumstances of reputation or acquiescence as were calculated to induce people, without inquiry, to submit to or invoke his action, supposing him to be the officer he assumed to be. Second. Under color of a known and valid appointment or election, but where the officer had failed to conform to some precedent, requirement, or condition, as to take an oath, give a bond, or the like. Third. Under color of a known election or appointment, void because the officer was not eligible, or because there was a want of power in the electing or appointing body, or by reason of some defect or irregularity in its exercise, such ineligibility, want of power, or defect being unknown to the public. Fourth. Under color of an election or an appointment by or pursuant to a public unconstitutional law, before the same is adjudged to be such. Of the great number of cases cited by the Chief Justice, none recognizes such a thing as a de facto office, or speaks of a person as a de facto officer, except when he is the incumbent of a de jure office.
In view of the new Constitution of Tennessee, the county court, as thus seen, was shorn of any power to order a subscription to stock of any railroad company without the previous assent of three-fourths of the voters of the county cast at an election held by its qualified voters, and of course it could not afterwards, without such assent, give validity to a subscription previously made by the commissioners. Sheppard
vs. This bill was filed in the circuit court of the United States for the
Whether Sheppard et al (the owners of the land) can contest the assessment of the amount
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southern district of Ohio, against Barron, as the treasurer of the county
payable for the cost of the improvement of their property? NO.
of Franklin, in the state of Ohio, to enjoin him from taking any proceedings towards the collection of the balance of an assessment for
Both parties in this case seem to agree that the statute of 1890, under which these proceedings
a local improvement upon land belonging to the appellants near the were taken, is void, as in violation of the state Constitution. As authority for that proposition city of Columbus, in the state of Ohio, because the assessment to pay the case of Hixson v. Burson, is cited. The case holds that a statute of a nature similar to the one for the improvement as provided for in the act was to be made by the under consideration violated the provision of the Ohio Constitution, because, while its subjectfoot front, and not in proportion to the special benefit which might result from the improvement to the property assessed.
matter was general, its operation and effect were local, thus violating the provisions of 26 of article 2 of the Constitution of that state, which provides that 'All laws of a general nature shall have a uniform operation throughout the state.' The act under consideration in the case at bar
The bill was dismissed by the circuit court, and from the judgment of seems to come within the principle of the a bove case. dismissal the plaintiffs have appealed directly to this court, because the law of Ohio referred to in the bill is claimed to be in contravention of In this case the manner of payment was, as provided for in the act, by an assessment upon the land by the foot front. The money thus collected would form a fund to be used to pay the bonds the Federal Constitution. The srcinal plaintiffs were partners doing business under the name of
which were to be issued in accordance with the act by the county commissioners, acting for the county. The county thus became the debtor for a debt which was incurred entirely for the
the Alum Creek Ice Company, and as such were the owners of the land benefit, and at the request, of the owners of the land. Under such facts the county has the right described in the bill
to look at the assessment upon the land as the fund out of which to pay the bonds. In this view the constant and frequent promises and representations made by the plaintiffs after the work Upon the trial it appeared that the plaintiffs and others were separate was embarked upon are material evidence of the implied contract to pay for the work, arising owners of distinct portions of a tract of land adjoining the city of from the request for its performance. It is, therefore, upon these facts, immaterial that the law Columbus, Ohio, and bounded by the Columbus and Granville turnpike under which the proceedings were conducted was unconstitutional, because the work was road, which was a public highway leading to and from the city of done at the special request of the owners, under the provisions of the act, and upon a contract, Columbus. The tract had a frontage on the road of 9,615.38 feet, of both implied and in substance expressed, that the bonds would be paid, and the assessment to which the plaintiffs owned 1,111 feet. be imposed for the raising of a fund to pay them would be legal and proper. On March 26, 1890, an act was passed by the Ohio legislature which Although the landowners have been greatly disappointed in the results of the improvement, authorized the county commissioners in counties in which there were and the affair has proved somewhat disastrous, yet they have obtained just such an situate cities of the first grade of the second class to improve roads improvement as they asked for and expected, and they are the ones to bear the extending from such cities, and other roads and streets in certain disappointment and loss. cases. The act provided for an assessment by the foot front on the adjoining land in order to pay the cost of the improvement.
It is true this action is not between the bondholders and the owners of the land. The
Immediately upon the passage of the act, and on or about March 31, representations and agreement of the landowners were, however, made for the purpose of 1890, the owners of the tract, including the plaintiffs, who were owners of a part thereof, inaugurated proceedings under the act, and
obtaining a market for the sale of the bonds, and, in order that there should not be any suspicion of their invalidity, the landowners agreed that the work was legally done, and the
presented a petition to the county commissioners asking for the
improvement legally constructed. The representation and agreement were, in fact, directed to
improvement of the road through their property, as provided for in the act.
all who might be interested in the matter, including the county commissioners, who were to issue the bonds as representatives of the county. The effect was to provide, in substance, that the lien of the assessment should be valid and the assessment should create a fund for the
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The petition was granted, and the commissioners made an order to
payment of the bonds. The defendant, representing the county, must be permitted to take
that effect, and for the execution of the work at an expense of $7.25 per front foot. On or about August 1, 1890, a contract was entered into
advantage of the representations and agreement of the landowners, as the county has a direct interest in sustaining the validity of the assessment, and the representations were made,
for the construction of the improvement, and between that time and among others, to the county commissioners, who represented the county in issuing the bonds October 16, 1891, the improvement was completed. An assessment and in doing the work. was, on October 15, 1891, laid upon the whole tract to pay for the On principles of general law, we are satisfied that the plaintiffs are not in a position to assert cost of the improvement, which amounted to $11.25 per front foot, the unconstitutionality of the act under which they petitioned that proceedings should be thus largely exceeding the amount srcinally contemplated as such cost. This cost was thus enhanced by reason of changes of plans regarding the improvement, made from time to time as the work progressed, and which were assented to or asked for by the land owners, including the plaintiffs.
taken, and that the assessment should be made i n accordance with those provisions. Provisions of a constitutional nature, intended for the protection of the property owner, may be waived by him, not only by an instrument in writing, upon a good consideration, signed by him, but also by a course of conduct which shows an intention to waive such provision, and where it
would be unjust to others to permit it to be set up. Certainly when action of this nature has In order to pay the cash for the cost of this improvement bonds were issued and sold by the county commissioners as provided for in been the induced at the request, and upon the instigation, of an individual, he ought not to be permitted, upon general principles of justice and equity, to claim that the action act, amounting to $110,000, in two issues, the first of $50,000 andthereafter the second of $60,000.
which he has himself instigated and asked for, and which has been taken upon the faith of his request, should be held invalid, and the expense thereof, which he ought to pay, transferred to
The total amount of the assessment on the plaintiffs' land, assessed a third person. per front foot, as provided for in the act, was $12,812.61, which, as the plaintiffs insist, largely exceeded the special benefit arising from We concur in the remarks of the District Judge in this case, when he said that: 'The complainants invoked the action of the county commissioners to enhance the value of their the improvement, and would result, if enforced to its full extent, in the confiscation of plaintiffs' property . The bonds not having been land; they actively promoted the improvement, knowing that its [194 U.S. 553, 572] cost must be paid by a front foot assessment on their property; they recognized the justice of the paid, an action was brought on them against the county assessment from time to time during the progress of the work, and afterwards by paying annual commissioners in the Federal circuit court in Ohio, and judgment installments of the assessment for seven years, and until they were tempted by the decision of recovered by the bondholders, which was affirmed by the United States circuit court of appeals without, however, passing upon the validity of the assessment now before this court.
the Supreme Court, in Norwood v. Baker, to cast their burden upon the general public; andit is now too late to complain of the method of the assessment or of the lack of the special benefits which were dissipated by the collapse of the 'boom."
After the plaintiffs had paid seven annual instalments of the assessment, each installment amounting to $1,258.61, and the total being $8, 810.27, there remained a balance due on the assessment of $4,002.34, and this bill was filed on June 12, 1899, for the purpose of enjoining the collection of the balance remaining unpaid on the assessment. nd
De Agbayani vs. During the 2
World War, 2 laws were passed which suspended
enforcement of payment of all debts and monetary obligations payable
HAS THE CLAIM OF PNB PRESCRIBED? NO. The above laws are null and void for being
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by war sufferers.
contrary to the constitution on the impairment of contracts. Thus, PNB may still foreclose.
EO 32: Provided for a debt moratorium. “enforcement of payment
First of all, the period was tolled from March 10, 1945 to May 18, 1953.
of all debts and other monetary obligations payable within the Philippines, except debts and other monetary obligations entered into in any area after declaration by Presidential Proclamation
Further, when the legislation passed the above laws, t he question before it was its satisfying the rational basis test , not as of the time of its enactment but as of such date. Clearly,if then it
is temporarily suspended pending action by the Commonwealth
were found unreasonable, the right to non-impairment of contractual obligations must prevail over the assertion of community power to remedy an existing . The evil Supreme Court
Govt (issued March 10, 1945)
was convinced that such indeed was the case. As stated in the opinion of Justice Bautista
that such area has been freed from enemy occupation and control,
Angelo: "But we should not lose sight of the fact that these obligations had been pending since
RA 342(1948): declared the EO 32 remains in full force and effect
1945 as a result of the issuance of Executive Orders Nos. 25 and 32 and at present their
for the war suferers as for them the emergency created by the last enforcement is still inhibited because of the enactment of Republic Act No. 342 and would war was still existent. It also contained “all debts and other continue to be unenforceable during the eight-year period granted to prewar debtors to afford monetary obligations payable by private parties within the
them an opportunity to rehabilitate themselves, which in plain language means that the
Philippines srcinally incurred or contracted before Dec 8. 1941,
creditors would have to observe a vigil of at least twelve (12) years before they could affect a
and still remaining unpaid,
liquidation of their investment dating as far back as 1941.
x x x SHALL NOT BE DUE AND
DEMANDABLE FOR A PERIOD OF 8 YEARS FROM AND AFTER SETTLEMENT OF THE WAR DAMAGE CLAIM OF THE DEBTOR B THE US PHILIPPINE WAR DAMAGE COMMISSION, without prejudice,
however, to any voluntary agreement which the interested parties
This period seems to us unreasonable, if not oppressive. While the purpose of Congress is plausible, and should be commended, the relief accorded works injustice to creditors who are
may enter into after the approval of this Act for the Settlement of said obligations.
practically left at the mercy of the debtors. Their hope to effect collection becomes extremely
Francisco Serrano de Agbayani
Phil Natl Bank, Provincial Sheriff of Pangasinan
remote, more so if the credits are unsecured. And the injustice is more patent when, under the law, the debtor is not even required to pay interest during the operation of the relief, unlike similar statutes in the United States." The conclusion to which the foregoing considerations inevitably led was that as of the time of
In this case, the petitioner made a loan of Php 450 from PNB on
adjudication, it was apparent that Republic Act No. 342 could not survive the test of validity .
. July 19, 1939. It was to mature on July 19, 1944 and was secured Executive Order No. 32 should likewise be nullified by a real estate mortgage durly registered covering property in An unconstitutional act, for that matter, an executive order or a municipal ordinance suffering Pangasinan. However, after the war, the balance due on the loan from infirmity, cannot be the source of any legal rights or duties. Nor can it justify any official remains unpaid. act taken under it.
Meanwhile, on May 18, 1953, the debt moratorium laws were declared unconstitutional On July 13, 1959 that PNB sought to foreclose the property.
When the courts declare a law to be inconsistent with the Constitution, the former shall be void and the latter shall govern. Administrative or executive acts, orders and regulations shall be valid only when they are not contrary to the laws or the Constitution.
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Petitioner de Agbayani now argues that since 15 years have elapsed (1944 to 1959), from the date of maturity, the mortgage sought to be foreclosed has nor prescribed.
TC: decided in favor of De Agbayani
IAC: Reversed TC and decided in favor of PNB Republic
Appellant executed three promissory notes in favor of the Bank of Taiwan, Ltd. payable May 10, 1944, June 8, 1944 and June 10, 1944.. The loans were secured by two real estate mortgages
affecting six parcels of land.
ISSUE: HAS THE ACTION PRESCRIBED? NO On review, the SC held that during their effectivity, the moratorium laws suspended the running of the prescriptive period for filing actions for payment of debts; and that the ten-year period within which to institute such action began the day after the moratorium laws were declared
November 10, 1944, EO. 25 was enacted suspending temporarily the enforcement of all debts and other monetary obligations
contracted during the war.
"The continued operation and enforcement of Republic Act 342 at the present time is
It was amended by Executive Order No. 32 of 1945 and Act No.
unreasonable and oppressive, and should not be prolonged a minute longer, and, therefore, the same is declared null and void and without effect. And what is said here with respect to said Act
holds true as regards Executive Orders Nos. 25 and 32, perhaps with greater force and reason
On May 18 1953, the above mentioned moratorium laws were declared unconstitutional.
as to the latter, considering that said Orders contain no limitation whatsoever in point of time as regards the suspension of the enforcement and effectivity of monetary obligations. Nonetheless, said laws were in effect from the time of their respective promulgations until May
On September 22, 1954, the Bank demanded payment of appellant's accounts but appellant failed and refused to pay.
18, 1953. As a consequence, before they were declared unconstitutional, they suspended the running of the prescriptive period during their effectivity. Thus, the 10-year period within which
to institute the action against herein appellant began the day after the moratorium laws were Meanwhile, pursuant to Transfer Agreement dated July 20, 1954, declared unconstitutional or, to be precise, on May 19, 1953. the Government of the Republic of the Philippines acquired all the rights, title and interest of the U.S. Government in the Bank of Appellee's cause of action will therefore prescribe only on May 19, 1963. The complaint in this Taiwan, Ltd., the assets of which included the loans of appellant case was filed in November 1961, which is within the 10-year period and, therefore, the action secured by the mortgages. Consequently, the Republic of the
has not yet prescribed.
Philippines filed a complaint for collection against appellant.
TC: rendered judgment ordering appellant to pay the balance of his account plus interest; and in case he fails to pay 90 days after the decision has become final, ordering the sale of the mortgaged properties at public auction to satisfy the judgment.
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On appeal, appellant contended that the action has already prescribed. The case was certified to the SC, the question involved being one of law.
Republic vd. CFI
Defendant, Dolores Infante obtained laons from the Bank of Taiwan, LTD in 1943. It was payable at its office in Bacolod City.
HAS THE ACTION PRESCRIBED? NO
Total amount was Php 683.10 at 6% per annum, compounded
In the case at bar, the loans which had no maturity dates were contracted in 1943, or during the period of the Japanese occupation of the Philippines. Ordinarily, the counting of the
prescriptive period should be reckoned from the date the debt became due and demandable.
WW2 intervened and the moratorium decrees (EO 25, 32 and RA 312) mandated that monetary obligations are temporarily
However, the moratorium decrees supervene suspending the enforcement of payments of all debts and other monetary obligations contracted during the war, although in the case of Royal
suspended, in light of sufferings from war.
L. Rutter vs. Placido J. Esteban, 93 Phil. 68, the moratorium laws (Executive Orders Nos. 25 and 32 and Republic Act No. 342) were declared unconstitutional. (Republic vs. Herida, G.R. No. L-
The moratorium laws were then declared unconstitutional on
34486, December 27, 1982). Nevertheless, said laws were in effect from the time of their respective promulgations until May 18, 1953.
May 19, 1953
The debts remained unpaid. Thus, in 1961, the Petitioner (now Republic, or RP because the assets of Bank of Taiwan who was under the Japanese were now transferred to and vested in the RP), filed a complaint in the Justice of the Peace Court of Villadolid, Negros Occidental to collect the mount of Php 683.10.
Defendant moved to dismiss the complaint on the ground of
As a consequence, before they were declared unconstitutional, they suspended the running of the prescriptive period during their effectivity. Thus, the 10-year period within which to institute the action against herein appellee began the day after the moratorium laws were declared unconstitutional or, to be precise, on May 19,. 1953 It was on September 27, 1954 when plaintiff (appellant) made extra-judicial written demand on defendant (appellee). As the loans in question did not have any maturity dates and, therefore, payable on demand, prescription could have accrued, if at all, only on September 27, 1954 when petitioner made the
prescription. The loan became due on June 1, 1944 and the extra-judicial demand. complaint was filed only on Jan 17, 1961 or after more than 16 years had elapsed, far beyond the period of 10 years when an
Plaintiff's cause of action will therefore prescribe only on September 27, 1964 . And, since the
action based on a written contract should be brought to court.
complaint in this case was filed onSeptember 15, 1961, which is within the 10-year period, the action has not yet prescribed.
CFI Negros Occidental:
dismissed RP’s claim on grounds of
prescription. judicial power Sec. 1, Art. 8
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Judicial Department SECTION 1. The judicial power shall be vested in one Supreme Court and in such lower courts as may be established by law. Judicial power includes the duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable, and to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government. all courts can exercise judicial power Badua vs. CBA
Petitioner(s): Spouses Leonor and Rosa Badua (allegedly owns a farm land in Lucaga, Lumaba, Villaviciosa, Abra.
CAN A TRIBAL COURT OF THE CORDILLERA BODONG ADMINISTRATION RENDER A VALID AND EXECUTORY DECISION IN A LAND DISPUTE? NO
Respondents: Cordillera Bodong Administration, Cordillera People’s Liberation Army, et al, David Quema (claimant of the petitioners’
It should be moted that the creation of the Cordillera Autonomous Region was rejected by all the provinces and cities (Benguet, Mountain Province, Abra, Kalinga-Apayao, and City of
Baguio), except for the IFUGAO PROVINCE. Thus, the Cordillera Autonomous Region did not come to be.
Petitioner spouses were forcibly ejected from their land by virtue of a “decision” by the Cordillera Bodong Adminsitration. The case was filed
As a logical consequence of that judicial declaration, the Cordillera Bodong Administration
by respondent David Quema.
created under Section 13 of Executive Order No. 220, the indigenous and special courts for the indigenous cultural communities of the Cordillera region (Sec. 1, Art. VII, Rep. Act 6766), and It was alleged that in 1966, Quema, as the owner of two parcels of land the Cordillera People's Liberation Army, as a r egional police force or a regional command of the in Lucaga, Lumaba, Villaviciosa, Abra, evidenced by Tax Declarations Nos. 4997 and 4998 mortgaged said parcels of land for P6,000 to Dra.
Armed Forces of the Philippines (Secs. 2 and 4, Article XVIII of R.A. 6766), do not legally exist.
Erotida Valera. He was able to redeem the land twenty-two (22) years
Since the Cordillera Autonomous Region did not come into legal existence, the Maeng Tribal
later, on August 14, 1988, long after the mortgagee had already died.
Court was not constituted into an indigenous or special court under R.A. No. 6766. Hence, the
He allegedly paid the redemption price of P10,000 to the mortgagee's heir, Jessie Macaraeg.
Maeng Tribal Court is an ordinary tribal court existing under the customs and traditions of an indigenous cultural community.
On the other hand, Rosa Badua, alleged that the land was sold to her by Dra. Erotida Valera when she was still alive. However, Rosa could
Such tribal courts are not a part of the Philippine judicial system which consists of the SC and the lower courts which have been established by law (Sec. 1, Art. VIII, 1987 Constitution). They
not produce the deed of sale because it is allegedly in the possession of
do not possess judicial power. Like the pangkats or conciliation panels created by P.D. No. 1508
in the barangays, they are advisory and conciliatory bodies whose principal objective is to bring together the parties to a dispute and persuade them to make peace, settle, and compromise.
As Quema was prevented by Rosa Badua from cultivating the land, he filed a case before the Barangay Council, but it failed to settle the An amicable settlement, compromise, and arbitration award rendered by a pangkat, if not dispute. A certain Judge Cacho advised Quema to file his complaint in seasonably repudiated, has the force and effect of a final judgment of a court (Sec. 11, P.D. the provincial level courts. Instead, Quema filed it in the tribal court of the Maeng Tribe. The tribal court conducted a trial on February 19,
1508), but it can be enforced only through the local city or municipal court to which the secretary of the Lupon transmits the compromise settlement or arbitration award upon
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1989 and rendered a decision IN FAVOR OF QUEMA.
expiration of the period to annul or repudiate it (Sec. 14, P.D. 1508). Similarly, the decisions of a
tribal court based on compromise or arbitration, as provided in P.D. 1508, may be enforced or However, the couple still did not immediately vacate the land. Thus set aside, in and through the regular courts today. they were handed a “warning order” on June 30, 1989 by the CORDILLERA PEOPLE’S LIBERATION ARMY.
Petition was thus GRANTED.
Petitioners allege that the decision of the Cordillera Bodong Administration is null and void because; 1.
petitioners were denied due process or formal hearing; and
the Cordillera Bodong Administration has no judicial power nor jurisdiction over the petitioners nor over the private respondent as neither of them are members of the Maeng Tribe.
When the case reached the SC, respondents claim that the SC has no jurisdiction over the tribal courts because the tribal courts are not part of the judicial system. Respondents concede that if the petitioners "want to test the wisdom of the decision of the council of elders," the petitioners should file the necessary suit, not in the SC, but in the trial courts where evidence can be presented. Respondents pray that the decision of the tribal court be maintained and the petition for certiorari and prohibition be dismissed. Lopez vs. Roxas
Petitioner: Fernando Lopez (VP candidate who won in the general elections held Nov 9, 1965)
DOES THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTORAL TRIBUNAL POSSESS JURISDICTION TO TAKE COGNIZANCE OF THE ELECTION PROTEST FILED BY RESPONDENT GERARDO ROXAS? YES
Respondent: Gerardo Roxas (VP candidate who ran against Fernando Judicial power is the authority to settle justiciable controversies or disputes involving rights that Lopez) are enforceable and demandable before the courts of justice or the redress of wrongs for violations of such rights. Petitioner was proclaimed Vice President in the 1965 elections. He gathered 3,531,550 votes or a plurality of 26,724 votes over his closest
The proper exercise of said authority requires legislative action:
opponent, Gerardo Roxas. (1) defining such enforceable and demandable rights and/or prescribing remedies for violations Jan 5, 1966: Respondent Roxas filed Election Protest No. 2 with the
Presidential Electoral Tribunal contesting the election of petitioner, upon the ground that it was he who obtained the largest number of (2) determining the court with jurisdiction to hear and decide said controversies or disputes, in
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the first instance and/or on appeal. For this reason, the Constitution ordains that "Congress
Feb 22, 1966: Petitioner Lopez instituted this action for prohibition
shall have the power to define, prescribe, and apportion the jurisdiction of the various courts", subject to the limitations set forth in t he fundamental law.
with preliminary injunction against Roxas to prevent the Presidential Electoral Tribunal from hearing and deciding the election contest. His Prior to the approval of Republic Act No. 1793, a defeated candidate for president or vicebasis was the UNCONSTITUTIONALITY of RA 1793 which created the president, who believed that he was the candidate who obtained the largest number of votes said Tribunal. Since, RA 1793 was unconstitutional, all proceedings for either office, despite the proclamation by Congress of another candidate as the Presidenttaken by it are a nullity, he claims. elect or vice president-elect, had no legal right to demand by election protest a recount of the votes cast for the office concerned, to establish his right thereto. As a consequence, Further, petitioner argues that Congress may not, by law, authorize an controversies or disputes on this matter were not justiciable. Section 1 of Republic Act No. election contest for Pres and VP because the Constitution is silent. The 1793, which provides that: contest tends to nullify the constitutional authority of Congress to proclaim the candidates elected for Pres and VP. In effect RA 1493 "There shall be on independent Presidential Electoral Tribunal . . . which shall be the sole judge amends the constitution.
of all contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of the president-elect and the Vice-president elect of the Philippines."
has the effect of giving said defeated candidate the legal right to contest judicially the election of the President-elect or Vice- President-elect and to demand a recount of the votes cast for the office involved in the litigation, as well as to secure a judgment declaring that he is the one elected president or vice-president, as the case may be 7and that, as such, he is entitled to assume the duties attached to said office. And by providing, further, that the Presidential Electoral Tribunal "shall be composed of the Chief Justice and the other ten Members of the SC", said legislation has conferred upon such Court an additional srcinal jurisdiction of an exclusive character. Republic Act No. 1793 has not created a new or separate court. It has merely conferred upon the SC the functions of a Presidential Electoral Tribunal. The result of the enactment may be likened to the fact that courts of first instance perform the functions of such ordinary courts of first instance, those of courts of land r egistration, those of probate courts, and those courts of juvenile and domestic relations. It is, also, comparable to the situation obtaining when the municipal court of a provincial capital exercises its authority, pursuant to law, over a limited number of cases which were previously within the exclusive jurisdiction of courts of first instance. In all of these instances, the court (court of first instance or municipal court) is only one, although the functions may be distinct and, even, separate. Thus the powers of a court of first instance, in the exercise of its jurisdiction over ordinary cases, are broader than, as well as distinct and separate from, those of the same court acting as a court of land registration or a
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probate court, or as a court of juvenile and domestic relations. So too, the authority of the municipal court of a provincial capital, when acting as such municipal court, is, territorially more limited than that of the same court when hearing the aforementioned cases which are primarily within the jurisdiction of courts of first instance. In other words, there is only one court, although it may perform the functions pertaining to several types of courts, each having some characteristics different from those of the others. Indeed, the SC, the Court of Appeals and courts of first instance, are vested with srcinal jurisdiction, as well as with appellate jurisdiction, in consequence of which they are both trial courts and appellate courts, without detracting from the fact that there is only one SC, one Court of Appeals, and one court of first instance, clothed with authority to discharge said dual functions. A court of first instance, when performing the functions of a probate court o r a court of land registration, or a court of juvenile and domestic relations, although with powers less broad than those of a court of first instance, hearing ordinary actions, is not inferior to the latter, for one cannot be inferior to itself. So too, the Presidential Electoral Tribunal is not inferior to the SC, since it is the same Court, although the functions peculiar to said Tribunal are more limited in scope than those of the SC in the exercise of its ordinary functions. Hence, the enactment of Republic Act No. 1793 does not entail an assumption by Congress of the power of appointment vested by the Constitution in the President. It merely connotes the imposition of additional duties upon the Members of the SC. Moreover, the power to be the "judge . . . of . . . contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications" of any public officer is essentially judicial. As such — under the very principle of separation of powers invoked by petitioner herein — it belongs exclusively to the judicial department, except only insofar as the Constitution provides otherwise. This is precisely the reason why said organic law ordains that "the Senate and the House of Representatives shall each have an Electoral Tribunal which shall be the sole judge of all contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of their respective Members" (Article VI, Section 11, of the Constitution). In other words, the purpose of this provision was to exclude the power to decide such contests relating to Members of Congress — which by nature is judicial— from the operation of the general grant of judicial power to the SC and such inferior courts as may be established by law." Petition is hereby dismissed. Santiago Bautista
Petitioner Teodoro Santiago Jr was a Grade 6 pupil at the Sero
ISSUE: DO TEACHERS FALL UNDER THE CLAUSE “ANY TRIBUNAL, BOARD OR OFFICER
Elementary School (Cotabato City) at the time this case was
EXERCISING JUDICIAL FUNCTIONS? NO
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instituted. For the graduation ceremony slatd for May 21, 1965, the ff were to be given the ff awards: Held: st
Socorro Medina (1 honor)
Patricia Lingat (2 honor)
Teodoro Santiago, Jr (3 honor)
The committee on the rating of students for honor whose actions are questioned in this case
Respondents here are teachers, principal, administrators of the Sero Elementary School.
exercised neither judicial nor quasi judicial functions in the performance of its assigned task.
A judicial functionis an act performed by virtue of judicial powers. The exercise of a judicial function is the doing of something in the nature of the action of the court. In order that a special civil action of certiorari may be invoked in this jurisdiction, the ff circumstances must exist:
However, 3 days before the graduation, petitioner, represented
by his mother, with his father as counsel, sought the invalidation
Committee on the Rating of Students for Honor was invalidly
determination of their respective rights and obligations. 2.
constituted because the committee was composed of Grade VI teachers only when it should have been composed of all teachers in Grades V and VI. They also claim that there was an intention to pull their son down because of the unjust and discriminating abuses made by the teachers in unduly favoring one student over the other.
That there must be a specific controversy involving rights of persons or property and said controversy is brought before a tribunal, board or officer for hearing and
of the ranking. They claimed that Patricia Lingat was coached during the summer of 1964. They also claimed that the
The tribunal, board or officer before whom the controversy is brought must have the power and authority to pronounce judgment and render a decision on the controversy construing and applying the laws to that end.
The tribunal, board or officer must pertain to that branch of the sovereign power which belongs to the judiciary, or at least, which does not belong to the legislative or executive department.
Thus petitioners prayed that: the final list of honor students for Before a tribunal board, or officer may exercise judicial or quasi judicial a cts, it is necessary that Grade VI be set aside; and that during the pendency of the suit, there be a law t hat gives rise to some specific rights of persons or property under which adverse the respondent teachers be enjoined from officially and formally claims to such rights are made, and the controversy ensuing therefrom is brought, in turn, before the tribunal, board or officer clothed With power and authority to determine what that publishing and proclaiming the said honor pupils in Grade VI. law is and thereupon adjudicate the respective rights of the contending parties.
And MTD filed in the lower court by the respondents was granted
There is nothing on record about any rule of law that provides that when teachers sit down to
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on the grounds that the petition is improper and academic.
assess the individual merits of their pupils for purposes of rating them for honors, such function involves the determination of what the law is and that they are therefore automatically vested with judicial or quasi judicial functions. Worse still, this Court has not even been appraised by
Petitioners argue, among others, on the basis of Rule 65 Sec 1 which states: Rule 65, Section 1 of the Rules of Court provides:
'Section 1.Petition for certiorari. — When any tribunal, board, or officer exercising judicial functions, has acted without or in excess of its or his
appellant of the pertinent provisions of the Service Manual of Teachers for Public Schools appellees allegedly violated in the composition of the committee they constituted thereunder, and, in the performance of that committee's duties.
Judgment of the lower court is affirmed.
jurisdiction, or with grave abuse of discretion and t here is no appeal, nor any plain, speedy, and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law, a person aggrieved thereby may file a verified petition in the proper court alleging the facts with certainty and praying that judgment be rendered annulling or modifying the proceedings, as the law requires, of such tribunal, board or officer.'
'The petition shall be accompanied by a certified true copy of the judgment or order subject thereof, together with copies of all pleadings and documents relevant and pertinent thereto.'
Lina vs. Purisima
Lualhati Lina (pharmacist by training but DOES THE COURT HAVE JURISDICTION OVER SUCH EXECUTIVE ACT? YES
working as a Bookkeeper in Phil Veterans Bank) Respondents:
Hon Amante Purisima (Judge CFI Manila) o
While the members of the Courts are not agreed on whether or not particular instances of attack against the validity of certain Presidential Decrees raise political questions which the judiciary would not interfere with, there is unanimity among the members of the Court that it is for the Court rather than the Executive to determine whether or not it may take cognizance of any given case involving the validity of acts of the Executive Department done purportedly under the
Petitioner was summarily removed from office by respondent bank for notoriously being undesirable. She was considered as a threat to the industrial peace having been involved in pro-labor
authority of the martial law proclamation.
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activities. When she appealed, the respondent president, Esteban Cabanos, denied her appeal. Further, If a case is elevated to the Supreme Court for the correction of any supposed procedural error of a lower court, and it was found that indeed there has been a mistake, and it
further appears that all the facts needed for a complete determination of the whole TC: decided in favor of respondents, reasoning that since removal controversy are already before the Court undisputed or uncontroverted by the parties, the of the petitioner was pursuant to a Letter of Instruction issued Supreme Court may at its option, whenever it feels the best interest of justice would be under Proclamation 1081, the validity or legality of said act was thereby subserved, dispense with the usual procedure of remanding the case to the court of beyond the power of the courts to review, much less to modify or srcin for its own judgment and instead, may already resolved the pertinent determinative reverse, as expressly provided in General Order No. 3 issues and render the final judgment on the merits.
General Order No 3 expressly limits the power of the courts
to pass upon the validity, legality or constitutionality of act of the Executive Department. SHOULD THE PETITIONER BE REINSTATED? YES This has already been deemed as practically inoperative by the SC. While the members of the Courts are not Concomitant with the right of an employee or worker to reinstatement after an unlawful agreed on whether or not particular instances of attack against the validity of certain Presidential Decrees raise
dismissal. She is entitled to her back salaries and expenses. However, her refusal to return back to work for the earlier return to work order disqualifies her from other damages prayed for.
political questions which the judiciary would not interfere with, there is unanimity among the members of the Court that it is for the Court rather than the Executive to determine whether or not it may take cognizance of any given case involving the validity of acts of the Executive Department done purportedly under the authority of the martial law proclamation.
When raised on appeal, respondent issued an administrative order
allowances, and reimbursement of all incidental expenses without prejudice to the outcome of the case. However, petitioner failed to report back to work and insisted on the final adjudication of her claim for moral and exemplary damages.
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Ynot vs. IAC
Issue: IS THE OUTRIGHT CONFISCATION CLAUSE IS A DENIAL OF DUE PROCESS AND AN ENCROACHMENT OF JUDICIAL POWER BY THE EXECUTIVE? YES
Intermediate Appellate Court, Station Commander,
Integrated National Police, Bureau of Animal Industry, etc Held:
Ynot transported 6 carabaos in a pumpboat from Masbate to Iloilo when they were confiscated by the police commander for violation of an EO 626-A which prohibits any carabao regardless of
Due process is violated because the owner of the property confiscated is denied the right to be
age, sex or physical conditionor purpose, including carabeef, to be
heard in his defense and is immediately condemned and punished.The conferment on the
transported from one province to another.
administrative authorities of the power to adjudge the guilt of the supposed offender is a clear encroachment on judicial functions and militates against the doctrine of separation of powers. There is, finally, also an invalid delegation of legislative powers to the officers
mentioned therein who are granted unlimited discretion in the distribution of the properties The EO succinctly provides the penalty of confiscation in favor of arbitrarily taken. For these reasons, we hereby declare Executive Order No. 626-A the government to be distributed to charitable institutions and unconstitutional. other similar institutions as the Chairman of the National Meat Inspection Comm may see fit, or in case of carabeef, to deserving farmers as the Director of Animal Industry may see fit.
Ynot sued for recovery before the RTC. The lower court sustained the confiscation.
Ynot appealed before the IAC assailing the constitutionality of the EO insofar as it authorizes the outright confiscation of the carabao or carabeef as a penalty without according the owner the opportunity to be heard.
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judicial power vs. power of judicial review Fernandez
Petitioner purchased from NOA a round trip ticket in SanFran for his flight from SanFran to Manila via Tokyo and back.
ISSUE OF CONSTITUTIONALITY
No date was specified for his return to SanFran
It is well-settled that courts will assume jurisdiction over a constitutional question only if it is shown that the essential requisites of a judicial inquiry into such a question are first satisfied.
Petitioner checked in at NOA SanFran for his scheduled departure
Thus, there must be an actual case or controversy involving a conflict of legal rights susceptible of judicial determination; the constitutional question must have been
Despite a previous confirmation and reconfirmation, he was
opportunely raised by the proper party; and the resolution of the question is unavoidably necessary to the decision of the case itself.
informed that he had no reservation from Tokyo to Manila
Petitioner sued NOA for damages NOA moved to dismiss on the ground of lack of jurisdiction citing Article 28(1) of the Warsaw Convention “Art. 28. (1)An action for damage must be brought at the option of the plaintiff, in the territory of one of the High Contracting Parties, either before the
Courts generally avoid having to decide a constitutional question. This attitude is based on the doctrine of separation of powers, which enjoins upon the departments of the government a becoming respect for each other's acts. The treaty which is the subject matter of this petition was a joint legislative-executive act. The presumption is that it was first carefully studied and determined to be constitutional before it was adopted and given the force of law in this country.
court of the domicile of the carrier or of his principal place of business, or where he has a place of business through which the
The petitioner's allegations are not convincing enough to overcome this presumption.
contract has been made, or before the court at the place of
It is true that at the time the Warsaw Convention was drafted, the airline industry was still in its
LC granted the motion and dismissed the case.
infancy. However, that circumstance alone is not sufficient justification for the rejection of the treaty at this time. The treaty has not been rejected by the Philippine government. The doctrine ofrebus sic stantibus does not operate automatically to render the treaty inoperative. There is a necessity for a formal act of rejection, usually made by the head of State, with a statement of the reasons why compliance with the treaty is no longer required. Rejection of the treaty, whether on the ground of rebus sic stantibus or pursuant to Article 39, is not a function of the courts but of the other branches of government. This is a political act. The conclusion and renunciation of treaties is the prerogative of the political departments and may not be usurped by the judiciary. The courts are concerned only with the interpretation and application of laws and treaties in force and not with their wisdom or efficacy.
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Petitioner alleges that the expenses and difficulties he will incur in filing a suit in the United States would constitute a constructive denial of his right to access to our courts for the protection of his rights.
The constitutional guaranty of access to courts refers only to courts with appropriate jurisdiction as defined by law. It does not mean that a person can go toany court for redress of his grievances regardless of the nature or value of his claim. If the petitioner is barred from filing his complaint before our courts, it is because they are not vested with the appropriate jurisdiction under the Warsaw Convention, which is part of the law of our land. Dumlao
Petitioner Dumlao, who has filed his certificate of candidacy,
Whether or not the petition may be gr anted? –NO!
questions the constitutionality sec 4 BP Blg 52 as discriminatory and contrary to the equal protection and due
Petition suffers from basic procedural infirmities, hence, traditionally unacceptable for judicial
resolution. For one, there is a misjoinder of parties and actions. Petitioner Dumlao's interest is alien to that of petitioners Igot and Salapantan Petitioner Dumlao does not join petitioners Igot
Petitioner Igot, a taxpayer, qualified voter and member of
and Salapantan in the burden of their complaint, nor do the latter join Dumlao in his.
the Bar, and Petitioner Salapantan, a taxpayer, assail the validity of Sec 7 of BP Blg 51; sec1, 4 and 6 of BP Blg 52
There are standards that have to be followed inthe exercise of the function of judicial review, namely (1) the existence of an a ppropriate case:, (2) an interest personal and substantial by the
Igot and Salapantan also question the accreditation of some
party raising the constitutional question: (3) the plea that the function be exercised at the earliest opportunity and (4) the necessity that the constiutional question be passed upon in
political parties by COMELEC
order to decide the case.
They pray that the statutory provisions they have challenged be declared null and void
Third requisite has been complied with, which is, that the parties have raised the issue of constitutionality early enough in their pleadings. But has fallen far short of the other three criteria. Actual case and controversy Power of judicial review is l imited to the determination of actual cases and controversies. Dumlao has not been adversely affected by the application of that provision. No petition seeking Dumlao's disqualification has been filed before the COMELEC. There is no ruling of that constitutional body on the matter, which this Court is being asked to review on Certiorari. His is a question posed in the abstract, a hypothetical issue, and in effect, a petition for an advisory opinion from this Court to be rendered without the benefit of a detailed factual record Petitioner Dumlao's case is clearly within the primary jurisdiction of COMELEC.
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Proper Party "the person who impugns the validity of a statute must have a personal and substantial interest in the case such that he has sustained, or will sustain, direct injury as a result of its enforcement"
With regard to Igot and Salapantan, it cannot be denied that neither one has been convicted nor charged with acts of disloyalty to the State, nor disqualified from being candidates for local elective positions. Neither one of them has been calle ed to have been adversely affected by the operation of the statutory provisions they assail as unconstitutional Theirs is a generated grievance. They have no personal nor substantial interest at stake. In the a bsence of any litigate interest; they can claim no locus standi in seeking judicial redress. Statutory provisions questioned do not directly involve the disbursement of public funds. While, concededly, the elections to be held involve the expenditure of public moneys, nowhere in their Petition do said petitioners allege that their tax money is "being extracted and spent in violation of specific constitutional protections against abuses of legislative power" or that there is a misapplication of such funds by COMELEC or that public money is being deflected to any improper purpose. Neither do petitioners seek to restrain respondent from wasting public funds through the enforcement of an invalid or unconstitutional law. Unavoidability of constitutional question “the constitutionality of an act of the legislature will not be determined by the courts unless that question is properly raised and presented in appropriate cases and is necessary to a determination of the case; i.e., the issue of constitutionality must be the very lis mota presented."
The present is not an "appropriate case" for either petitioner Dumlao or for petitioners Igot and Salapantan. They are actually without cause of action. It follows that the necessity for resolving the issue of constitutionality is absent, and procedural regularity would require that this suit be dismissed. Nepa vs. Ongpin
Pres Marcos issued PD1789 Omnibus Investment Code.
Whether or not the petition may be g ranted? –NO!
Thereafter, he issued PD 1892 suspending for one year from date It is a well-settled rule that no constitutional question will be heard and resolved unless the of its effectivity the nationality requirement of at least 60% following requisites of a judicial inquiry are present: Philippine Nationals for non-pioneer industries entitled to (1) the existence of an appropriate case;
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registration under PD 1789
They maintain that the Pres has no absolute legislative power Petitioners merely complied with the third requisite that of raising the issue of constitutionality during martial law but only limited to the decree-making power at the earliest instance in their pleadings. The petition is deficient as to the other three criteria. relative to the suppression and prevention of the ground for its The power of judicial review is limited to the determination of actual cases and controversies, imposition
(2) an interest personal and substantial by the party raising the constitutional question;
Petitioner NEPA filed the instant petition seeking to enjoin public (3) the plea that the f unction be exercised at the earliest opportunity; and respondents from enforcing said decrees as well as the (4) the necessity that the constitutional question be passed upon in order to decide the case Investment Priorities Plan
which are obviously absent in the instant case
SolGen contend that the petitioners have no personality and Not even one of the petitioners has been adversely affected by the application of those standing to sue in the absence of an actual controversy provisions. No actual conflict has been alleged wherein the petitioner could validly and possibly say that the increase in foreign equity participation in non-pioneer areas of investment had any concerning the enforcement of the PDs in question direct bearing on them. Petitioners advance an abstract, hypothetical issue which is in effect a petition for an advisory opinion from this Court. The unchallenged rule is that the person who impugned the validity of a statute must have a personal and substantial interest in the case, such that he has sustained or will sustain direct injury as a result of its enforcement. Not one of them has averred to have been adversely affected by the operation of the statutory provisions they assail as unconstitutional. They have no personal or substantial interest at stake. In the absence of any legal conflict, they can claim nolocus standi in seeking judicial redress especially so, as the challenged laws do not relate to appropriation measures that constitute misappropriation of public funds. Courts will not pass upon the constitutionality of a law upon the complaint of one who fails to show that he is injured by its operation.
Lagamy vs. CA
Adela Tuason, registered owner of 300 sq m lot, leased 164 sq m
Can the Court decide questions of constitutional nature? – NO.
to Lagmay, Basconvillo and Pinggan The issue of constitutionality of a statute, executive order or proclamation must be the very lis
These lessees built residential houses in their respective area s
mota presented in a case. The Court does not decide questions of a constitutional nature unless
that question is properly raised and presented in an appropriate case and is necessary to its Atty. Molina, counsel of Adela, sent lessees a letter notifying them determination. that Adela intends to sell the premised they were occupying Although the Court may deem it best for public policy to resolve the constitutional issue She gave first preference to the lessees to buy the lot and allowed considering that numerous persons are affected by the questioned proclamation, there are
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them 3 months to decide
other grounds by which this case may be resolved on a non-constitutional determination.
Lessees did not make any reply, Adela, stopped collecting rentals. Lessees did not even bother to pay
In this case, the resolution of the issue of whether or not Sec. 6 of P.D. No. 1517 is "self-
Adela’s sisters requested the lessee to leave the premises to
executing" will determine the legality of petitioners' claim for the preemptive right provided for in said section. Petitioners assert their entitlement to said right but even a cursory reading of said section points to a contrary conclusion.
enable their sister to sell the lots to meet her financial obligations
The terms and conditions of the sale in exercise of the lessee's right of first refusal to purchase Lessees instead of leaving, sent a letter to Adela offering to buy shag be determined by the Urban Zone Expropriation and Land Management Committee. the land and assert their priority legal rights under PD 1517 with Hence, the lower court rightfully ruled that certain prerequisites must be complied with by issuance of preliminary injunction which was granted by LC anyone who wishes to avail himself of the benefits of the decree.
Adela did not make a reply
Lessees filed a complaint for the enforcement of their preemptive right
Through another letter, they offered to buy at P800.00/sq.m.
LC dismissed the complaint and lifted the preliminary injunction
LC: lessees can exercise his "right of first refusal to purchase" the leased land following preconditions that must be complied with:
(a) the lessor's proposal to sell must be duly accepted by the lessee; (b) the terms and conditions of the said proposal must be determined by the Urban Zone Expropriation and Land Management Committee; and (c) the said proposal must be declared to the Ministry of Human Settlements. The lower court held that these conditions had not been met in this case.
CA: dismissed their appeal on the ground that the lessees could not properly exercise their preemptive right to purchase the property because their leased lots were not
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included in the 244 urban sites proclaimed as urban land reform areas under Proclamation No. 1967, which amended Proclamation No. 1893
Proclamation No. 1967 on the grounds that it is discriminatory and not uniformly applied "to all tenants wherever they are." --- CA denied jurisdiction of the supreme court Sec. 5(2d), Art. SECTION 5. The Supreme Court shall have the following powers: 8
(2) Review, revise, reverse, modify, or affirm on appeal or certiorari, as the law or the Rules of Court may provide, final judgments and orders of lower courts in:
(a) All cases in which the constitutionality or validity of any treaty, international or executive agreement, law, presidential decree, proclamation, order, instruction, ordinance, or regulation is in question.
(b) All cases involving the legality of any tax, impost, assessment, or toll, or any penalty imposed in relation thereto.
(c) All cases in which the jurisdiction of any lower court is in issue.
(d) All criminal cases in which the penalty imposed is reclusion perpetua or higher.
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(e) All cases in which only an error or question of law is involved. congressional power over the jurisdiction of the supreme court Sec. 2(1), Art. 8
SECTION 5. The Supreme Court shall have the following powers: (1) Exercise srcinal jurisdiction over cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, and over petitions for certiorari, prohibition, mandamus, quo warranto, and habeas corpus.
Sec. 30, Art. 6
SECTION 30. No law shall be passed increasing the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court as provided in this Constitution without its a dvice and concurrence.
en banc vs. division Sec. 4, Art. 8
(2) All cases involving the constitutionality of a treaty, international or executive agreement, or law, which shall be heard by the Supreme Court en banc, and all other cases which under the Rules of Court are required to be heard en banc, including those involving the constitutionality, application, or operation of presidential decrees, proclamations, orders, instructions, ordinances, and other regulations, shall be decided with the concurrence of a majority of the Members who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and voted thereon.
(3) Cases or matters heard by a division shall be decided or resolved with the concurrence of a majority of the Members who a ctually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and voted thereon, and in no case, without the concurrence of at least three of such Members. When the required number is not obtained, the case shall be decided en banc: Provided, that no doctrine or principle of law laid down by the court in a decision rendered en banc or in division may be modified or reversed except by the court sitting en banc. En
Conflict of decisions by its divisions
Referred by a division and receipts by en banc
Death penalty cases
composition of the supreme court
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SECTION 4. Vargas
SECTION 4. vs.
appointments & qualifications of the judicial & bar council Sec. 7(1), Art. 8
SECTION 7. (1) No person shall be appointed Member of the Supreme Court or any lower collegiate court unless he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines. A Member of the Supreme Court must be at least forty years of age, and must have been for fifteen years or more a judge of a lower court or engaged in the practice of law in the Philippines.
(2) The Congress shall prescribe the qualifications of judges of lower courts, but no person may be appointed judge thereof unless he is a citizen of the Philippines and a member of the Philippine Bar.
(3) A Member of the Judiciary must be a person of proven competence, integrity, probity, and independence. Sec. 8, Art. 8
SECTION 8. (1) A Judicial and Bar Council is hereby created under the supervision of the Supreme Court composed of the Chief Justice as ex officio Chairman, the Secretary of Justice, and a representative of the Congress as ex officio Members, a representative of the Integrated Bar, a professor of law, a retired Member of the Supreme Court, and a representative of the private sector.
(2) The regular Members of the Council shall be appointed by the President for a term of four years with the consent of the Commission on Appointments. Of the Members first appointed, the representative of the Integrated Bar shall serve for four years, the professor of law for three years, the retired Justice for two years, and the representative of the private sector for one year.
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(3) The Clerk of the Supreme Court shall be the Secretary ex officio of the Council and shall keep a record of its proceedings.
(4) The regular Members of the Council shall receive such emoluments as may be determined by the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court shall provide in its annual budget the appropriations for the Council.
(5) The Council shall have the principal function of recommending appointees to the Judiciary. It may exercise such other functions and duties as the Supreme Court may assign to it. Sec. 9, Art. 8
SECTION 9. The Members of the Supreme Court and judges of lower courts shall be appointed by the President from a list of at least three nominees prepared by the Judicial and Bar Council for every vacancy. Such appointments need no confirmation.
For the lower courts, the President shall issue the appointments within ninety days from the submission of the list. salary
Sec. 10, Art. 8
SECTION 10. The salary of the Chief Justice and of the Associate Justices of the Supreme Court, and of judges of lower courts shall be fixed by law. During their continuance in office, their salary shall not be decreased.
Sec. 17, Art. 18
SECTION 17. Until the Congress provides otherwise, the President shall receive an annual salary of three hundred thousand pesos; the Vice-President, the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, two hundred forty thousand pesos each; the Senators, t he Members of the House of Representatives, the Associate Justices of the Supreme Court, and the Chairmen of the Constitutional Commissions, two hundred four thousand pesos each; and the Members of the Constitutional Commissions, one hundred eighty thousand pesos each.
security of tenure Sec. 2, Art. 8
SECTION 2. The Congress shall have the power to define, prescribe, and apportion the jurisdiction of various courts but may not deprive the Supreme Court of its jurisdiction over cases enumerated in Section 5 hereof.
No law shall be passed reorganizing the Judiciary when it undermines the security of tenure of its Members.
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SECTION 11. The Members of the Supreme Court and judges of lower courts shall hold office during good behavior until they rea ched the age of seventy years or become
Sec. 11, Art. 8
incapacitated to discharge the duties of their office. The Supreme Court en banc shall have the power to discipline judges of lower courts, or order their dismissal by a vote of a majority of the Members who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case a nd voted thereon. De La Llana vs. Alba
removal SECTION 11. The Members of the Supreme Court and judges of lower courts shall hold office during good behavior until they reached the age of seventy years or become
Sec. 11, Art. 8
incapacitated to discharge the duties of their office. The Supreme Court en banc shall have the power to discipline judges of lower courts, or order their dismissal by a vote of a majority of the Members who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and voted thereon. Sec. 2, Art. 9
requirements as to decisions Sec. 13, Art. 8
SECTION 13. The conclusions of the Supreme Court in any case submitted to it for decision en banc or in division shall be reached in consultation before the case is assigned to a Member for the writing of the opinion of the Court. A certification to this effect signed by the Chief Justice shall be issued and a copy thereof attached to the record of the case and served upon the parties. Any Member who took no part, or dissented, or abstained from a decision or resolution must state the reason therefor. The same requirements shall be observed by all lower collegiate courts. SECTION 14. No decision shall be rendered by any court without expressing therein clearly and distinctly t he facts and the law on which it is based.
Sec. 14, Art. 8
No petition for review or motion for reconsideration of a decision of the court shall be refused due course or denied without stati ng the legal basis therefor. Oil
Nature Corp. vs. CA Airfrance
Carrascoso Vda. De Espiritu vs. CFI
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vs. Buscayno is a civilian and a ranking leader of the Communist Party, the Whether a CPP member should be tried in a military tribunal? YES
Hukbong Mapagpalaya ng Bayan or the NPA was accused in 2 criminal cases, one for violation of RA 1700 and another for murder, both pending with respondent Military Commission 2. He contested the
The Supreme Court dismissed the petition sustaining the military tribunal's jurisdiction over the proceedings had against him therein, claiming that the charges against accused and ruling that the proceeding before the respondent commission observe the him are properly cognizable by the regular civil courts which have fundamental requisites of procedural due process, due notice, an essentially fair and impartial remained open and have been regularly functioning notwithstanding trial and reasonable opportunity for the preparation of the defense. the imposition of martial law.
The military tribunals were vested with jurisdiction 'exclusive of the civil courts,' among others, over crimes against public order, violations of the Anti-Subversion Act, violations of the laws on firearms, and other crimes which in the face of the emergency, are directly related to the quelling of the rebellion and preservation of the safety and security of the Republic in order to ensure a more orderly administration of justice, in the cases triable by the said, military tribunals, PD 39. A state of rebellion existed in the country when Proc. 1081 was i ssued.
The guarantee of due process is not a guarantee of any particular form of tribunal in criminal cases. A military tribunal of competent jurisdiction, accusation in due form, notice and opportunity to defend and trial before an impartial tribunal, adequately meet the due process requirement. Due process of law does not necessarily mean a judicial proceedings in the regular courts. The guarantee of due process, viewed in its procedural aspect, requires no particular form or procedure. It implies due notice to the individual of the proceedings, an opportunity to defend himself and the problem of the propriety of the deprivations, under the circumstances presented, must be resolved in a manner consistent with essential fairness. It means essentially a fair and impartial trial and reasonable opportunity for the preparation of defense. The procedure before the Military Commission, as prescribed in PD 39, assures observance of the fundamental requisites of procedural due process, due notice, an essential fair and impartial trial and reasonable opportunity for the preparation of the defense.
FAIRNESS AND LACK OF IMPARTIALITY PRESUMED Prejudice cannot be presumed, especially if weighed against the great confidence and trust reposed by the people upon the President and the latter's legal obligation under his oath to do
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justice to every man. Mangelen vs. CA
Habaluyas Ent. bound itself to pay P600,000.00 to Mangelen by virtue of a Compromise Agreement. Instead of filing an Answer within the reglementary period, Habaluyas Ent. submitted a MTD for improper venue, which was denied.
WHETHER THE DECISION OF THE CA WAS CORRECT? NO
What was filed before the CA was an ordinary appeal from a judgment by default. This necessitated a full-blown decision taking into account substantive and procedural matters.
A 2 MTD lis pendens was filed, which was also denied
Now, if such decision had to be completely overturned or set aside, upon the filing of
Although they received a copy of the denial order, Habaluyas still
a motion for reconsideration, in a subsequent action via a resolution or modified
did not file any answer to the complaint. Consequently, Mangelen filed a motion to declare defendants in default, which was
decision, such resolution or decision should likewise state the factual and legal foundation relied upon. The reason is obvious: aside from being required by the
Constitution, the court should be able to justify such a sudden change of course; it
Habaluyas filed a motion to set aside the order of default and to
must be able to convincingly explain the taking back of its solemn conclusions and pronouncements in the earlier decision. In the instant case, the CA miserably failed to
hold in abeyance further proceedings because of the certiorari
do so, this is reflected in the quoted resolution of 12 July 1989 which leaves in limbo
with the IAC, but the same was denied since the defendants were grossly and inexcusably negligent in failing to submit their
the trial court's challenged decision because it is not the latter which is reversed but rather the public respondent's own decision of 30 January 1989. Public respondent
simply restored the parties to the status quo obtaining prior to 30 January 1989. Clearly, therefore, an amended decision on the appeal proper or on the merits of the
CA: Remanded the case for further proceedings
decision of the trial court would be in order.
CA ordered the remand of the case to the trial court for further proceedings, thereby placing the latter in a quandary as to what it was supposed to do. The TC would not know what "further proceedings" means as the public respondent neither nullified the order of default nor set aside the evidence received ex-parte. Thus, the former would be hard put at finding a satisfactory solution to the problem presented for its resolution.
We are thus unable to see how further proceedings by the TC could produce a result consistent with the theory of Habaluyas. Besides, the interpretation of the Compromise Agreement involves a question of law; the remand of the case would thus serve no useful purpose.
mandatory period for deciding cases Sec. 15, Art. 8
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(1) All cases or matters filed after the effectivity of this Constitution must be decided or resolved within twenty-four months from date of submission for the Supreme Court, and, unless reduced by the Supreme Court, twelve months for all lower collegiate courts, and three months for all other lower courts.
(2) A case or matter shall be deemed submitted for decision or resolution upon the filing of the last pending, brief, or memorandum required by the Rules of Court or by the court itself.
(3) Upon the expiration of the corresponding period, a certification to this effect signed by the Chief Justice or the presiding judge shall forthwith be issued and a copy thereof attached to the record of the case or matter, and served upon the parties. The certification shall state why a decision or resolution has not been rendered or issued within said period.
(4) Despite the expiration of the applicable mandatory period, the court, without prejudice to such responsibility as may have been incurred in consequence thereof, shall decide or resolve the case or matter submitted thereto for determination, without further delay. Sec. 18(3), Art. 7 SECTION 18. The President shall be the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of t he Philippines and whenever it becomes necessary, he may call out such armed forces
to prevent or suppress lawless violence, invasion or rebellion. In case of invasion or rebellion, when the public safety requires it, he may, for a period not exceeding sixty days, suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or place the Philippines or any part thereof under martial law. Within forty -eight hours from the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, the President shall submit a report in person or in writing to the Congress. The Congress, v oting jointly, by a vote of at least a majority of all its Members in regular or special session, may revoke such proclamation or suspension, which revocation shall not be set aside by the President. Upon the initiative of the President, the Congress may, in the same manner, extend such proclamation or suspension for a period to be determined by the Congress, if the invasion or rebellion shall persist and public safety requires it.
The Congress, if not in session, shall, within twenty-four hours following such proclamation or suspension, convene in accordance with its rules without any need of a call.
The Supreme Court may review, in an appropriate proceeding filed by any citizen, the sufficiency of the factual basis of the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ or the extension thereof, and must promulgate its decision thereon within thirty days from its filing.
A state of martial law does not suspend the operation of the Constitution, nor supplant the functioning of the civil courts or legislative assemblies, nor authorize the
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conferment of jurisdiction on military courts and agencies over civilians where civil courts are able to function, nor automatically suspend the privilege of the writ.
The suspension of the privilege of the writ shall apply only to persons judicially charged for rebellion or offenses inherent in or directly connected with the invasion.
During the suspension of the privilege of the writ, any person thus arrested or detained shall be judicially charged within three days, otherwise he shall be relea sed. Sec. 12, Art. 18
SECTION 12. The Supreme Court shall, within one year after the ratification of this Constitution, adopt a systematic plan to expedite the decision or resolution of cases or matters pending in the Supreme Court or the lower courts prior to the effectivity of this Constitution. A similar plan shall be adopted for all special courts and quasijudicial bodies.
Sec. 13, Art. 18
SECTION 13. The legal effect of the lapse, before the ratification of this Constitution, of the applicable period for the decision or resolution of the cases or matters submitted for adjudication by the courts, shall be determined by the S upreme Court as soon as practicable.
Sec. 14, Art. 18
SECTION 14. The provisions of paragraphs (3) and (4), Section 15 of Article VIII of this Constitution shall apply to cases or matters filed before the ratification of this Constitution, when the applicable period lapses after such ratification.
(1) All cases or matters filed after the effectivity of this Constitution must be decided or resolved within twenty-four months from date of submission for the Supreme Court, and, unless reduced by the Supreme Court, twelve months for all lower collegiate courts, and three months for all other lower courts.
(2) A case or matter shall be deemed submitted for decision or resolution upon the filing of the last pending, brief, or memorandum required by the Rules of Court or by the court itself.
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(3) Upon the expiration of the corresponding period, a certification to this effect signed by the Chief Justice or the presiding judge shall forthwith be issued and a copy thereof attached to the record of the case or matter, and served upon the parties. The certification shall state why a decision or resolution has not been rendered or issued within said period.
(4) Despite the expiration of the applicable mandatory period, the court, without prejudice to such responsibility as may have been incurred in consequence thereof, shall decide or resolve the case or matter submitted thereto for determination, without further delay. administrative powers Sec. 5(3), Art. 8
(3) Assign temporarily judges of lower courts to other stations as public interest may require. Such temporary assignment shall not exceed six months without the consent of the judge concerned.
Sec. 5(4), Art. 8
(4) Order a change of venue or place of trial to avoid a miscarriage of justice.
Sec. 5(6), Art. 8
(6) Appoint all officials and employees of the Judiciary in accordance with the Civil Service Law.
Sec. 5(11), Art. 8
supervision over the lower courts Maceda
Vasquez In Re Demeteria
Justice Demetria filed this MR of the decision dated March 27, 2001
WHETHER DEMETRIA IN EXTENDING COUNSELING SERVICES SHOULD BE PUNISHED? YES
finding him guilty for interceding for suspected Chinese drug queen Yu In affirming the assailed decision, the Supreme Court held that great weight and highest respect Formaran III. Mme. Justice Carolina Grino P. Aquino evaluated the case is accorded to the evaluation of Mme. Justice Carolina Grino P. Aquino, as her assessment of and thru the testimonies of witnesses found him aiding the case of Yu the evidence are quite competent and convincing and in the absence of GAD; that the conspiracy to clear Yu Yuk Lai has become clearer with the recent dismissal of Judge Manuel T. Yuk Lai. Yuk Lai. Demetria was accused of extending counseling services to SP
Muro who is handling her case for misconduct, for being utterly inefficient and partial in favor of Yu Yuk Lai, and respondent Justice has wittingly, perhaps unwittingly, become one of the coconspirators; that as a member of the Judiciary, respondent Justice should not act as lawyer for an accused nor should he teach the prosecutors what to do; that the series of events that transpired led to the conclusion that points to his guilt; and that his denial cannot prevail over the positive declarations of the prosecutions who from all indications were never actuated by
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improper motives. Respondent argues that his culpability must be established beyond reasonable doubt. But, as often said, proof beyond reasonable doubt does not mean such absolute certainty as to exclude the possibility of error. Only moral certainty is required, or that degree of proof which produces conviction in an unprejudiced mind. In the instant case, we believe that that requisite degree of proof has been met. MR DENIED temporary assignmentof judges to other stations in public interest
order a change of venue / place of trial to Avoid miscarriage of justice
Mondiguing was the mayor of Banawe Ifugao.
WHETHER A CHANGE OF VENUE SHOULD BE ORDERED? YES
Mondiguing and Dunuan are 2 of 10 defendants accused of double murder, frustrated murder and attempted murder in connection with an ambuscade in Baag, Banaue where Governor Lumauig was In Paredes vs. Abad, Judge Abad was disqualified from trying the electoral protests filed by wounded and his executive assistant and his driver were killed. Up Paredes against Lumauig. to this time the accused in that case have not been arraigned. .
Accused filed in the SC a petition for transfer of venue Baguio or Quezon City, claiming they could not expect a fair trial in Lagawe, Ifugao because Judge Abad is a protege of Governor Lumauig and that their witnesses would be afraid to testify because of harassment.
Because of the incident and constant threats on his life, Mondiguing resigned as mayor of Banaue and took refuge in
Generally,a change of the place of trial in criminal cases should not be granted for whimsical or flimsy reasons. The interests of the public require that, to secure the best results and effects in the punishment of crime, it is necessary to prosecute and punish the criminal in the very place, as near as may be, where he committed his crime. Except when it is to avoid a miscarriage of justice.
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In the interest of a fair and impartial trial and to avoid a miscarriage of justice and considering
The Acting Sol-Gen offered to be transferred in Isabela in view of
that his life would be in danger if he were to be tried in Lagawe, Ifugao, he should be tried in Baguio.
its proximity to Ifugao.
People vs. Sola
Respondent Judge Abad claimed that he was not biased.
The criminal case for 7 murders against Pablo Sola was pending
WHETHER THERE SHOULD BE A CHANGE OF VENUE? YES
trial before CFI Negros Occidental.
A search warrant for the search and seizure of the 7 deceased bodies believed in the possession of Pablo Sola in his hacienda at
The prosecution’s witnesses were not able to testify because of several death threats so there
Sta. Isabel. Diggings made in a canefield yielded 2 common graves
was a compelling need to change the venue in order to promote a fair trial.
containing the 7 bodies
7 separate complaints for murder were filed against Sola, et.al., wherein warrants of arrest were issued. Without giving the prosecution the opportunity to prove that the evidence of guilt of the accused is strong, the court granted t hem the right to post bail for their temporary release.
The prosecution’s witness claimed their safety could be jeopardized because at least 2 of the accused are officials with power and influence in Kabankalan and they have been released on bail. In addition, most of the accused remained at large. Indeed, there have been reports made to police authorities of threats made on the families of the witnesses.
appointment of officials & employees of the entire judiciary
promulgation of rules concerning the enforcement & protection of constitutional rights
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promulgation of rules concerning pleading, practice & procedure Bustos
The petitioner is an accused in a criminal case, filed a petition to Whether the accused, after renouncing his right to present evidence, and by reason of that remand the case to the justice of the peace court (court of srcin), in waiver he was committed to the corresponding court for trial, is estopped from questioning order for him to cross-examine the complainant and her witnesses in the same? yes connection with their testimony that led to his warrant of arrest. The motion was denied and that denial is the subject matter of this Section 11 of Rule 108 does not curtail the sound discretion of the justice of the peace on the proceeding.
matter. While section 11 of Rule 108 defines the bounds of the defendant's right in the preliminary investigation, there is nothing in it or any other law restricting the authority,
Petitioner claims that when he was summoned for investigation, the inherent in a court of justice, t o pursue a course of action reasonably calculated to bring out the justice of the peace informed him of the charges and a sked him if he truth. But the "defendant can not, as a matter of right, compel the complainant and his pleaded guilty or not guilty, upon which he entered the plea of not
witnesses to repeat in his presence what they had said at the preliminary examination before
guilty. Then his counsel moved that the complainant present her the issuance of the order of arrest." The constitutional right of an accused to be confronted by evidence so that she and her witnesses could be examined and cross- the witnesses against him does not apply to preliminary hearings; nor will the absence of a examined in the manner and form provided by law. The fiscal and the private prosecutor objected, invoking section 11 of Rule 108, and the
preliminary examination be an infringement of his right to confront witnesses. As a matter of fact, preliminary investigation may be done away with entirely without infringing the
objection was sustained. The accused's counsel announced his
constitutional right of an accused under the due process clause to a fair trial.
intention to renounce his right to present evidence, and the justice of the peace forwarded the case to the court of first instance.
The foregoing decision was rendered by a divided court. The minority went farther than the majority and denied even any discretion on the part of the justice of the peace or judge holding the preliminary investigation to compel the complainant and his witnesses to testify anew. Upon the foregoing considerations, the present petition is dismissed with costs against the petitioner.
vs. Petitioner, accused before the Sandiganbayan of estafa through
WHETHER THE PRESIDENT (DURING MARTIAL LAW) CAN CREATE AN ANTI-GRAFT COURT? YES
falsification of public and commercial documents, assailed the validity of PD 1486, as amended by PD 1606 creating this special court on the ground that its creation is violative of the due process, equal protection and ex post facto clauses of the Constitution.
While the 1973 Constitution would contemplate that an act creating a special court s uch as the Sandiganbayan should come from the National Assembly, the 1976 Amendments made clear that the incumbent President "shall continue to exercise legislative powers until martial law shall have been lifted.'' As affirmed in Aquino, Jr. v. COMELEC, "it is not a grant of authority to legislate but a recognition of such power as already existing in favor of the incumbent President during the period of Martial law.
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That SC, in dismissing the petition, held that the unconstitutionality of such decree cannot be adjudged. The requirements of due process as applied to criminal proceedings are considered complied with where the accused is heard in a court of competent jurisdiction and proceeded against under the orderly process of law, and only punished after inquiry and investigation, upon notice to him, with an opportunity to be heard and a judgment awarded within the authority of a constitutional law. The equal protection clause has not been violated either despite the limitation in the accused's right to appeal as the classification satisfies the test of substantial distinctions, germane to the purposes of the law, the Sandiganbayan having been specially created in response to the problem of dishonesty in the public service. The challenged decree is likewise not contrary to the ex post facto provision of the Constitution on the allegation that petitioner's right of appeal is being diluted or eroded efficacy wise as the omission of the Court of Appeals as an intermediate tribunal does not deprive petitioner of a right vital to the protection of his liberty. As held in the case of Duncan v. Missouri, "the prescribing, of different modes of procedure and the abolition of courts and the creation of new ones, leaving untouched all the substantial protections with which the existing laws surrounds the person accused of crime, are not considered within the constitutional inhibition."
EX POST FACTO LAW: In re: Kay Villegas Kami Inc., it was held that an ex post facto law is one which: (1) makes criminal an act done before the passage of the law and which was innocent when done, and punishes such an act; (2) aggravates a crime, or makes it greater than it was, when committed; (3) changes the punishment and inflicts a greater punishment than the law annexed to the crime when committed; (4) alters the legal rules of evidence, and authorizes conviction upon less or different testimony than the law required at the time of the commission of the offense; (5) assuming to regulate civil rights and remedies only, in effect imposes penalty or deprivation of a right for something which when done was lawful; and (6) deprives a person accused of a crime of some lawful protection to which he has become entitled, such as the protection of a former conviction or acquittal, or a proclamation of amnesty. Maniago vs. CA
Ruben Maniago was the owner of shuttle buses which were used
In the present case, the criminal action was filed against the employee, bus driver. Had the
in transporting employees of the Texas Instruments from Baguio City proper to its plant site at the Export Processing Authority in
driver been convicted and found insolvent, his employer would have been held subsidiarily liable for damages. But if the right to bring a separate civil action (whether arising from the
Loakan, Baguio. 1 of his buses figured in a vehicular accident with
crime or from quasi-delict) is reserved, there would be no possibility that the employer would
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a passenger jeepney owned by Boado. As a result of the accident,
be held liable because in such a case there would be no pronouncement as to the civil liability
a criminal case for reckless imprudence resulting in damage to of the accused. In such a case the institution of a separate and independent civil action under property and multiple physical injuries was filed against his driver. the Civil Code would not result in the employee being held liable for the same act or omission.
A month later, a civil case for damages against Maniago himself.
The rule requiring reservation in the end serves to implement the prohibition against double
Maniago moved for the suspension of the proceedings in the civil
recovery for the same act or omission. As held in Barredo v. Garcia, 25 the injured party must choose which of the available causes of action for damages he will bring. If he fails to reserve
case against him, citing the pendency of the criminal case against his driver. But it was denied because action could proceed
the filing of a separate civil action he will be deemed to have elected to recover damages from the bus driver on the basis of the crime. In such a case his cause of action against the employer independently of the criminal action, in addition to the fact that will be limited to the recovery of the latter's subsidiary liability under Art. 103 of the Revised Maniago was not the accused in the criminal case. Penal Code.
Maniago went to the CA maintaining that the civil action could not . proceed independently of the criminal case because no reservation of the right to bring it separately had been made in the criminal case.
Nor does it matter that the action is against the employer to enforce his vicarious liability under Art. 2180 of the Civil Code. Though not an accused in the criminal case, the employer is very
much a party, as long as the right to bring or institute a separate action (whether arising from CA: DISMISSED because a civil action for damages to be filed crime or from quasi delict) is not reserved. The ruling that a decision convicting the employee is independently of the criminal action even though no reservation binding and conclusive upon the employer "not only with regard to its civil liability but also with to file the same has been made. regard to its amount because the liability of an employer cannot be separated but follows that of his employee" It is true not only with respect to the civil liability arising from crime but also with respect to the civil liability under the Civil Code. Since whatever is recoverable against the employer is ultimately recoverable by him from the employee, the policy against double recovery requires that only one action be maintained for the same act or omission whether the action is brought against the employee or against his employer. Thus in Dulay v. Court of Appeals this Court held that an employer may be sued under Art. 2180 of the Civil Code and that the right to bring the action did not have to be reserved because, having been instituted before the criminal case against the employee, the filing of the civil action against the employer constituted an express reservation of the right to institute it separately.
On the basis of Rule 111, §§1-3, a civil action for the recovery of civil liability is, as a general rule, impliedly instituted with the criminal action, except only (1) when such action arising from the same act or omission, which is the subject of the criminal action, is waived; (2) the right to bring it separately is reserved or (3) such action has been instituted prior to the criminal action. Even if an action has not been reserved or it was brought before the institution of the criminal case, the acquittal of the accused will not bar recovery of civil liability unless the acquittal is based on a finding that the act from which the civil liability might arise did not exist because of
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Art. 29 of the Civil Code.
Complaint against Maniago is DISMISSED. admission to the practice of the law SC Circular No. SUBJECT: ADOPTION OF RULE 138A OF THE REVISED RULES OF COURT TO PERMIT LIMITED LAW STUDENT PRACTICE. 19
RULE 138A LAW STUDENT PRACTICE RULE SEC. 1.Conditions for Student Practice. - A law student who has successfully completed his third year of the regular four-year prescribed law curriculum and is enrolled in a recognized law school’s clinical legal education program approved by the SC, may appear,without compensation, in any civil, criminal or administrative case before any
trial court, tribunal, board or officer, to represent any indigent clients accepted by the legal clinic of the law school. SEC. 2. Appearance. - The appearance of the law student authorized by this rule, shall be under the direct supervision and control of a member of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines duly accredited by the law school. Any and all pleadings, motions, briefs, memoranda or other papers to be filed, must be signed by the supervising attorney for and in behalf of the legal clinic. SEC. 3. Privileged communications. - The Rules safeguarding privileged communications between attorney and client shall apply to similar communications made to or received by the law student, acting for the legal clinic. SEC. 4. Standards of conduct and supervision. - The law student shall comply with the standards of professional conduct governing members of the Bar. Failure of an attorney to provide adequate supervision of student practice may be a ground for disciplinary action.’ INTEGRATION OF THE BAR In Re Edillon
IBP Board of Governors, unanimously adopted a Resolution in an WHETHER EDILLON MAY BE COMPELLED TO PAY IBP DUES in order to maintain his name in Administrative case recommending to the Court the removal of the the roll of attorneys? yes. name Edillon from its Roll of Attorneys for 'stubborn refusal to pay his membership dues' to the IBP since the latter's constitution From the time the decision was rendered, there were various pleadings filed by Edillon for reinstatement starting with a MR. Characterized as it was by persistence in his adamantine notwithstanding due notice. The IBP, through its then President Neri, submitted the said resolution
refusal to admit the full competence of the Court on the matter, it was not unexpected that it would be denied. Since respondent could not be said to be that deficient in legal knowledge and
to the Court for consideration and approval,. Pursuant to paragraph 2, since his pleadings in other cases coming before this Tribunal were quite literate, even if rather generously sprinkled with invective for which he had been duly taken to task, there was the
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Section 24, Article III of the By-Laws of the IBP:
impression that his recalcitrance arose from and sheer obstinacy. Necessary, the extreme penalty of disbarment visited on him was more than justified.
... Should the delinquency further continue until the following June 29, the Board shall promptly inquire into the cause or causes of the Since then, however, there were other communications to this Court where a different attitude continued delinquency and take whatever action it shall deem on his part was discernible. The tone of defiance was gone and circumstances of a mitigating appropriate, including a recommendation to the SC for the removal of character invoked — the state of his health and his advanced age. He likewise spoke of the the delinquent member's name from the Roll of Attorneys. Notice of the action taken should be submit by registered mail to the member
welfare of former clients who still rely on him for counsel, their confidence apparently undiminished. For he had in his career been a valiant, if at times unreasonable, defender of the
and to the Secretary of the Chapter concerned.'
causes entrusted to him.
The Court required Edillon to comment on the resolution and letter. He
This Court, in the light of the above, felt that reinstatement could be ordered. It made certain
submitted his comment reiterating his refusal to pay the membership fees due from him.
that there was full acceptance on his part of the competence of this Tribunal in the exercise of its plenary power to regulate the legal profession and can integrate the bar and that the dues
Reference was then made to the authority of the IBP Board of Governors to recommend to the SC the removal of a delinquent member's name from the Roll of Attorneys as found in Rules of Court: 'Effect of non-payment of dues. — Subject to the provisions of Section
were duly paid. Moreover, the fact that more than two years had elapsed during which he was barred from exercising his profession was likewise taken into account. It may likewise be said that as in the case of the inherent power to punish for contempt, the power to discipline, especially if amounting to disbarment, should be exercised on the preservative and not on the vindictive principle.
12 of this Rule, default in the payment of annual dues for six months shall warrant suspension of membership in the Integrated Bar, and
One last word. It has been pertinently observed that there is no irretrievable finality as far as
default in such payment for one year shall be a ground for the removal admission to the bar is concerned. So it is likewise as to loss of membership. What must ever be of the name of the delinquent member from the Roll of Attorneys. borne in mind is that membership in the bar is a privilege burdened with conditions. Failure to abide by any of them entails the loss of such privilege if the gravity thereof warrant such drastic Edillion submitted that "the above provisions constitute an invasion of move. his constitutional rights in the sense that he is being compelled, as a pre-condition to maintaining his status as a lawyer in good standing, to be a member of the IBP and to pay the corresponding dues, and that as a consequence of this compelled financial support of the said organization to which he is admittedly personally antagonistic, he is being deprived of the rights to liberty and property guaranteed to him by the Constitution. Hence, he concludes, the above provisions of the Court Rule and of the IBP By-Laws are void and of no legal force and effect. It was pointed out in the resolution that such issues was raised on a previous case before the Court, entitled 'Administrative Case No. 526, In the Matter of the Petition for the Integration of the Bar of the Philippines, Roman Ozaeta, et al., Petitioners.' The unanimous
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conclusion reached by the Court was that the integration of the Philippine Bar raises no constitutional question and is therefore legally unobjectionable, "and, within the context of contemporary conditions in the Philippine, has become an imperative means to raise the standards of the legal profession, improve the administration of justice, and enable the Bar to discharge its public responsibility fully and effectively." legal assistance to the underprivileged
No quasi-judicial & administrative work for judges Sec. 12, Art. 8
SECTION 12. The Members of the Supreme Court and of other courts established by law shall not be designated to any agency performing quasi-judicial or administrative functions.
electric Act No. 1446 is entitled. "An Act granting a franchise to Charles M.
WHETHER THE SC HAS THE POWER TO SIT AS BOARD OF ARBITRATORS? NO
Swift to construct, maintain, and operate an electric railway, and to Co. vs. Trans.
construct, maintain, and operate an electric light, heat, and power system from a point in Manila in an easterly direction to the town of Pasig, in the Province of Rizal."
The SC holds that section 11 of Act No. 1446 contravenes the maxims which guide the operation of a democratic government constitutionally established, and that it would be improper and illegal for the members of the SC, sitting as a board of arbitrators, the decision of a majority of whom shall be final, to act on the petition of the Manila Electric Company.
Section 11 of the Act provides: "Whenever any franchise or right of way is granted to any other person or corporation, now or hereafter in existence, over portions of the lines and tracks of the grantee herein, the terms on which said other person or corporation shall use such right of way, and the compensation to be paid to t he grantee herein by such other person or corporation for said use, shall be fixed by the members of the SC, sitting as a board of arbitrators, the decision of a
majority of whom shall be final."
The law calls for arbitration which represents a method of the parties' own choice. A submission to arbitration is a contract. The parties to an arbitration agreement may not oust the courts of jurisdiction of the matters submitted to arbitration. We can also perceive a distinction between a private contract for submission to arbitration and agreements to arbitrate falling within the terms of a statute enacted for such purpose and affecting others than the parties to a particular franchise. Here, however, whatever else may be said in extenuation, it remains true that the decision of the board of arbitrators is made final,
Manila Electric Company presented a petition the members of the SC, which if literally enforced would leave a public utility, not a party to the contract authorized by sitting as a board of arbitrators, to fix the terms upon which certain Act No. 1446, without recourse to the courts for a judicial determination of the question in transportation companies shall be permitted to use the Pasig bridge of dispute. the Manila Electric Company and the compensation to be paid to the
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Manila Electric Company by such transportation companies.
Either the members of the SC, sitting as a board of arbitrators, exercise judicial functions, or the members of the SC, sitting as board of arbitrators, exercise administrative or quasi judicial functions. The first case would appear not to fall within the jurisdiction granted the SC. Even conceding that it does, it would presuppose the right to bring the matter in dispute before the courts, for any other construction would tend to oust the courts of jurisdiction and render the award a nullity. The SC of the Philippine Islands represents one of the three divisions of power in our government. It is judicial power and judicial power only which is exercised by the SC. Just as the SC, as the guardian of constitutional rights, should not sanction usurpations by any other department of the government, so should it as strictly confine its own sphere of influence to the powers expressly or by implication conferred on it by the Organic Act. The SC and its members should not and cannot be required to exercise any power or to perform any trust or to assume any duty not pertaining to or connected with the administering of judicial functions. The Organic Act provides that the SC of the Philippine Islands shall possess and exercise jurisdiction as heretofore provided and such additional jurisdiction as shall hereafter be prescribed by law (sec. 26). When the Organic Act speaks of the exercise of "jurisdiction" by the SC, it could not only mean the exercise of "jurisdiction" by the SC acting as a court, and could hardly mean the exercise of "jurisdiction" by the members of the SC, sitting as a board of arbitrators. There is an important distinction between the SC as an entity and the members of the SC. A board of arbitrators is not a "court" in any proper sense of the term, and possesses none of the jurisdiction which the Organic Act contemplates shall be exercised by the Supreme Court. The power conferred on this court is exclusively judicial , and it cannot be required or authorized to exercise any other. . . . Its jurisdiction and powers and duties being defined in the organic law of the government, and being all strictly judicial, Congress cannot require or authorize the court to exercise any other jurisdiction or power, or perform any other duty. . . . The award of execution is a part, and an essential part of every judgment passed by a court exercising judicial power. It is no judgment, in the legal sense of the term, without it. Without such an award the judgment would be inoperative and nugatory, leaving the aggrieved party without a remedy. It would be merely an opinion, which would remain a dead letter, and without any operation upon the rights of the parties, unless Congress should at some future time sanction it, and pass a law authorizing the court to carry its opinion into effect. Such is not the judicial power confided to this court, in the exercise of its appellate jurisdiction; yet it is the whole power that the court is allowed to exercise under this act of Congress. . . . And while it
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executes firmly all the judicial powers entrusted to it, the court will carefully abstain from exercising any power that is not strictly judicial in its character, a nd which is not clearly confided to it by the Constitution. in
judge Judge Rodolfo U. Manzano, Executive Judge, RTC, Bangui, Ilocos Norte,
Branch 19, sent this Court a letter which reads:
WHETHER AN RTC JUDGE CAN VALIDLY HOLD a provincial/city committee on justice position while being an appointed judge?
An examination of EO 856, as amended, reveals that Provincial/City Committees on Justice are created to insure the speedy disposition of cases of detainees, particularly those involving the
By Executive Order RF6-04 issued on June 21, 1988 by the Honorable
poor and indigent ones, thus alleviating jail congestion and improving local jail conditions.
Provincial Governor of Ilocos Norte, Hon. Rodolfo C. Farinas, I was designated as a member of the Ilocos Norte Provincial Committee on
It is evident that such Provincial/City Committees on Justice perform administrative functions.
Justice created pursuant to Presidential Executive Order No. 856 of 12
Administrative functions are those which involve the regulation and control over the conduct
December 1986, as amended by Executive Order No. 326 of June 1, 1988. In consonance with Executive Order RF6-04, the Honorable
and affairs of individuals for; their own welfare and the promulgation of rules and regulations to better carry out the policy of the legislature or such as are devolved upon the administrative
Provincial Governor of Ilocos Norte issued my appointment as a
agency by the organic law of its existence.
member of the Committee. For your ready reference, I am enclosing herewith machine copies of Executive Order RF6-04 and the
Furthermore, under Executive Order No. 326 amending Executive Order No. 856, it is provided
Before I may accept the appointment and enter in the discharge of the Section 6. Supervision.—The Provincial/City Committees on Justice shall be under the powers and duties of the position as member of the Ilocos (Norte) supervision of the Secretary of justice Quarterly accomplishment reports shall be submitted to Provincial Committee on Justice, may I have the honor to request for the Office of the Secretary of Justice. the issuance by the Honorable Supreme Court of a Resolution, as follows:
Under the Constitution, the members of the Supreme Court and other courts established by law shall not be designated to any agency performing quasi- judicial or administrative
(1) Authorizing me to accept the appointment and to as assume and discharge the powers and duties attached to the said position;
functions (Section 12, Art. VIII, Constitution).
(2) Considering my membership in the Committee as neither violative
Justice, which discharges a administrative functions, will be in violation of the Constitution, the Court is constrained to deny his request.
of the Independence of the Judiciary nor a violation of Section 12, Article VIII, or of the second paragraph of Section .7, Article IX (B), both of the Constitution, and will not in any way amount to an abandonment of my present position as Executive Judge of Branch XIX, Regional Trial Court, First Judicial Region, and as a member of the Judiciary; and (3) Consider my membership in the said Committee as part of the
Considering that membership of Judge Manzano in the Ilocos Norte Provincial Committee on
While the doctrine of separation of powers is a relative theory not to be enforced with pedantic rigor, the practical demands of government precluding its doctrinaire application, it cannot justify a member of the judiciary being required to assume a position or perform a duty nonjudicial in character. That is implicit in the principle. Otherwise t here is a plain departure from its command. The essence of the trust reposed in him is to decide. Only a higher court, as was emphasized by Justice Barredo, can pass on his actuation. He is not a subordinate of an
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primary functions of an Executive Judge.
executive or legislative official, however eminent. It is indispensable that there be no exception
May I please be favored soon by your action on this request.
to the rigidity of such a norm if he is, as expected, to be confined to the task of adjudication. Fidelity to his sworn responsibility no less than the maintenance of respect for the judiciary can
Very respectfully yours, (Sgd) RODOLFO U. MANZANO Judge
be satisfied with nothing less. This declaration does not mean that RTC Judges should adopt an attitude of monastic insensibility or unbecoming indifference to Province/City Committee on Justice. As incumbent RTC Judges, they form part of the structure of government. Even as non-members of Provincial/City Committees on Justice, RTC judges should render assistance to said Committees to help promote the laudable purposes for which they exist, butonly when such assistance may be reasonably incidental to the fulfillment of their judicial duties.
fiscal autonomy Nitafan
report on the judiciary Sec. 16, Art. 8 Corpus vs. CA
whether or not David is entitled to attorney's fees? YES.
Corpus was charged administratively by several employee of the
While there was express agreement between petitioner Corpus and respondent David as
Central Bank Export Department of which he is the director. Pending regards attorney's fees, the facts of the case support the position of respondent David that the investigation, he was suspended from office. After the investigating there was at least an implied agreement for the payment of attorney's fees. committee found the administrative charges to be without merit, and subsequently recommended the immediate reinstatement, then However, David and Judge Jose H. Tecson is guilty of contempt of court because of David's Governor of Central Bank, Miguel Cuaderno, Sr., recommended that petitions filed with the Supreme Court to remand the case to the trial court for execution and the Corpus be considered resigned on the ground of lost confidence. The Monetary Board declared Corpus as resigned as of the date of suspension.
for the issuance of such certification had not yet been acted upon as the same were still pending consideration by this Court. David filed a motion with the court a quo for the issuance of a writ of execution to enforce its
Corpus then filed a petition for certiorari, mandamus and quo warranto decision knowing fully well that it was then still pending appeal before this Court. In addition, with preliminary mandatory injuction and damages against Miguel no certification that the aforesaid decision is already deemed affirmed had as yet been issued Cuaderno, Sr., the Central Bank and Mario Marcos who was appointed by the Chief Justice pursuant to Section 11, paragraph 2, Article X of the New Constitution; In to his previous position. The case was dismissed for failure to exhaust
fact, this Court has not as of this time made any pronouncement on the aforesaid provision of
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the New Constitution.
This act of David constitutes disrespect to, as well as disregard of, the authority of this Court as the final arbiter of all cases duly appealed to it, especially constitutional questions. It must be
According to plaintiff David, 6 or 7 days prior to the expiration of the period for appeal from the order of dismissal, he chanced to meet the
emphasized that as a member of the Philippine Bar he is required "to observe and maintain the respect due to the court of justice and judicial officers" (Section 20 (b), 138 of the Revised Rules
father of Corpus. After talking about Corpus's having lost his case, and knowing that David and Corpus were both members of the CLU, the
of Court). Likewise, Canon 1 of the Canons of Professional Ethic expressly provide that: "It is the duty of the lawyer to maintain towards the Courts a respectful attitude, not for the sake of the
father requested David to go over the case and that he would send his
temporary incumbent of the judgement office, but for the maintenance of its supreme
son to him to find out what could be done about the case. Corpus called up David the following morning for an appointment. Corpus
importance." And this Court had stressed that "the duty of an attorney to the courts 'can only be maintained by rendering no service involving any disrespect to the judicial office which he is requested David to handle the case because Atty. Alvarez had already bound to uphold'. been disenchanted and wanted to give up the case. Although at first reluctant to handle the case, the David finally agreed on condition that This Court takes judicial notice of the fact that David, in the previous case of Integrated he and Atty. Alverez would collaborate in the case. Construction Services, Inc. and Engineering Construction, Inc. v. Relova had sent letters addressed to the then Chief Justice Makalintal and later to the late Chief Justice Castro, Corpus's version of how David came into the case is as follows: After the order of dismissal was published in the newspapers, David sought a conference with Corpus. Even before the case was dismissed, David had shown interest in the same by being present during the
requesting for the issuance of certification on the basis of the aforementioned provision of the New Constitution which were not given due consideration. And knowing this, David should have been more prudent and cautious with the court a quo for any motion for execution.
There was even a taint of arrogance and defiance on the part of David in not filing his comment hearings in the sala of Judge Lantin. When David and Corpus met, David to the letter-complaint and instead, he sent a letter requesting to be excused from the filing of handed Corpus a memorandum prepared by him on how he can secure his comment on the lame excuse that petitioner's letter-complaint was not verified. the reversal of the order of dismissal by means of a formula stated in said memorandum. Corpus wrote David, sending with it a copy of the
On the part of Judge Tecson, his presumptuous and precipitate act of granting the motion for
order (Corpus contends that it was not six or seven days prior to the expiration of the period of appeal) but on a date even earlier.
execution of David likewise constitutes disrespect to, as well as of, the authority of this Court because he know for a fact that the case was still pending, as not yet been remanded to it and
that no certification has been issued by this Court. As a judicial officer, Judge Tecson is charged The SC in the background case rendered a decision declaring illegal the with the knowledge of the fact that this Court has yet to make a definite pronouncement on resolution of the Monetary Board. Corpus made a formal demand upon Section 11, paragraph 2, Article X of the New Constitution. Judge Tecson should know that only the defendants in that case for collection of the amount as back the Supreme Court can authoritatively interpret Section 11 (2) of Article X of the 1973 salaries and other emoluments from the CB. Corpus likewise wrote the Constitution. Yet, Judge Tecson assumed the role of the Highest Court of the Land. Governor of CB requesting that the amount representing the back salaries be made out in two: one in his favor and the other
A becoming modesty of inferior courts demands conscious realization of the position that
representing the professional fees equivalent to 50% of the said back
they occupy in the interrelation and operation of the integrated judged system of the nation.
salaries being claimed by Corpus. It may also be added that the improvident act of respondent David in firing the motion for To obtain the relief from the Governor of Central Bank, DAVID
execution and the precipitate act of Judge Tecson in issuing the writ of execution are intriguing
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instituted this action against CORPUS.
as they invite suspicion that there was connivance between the two. Respondent David would
seem to imply that his claim for attorney's fees should be given preference over the other cams Corpus contends that respondent David is not entitled to attorney's now pending in this Court. Certainly, such should not be the case because there are cases which fees because there was no contract to that effect. On the other hand, by their nature require immediate or preferential attention by this Tribunal like habeas corpus respondent David contends that the absence of a formal contract for cases, labor cases and c cases involving death sentence, let al one cases involving properties and the payment of the attorney's fees will not negate the payment thereof property rights of poor litigants pending decision or resolution long before the New Constitution because the contract may be express or implied, and there was an of 1973. Nobility and exempt forbearance were expected of Atty. David, who is old and implied understanding between the petitioner and private respondent experienced in the practice of the legal profession, from which he has derived a great measure. that the former will pay the latter attorney's fees when a final decision of economic well-being and independence shall have been rendered in favor of the petitioner reinstating him to his former position in the Central Bank and paying his back salaries. Consequently, the filing of the motion for immediate execution and the issuance of the writ of execution constitute a defiance and usurpation of the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court. As a disciplinary measure for the preservation and vindication of the dignity of this Supreme Tribunal respondent Atty. David should be REPRIMANDED for his precipitate action of filing a motion for execution as well as Judge Tecson for his improvident issuance of a writ of execution while the case is pending appeal before the Supreme Court, and a repetition of said acts would be dealt with more severely. Malacora vs. CA CAR CASE:
WHETHER THE COURT OF APPEALS PROPERLY ANNULLED THE WRIT OF EXECUTION, SHERIFFS CERT. OF SALE AND FINAL DEED OF SALE? YES.
"Dionisio Malacora and Lucia Marabulas vs. Rodrigo Libarnes and Consuelo Libarnes", both were ordered to pay 50-50 the court fees, the
Under the provision of Article X, Section 11 of the 1973 Constitution provides for a period of
plaintiffs (MM)to pay their one-half share upon receipt of the
(18) months within which an appealed case should be decided by this Court.
payments for one-half of the improvements. That provision is mandatory . The provision is mandatory and should have been complied with CA:
immediately after the effectivity of the New Constitution. All provisions of the Constitution
which direct specific acts to be done, or prohibit certain acts to be done, should be construed as mandatory . decision became final and the case returned to CAR, MM filed a motion for execution. A writ of execution was issued which commanded LL to The provision in question states: Defendants (LL) appealed, CA modified the judgment. After the
pay MM. The Provincial Sheriff enforced the writ of execution by levying upon
Section 11. (1) Upon the effectivity of this Constitution, the maximum period within which a case or matter shall be decided or solved from the date of its submission, shall be eighteen (18)
the property of LL. In the ensuing auction sale, the property was sold to
months for the Supreme Court, and unless reduced by the Supreme Court, twelve (12) months
MM, who were then issued the corresponding certificate of sale. As LL failed to exercise their right of redemption, a final deed of sale was
for an inferior collegiate courts, and three (3) months for all other inferior courts.
issued in favor of MM. MM filed a motion for issuance of a writ of
(2) With respect to the Supreme Court and other collegiate appellate courts, when the
possession, which was opposed on the ground 'that the writ of
applicable maximum period shall have lapsed without the rendition of the corresponding
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execution did not conform to the judgment of the trial court as
decision or resolution because the necessary vote cannot be had, the judgment, order, or
modified by the decision of the CA. In resolving the motion the CA:
resolution appealed from shall be deemed affirmed except in those cases where a qualified majority is required and in appeals from judgment of conviction in criminal cases; and in srcinal
This is a motion for the issuance of writ of possession on the ground
special civil actions and proceedings for habeas corpus, the petition in such cases shall be
that LL, the losing party, refuse to surrender the possession of the property subject of execution of which the Sheriff's final Deed of Sale
deemed dismissed; and a certification to this effect signed by the chief magistrate of the court shall be issued and a copy thereof at tached to the record of the case.
has already been issued in favor of MM. The Constitution could not have intended anything but full and immediate compliance The decision of this Court granted unto MM a sum corresponding to
therewith. The manifest purpose is to avoid delay in the disposition of cases, which always is a one-half of P5,190.00 which is the total valuation of the fruit bearing cause of injustice, under the familiar aphorism that "justice delayed is justice denied." It would, coconut trees and 62 non-bearing coconut trees. On appeal, the at the same time, ease up the clogged dockets of the courts. valuation was modified by the CA per coconut tree, be it fruit bearing or not. What may be impossible is for example, to decide a case on the merit within the eighteen (18) monthsgiven to it from its submission for decision , because so many other appealed cases had The Court feels that the variance in amount is not sufficient to cancel already accumulated. The automatic affirmance of the appealed provision in case of failure to and/or declare as null and void an otherwise regular and lawful decide or resolve within the time limit is precisely the alternative prescription, believed to execution proceedings undertaken by the Sheriff. A simple restitution better serve the cause of justice than waiting, no matter how long, for a decision on the merit. would better serve the ends of justice than have us follow the complexities of technical rules of procedure and of law.
Under Section 2 of Article X of the Constitution, eight (8) votes are required for a decision of the Court en banc, five (5) votes, for a decision of a Division. If the necessary vote is not obtained,
Therefore MM were ordered to restore/return and/or reimburse unto the petition is dismissed, and the appealed decision, order or resolution is then deemed LL a particular sum. MM filed an MR where the court ordered to place affirmed. This is what happens when this Court acts on the case within the period fixed in MM in possession as owners of the property and to reimburse LL an Section 11 of Article X of the Constitution, but fails to obtain the necessary vote. amount. The Constitution intends that aside from the way an appealed decision, order or resolution is Thereafter, MM filed a petition in the CA. Despite the Resolution of this deemed affirmed because of lack of necessary vote under Section 2 of Article X, thesame effect Court requiring the parties to submit their memorandum is contemplated by reason of the lapse of the period fixed without the case being decided on simultaneously within thirty (30) days from notice, after the petition the merits.Both Section 2 and Section 11, each be given distinct Identity achieving a common was given due course, MM failed to file their memorandum, while LL objective but through two different and separate ways: (1) the necessary vote could not be filed their own. MM as the appellants, should feel more under had, under Section 2, and (2) the period fixed had lapsed, under Section 11. obligation to file his memorandum, just like the appellant in an ordinary appeal, which would be dismissed for failure to file the All that paragraph 2 of Section 11 requires for the appealed decision to be deemed affirmed and appellant's brief.
srcinal special civil actions, dismissed, is that the applicable maximum period has lapsed without the decision of the merits being rendered, because of failure to act on the case and put CA annulled the writ of execution, the Sheriff's Certificate of Sale and it to a vote, not that it was put to a vote, but "the necessary vote could not be had." What the Sheriff's Final Deed of Sale. Constitution has in and, therefore, is "inaction" on the part of the court during the applicable period, as the reason or cause for the failure to render a decision or resolution within the
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applicable period, not that "the necessary vote cannot be had. The express mention by Section 11 itself of exceptionsto the a utomatic affirmance of appealed decisions, orders or resolutions when not reversed or modified within the prescribed period, namely, (1) cases where a qualified majority is required and (2) appeals from judgment of conviction in criminal cases, which even after the lapse of the fixed period may still be decided on the merits, clearly, means under the maxim "expressio inius est exclusio alterius," that aside from the exceptions expressly mentioned, all other cases may no longer be decided on the merits after the lapse of the applicable maximum period. The appealed decision, order and resolution would be deemed affirmed, and shall then be so certified by the chief magistrate of the court, as provided in the last part of paragraph 2 of Section 11. No member of the Court is meant to be singled out for any culpability or dereliction of duty. Neither is any adverse reflection meant to be made against the Court as a whole, because there is in the Constitution an implicit recognition of the probability of many appealed cases not being decided or resolved within the period as short as that prescribed, not because of culpable neglect, inefficiency or incompetence of any member of the Court or of the Court itself as a body, but because of sheer physical impossibility. The particular right to demand for the certificationof the Chief Magistrate that t he appealed decision is deemed affirmed by the lapse of the specified period without a decision on the merits having been rendered, is waivable,and is deemed waived if not invoked within a reasonable time from notice of the questioned decision. The Constitution provides that the conclusion of the Court shall be reached in consultation before the case is assigned to a member for the writing of the opinion of the Court (Section 8, Article X). Setting a case for that required consultation can reasonably be done within just months from its submission for decision, long before the lapse of the applicable period. This same case had already been discussed among the members, and dismissing it or giving due course to it is not so difficult a matter to determine. Either of these actions is usually taken in the session when the agenda in which the new petition is placed is discussed just one day or so after the new cases are assigned to the members for report and recommendation as to what action to take. There should perhaps be less difficulty in reaching the final conclusion when, after a long period. After the voting, the case is actually decided on the merits, or the appealed decision, order or resolution is deemed affirmed by operation of the Constitution, depending on the result of the voting. If this procedure is adopted, no unnecessary delay need be incurred in. What really takes some time is the writing of the decision by the ponente who is chosen after a final conclusion is
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reached. But if by appropriate Resolution, which may be just a Minute Resolution, it would be made of record that in that session when the voting was held after the required consultation, the Court had reached its conclusion the case has, in fact, been already decided, at least for the purpose of compliance with the Constitution. The decision complete with the opinion as written by the ponente chosen for the purpose may be actually released as later, indeed, there have been instances when decisions were promulgated without prejudice to the writing of the extended opinion. As to the srcinal special civil actions including habeas corpus, all that the Constitution mandates is that the petitions in such cases shall be deemed dismissed if the necessary vote cannot be had within the period fixed , which is actually another way of saying that no decision has been rendered. Marcelino Cruz
vs. A petition for prohibition and writ of habeas corpus to enjoin Judge
Fernando Cruz, Jr. from promulgating his decision in a Criminal Case
WHETHER THE Three-month period prescribed by Section 11[l] of Article X of the 1973 Constitution, being a constitutional directive, is mandatory in character and that non-
and for release from detention of the accused in said case, on the
observance thereof results in the loss of jurisdiction of the court over the unresolved case?
ground of loss of jurisdiction of trial court for failure to decide the same
within the period of ninety  days from submission. Marcelino was charged with the crime of rape before the CFI. Trial was
November 28, 1975 or 85 days from the date the case was deemed submitted for decision, respondent judge filed with the deputy clerk of court the decision. He had thus veritably
conducted and the same was concluded when the accused rested his rendered his decision on said case within the three-month period prescribed by the case. On the same date, however, the attorneys for both parties moved Constitution. for time within which to submit their respective memoranda. The trial in trial courts refers to the filing of the signed decision with the court granted the motion. Counsel for Marcelino submitted his The rendition of the judgment . Thus, it is this date that should be considered in determining whether or not memorandum in due time, but no memorandum was filed by the clerk of court respondent judge had resolved the case within the allotted period. Indeed, the date of People. Judge Cruz filed with the Deputy Clerk of Court his decision for
promulgation of a decision could not serve as the reckoning date because the same necessarily comes at at a later date, considering that notices have to be sent to the accused as well as to
promulgation. The decision was also dated November 28, 1975. A certification dated January 26, 1976 was executed by Postmaster
the other parties involved, an event which is beyond the control of the judge. The promulgation of a judgment in the trial court does not necessarily coincide with the date of its delivery by t he
Santos to the effect that registered letters addressed to Marietta
judge of the clerk of court.
Ferrer, the complaining witness, and Atty. Angel P. Purisima, counsel for the accused, respectively, were posted in said office on December 4, 1975. These notices were received by the respective addressees on December 8 and 9, 1975. Similar notices were sent to the Provincial Fiscal and to the Provincial Warden of Pasig, Rizal, who both received them on December 2,1975.
Section 11 , Article X of the New Constitution provides in full, to wit: SEC. 11 . Upon the effectivity of this Constitution, the maximum period within which a case or matter shall be decided or resolved from the date of its submission, shall be eighteen months for the Supreme court, and, unless reduced by the Supreme Court, twelve months for all
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On the date set for promulgation of the decision, counsel for accused
inferior collegiate courts, and three months for all other inferior courts.
moved for postponement, raising for the first time the alleged loss of jurisdiction of the trial court for failure to decide the case within 90 The established rule is that "constitutional provisions are to be construed as mandatory, unless days from submission thereof for decision. Acceding to counsel's by express provision or by necessary implication, a different intention is manifest." "The request that he be given time to consider the proper remedial measure difference between a mandatory and a directory provision is often determined on grounds of to take, the judge reset the promulgation of the decision to January 19, expediency, the reason being that less injury results to the general public by disregarding than by enforcing the letter of the law." 1976 at 8:30 AM. On January 19, 1976, counsel for Marcelino moved anew for the
"the statutory provisions which may be thus departed from with impunity, without affecting the
resetting of the promulgation of decision. Granting the motion, Judge Cruz rescheduled the promulgation to January 26, 1976.
validity of statutory proceedings, are usually those which relate to the mode or time of doing that which is essential to effect the aim and purpose of the Legislature or some incident of the essential act.”
It falls within the exception rather than the general rule. By the phrase "unless reduced by the Supreme Court," it is evident that the period prescribed therein is subject to modification by this Court in accordance with its prerogative under Section 5 of Article X of the New Constitution to "promulgate rules concerning pleading, practice and procedure in all ... courts " And there can be no doubt that said provision, having been incorporated for reasons of expediency, relates merely to matters of procedure . Constitutional provisions are directory, and not mandatory, where they refer to matters merely procedural. De Roma vs. CA
automatic release of appropriation for the judiciary Sec. 3, Art. 8
SECTION 3. The Judiciary shall enjoy fiscal autonomy. Appropriations for the Judiciary may not be reduced by the legislature below the amount appropriated for the previous year and, after approval, shall be automatically and r egularly released.
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