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Election Laws

Election Laws

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Published by geritt
Digested election law cases
Digested election law cases

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Published by: geritt on Apr 03, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Election Laws
( 254 SCRA 286 )“Election Offense, B. Jurisdiction Over Election Offenses”Facts: Complainant Alberto Naldoza, accused in the aforestated cases ran for re-election in the May 8 Barangay elections. The spouses Generoso Flame and LuciaFlame and the spouses Marlon Piedad and Rosemarie Piedad thereafter accusedcomplainant of vote-buying in winning the election. Accordingly, the Chief of Policeof Miagao with whom the charge was lodged, filed two separate complaints againstNaldoza for vote-buying. Respondent examined the private complainants, adoptingfor the purpose the transcript of the question-and-answer type of examinationconducted by the Chief of Police and sworn before him by the parties. Respondentissued an order finding probable cause to believe complainant Naldoza committedthe crime charged, and respondent thereupon issued the warrants for complainant’sarrest.Subsequently, respondent issued another order, reconsidering his order, insofar as itreferred the cases to the Comelec. The cases were instead remanded to the Chief of Police of Miagao, Iloilo with instructions to file the same directly with the provincialprosecutor. The warrants of arrest were lifted and complainant’s release wasordered.Issue: Whether or not there is ignorance of the law for failure to comply with Section4 of Comelec resolution No. 2695, authorizing chiefs of police to conduct thepreliminary investigation of charges for violation of the Omnibus Election Code.Held: Yes, service in the judiciary means a continuous study and research on the lawfrom beginning to the end. A judge owes it to the public and to the legal profession toknow the factual basis of the complaint and the very law he is supposed to apply to agiven controversy. A reduced fine is deemed proper where there is no malice or evilintent in a judge’s actuations in unwarrantedly conducting a preliminary investigationand in ordering the issuance of warrants of arrest.
Election Laws
“Election Offense, B. Jurisdiction Over Election Offenses”Facts: Special Provision No. 1 of the Countrywide Development Fund (CDF) under Republic Act No. 7180, allocates a specific amount of government funds foinfrastructure and other priority projects and activities. In order to be valid, the useand release of said amount should have the following mandatory requirements: (1)Approval by the President of the Philippines; (2) Release of the amount directly to theappropriate implementing agency; and (3) List of projects and activities.Respondent Cesar Sarino, the then DILG Secretary, requested for authority tonegotiate, enter into, sign Memoranda of Agreements with accredited Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in order to utilize them to implement theprojects of the CDF provided for under R.A. No. 7180. Respondent Franklin Drilon,the then Executive Secretary, granted the abovementioned request of SecretarySarino. Such an authority was extended to all the Regional Directors of the DILG.Pursuant to the above-described authority granted him, respondent Tiburcio Relucio,on April 24, 1992, entered into a Memorandum of Agreement with an accreditedNGO known as the “Philippine Youth Health and Sports Development Foundation,Inc.” (PYHSDFI). COMELEC received from petitioner Kilosbayan a letter informingthe former of “two serious violations of election laws,” among them that the amount of P70 million was released by the Budget Department, shortly before the elections of May 11, 1992, in favor of “PYHSDFI” a private entity, which had reportedly engagedin dirty election tricks and practices in said elections and requesting that theseoffenses and malpractices be investigated promptly, thoroughly, impartially, withoutfear of favor.Issue: Based on recommendations by the Comelec Law Department, theCommission en banc dismissed the letter-complaint for lack of evidence.Held: The constitutional and statutory mandate for the Comelec to investigate andprosecute cases of violation of election laws translates, in effect, to the exclusivepower to conduct preliminary investigations in cases involving election offenses for the twin purpose of filing an information in court and helping the Judge determine, inthe course of preliminary inquiry, whether or not a warrant of arrest should be issued.Although only a low quantum and quality of evidence is needed to support a findingof probable cause, the same cannot be justified upon hearsay evidence that is never given any evidentiary or probative value in this jurisdiction.
Election Laws
CORPUZ vs. TANODBAYAN ( 149 SCRA 281 )“Election Offense, B. Jurisdiction Over Election Offenses”Facts: Petitioners were members of the Citizens Election Committee of Caba, LaUnion in the January 30, 1980 elections; petitioner Epifanio Castillejos was Director of the Bureau of Domestic Trade and petitioner Edgar Castillejos was then acandidate and later elected mayor in the same election. Private respondent EstebanMangaser, an independent candidate for vice-mayor of the same municipality sent aletter to President Marcos charging the petitioners with violation of the 1978 ElectionCode, specifically for electioneering and / or campaigning inside the voting centersduring the election. Regional Election Director of San Fernando, La Union,conducted a formal investigation and on September 29, 1981, submitted its reportrecommending to the Comelec the dismissal of the complaint. Private respondentMangaser formally withdrew his charges filed with the Comelec stating his intentionto refile it with the Tanodbayan. On November 26, 1981 the Comelec dismissed thecomplaint for insufficiency of evidence.Subsequently the assistant provincial fiscal started a preliminary investigation of acomplaint filed by Mangaser with the Tanodbayan against the same parties and onthe same charges previously dismissed by the Comelec. The Tanodbayan assertedexclusive authority to prosecute the case, stated in a letter to the Comelec Chairmanthat a lawyer of the Comelec if not properly deputized as a Tanodbayan prosecutor has not authority to conduct preliminary investigation s and prosecute offensescommitted by Comelec officials in relation to their office.Issue: Whether or not the Tanodbayan has exclusive jurisdiction to investigate andprosecute election offenses.Held: Comelec, not the Tanodbayan, or Sandiganbayan, has exclusive jurisdiction toinvestigate and prosecute election offenses committed by a private individual or public officer or employee. Nature of the offense, not the personality of the offender,is important.

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