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POLITICAL LAW - Case Digests

POLITICAL LAW - Case Digests

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CASE DIGESTS IN POLITICAL LAW
SAN BEDA COLLEGE OF LAW – 2003 CENTRALIZED BAR OPERATIONS
Reproduction in any form of this copy is strictly prohibited!!!
19
POLITICAL LAW COMMITTEE: Andy Nachura, Alexander Ragonjan, Maricel Abarentos, Jennifer Balboa, Avito Cahig, Jr., Ma. Cristina Constantino,Ricardo de Guzman, Ethel Degollado, Alder Delloro, Joyce Diňo, Christopher Godinez, Andre Jacob, Juanito Lim, Jr., Jonathan Mangundayao, RajiMendoza, Jeanne Montes, Charo Rejuso, Aimee Sabilala, Jennifer Sobremonte, Gerald Sotto, Jemina Sy, Ryan Sy Lita, Gloriosa Sze, Maria FeTaal, Joeshias Tambago, Mae Ventura, Elsa Villaflor.
FUNDAMENTAL POWERS OF THE STATE
POLICE POWER 
POLICE POWER; THE STATE UNDER ITS POLICE POWER, MAY ALTER,MODIFY OR AMEND MINING EXPLORATION PERMITS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE DEMANDS OF THE GENERAL WELFARE.
SOUTHEAST MINDANAO GOLDMINING CORP. vs. BALITE PORTALMINING COOP., et al.
[G.R. No. 135190, April 3, 2002]
 YNARES-SANTIAGO, J:FACTS:
 
On March 10, 1988, Marcopper Mining Corporation (Marcopper) was grantedExploration Permit No. 133 (EP No. 133) over 4,491 hectares of land, which included theDiwalwal area.On June 27, 2991, Congress enacted Republic Act No. 7076, or the People's Small-Scale Mining Act. The law established a People's Small-Scale Mining Program to beimplemented by the Secretary of the DENR and created the Provincial Mining Regulatory Board(PMRB) under the DENR Secretary's direct supervision and control.Subsequently, a petition for the cancellation of EP No. 133 and the admission of aMineral Production Sharing Arrangement (MPSA) proposal over Diwalwal was filed before theDENR Regional Executive Director, docketed as RED Mines Case.On February 16, 1994, while the RED Mines case was pending, Marcopper assigned itsEP No. 133 to petitioner Southeast Mindanao Gold Mining Corporation (SEM), which in turnapplied for an integrated MPSA over the land covered by the permit.In due time, the Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XI in Davao City(MGB-XI) accepted and registered the integrated MPSA application of petitioner and thereafter,several MAC cases were filed.On March 3, 1995, Republic Act No. 7942, the Philippine Mining Act, was enacted.Pursuant to this statute, the MAC cases were referred to a Regional Panel of Arbitrators (RPA)tasked to resolve disputes involving conflicting mining rights. The RPA subsequently tookcognizance of the RED Mines case, which was consolidated with the MAC cases.On June 24, 1997, the DENR Secretary issued Memorandum Order No. 97-03 whichprovided that the DENR shall study thoroughly and exhaustively the option of direct stateutilization of the mineral resources in the Diwalwal Gold-Rush Area.On July 16, 1997, petitioner filed a special civil action for certiorari, prohibition andmandamus before the Court of Appeals against PMRB-Davao, the DENR Secretary and BaliteCommunal Portal Mining Cooperative (BCPMC). It prayed for the nullification of the above-quotedMemorandum Order No. 97-03 on the ground that the "direct state utilization" espoused thereinwould effectively impair its vested rights under EP No. 133; and that the memorandum order arbitrarily imposed the unwarranted condition that certain studies be conducted before mining andenvironmental laws are enforced by the DENR.
ISSUE:
 
Whether or not the "direct state utilization scheme" espoused in MO 97-03 divestedpetitioner of its vested right to the gold rush area under its EP No. 133.
HELD:
 
NO
. MO 97-03 did not conclusively adopt "direct state utilization" as a policy inresolving the Diwalwal dispute. The terms of the memorandum clearly indicate that what wasdirected thereunder was merely a study of this option and nothing else. Contrary to petitioner'scontention, it did not grant any management/operating or profit-sharing agreement to small-scaleminers or to any party, for that matter, but simply instructed the DENR officials concerned toundertake studies to determine its feasibility.As to the alleged "vested rights" claimed by petitioner, it is well to note that the same isinvariably based on EP No. 133, whose validity is still being disputed in the Consolidated Minescases. A reading of the appealed MAB decision reveals that the continued efficacy of EP No. 133
 
CASE DIGESTS IN POLITICAL LAW
SAN BEDA COLLEGE OF LAW – 2003 CENTRALIZED BAR OPERATIONS
Reproduction in any form of this copy is strictly prohibited!!!
20
POLITICAL LAW COMMITTEE: Andy Nachura, Alexander Ragonjan, Maricel Abarentos, Jennifer Balboa, Avito Cahig, Jr., Ma. Cristina Constantino,Ricardo de Guzman, Ethel Degollado, Alder Delloro, Joyce Diňo, Christopher Godinez, Andre Jacob, Juanito Lim, Jr., Jonathan Mangundayao, RajiMendoza, Jeanne Montes, Charo Rejuso, Aimee Sabilala, Jennifer Sobremonte, Gerald Sotto, Jemina Sy, Ryan Sy Lita, Gloriosa Sze, Maria FeTaal, Joeshias Tambago, Mae Ventura, Elsa Villaflor.
is one of the issues raised in said cases, with respondents therein asserting that Marcopper cannot legally assign the permit which purportedly had expired. In other words, whether or notpetitioner actually has a vested right over Diwalwal under EP No. 133 is still an indefinite andunsettled matter. And until a positive pronouncement is made by the appellate court in theConsolidated Mines cases, EP No. 133 cannot be deemed as a source of any conclusive rightsthat can be impaired by the issuance of MO 97-03.It must likewise be pointed out that under no circumstances may petitioner's rights under EP No. 133 be regarded as total and absolute. As correctly held by the Court of Appeals EP No.133 merely evidences a privilege granted by the State, which may be amended, modified or rescinded when the national interest so requires. This is necessarily so since the exploration,development and utilization of the country's natural mineral resources are matters impressed withgreat public interest. Like timber permits, mining exploration permits do not vest in the granteeany permanent or irrevocable right within the purview of the non-impairment of contract and dueprocess clauses of the Constitution, since the State, under its all-encompassing police power,may alter, modify or amend the same, in accordance with the demands of the general welfare.Additionally, there can be no valid opposition raised against a mere study of analternative which the State, through the DENR, is authorized to undertake in the first place. Worthnoting is Article XII, Section 2, of the 1987 Constitution and Section 4, Chapter II of the PhilippineMining Act of 1995.Thus, the State may pursue the constitutional policy of full control and supervision of theexploration, development and utilization of the country's natural mineral resources, by either directly undertaking the same or by entering into agreements with qualified entities. The DENRSecretary acted within his authority when he ordered a study of the first option, which may beundertaken consistently in accordance with the constitutional policy enunciated above.Obviously, the State may not be precluded from considering a direct takeover of the mines, if it isthe only plausible remedy in sight to the gnawing complexities generated by the gold rush.
EMINENT DOMAIN 
EMINENT DOMAIN; JUST COMPENSATION IS DETERMINED AT THE DATE OF THE FILING OF THE COMPLAINT EXCEPT WHEN THE COURT FIXES THE VALUE OF THE PROPERTY AT THE DATE IT WAS TAKEN 
CITY OF CEBU vs. SPOUSES APOLONIO and BLASA DEDAMO
[G.R. No. 142971, May 7, 2002]
DAVIDE, JR., C .J:FACTS:
On 17 September 1993, petitioner City of Cebu filed a complaint for eminent domainagainst respondents spouses Apolonio and Blasa Dedamo. The petitioner alleged therein that itneeded the land for a public purpose, i.e., for the construction of a public road which shall serveas an access/relief road of Gorordo Avenue to extend to the General Maxilum Avenue and theback of Magellan International Hotel Roads in Cebu City. The lower court fixed the amount of justcompensation at P20,826,339.50.Petitioner alleged that the lower court erred in fixing the amount of just compensation atP20,826,339.50. The just compensation should be based on the prevailing market price of theproperty at the commencement of the expropriation proceedings.The petitioner did not convince the Court of Appeals, which affirmed the lower court’sdecision in toto.
ISSUE:
Whether or not just compensation should be determined as of the date of the filing of the complaint.
HELD:
NO
. In the case at bar, the applicable law as to the point of reckoning for thedetermination of just compensation is Section 19 of R.A. No. 7160, which expressly provides that just compensation shall be determined as of the time of actual taking.The petitioner has misread our ruling in
The National Power Corp. vs. Court of Appeals
.We did not categorically rule in that case that just compensation should be determined as of the
 
CASE DIGESTS IN POLITICAL LAW
SAN BEDA COLLEGE OF LAW – 2003 CENTRALIZED BAR OPERATIONS
Reproduction in any form of this copy is strictly prohibited!!!
21
POLITICAL LAW COMMITTEE: Andy Nachura, Alexander Ragonjan, Maricel Abarentos, Jennifer Balboa, Avito Cahig, Jr., Ma. Cristina Constantino,Ricardo de Guzman, Ethel Degollado, Alder Delloro, Joyce Diňo, Christopher Godinez, Andre Jacob, Juanito Lim, Jr., Jonathan Mangundayao, RajiMendoza, Jeanne Montes, Charo Rejuso, Aimee Sabilala, Jennifer Sobremonte, Gerald Sotto, Jemina Sy, Ryan Sy Lita, Gloriosa Sze, Maria FeTaal, Joeshias Tambago, Mae Ventura, Elsa Villaflor.
filing of the complaint. We explicitly stated therein that although the general rule in determining just compensation in eminent domain is the value of the property as of the date of the filing of thecomplaint, the rule "admits of an exception: where this Court fixed the value of the property as of the date it was taken and not at the date of the commencement of the expropriation proceedings."
BILL OF RIGHTS
DUE PROCESS 
DUE PROCESS; PRELIMINARY INVESTIGATION IS NOT PART OF THE DUE PROCESS GUARANTEED BY THE CONSTITUTION 
BENEDICTO and RIVERA vs. COURT OF APPEALS
[G.R. No. 125359, September 4, 2001]
QUISUMBING, J:FACTS:
On December 27, 1991, Mrs. Imelda Marcos and Messrs. Benedicto and Rivera wereindicted for violation of Section 10 of Circular No. 960 1 in relation to Section 34 of the CentralBank Act (Republic Act No. 265, as amended) in five Informations filed with the Regional TrialCourt of Manila. Docketed as Criminal Cases Nos. 91-101879 to 91-101883, the charge sheetsalleged that the trio failed to submit reports of their foreign exchange earnings from abroad and/or failed to register with the Foreign Exchange Department of the Central Bank within the periodmandated by Circular No. 960. Said Circular prohibited natural and juridical persons frommaintaining foreign exchange accounts abroad without prior authorization from the Central Bank.On August 11, 1994, petitioners moved to quash all the Informations filed against them inCriminal Cases Nos. 91-101879 to 91-101883; 91-101884 to 91-101892, and 91-101959 to 91-101969. Their motion was grounded on lack of jurisdiction, forum shopping, absence of apreliminary investigation and extinction of criminal liability with the repeal of Circular No. 960.On September 6, 1994, the trial court denied petitioners' motion. A similar motion filed onMay 23, 1994 by Mrs. Marcos seeking to dismiss the dollar-salting cases against her due to therepeal of Circular No. 960 had earlier been denied by the trial court in its order dated June 9,1994. Petitioners then filed a motion for reconsideration, but the trial court likewise denied thismotion on October 18, 1994.
ISSUES:
(1)Whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in denying the Motion to Quash for absence of avalid preliminary investigation.(2)Whether or not the repeal of Central Bank Circular No. 960 and Republic Act No. 265 byCircular No. 1353 and Republic Act No. 7653 respectively, extinguish the criminal liability of petitioners.
 
HELD:
(1)
NO
. Preliminary investigation is not part of the due process guaranteed by theConstitution. It is an inquiry to determine whether there is sufficient ground to engender a well-founded belief that a crime has been committed and the respondent is probably guilty thereof.Instead, the right to a preliminary investigation is personal. It is afforded to the accused bystatute, and can be waived, either expressly or by implication.When the records of the case were disclosed to them, in opting to enter their respectivepleas to the charges, and filed various motions and pleadings, they are deemed to have made anexpress waiver of their right to have a preliminary investigation.(2)
NO
. In the instant case, it must be noted that despite the repeal of Circular No. 960,Circular No. 1353 retained the same reportorial requirement for residents receiving earnings or profits from non-trade foreign exchange transactions. Even the most cursory glance at therepealing circulars, Circular Nos. 1318 and 1353 shows that both contain a saving clause,expressly providing that the repeal of Circular No. 960 shall have no effect on pending actions for 

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