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CUEVAS- Constitutional Law II Digests

CUEVAS- Constitutional Law II Digests

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Published by Zyra C.
My digests of cases assigned by Atty. Adonis Gabriel
My digests of cases assigned by Atty. Adonis Gabriel

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Published by: Zyra C. on Jun 18, 2012
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04/03/2015

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De Leon v. EsguerraFacts:On May 17, 1982, Alfredo De Leon was elected Barangay Captain together with theother petitioners who elected as councilmen of Barangay Dolores in the muncipalityof Taytay, Rizal held under Batas Pambansa Blg. 222, or the Barangay Election Act of 1982.On February 9, 1987, De Leon received a Memorandum antedated December 1, 1986but signed by the OIC Governor Benjamin Esguerra on February 8, 1987 designatingFlorentino Magno as Barangay Captain and the other respondents as members of Barangay Council of the same Barangay and Municipality.Petitoners then filed a case, praying that the subject Memoranda be declared null andvoid and that respondents be prohibited by taking over the said positions. Theymaintained that pursuant to Section 3 of BP Blg. 222, their terms of office shall be sixyears which shall commence on June 7, 1982 and shall continue until their successorsshall have elected and shall have qualified. They also asserted that with theratification of the 1987 Philippine Constitution, OIC Governor no longer has theauthority to replace them and to designate their successors.Respondents contended that the terms of office of elective officials were abolishedand that petitioners continued in office by virtue of Sec. 2, Art. 3 of the ProvisionalConstitution and not because their term of six years had not yet expired. They saidthat the provision in the Barangay Election Act fixing the term of office of Barangayofficials to six years must be deemed to have been repealed for being inconsistentwith Sec. 2, Art. 3 of the Provisional Constitution.Issue:Whether or not the designation of respondents to replace petitioners was validlymade during the one-year period which ended on Feb 25, 1987.Ruling:No. It was held that the memoranda had no legal force and effect. The 1987Constitution was ratified in a plebiscite on Feb 2, 1987, therefore, the ProvisionalConstitution must be deemed to have superseded. Having become inoperative,respondent OIC Gov could no longer rely on Sec 2, Art 3, thereof to designaterespondents to the elective positions occupied by petitioners. Relevantly, Sec 8, Art 1of the 1987 Constitution further provides in part:"Sec. 8. The term of office of elective local officials, except barangay officials, whichshall be determined by law, shall be three years x x x."Until the term of office of barangay officials has been determined by aw, therefore,the term of office of 6 years provided for in the Barangay Election Act of 1982 shouldstill govern.
 
Francisco vs. House of RepresentativesFacts:Following the dismissal of an complaint for the impeachment of Chief Justic HilarioDavide Jr. on October 22, 2003, a second one was filed on June 2, 2003. Thus arosethe instant petitions (including that filed by Atty. Ernesto Francisco Jr.) against theHouse of Representatives, et. al., most of which petitions contend that the filing of thesecond impeachment complaint is unconstitutional as it violates the provision of Section 5 of Article XI of the Constitution that "[n]o impeachment proceedings shallbe initiated against the same official more than once within a period of one year."Issue:Whether or not the power of judicial review extends to those arising fromimpeachment proceedingsHeld: To determine the merits of the issues raised in the instant petitions, this Court foundthe necessity of turning to the Constitution itself which employs the well-settledprinciples of constitutional construction. The first of these is, verba legis, that is,wherever possible, the words used in the Constitution must be given their ordinarymeaning except where technical terms are employed. Second, where there isambiguity, ratio legis est anima. The words of the Constitution should be interpretedin accordance with the intent of its framers. Finally, ut magis valeat quam pereat. TheConstitution is to be interpreted as a whole. No one provision of the Constitution is tobe separated from all the others, to be considered alone, but that all the provisionsbearing upon a particular subject are to be brought into view and to be so interpretedas to effectuate the great purposes of the instrument. The Court's power of judicial review is conferred on the judicial branch of thegovernment in Section 1, Article VIII of our present 1987 Constitution. The"moderating power" to "determine the proper allocation of powers" of the differentbranches of government and "to direct the course of government along constitutionalchannels" is inherent in all courtsas a necessary consequence of the judicial poweritself, which is "the power of the court to settle actual controversiesinvolving rightswhich are legally demandable and enforceable."However, it is noted that the doctrine of checks and balances insures that no branchof government act beyond the powers assigned to it bythe Constitution.The framersof the Constitution also understood initiation in its ordinary meaning. Thus whenaproposal reached the floor proposing that "A vote of at least one-third of all theMembers of theHouse shall be necessary to initiate impeachment proceedings," thiswas met by a proposal todelete the line on the ground that the vote of the Housedoes not initiate impeachmentproceeding but rather the filing of a complaint does.Having concluded that the initiation takes place by the act of filing and referral orendorsementof the impeachment complaint to the House Committee on Justice or, bythe filing by at leastone-third of the members of the House of Representatives withthe Secretary General of theHouse, the meaning of Section 3 (5) of Article XI becomesclear. Once an impeachmentcomplaint has been initiated, another impeachmentcomplaint may not be filed against thesame official within a one year period. The framers of the Constitution also understood initiation in its ordinary meaning. Thus when a proposal reached the floor proposing that "A vote of at least one-third of all the Members of the House shall be necessary… toinitiate impeachment
 
proceedings," this was met by a proposal to delete the line on the ground that thevote of the House does not initiate impeachment proceeding but rather the filing of a complaint does.Gonzales vs. COMELECFacts: The petitioner in the case prayed for the restraining of the COMELEC from enforcingRepublic Act No. 4913, or from performing any act that will result in the holding of theplebiscite for the ratification of the constitutional amendments proposed in JointResolutions Nos. 1 and 3 of the two Houses of Congress of the Philippines, approvedon March 16, 1967.Subsequently, Congress passed a bill, which, upon approval by the President, on June17, 1967, became Republic Act No. 4913, providing that the amendments tothe Constitution proposed in the aforementioned Resolutions No. 1 and 3 besubmitted, for approval by the people, at the general elections which shall be held onNovember 14, 1967.Issue:WON Constitutional Amendments may be Submitted for ratification in a GeneralElection?Held:Nothing in the provision of Article XV of the Constitution indicates that the "election"therein referred to is a "special," not a general, election. The circumstance that threeprevious amendments to the Constitution had been submitted to the people forratification in special elections merely shows that Congress deemed it best to do sounder the circumstances then obtaining. It does not negate its authority to submitproposed amendments for ratification in general elections.It would be better, from the viewpoint of a thorough discussion of the proposedamendments, that the same be submitted to the people's approval independently of the election of public officials. Although an adequate appraisal of the merits anddemerits proposed amendments is likely to be overshadowed by the great attentionusually commanded by the choice of personalities involved in general elections,particularly when provincial and municipal officials are to be chosen. But, then, theseconsiderations are addressed to the wisdom of holding a plebiscite simultaneouslywith the election of public officer. They do not deny the authority of Congress tochoose either alternative, as implied in the term "election" used, without qualification,in the abovequoted provision of the Constitution.

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