certified on November 21, 1996 the word “no” on line 17 appears only once, while in the other
versions it is repeated three times; and (3) the published version does not contain the sentence
“(Y)ou better prepare for a quorum
because I will raise the question of the
appears in the other versions.
Petitioners‟ allegations are vehemently denied by respondents. However, there is no need to
discuss this point as petitioners have announced that, in order to expedite the resolution of thispetition, they admit, without conceding, the correctness of the transcripts relied upon by the
respondents. Petitioners agree that for purposes of this proceeding the word “approved” appears
in the transcripts.Only the proceedings of the House of Representatives on the conference committee report on H.
No. 7198 are in question. Petitioners‟ principal argument is that R.A. No. 8240 is null and void
because it was passed in violation of the rules of the House; that these rules embody the
“constitutional mandate” in Art. VI, §16(3) that “each House may determine the rules of its proceedings” and that, consequently, violation of the House rules is a violation of the
Constitution itself. They contend that the certification of Speaker De Venecia that the law wasproperly passed is false and spurious.More specifically, petitioners charge that (1) in violation of Rule VIII, §35 and Rule XVII, §103of the rules of the House,
the Chair, in submitting the conference committee report to theHouse, did not call for the
but simply asked for its approval by motion in order toprevent petitioner Arroyo from questioning the presence of a quorum; (2) in violation of RuleXIX, §112,
the Chair deliberately ignored Rep. Arroyo‟s question, “What is that . . . Mr.Speaker?” and did not repeat Rep. Albano‟s motion to approve or ratify; (3) in violation of Rule
the Chair refused to recognize Rep. Arroyo and instead proceeded to act on Rep.
Albano‟s motion and afterward declared the report approved; and (4) in violation of Rule XX,
§§121-122, Rule XXI, §123, and Rule XVIII, §109,
the Chair suspended the session without
first ruling on Rep. Arroyo‟s question which, it is al
leged, is a point of order or a privileged
motion. It is argued that Rep. Arroyo‟s query should have been resolved upon the resumption of
the session on November 28, 1996, because the parliamentary situation at the time of theadjournment remained upon the resumption of the session.Petitioners also charge that the session was hastily adjourned at 3:40 p.m. on November 21, 1996and the bill certified by Speaker Jose De Venecia to prevent petitioner Rep. Arroyo fromformally challenging the existence of a
and asking for a reconsideration.Petitioners urge the Court not to feel bound by the certification of the Speaker of the House that
the law had been properly passed, considering the Court‟s power under Art. VIII, §1 to pass on
claims of grave abuse of discretion by the other departments of the government, and they ask fora reexamination of Tolentino
. Secretary of Finance,
which affirmed the conclusiveness of anenrolled bill, in view of the changed membership of the Court.