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Republic Act No. 6735 August 4, 1989 AN ACT PROVIDING FOR A SYSTEM OF INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in Congress assembled:: I. — General Provisions Section 1. Title. — This Act shall be known as "The Initiative and Referendum Act." Section 2. Statement of Policy. — The power of the people under a system of initiative and referendum to directly propose, enact, approve or reject, in whole or in part, the Constitution, laws, ordinances, or resolutions passed by any legislative body upon compliance with the requirements of this Act is hereby affirmed, recognized and guaranteed. Section 3. Definition of Terms. — For purposes of this Act, the following terms shall mean: (a) "Initiative" is the power of the people to propose amendments to the Constitution or to propose and enact legislations through an election called for the purpose. There are three (3) systems of initiative, namely: a.1 Initiative on the Constitution which refers to a petition proposing amendments to the Constitution; a.2. Initiative on statutes which refers to a petition proposing to enact a national legislation; and a.3. Initiative on local legislation which refers to a petition proposing to enact a regional, provincial, city, municipal, or barangay law, resolution or ordinance. (b) "Indirect initiative" is exercise of initiative by the people through a proposition sent to Congress or the local legislative body for action.
(c) "Referendum" is the power of the electorate to approve or reject a legislation through an election called for the purpose. It may be of two classes, namely: c.1. Referendum on statutes which refers to a petition to approve or reject an act or law, or part thereof, passed by Congress; and c.2. Referendum on local law which refers to a petition to approve or reject a law, resolution or ordinance enacted by regional assemblies and local legislative bodies. (d) "Proposition" is the measure proposed by the voters. (e) "Plebiscite" is the electoral process by which an initiative on the Constitution is approved or rejected by the people. (f) "Petition" is the written instrument containing the proposition and the required number of signatories. It shall be in a form to be determined by and submitted to the Commission on Elections, hereinafter referred to as the Commission. (g) "Local government units" refers to provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays. (h) "Local legislative bodies" refers to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Sangguniang Panlungsod, Sangguniang Bayan, and Sangguniang Nayon. (i) "Local executives" refers to the Provincial Governors, City or Municipal Mayors and Punong Barangay, as the case may be. Section 4. Who may exercise. — The power of initiative and referendum may be exercised by all registered voters of the country, autonomous regions, provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays. Section 5. Requirements. — (a) To exercise the power of initiative or referendum, at least ten per centum (10%) of the total number of the registered voters, of which every legislative district is represented by at least three per centum (3%) of the registered voters thereof, shall sign a petition for the purpose and register the same with the Commission. (b) A petition for an initiative on the 1987 Constitution must have at least twelve per centum (12%) of the total number of registered voters as signatories, of which every legislative district must be represented by at least three per centum (3%) of the registered voters therein. Initiative on the Constitution may be exercised only after five (5) years from the ratification of the 1987 Constitution and only once every five (5) years thereafter. (c) The petition shall state the following:
(e) A referendum of initiative on an ordinance passed in a municipality shall be deemed validly initiated if the petition therefor is signed by at least ten per centum (10%) of the registered voters in the municipality. however. of which every barangay is represented by at least three per centum (3%) of the registered voters therein. That if the province or city is composed only of one (1) legislative district. — The Commission shall call and supervise the conduct of initiative or referendum. the proposition. c. Verification of Signatures. (f) A referendum or initiative on a barangay resolution or ordinance is deemed validly initiated if signed by at least ten per centum (10%) of the registered voters in said barangay. as the case may be. Section 6.1. and c. c. upon determining the sufficiency of the petition. then at least each municipality in a province or each barangay in a city should be represented by at least three per centum (3%) of the registered voters therein. that it is not one of the exceptions provided herein.c. c.3. II. Special Registration. an abstract or summary in not more than one hundred (100) words which shall be legibly written or printed at the top of every page of the petition. the reason or reasons therefor. publish the same in Filipino and English at least twice . contents or text of the proposed law sought to be enacted. Within a period of thirty (30) days from receipt of the petition. resolution or ordinance passed by the legislative assembly of an autonomous region. Conduct and Date of Initiative or Referendum. Section 7. — National Initiative and Referendum SECTION 8.4. c. amended or repealed. voters' affidavits and voters identification cards used in the immediately preceding election. approved or rejected. — The Election Registrar shall verify the signatures on the basis of the registry list of voters.5. of which every legislative district must be represented by at least three per centum (3%) of the registered voters therein. — The Commission on Election shall set a special registration day at least three (3) weeks before a scheduled initiative or referendum. signatures of the petitioners or registered voters. province or city is deemed validly initiated if the petition thereof is signed by at least ten per centum (10%) of the registered voters in the province or city. Provided.2.6. (d) A referendum or initiative affecting a law. the Commission shall.
Effectivity of Initiative or Referendum Proposition. the national law sought to be rejected or amended shall remain in full force and effect. (b) The proposition in an initiative on the Constitution approved by a majority of the votes cast in the plebiscite shall become effective as to the day of the plebiscite. the proposition is approved by a majority of the votes cast.in newspapers of general and local circulation and set the date of the initiative or referendum which shall not be earlier than forty-five (45) days but not later than ninety (90) days from the determination by the Commission of the sufficiency of the petition. or amendment shall become effective fifteen (15) days following completion of its publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation in the Philippines. — The following cannot be the subject of an initiative or referendum petition: (a) No petition embracing more than one (1) subject shall be submitted to the electorate. The procedure to be followed on the initiative bill shall be the same as the enactment of any legislative measure before the House of Representatives except that the said initiative bill shall have precedence over the pending legislative measures on the committee. the proposition to reject a national law is approved by a majority of the votes cast. However. Section 10. approval. The petition shall contain a summary of the chief purposes and contents of the bill that the organization proposes to be enacted into law by the legislature. — (a) The Proposition of the enactment. as defined by law. and (b) Statutes involving emergency measures. may file a petition for indirect initiative with the House of Representatives. Indirect Initiative. If. Prohibited Measures. and other legislative bodies. cannot be subject to referendum until ninety (90) days after its effectivity. the national law proposed for enactment. (c) A national or local initiative proposition approved by majority of the votes cast in an election called for the purpose shall become effective fifteen (15) days after certification and proclamation by the Commission. the enactment of which are specifically vested in Congress by the Constitution. approval. the said national law shall be deemed repealed and the repeal shall become effective fifteen (15) days following the completion of publication of the proposition and the certification by the Commission in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation in the Philippines. If. if the majority vote is not obtained. amendment or rejection of a national law shall be submitted to and approved by a majority of the votes cast by all the registered voters of the Philippines. . — Any duly accredited people's organization. Section 9. as certified to by the Commission. as certified by the Commission. Section 11.
and a representative of the regional assemblies and local legislative bodies concerned in a public place in the autonomous region or local government unit. the Commission shall then set a date for the initiative at which the proposition shall be submitted to the registered voters in the local government unit concerned for their approval within ninety (90) days from the date of certification by the Commission. sixty (60) days in case of the provinces and cities. The initiative . and thirty (30) days in case of barangays.000) registered voters in case of autonomous regions. Appeal. one hundred (100) in case of municipalities. (d) Two or more propositions may be submitted in an initiative. as the case may be. giving notice thereof to the local legislative body concerned. — Local Initiative and Referendum SECTION 13. ordinance or resolution.000) in case of provinces and cities. Procedure in Local Initiative. (b) If no favorable action thereon is made by local legislative body within (30) days from its presentation. Signature stations may be established in as many places as may be warranted. and fifty (50) in case of barangays. sixty (60) days in case of municipalities. repeal. Failure to obtain the required number is a defeat of the proposition. (e) Proponents shall have one hundred twenty (120) days in case of autonomous regions. the Commission on Elections. (g) Upon the lapse of the period herein provided. The Secretary of Local Government or his designated representative shall extend assistance in the formulation of the proposition. (c) The proposition shall be numbered serially starting from one (1). — The decision of the Commission on the findings of the sufficiency or insufficiency of the petition for initiative or referendum may be appealed to the Supreme Court within thirty (30) days from notice thereof.Section 12. (h) If the required number of the signatures is obtained. through its office in the local government unit concerned shall certify as to whether or not the required number of signatures has been obtained. III. or his designated representative. and thirty (30) days in case of barangays. forty-five (45) days in case of municipalities. or amendment. in case of autonomous regions. as provided in subsection (g) hereof. ninety (90) days in case of provinces and cities. one thousand (1. — (a) Not less than two thousand (2. from notice mentioned in subsection (b) hereof to collect the required number of signatures. in the presence of a representative of the proponent. may file a petition with the Regional Assembly or local legislative body. the proponents through their duly authorized and registered representative may invoke their power of initiative. of any law. enactment. (f) The petition shall be signed before the Election Registrar. respectively. proposing the adoption.
modified or repealed by the local legislative body within three (3) years thereafter by a vote of three-fourths (3/4) of all its members: Provided. If it fails to obtain said number of votes. Local Referendum. however. IV. — (a) The power of local initiative shall not be exercised more than once a year. The Commission shall certify and proclaim the results of the said referendum. cities. — Nothing in this Act shall prevent or preclude the proper courts from declaring null and void any proposition approved pursuant to this Act for violation of the Constitution or want of capacity of the local legislative body to enact the said measure. municipalities and barangays for the approval or rejection. the proposition is considered defeated. those against such action may. Applicability of the Omnibus Election Code. Section 18. Section 16. Limitations Upon Local Legislative Bodies. — Final Provisions SECTION 19. Section 17. forty-five (45) days in case of municipalities and thirty (30) days in case of barangays. — If the proposition is approved by a majority of the votes cast. Said referendum shall be held under the control and direction of the Commission within sixty (60) days in case of provinces and cities. (c) If at any time before the initiative is held. modified or amended. provinces. any ordinance or resolution duly enacted or approved. not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act. . shall apply to all initiatives and referenda. any local legislative body may submit to the registered voters of autonomous region. — The Omnibus Election Code and other election laws. the period shall be one (1) year after the expiration of the first six (6) months. by the local legislative body concerned within six (6) months from the date therefrom. — Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 4 hereof. (b) Initiative shall extend only to subjects or matters which are within the legal powers of the local legislative bodies to enact. Effectivity of Local Propositions.shall then be held on the date set. the local legislative body shall adopt in toto the proposition presented. Section 15. if they so desire. after which the results thereof shall be certified and proclaimed by the Commission on Elections. that in case of barangays. Authority of Courts. Limitations on Local Initiatives. it shall take effect fifteen (15) days after certification by the Commission as if affirmative action thereon had been made by the local legislative body and local executive concerned. and may be amended. the initiative shall be cancelled. However. Section 14. apply for initiative in the manner herein provided. — Any proposition or ordinance or resolution approved through the system of initiative and referendum as herein provided shall not be repealed.
1989 Lambino Vs.parliamentary. Whether or Not this Court should revisit its ruling in Santiago declaring RA 6735 “incomplete. — The amount necessary to defray the cost of the initial implementation of this Act shall be charged against the Contingent Fund in the General Appropriations Act of the current year. Thereafter. the proposed changes will shift the present bicameral. Article XVII of the Constitution on amendments to the Constitution through a people’s initiative. No. Separability Clause. Rules and Regulations. Their petition changes the 1987 constitution by modifying sections 17 of Art 6 and sections 1-4 of Art 7 and by adding Art 18. . they filed a petition with the COMELEC to hold a plebiscite that will ratify their initiative petition under RA 6735. Section 23.Section 20. 174153 Oct. — This Act shall take effect fifteen (15) days after its publication in a newspaper of general circulation. Approved: August 4. Lambino group alleged that the petition had the support of 6M individuals fulfilling what was provided by art 17 of the constitution. Whether or Not the COMELEC committed grave abuse of discretion in denying due course to the Lambino Group’s petition. inadequate or wanting in essential terms and conditions” to implement the initiative clause on proposals to amend the Constitution. Appropriations. — If any part or provision of this Act is held invalid or unconstitutional. — The Commission is hereby empowered to promulgate such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of this Act.R. Effectivity. Comelec G. the other parts or provisions thereof shall remain valid and effective. Section 21. 25 2006 Facts: Petitioners (Lambino group) commenced gathering signatures for an initiative petition to change the 1987 constitution. Section 22. such sums as may be necessary for the full implementation of this Act shall be included in the annual General Appropriations Act. Comelec ruling that RA 6735 is inadequate to implement the initiative petitions. COMELEC denied the petition due to lack of enabling law governing initiative petitions and invoked the Santiago Vs. Issue: Whether or Not the Lambino Group’s initiative petition complies with Section 2.presidential form of government to unicameral.
Held: According to the SC the Lambino group failed to comply with the basic requirements for conducting a people’s initiative. therefore a constitutes a revision. NO. 1. On March 16. COMELEC G. A Revisit of Santiago v.A. Gonzales to impugn the constitutionality of R. 2 which called for a Constitutional Convention to propose constitutional amendments to be composed of two delegates from each representative district who shall have the same qualifications as those of Congressmen. must first comply with the constitution before complying with RA 6735 Petition is dismissed. 1967. No. The Initiative Violates Section 2. failure to do so is “deceptive and misleading” which renders the initiative void. 19 of R. it will not change the result because the present petition violated Sec 2 Art 17 to be a valid initiative. 2. IMBONG VS. Imbong vs Comelec MANUEL B.A. claiming during the oral argument that it prejudices their rights as such candidates. 3. Merging of the legislative and the executive is a radical change. 6132 by petitioners Manuel B.R. 6132. No. The Court held that the COMELEC did not grave abuse of discretion on dismissing the Lambino petition. L-32432 SEPTEMBER 11. COMELEC is Not Necessary Even assuming that RA 6735 is valid. the Congress acting as a Constituent Assembly passed Resolution No. . Article XVII of the Constitution Disallowing Revision through Initiatives The framers of the constitution intended a clear distinction between “amendment” and “revision. The Initiative Petition Does Not Comply with Section 2. 1970 FACTS: These two separate but related petitions for declaratory relief were filed pursuant to Sec. Imbong and Raul M. it is intended that the third mode of stated in sec 2 art 17 of the constitution may propose only amendments to the constitution. Article XVII of the Constitution on Direct Proposal by the People The petitioners failed to show the court that the initiative signer must be informed at the time of the signing of the nature and effect.
A. by virtue of the doctrine of necessary implication. 1967 by providing that the convention "shall be composed of 320 delegates apportioned among the existing representative districts according to the number of their respective inhabitants: Provided. 4914 and R. Congress. 6132. No. and the holding of. 4 amending the aforesaid Resolution No. Congress. 2 of March 16. The grant to Congress as a Constituent Assembly of such plenary authority to call a constitutional convention includes." On August 24. 1969. the Constitutional Convention shall be embodied in an implementing legislation: Provided. when acting as a Constituent Assembly pursuant to Art. who shall have the same qualifications as those required of members of the House of Representatives. 2 and practically restating in toto the provisions of said Resolution No. XV of the Constitution. election of delegates to. 2 and 4. the court explained the following: 1. Resolutions Nos. Whether or not Section 2. apportionment. 2. No. enacted Republic Act No. . 2 in 1967 but before the November elections of that year Congress.After the adoption of said Res. 5.A. passed Resolution No. acting as a Legislative Body. as well as all other implementing details indispensable to a fruitful convention. 2 and 4 already embody the above-mentioned details. ISSUE: 1. 2." 1 "and that any other details relating to the specific apportionment of delegates. all other powers essential to the effective exercise of the principal power granted. 4914. implementing Resolutions Nos. acting as a Legislative Body.A. except the appropriation of funds. No. and 8 is valid and does not prejudice the rights of individual embodied in the constitution? HELD: Issue 1: In sustaining the constitutionality of R.On June 17. 1970. 2 and 4 calling for a constitutional convention were passed by the required three-fourths vote. number. Resolutions Nos. No. such as the power to fix the qualifications. enacted Republic Act No. 4914 implementing the aforesaid Resolution No. that it shall not be inconsistent with the provisions of this Resolution. by a three-fourths vote of each House in joint session assembled but voting separately. and compensation of the delegates as well as appropriation of funds to meet the expenses for the election of delegates and for the operation of the Constitutional Convention itself. also acting as a Constituent Assembly. 6132. that a representative district shall be entitled to at least two delegates. and expressly repealing R. Whether or not RA No. Congress. has full and plenary authority to propose Constitutional amendments or to call a convention for the purpose. 6132 is constitutional? 2.
6132 is attacked on the ground that it is an undue deprivation of liberty without due process of law and denies the equal protection of the laws. No. 8 of Res No. for it merely obeyed and implemented the intent of Congress acting as a Constituent Assembly expressed in Sec. Gonzales asserts that Sec. acting as a legislative body. 6132 cannot possibly conflict with its own intent expressed therein. which are now contained in Resolutions Nos. can enact the necessary implementing legislation to fill in the gaps. is to compel the elected delegates to . but fixing a minimum of at least two delegates for a representative district. 5 and 8 Section 2: Apportionment of delegates Petitioner Raul M. Such implementing details are matters within the competence of Congress in the exercise of its comprehensive legislative power.A. 4. Consequently. The apportionment provided for in Sec. does not exclusively pertain to Congress acting as a Constituent Assembly. 6132. No. 5 of R. which provides that the 320 delegates should be apportioned among the existing representative districts according to the number of their respective inhabitants. without pinpointing any specific provision of the Constitution with which it collides." As observed by the Solicitor General in his answer. temporary in nature. 5 disqualifies any elected delegate from running "for any public office in any election" or from assuming "any appointive office or position in any branch of the government until after the final adjournment of the Constitutional Convention.A. the power to enact the implementing details. the latest available official population census. Said Sec. 2 of R. No. they are valid. acting as a Constituent Assembly. The presumption is that the factual predicate. 4. 1 of Res. And as lone as such statutory details do not clash with any specific provision of the constitution. 2 as amended by Res. Issue 2 – Validity of Section 2. for such apportionment was presented to Congress.A. 2 on the apportionment of delegates is not in accordance with proportional representation and therefore violates the Constitution and the intent of the law itself. the overriding objective of the challenged disqualification. Section 5: Deprivation of Liberty Sec.3. While the authority to call a constitutional convention is vested by the present Constitution solely and exclusively in Congress acting as a Constituent Assembly. accordingly employed a formula for the necessary computation to effect the desired proportional representation. No. when Congress. which power encompasses all matters not expressly or by necessary implication withdrawn or removed by the Constitution from the ambit of legislative action. which authority is expressly recognized in Sec. Congress. 4. omits to provide for such implementing details after calling a constitutional convention. which. 2 and 4 as well as in R.
serve in full their term as such and to devote all their time to the convention. The discrimination under Sec. 5 of R. to curtail the latter's desire to 'raid' the convention of "talents" or attempt to control the convention. 6132 is impugned by both petitioners as violative of the constitutional guarantees of due process. Unlike ordinary statutes. free expression. 8(a) of R.A. freedom of expressions. 8(a). or (b) allowing himself to be represented as being a candidate of any political party or any other organization. or injustice. corruption. his seat in the convention will be vacant and his constituents will be deprived of a voice in the convention. its basic organization and powers. 10. No. Answer in L-32443. the inhibition is relevant to the object of the law. No. freedom of assembly and freedom of association. propose constitutional amendments when acting as a Constituent Assembly pursuant to Art. constitutional amendments cannot be changed in one or two years. 5 against delegates to the Constitutional Convention is likewise constitutional. As heretofore intimated. No. otherwise. This Court ruled last year that the guarantees of due process. and controls all other laws. is neither whimsical nor repugnant to the sense of justice of the community. The classification.) Thus the challenged disqualification prescribed in Sec. and applies to all members of the same class. Section 8: Prohibition from organization and political party support Paragraph 1. greed. 6132 prohibits: 1. 6132 is a valid limitation on the right to public office pursuant to state police power as it is reasonable and not arbitrary. and the right of association are neither absolute nor illimitable rights." (p. defines the liberties of the people.A. Paragraph 1 of Sec. they are always subject to the pervasive and dormant police power of the State and may be lawfully abridged to serve appropriate and important public interests. Also it is a brake on the appointing power. is germane to the purposes of the law. which is to insure that the proposed amendments are meaningful to the masses of our people and not designed for the enhancement of selfishness. equal protection of the laws. therefore. for it is based on a substantial distinction which makes for real differences. Sec. The inhibition is likewise "designed to prevent popular political figures from controlling elections or positions. not even the members of Congress unless they themselves. equal protection of the laws. peaceful assembly.A. and . A delegate shapes the fundamental law of the land which delineates the essential nature of the government. any candidate for delegate to the convention (a) from representing. R. XV of the Constitution. No other public officer possesses such a power. pursuant to their representation and commitment to the people.
and to attain real equality of chances among individual candidates and thereby make real the guarantee of equal protection of the laws. this ban is to assure equal chances to a candidate with talent and imbued with patriotism as well as nobility of purpose. so that the country can utilize their services if elected. The freedom of association also implies the liberty not to associate or join with others or join any existing organization. religious. Comelec 27 SCRA 835 G. I of Sec. any political party. for the reasons aforestated. material or otherwise. While it may be true that a party's support of a candidate is not wrong per se it is equally true that Congress in the exercise of its broad law-making authority can declare certain acts as mala prohibita when justified by the exigencies of the times. The discrimination applies to all organizations. which are to avert the debasement of the electoral process. 8(a). Comelec Case Digest Gonzales Vs. because it does not create any hostile discrimination against any party or group nor does it confer undue favor or privilege on an individual as heretofore stated. L-27833 April 18. 8(a) which ban is a valid limitation on the freedom of association as well as expression. professional or other organizations or organized group of whatever nature from (a) intervening in the nomination of any such candidate or in the filing of his certificate. 1967. As emphasized by Senators Tolentino and Salonga.R. political committee. favorable to or against his campaign for election. prohibiting the too early nomination of candidates and limiting the period of election campaign or partisan political activity was challenged on constitutional grounds. civic. political group. must be afforded equal chances.2. or (b) from giving aid or support directly or indirectly. whether political parties or social. the basic liberties of free . or professional associations. One such act is the party or organization support proscribed in Sec. Senator Tolentino emphasized that "equality of chances may be better attained by banning all organization support. 1969 Facts: RA 4880 which took effect on June 17. civic. as much as any candidate whose candidacy does not evoke sympathy from any political party or organized group. More precisely. A person may run independently on his own merits without need of catering to a political party or any other association for support. Gonzales Vs. religious. The ban is germane to the objectives of the law." We likewise concur with the Solicitor General that the equal protection of the laws is not unduly subverted in par. And he.
is a private individual. whether for national or local officials.P.speech and free press. excess of partisanship and undue concentration in politics with the loss not only of efficiency in government but of lives as well. means that the evil consequence of the comment or utterance must be extremely serious and the degree of imminence extremely high before the utterance can be punished. then such words are punishable. Fernandez there are two tests that may supply an acceptable criterion for permissible restriction on freedom of speech. an incumbent councilor in the 4th District of Manila and the Nacionalista Party official candidate for Vice-Mayor of Manila to which he was subsequently elected on November 11. Law Center and the U. The Philippine Bar Association. As held in Cabansag v. of assembly and of association. Senator Lorenzo M. would render the constitutional rights of petitioners meaningless and without effect. Petitioner Cabigao was. It provides the criterion as to what words may be publicly established. there being the substantive evil of elections. violence.” It is not necessary that some definite or immediate acts of force. Tañada was asked to appear as amicus curiae. a registered voter in the City of Manila and a political leader of his co-petitioner. freedom of assembly and freedom of association are invoked to nullify the act. the Civil Liberties Union. Respondents contend that the act was based on the police power of the state. The danger to be guarded against is the 'substantive evil' sought to be prevented. petitioner Gonzales. Women Lawyers' Circle were requested to give their opinions. 1967. the U. and elucidated that Act No. Held: Yes. It is sufficient if the natural tendency and probable effect of the utterance be to bring about the substantive evil which the legislative body seeks to prevent. There was the further allegation that the nomination of a candidate and the fixing of period of election campaign are matters of political expediency and convenience which only political parties can regulate or curtail by and among themselves through self-restraint or mutual understanding or agreement and that the regulation and limitation of these political matters invoking the police power. being debased and degraded by unrestricted campaigning.P. He did justify its enactment however under the clear and present danger doctrine. such provisions were deemed by the legislative body to be part and . at the time of the filing the petition. It has the advantage of establishing according to the above decision a definite rule in constitutional law. The "dangerous tendency rule" is such that “If the words uttered create a dangerous tendency which the state has a right to prevent. As the author Tañada clearly explained. or unlawfulness be advocated. on the other hand. 4880 could indeed be looked upon as a limitation on the preferred rights of speech and press. The first. These are the “clear and present danger” rule and the 'dangerous tendency' rule. Issue: Whether or Not RA 4880 unconstitutional. violence. in the absence of clear and present danger to the state. Nor is it necessary that the language used be reasonably calculated to incite persons to acts of force. It is sufficient that such acts be advocated in general terms. The challenged statute could have been more narrowly drawn and the practices prohibited more precisely delineated to satisfy the constitutional requirements as to a valid limitation under the clear and present danger doctrine. or unlawfulness.
parcel of the necessary and appropriate response not merely to a clear and present danger but to the actual existence of a grave and substantive evil of excessive partisanship. 2 dealing with the Presidency. NO. except on a showing of a clear and present danger of a substantive evil that Congress has a right to prevent.) The petitioners contends that such resolution is against the constitutions in proposing amendments: ISSUE: Whether the resolutions are unconstitutional? HELD: In dismissing the petition for lack of merit. and Resolution No. and the National Assembly by a vote of 147 to 5 with 1 abstention. The prohibition of any speeches. this right is not to be limited. Resolution No. implies a right on the part of its citizens to meet peaceably for consultation in respect to public affairs and to petition for redress of grievances. the Prime Minister and the Cabinet. or the undertaking of any campaign literature or propaganda for or against any candidate or party is repugnant to a constitutional command. The very idea of a government.R. 1 proposing an amendment allowing a natural-born citizen of the Philippines naturalized in a foreign country to own a limited area of land for residential purposes was approved by the vote of 122 to 5. republican in form. the court ruled the following: 1. COMELEC SAMUEL OCCENA VS. As in the case of freedom of expression. or the holding of interviews for or against the election of any party or candidate for public office and the prohibition of the publication or distribution of campaign literature or materials. The power of the Interim Batasang Pambansa to propose its amendments and how it may be exercised was validly obtained. 3 on the amendment to the Article on the Commission on Elections by a vote of 148 to 2 with 1 abstention. Gozales instituted a prohibiting proceedings against the validity of three batasang pambansa resolutions (Resolution No. therefore. The 1973 Constitution in its Transitory Provisions vested the Interim National Assembly with the power to propose amendments upon special call by the Prime Minister by a vote of the majority of its members to be ratified in accordance with the Article on Amendments similar with the interim and regular national assembly. OCCENA VS. much less denied. L-34150 APRIL 2. the Interim Batasang . 15 When. COMELEC G. dishonesty and corruption as well as violence that of late has invariably marred election campaigns and partisan political activities in this country. against the solicitation of votes whether directly or indirectly. announcements or commentaries. 1981 FACTS: Petitioner Samuel Occena and Ramon A.
Marcos. 1 of the Constitutional Convention of 1971. is of no moment. The Interim Batasang Pambansa. It would be an indefensible proposition to assert that the three-fourth votes required when it sits as a legislative body applies as well when it has been convened as the agency through which amendments could be proposed. Further. 1981. 2." 3.Pambansa. The Constitutional Convention of 1971 came into being by virtue of ." at which the proposed constitutional amendment "reducing the voting age" in Section 1 of Article V of the Constitution of the Philippines to eighteen years "shall be. It is thus within the 90-day period provided by the Constitution. met as a constituent body it acted by virtue of such impotence. In that capacity. the period required by the constitution was complied as follows: "Any amendment to.. To dispose this contention. The language of the Constitution supplies the answer to the above questions. by declaring said resolutions to be without the force and effect of law for being violative of the Constitution of the Philippines. because the same will be submitted to the people for ratification. Once ratified by the sovereign people.. 1981. the court held that whether the Constitutional Convention will only propose amendments to the Constitution or entirely overhaul the present Constitution and propose an entirely new Constitution based on an ideology foreign to the democratic system. That is not a requirement as far as a constitutional convention is concerned. The fact that the present Constitution may be revised and replaced with a new one . submitted" for ratification by the people pursuant to Organic Resolution No. At any rate. In the Batasang Pambansa Blg." 21 The three resolutions were approved by the Interim Batasang Pambansa sitting as a constituent assembly on February 5 and 27. sitting as a constituent body. the date of the plebiscite is set for April 7. and the subsequent implementing resolutions. is no argument against the validity of the law because 'amendment' includes the 'revision' or total overhaul of the entire Constitution. upon the call of the President and Prime Minister Ferdinand E. whether the Constitution is merely amended in part or revised or totally changed would become immaterial the moment the same is ratified by the sovereign people. only a majority vote is needed. Petitioners assailed that the resolutions where so extensive in character as to amount to a revision rather than amendments. That leaves only the questions of the vote necessary to propose amendments as well as the standard for proper submission. or revision of. this Constitution shall be valid when ratified by a majority of the votes cast in a plebiscite which shall be held not later than three months after the approval of such amendment or revision. can propose amendments. 22. 1971. Tolentino vs COMELEC 41 SCRA 702 Facts The case is a petition for prohibition to restrain respondent Commission on Elections "from undertaking to hold a plebiscite on November 8. there can be no debate about the validity of the new Constitution.
1 of the Constitutional Convention of 1971 and the implementing acts and resolutions of the Convention. The petition herein is granted.two resolutions of the Congress of the Philippines approved in its capacity as a constituent assembly convened for the purpose of calling a convention to propose amendments to the Constitution namely. Republic Act 6132. hence all acts of the Convention and the respondent Comelec in that direction are null and void. Organic Resolution No. COMELEC Case Digest SANIDAD vs. and the provision unequivocably says "an election" which means only one. 1967 and June 17. The same provision also as definitely provides that "such amendments shall be valid as part of this Constitution when approved by a majority of the votes cast at an election at which the amendments are submitted to the people for their ratification. Disbursing Officer. lt says distinctly that either Congress sitting as a constituent assembly or a convention called for the purpose "may propose amendments to this Constitution. the Court declares this decision immediately executory." thus leaving no room for doubt as to how many "elections" or plebiscites may be held to ratify any amendment or amendments proposed by the same constituent assembly of Congress or convention. 1971. 695) are hereby declared null and void. Issue Is it within the powers of the Constitutional Convention of 1971 to order the holding of a plebiscite for the ratification of the proposed amendment/s? Held The Court holds that all amendments to be proposed must be submitted to the people in a single "election" or plebiscite. In view of the peculiar circumstances of this case. Resolutions 2 and 4 of the joint sessions of Congress held on March 16. The plebiscite was scheduled 30 January . RA 6766 (Act providing for an organic act for the Cordillera Autonomous Region) was enacted into law. 1969 respectively. Chief Accountant and Auditor of the Constitutional Convention are hereby enjoined from taking any action in compliance with the said organic resolution. insofar as they provide for the holding of a plebiscite on November 8. as well as the resolution of the respondent Comelec complying therewith (RR Resolution No. 1971 is not authorized by Section 1 of Article XV of the Constitution. SANIDAD vs. We hold that the plebiscite being called for the purpose of submitting the same for ratification of the people on November 8.". The respondents Comelec. The delegates to the said Convention were all elected under and by virtue of said resolutions and the implementing legislation thereof. COMELEC 181 SCRA 529 Facts: On 23 October 1989.
The Comelec. 1971. and the right to reply. Therefore. promulgated Resolution 2167. adopted on June 17. 2nd paragraph of RA 6646 (“a columnist.” Issue: Whether columnists are prohibited from expressing their opinions. a newspaper columnist of “Overview” for the “Baguio Midland Courier” assailed the constitutionality of Section 19 (Prohibition on columnists. The Executive Secretary The Facts: Sequence of events that lead to the filing of the “Plebiscite” then “Ratification” Cases. RA 6766 and other pertinent election laws. on the day before and on plebiscite day. 4 of said body. equal rates therefor. media of communication or information to the end that equal opportunity. Said Resolution No. Congress of the Philippines passed Resolution No. 6132. Section 19 of Comelec Resolution 2167 has no statutory basis. 1970. during plebiscite periods. commentator. time and space. which was amended by Resolution No. In fact. Neither Article IX-C of the Constitution nor Section 11-b. announcer or personality. Held: Article IX-C of the 1987 Constitution that what was granted to the Comelec was the power to supervise and regulate the use and enjoyment of franchises. 2. Sanidad. the Omnibus Election Code (BP 881). calling a Convention to propose amendments to the Constitution of the Philippines. as amended. Media practitioners exercising their freedom of expression during plebiscite periods are neither the franchise holders nor the candidates. was implemented by Republic Act No. . The Plebiscite Case On March 16. 1967. 1970. commentator. no mass media columnist. and the 1971 Constitutional Convention began to perform its functions on June 1. or should be under Comelec regulation. which provides “During the plebiscite campaign period. including reasonable. there are no candidates involved in a plebiscite. who is a candidate for any elective office is required to take a leave of absence from his work during the campaign period”) can be construed to mean that the Comelec has also been granted the right to supervise and regulate the exercise by media practitioners themselves of their right to expression during plebiscite periods. Pablito V. by virtue of the power vested by the 1987 Constitution. announcer or personality shall use his column or radio or television time to campaign for or against the plebiscite issues. for public information campaigns and forums among candidates are ensured. to govern the conduct of the plebiscite on the said Organic Act for the Cordillera Autonomous Region. approved on August 24. commentators or announcers) of the said resolution. Javellana vs. 2. pursuant to the provisions of which the election of delegates to the said Convention was held on November 10. 1969.1990. permits or other grants issued for the operation of transportation or other public utilities.
until further orders of the Court. 1081 placing the entire Philippines under Martial Law. 1972." Because of these events relative to the postponement of the aforementioned plebiscite. the Court deemed it fit to refrain. the petitioners in Case G. 1973. be postponed until further notice. . Charito Planas filed a case against the Commission on Elections. particularly in view of the formal postponement of the plebiscite by the President reportedly after consultation with. lodged exclusively in Congress . when General Order No. the President announced the postponement of the plebiscite for the ratification or rejection of the Proposed Constitution. 1972. are. for neither the date nor the conditions under which said plebiscite would be held were known or announced officially. The next day. Then. there being no freedom of speech. inter alia. 1973.While the Convention was in session on September 21. 73. "submitting to the Filipino people for ratification or rejection the Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines proposed by the 1971 Constitutional Convention. the President had issued an order temporarily suspending the effects of Proclamation No." and "there is no proper submission to the people of said Proposed Constitution set for January 15. the Treasurer of the Philippines and the Auditor General. the President issued Proclamation No. 1978. for the purpose of free and open debate on the Proposed Constitution. 1973. No formal action to this effect was taken until January 7. On December 7. among others. the President of the Philippines issued Presidential Decree No. that said Presidential Decree "has no force and effect as law because the calling .R. 20. "In the afternoon of January 12. 73 was that the President does not have the legislative authority to call a plebiscite and appropriate funds therefor. and the appropriation of public funds for the purpose. and appropriating funds therefor. for the time being. On November 29. of such plebiscite. "suspended in the meantime" the "order of December 17. to enjoin said "respondents or their agents from implementing Presidential Decree No. Congress was. 1973. 1972.. in any manner." upon the grounds. the setting of guidelines for the conduct of the same. 1972. directing "that the plebiscite scheduled to be held on January 15. 73." as well as setting the plebiscite for said ratification or rejection of the Proposed Constitution on January 15." Said General Order No. L-35948 filed an "urgent motion. again.. 1973. and there being no sufficient time to inform the people of the contents thereof. from deciding the aforementioned cases. 1972. press and assembly. temporarily suspending the effects of Proclamation No. moreover." praying that said case be decided "as soon as possible." On December 17. pursuant to the 1935 Constitution. On December 23. scheduled to meet in regular session on January 22. No. the prescription of the ballots to be used and the question to be answered by the voters.. 1972.. by the Constitution. 20 was issued. preferably not later than January 15. 1081 for purposes of free and open debate on the proposed Constitution. the Convention approved its Proposed Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines. 1081.. November 30. and since the main objection to Presidential Decree No. which Congress unquestionably could do. the leaders of Congress and the Commission on Elections the Court deemed it more imperative to defer its final action on these cases.
No. the said Citizens Assemblies were established precisely to broaden the base of citizen ." praying: "." While the case was being heard." Prior thereto. 1102 "ANNOUNCING THE RATIFICATION BY THE FILIPINO PEOPLE OF THE CONSTITUTION PROPOSED BY THE 1971 CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION. earlier that morning. which had just been signed by the President. Secretary Conrado Estrella." On the same date January 15.R. L-35948 to file "file an answer to the said motion not later than 4 P.. on the date last mentioned. L-35948 inasmuch as the hearing in connection therewith was still going on and the public there present that the President had. the Secretary of Justice called on the writer of this opinion and said that. composed of all persons who are residents of the barrio. 1973. 1973. the National Ratification Coordinating Committee and its Chairman.M. Tuesday. Citizens Assemblies were created in barrios. district or ward secretary. No. which was a Saturday. Guillermo de Vega. and announcing and reporting to the President or other officials concerned. on the two questions quoted in paragraph 1 of this Supplemental Urgent Motion. certifying. 1102. 1973.m. "WHEREAS. January 13. fifteen years of age or over.1973. 1973. Thereupon. the parties in G. 1973. in municipalities and in districts/wards in chartered cities pursuant to Presidential Decree No. "WHEREAS. 1972. as well as the Department of Local Governments and its head. the Constitution proposed by the nineteen hundred seventy-one Constitutional Convention is subject to ratification by the Filipino people. the so-called Citizens' Assemblies referendum results allegedly obtained when they were supposed to have met during the period comprised between January 10 and January 15. he (the Secretary of Justice) was delivering to him (the writer) a copy of Proclamation No. the Court issued a resolution requiring the respondents in said three (3) cases to comment on said "urgent motion" and "manifestation. the Department of Agrarian Reforms and its head. 1973 the Court passed a resolution requiring the respondents in said case G. subordinates and substitutes. citizens of the Philippines and who are registered in the list of Citizen Assembly members kept by the barrio. "WHEREAS. or on January 15. Thereupon. upon instructions of the President." "not later than Tuesday noon. their deputies. the writer read Proclamation No. 86. the writer returned to the Session Hall and announced to the Court." and setting the motion for hearing "on January 17. signed said Proclamation No. according to information conveyed by the Secretary of Justice. from collecting." The next day. Secretary Jose Roño. L-35948 riled a "supplemental motion for issuance of restraining order and inclusion of additional respondents. the petitioners in said Case G. that a restraining order be issued enjoining and restraining respondent Commission on Elections.R. district or ward for at least six months. January 16. at 9:30 a. 1102 which is of the following tenor: ____________________________ "BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES "PROCLAMATION NO. at noontime. 1973. dated December 31. No. shortly before noon. and all other officials and persons who may be assigned such task...R. 1102. January 16.
fourteen million two hundred ninety-eight thousand eight hundred fourteen (14. by virtue of the powers in me vested by the Constitution. I. Josue Javellana filed Case G. MARCOS "President of the Philippines "By the President: "ALEJANDRO MELCHOR "Executive Secretary" _________________________________ The Ratification Case On January 20. 1973. nineteen hundred and seventy-three. to restrain said respondents "and their subordinates or agents from implementing any of the provisions of the propose Constitution not found in the present Constitution" referring to that of 1935. since the referendum results show that more than ninety-five (95) per cent of the members of the Barangays (Citizens Assemblies) are in favor of the new Constitution." was amended on or about January 24.participation in the democratic process and to afford ample opportunity for the citizenry to express their views on important national issues. "NOW. After reciting in substance the facts set forth in the decision in the plebiscite cases. for himself. dated January 5. Justice and Finance. responding to the clamor of the people and pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 86-A. "WHEREAS. President of the Philippines. "Done in the City of Manila. 1973. in the year of Our Lord. MARCOS.814) answered that there was no need for a plebiscite and that the vote of the Barangays (Citizens Assemblies) should be considered as a vote in a plebiscite.869) who voted for its rejection. "WHEREAS. FERDINAND E. respondents . "IN WITNESS WHEREOF. while on the question as to whether or not the people would still like a plebiscite to be called to ratify the new Constitution. and has thereby come into effect. (Sgd.298.976. thru his Cabinet. filed by Josue Javellana.561) members of all the Barangays (Citizens Assemblies) voted for the adoption of the proposed Constitution. this 17th day of January. Javellana alleged that the President had announced "the immediate implementation of the New Constitution. The petition therein. and a qualified and registered voter" and as "a class suit. 1973. as a "Filipino citizen. fourteen million nine hundred seventy-six thousand five hundred sixty-one (14. do hereby certify and proclaim that the Constitution proposed by the nineteen hundred and seventy-one (1971) Constitutional Convention has been ratified by an overwhelming majority of all of the votes cast by the members of all the Barangays (Citizens Assemblies) throughout the Philippines. I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the Republic of the Philippines to be affixed. the following questions were posed before the Citizens Assemblies or Barangays: Do you approve of the New Constitution? Do you still want a plebiscite to be called to ratify the new Constitution? "WHEREAS.R. THEREFORE. as against seven hundred forty-three thousand eight hundred sixty-nine (743. and in behalf of all citizens and voters similarly situated. No. L-36142 against the Executive Secretary and the Secretaries of National Defense.) FERDINAND E. the Katipunan ng Mga Barangay has strongly recommended that the new Constitution should already be deemed ratified by the Filipino people.
in their discussion of the second question.) 4. and "that the election held to ratify the proposed Constitution was not a free election. together Justices Zaldivar. only inferentially. voted to grant the relief being sought. Has the aforementioned proposed Constitution acquiesced in (with or without valid ratification) by the people? (acquiesced . or six (6) members of the Court. Barredo. hold that the issue of the validity of Proclamation No. Makasiar. Is the aforementioned proposed Constitution in force? The Resolution: Summary: The court was severely divided on the following issues raised in the petition: but when the crucial question of whether the petitioners are entitled to relief. Is the issue of the validity of Proclamation No. if not strict. Fernando and Teehankee. Teehankee and myself.including. Has the Constitution proposed by the 1971 Constitutional Convention been ratified validly (with substantial. Antonio and Esguerra) voted to dismiss the petition. Castro. 1102 a justiciable. Fernando. is without authority to create the Citizens Assemblies"." The Issue: 1. thus upholding the 1973 Constitution. question? On the first issue involving the political-question doctrine Justices Makalintal." and that the latter "are acting without. 1102 presents a justiciable and non-political question. as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. Concepcion."permission" given by silence or passiveness. 1102 a justiciable. Justice Barredo qualified his vote. hence null and void. Details: 1. Justices Makalintal and Castro did not vote squarely on this question.". Zaldivar. Castro. stating that "inasmuch as it is claimed there has been approval by the . question? 2. or political and therefore nonjusticiable. or political and therefore nonjusticiable. "that the President is without power to proclaim the ratification by the Filipino people of the proposed Constitution". that the same "are without power to approve the proposed Constitution ... but. or in excess of jurisdiction in implementing the said proposed Constitution" upon the ground: "that the President. Are petitioners entitled to relief? 5. Is the issue of the validity of Proclamation No. compliance) conformably to the applicable constitutional and statutory provisions? 3. six members of the court (Justices Makalintal. Acceptance or agreement by keeping quiet or by not making objections.
however. it may be said that in its political aspect. or three (3) members of the Court hold that the issue is political and "beyond the ambit of judicial inquiry. Castro." Justices Makasiar. Justice Barredo qualified his vote. in the political sense. Has the aforementioned proposed Constitution acquiesced in (with or without valid ratification) by the people? On the third question of acquiescence by the Filipino people in the aforementioned proposed Constitution. specially in the manner the votes therein were cast.. namely. "in an election or plebiscite held in accordance with law and participated in only by qualified and duly registered voters. stating that "(A)s to whether or not the 1973 Constitution has been validly ratified pursuant to Article XV. Antonio and Esguerra hold that "the people have already accepted the 1973 Constitution. the Court may inquire into the question of whether or not there has actually been such an approval. Has the Constitution proposed by the 1971 Constitutional Convention been ratified validly (with substantial. hence. said Article has been substantially complied with. which provides only one way for ratification.people. if not strict. if not in the orthodox legal sense. Makasiar.e. Antonio and Esguerra. the Court may determine from both factual and legal angles whether or not Article XV of the 1935 Constitution been complied with. I am constrained to hold that. Justices Makalintal. Esguerra. In view. falls short of the requirements thereof. which is what counts most. 3. the Court should keep hands-off out of respect to the people's will. Teehankee and myself. Four (4) of its members. no majority vote has been reached by the Court. after all. the 1973 Constitution has been constitutionally ratified." Justices Makasiar. Antonio. i. Justices Barredo." 2. of their acceptance or repudiation of the proposed Constitution under Martial Law. section 1 of the 1935 Constitution. and. Justice Zaldivar and myself hold that there can be no free expression. the people may be deemed to have cast their favorable votes in the belief that in doing so they did the part required of them by Article XV. but. reported and canvassed. or six (6) members of the Court also hold that the Constitution proposed by the 1971 Constitutional Convention was not validly ratified in accordance with Article XV. in the affirmative. in effect. the referendum in the Citizens' Assemblies. Fernando. compliance) conformably to the applicable constitutional and statutory provisions? On the second question of validity of the ratification. I still maintain that in the light of traditional concepts regarding the meaning and intent of said Article. or three (3) members of the Court hold that under their view there has been in effect substantial compliance with the constitutional requirements for valid ratification. and there has even been no expression. Zaldivar. in negative. of the fact that I have no means of refusing to recognize as a judge that factually there was voting and that the majority of the votes were for considering as approved the 1973 Constitution without the necessity of the usual form of plebiscite followed in past ratifications." Two (2) members of the Court. and. Justice . by the people qualified to vote all over the Philippines. namely.
namely. Fernando. an therefore beyond the competence of this Court. Barredo. Teehankee and myself voted to deny respondents' motion to dismiss and to give due course to the petitions. Fernando and Teehankee cast no vote thereon on the premise stated in their votes on the third question that they could not state with judicial certainty whether the people have accepted or not accepted the Constitution. is the basic and ultimate question posed by these cases to resolve which considerations other than judicial. Castro. six (6) members of the Court. Makasiar. This being the vote of the majority. 90 are relevant and unavoidable. Justices Makalintal and Castro are joined by Justice Teehankee in their statement that "Under a regime of martial law. It is so ordered. Are petitioners entitled to relief? On the fourth question of relief. (they) have no means of knowing. Justices Zaldivar. Castro. with the free expression of opinions through the usual media vehicle restricted. namely. Justice Zaldivar and myself voted that the Constitution proposed by the 1971 Constitutional Convention is not in force." 88 Three (3) members of the Court express their lack of knowledge and/or competence to rule on the question. whether the people have accepted the Constitution. to the point of judicial certainty." 91 Four (4) members of the Court. namely. with the result that there are not enough votes to declare that the new Constitution is not in force. there is no further judicial obstacle to the new Constitution being considered in force and effect." 4. Makasiar. by virtue of the majority of six (6) votes of Justices Makalintal. ACCORDINGLY. Antonio and Esguerra voted to DISMISS the petition. Justices Barredo. Barredo. and Two (2) members of the Court. all the aforementioned cases are hereby dismissed. Antonio and Esguerra with the four (4) dissenting votes of the Chief Justice and Justices Zaldivar. Justices Makalintal. 5. Makasiar. Is the aforementioned proposed Constitution in force? On the fifth question of whether the new Constitution of 1973 is in force: Four (4) members of the Court. in the final analysis. Four (4) members of the Court. Justice Makalintal and Castro so voted on the strength of their view that "(T)he effectivity of the said Constitution. namely.Fernando states that "(I)f it is conceded that the doctrine stated in some American decisions to the effect that independently of the validity of the ratification. Fernando and Teehankee. Castro. Antonio and Esguerra hold that it is in force by virtue of the people's acceptance thereof. namely. Justices Makalintal. . I am not at this stage prepared to state that such doctrine calls for application in view of the shortness of time that has elapsed and the difficulty of ascertaining what is the mind of the people in the absence of the freedom of debate that is a concomitant feature of martial law. a new Constitution once accepted acquiesced in by the people must be accorded recognition by the Court.
a group of citizens desirous to avail of the system intended to institutionalize people power. signature stations shall be established all over the country. Delfin alleged in his petition that he is a founding member of the Movement for People's Initiative. AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE SECTIONS 4 AND 7 . 2300. that the exercise of that power shall be conducted in proceedings under the control and supervision of the COMELEC. in newspapers of general and local circulation. that. Causing the necessary publications of said Order and the attached "Petition for Initiative on the 1987 Constitution.SANTIAGO VS. The Delfin Petition further alleged that the provisions sought to be amended are Sections 4 and 7 of Article VI. COMELEC G. private respondent Atty. 1976 FACTS: On 6 December 1996. Jesus S. in establishing signing stations at the time and on the dates designated for the purpose. that he and the members of the Movement and other volunteers intend to exercise the power to directly propose amendments to the Constitution granted under Section 2. NO. COMELEC Case Digest SANTIAGO VS. to assist Petitioners and volunteers. Delfin filed with public respondent Commission on Elections a "Petition to Amend the Constitution. Delfin Petition) wherein Delfin asked the COMELEC for an order 1. who shall verify the signatures affixed by individual signatories. L-44640 OCTOBER 12. and with the following proposition: DO YOU APPROVE OF LIFTING THE TERM LIMITS OF ALL ELECTIVE GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS. by People's Initiative" (hereafter. as required in COMELEC Resolution No. it is necessary that the time and dates to be designated for the purpose be first fixed in an order to be issued by the COMELEC. and that to adequately inform the people of the electoral process involved.R. 3. 8 and Section 8 of Article X 9 of the Constitution. Fixing the time and dates for signature gathering all over the country. it is likewise necessary that the said order. with the assistance of municipal election registrars. as well as the Petition on which the signatures shall be affixed. 2. to Lift Term Limits of Elective Officials. Attached to the petition is a copy of a "Petition for Initiative on the 1987 Constitution" 10 embodying the proposed amendments which consist in the deletion from the aforecited sections of the provisions concerning term limits. Instructing Municipal Election Registrars in all Regions of the Philippines. under the control and supervision of the COMELEC. be published in newspapers of general and local circulation. Article XVII of the Constitution. 7 Section 4 of Article VII. that before the Movement and other volunteers can gather signatures.
adopted on 16 January 1991 to govern "the conduct of initiative on the Constitution and initiative and referendum on national and local laws. 6735 provides for the effectivity of the law after publication in print media. . the said Petition for Initiative will first be submitted to the people. is ultra vires insofar as initiative on amendments to the Constitution is concerned. (2) It is true that R. which are specifically provided for in Subtitle II and Subtitle III. in fact. This indicates that the Act covers only laws and not constitutional amendments because the latter take effect only upon ratification and not after publication. 1290 entitled An Act Prescribing and Regulating Constitution Amendments by People's Initiative. it failed to provide any subtitle on initiative on the Constitution. On 18 December 1996. No. is still pending before the Senate Committee on Constitutional Amendments.OF ARTICLE VI. or office has realigned funds for the purpose. agency. This deliberate omission indicates that the matter of people's initiative to amend the Constitution was left to some future law. therefore. 2300. SECTION 4 OF ARTICLE VII. (5) The people's initiative is limited to amendments to the Constitution. However. not to revision thereof.A. unlike in the other modes of initiative. neither the COMELEC nor any other government department. (4) COMELEC Resolution No. which petitioner Senator Santiago filed on 24 November 1995. (6) Finally. since the COMELEC has no power to provide rules and regulations for the exercise of the right of initiative to amend the Constitution. namely. Only Congress is authorized by the Constitution to pass the implementing law. and on local legislation. No such law has been passed. Former Senator Arturo Tolentino stressed this deficiency in the law in his privilege speech delivered before the Senate in 1994: "There is not a single word in that law which can be considered as implementing [the provision on constitutional initiative]. Such implementing provisions have been obviously left to a separate law. the petitioners herein — Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago. initiative on the Constitution. Alexander Padilla. 6735 provides for three systems of initiative. Congress has not yet appropriated funds for people's initiative. AND SECTION 8 OF ARTICLE X OF THE 1987 PHILIPPINE CONSTITUTION? According to Delfin. (3) Republic Act No. Extending or lifting of term limits constitutes a revision and is. and Maria Isabel Ongpin — filed this special civil action for prohibition raising the following arguments: (1) The constitutional provision on people's initiative to amend the Constitution can only be implemented by law to be passed by Congress. on statutes. Senate Bill No. and after it is signed by at least twelve per cent of the total number of registered voters in the country it will be formally filed with the COMELEC. outside the power of the people's initiative.
No. maps out its boundaries and specifies the public agency to apply it. Issue 2 – Validity of Comelec Resolution 2300 . carried out.A. adequately covers such initiative. Whether that portion of COMELEC Resolution No. 6735 is sufficient to cover the people’s initiative to propose amendments? R. R. However. HELD: Issue 1 – Whether R.A. Whether R. 2. 5 above. 6735 INTENDED TO INCLUDE THE SYSTEM OF INITIATIVE ON AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION. No. as worded.ISSUES: 1. UNFORTUNATELY. Insofar as initiative to propose amendments to the Constitution is concerned. or wanting in essential terms and conditions insofar as initiative on amendments to the Constitution is concerned. It is valid only if the law (a) is complete in itself. and Initiative and Referendum on National and Local Laws) regarding the conduct of initiative on amendments to the Constitution is valid. Curiously. No. in every case of permissible delegation. to promulgate rules and regulations is a form of delegation of legislative authority under no. entitled An Act Providing for a System of Initiative and Referendum and Appropriating Funds Therefor. NO. while R. 2300 (In re: Rules and Regulations Governing the Conduct of Initiative on the Constitution. It indicates the circumstances under which the legislative command is to be effected. there must be a showing that the delegation itself is valid. BUT IS. whether the Act. was intended to include or cover initiative on amendments to the Constitution. it failed. and (b) fixes a standard — the limits of which are sufficiently determinate and determinable — to which the delegate must conform in the performance of his functions. and if so. Empowering the COMELEC. 6735. No. 6735 is incomplete. 6735 exerted utmost diligence and care in providing for the details in the implementation of initiative and referendum on national and local legislation thereby giving them special attention. 6735 miserably failed to satisfy both requirements in subordinate legislation. R. an administrative body exercising quasi-judicial functions.A.A. INADEQUATE TO COVER THAT SYSTEM.A. rather intentionally. to do so on the system of initiative on amendments to the Constitution. considering the absence in the law of specific provisions on the conduct of such initiative.A. or implemented by the delegate. inadequate. No. setting forth therein the policy to be executed. The delegation of the power to the COMELEC is then invalid. marks its limits. A sufficient standard is one which defines legislative policy.
It does not have that power under R.1109 to the Senate for its approval and adoption and the possible promulgation of a Joint and Concurrent Resolution convening the Congress into a Constituent Assembly. for the laws and regulations referred to therein are those promulgated by the COMELEC under (a) Section 3 of Article IX-C of the Constitution. 6735. no usurpation of power or gross abuse of discretion has yet taken place.” Both petitions seek to trigger a justiciable controversy that would warrant a definitive interpretation by the Court of Section 1.Res. Held: No. . The House has said it would forward H. which provides for the procedure for amending or revising the Constitution. Article XVII. No proposal has yet been made. filed by their respective petitioners in their capacities as concerned citizens and taxpayers. or indeed may not occur at all. the House that the Congress ought to convene into a Constituent Assembly and adopt some Rules for proposing changes to the charter. No. Reliance on the COMELEC's power is misplaced. The House has not yet performed a positive act that would warrant an intervention from this Court.” Issue: Whether or not the Congress committed a violation in promulgating the HR1109. or (b) a law where subordinate legislation is authorized and which satisfies the "completeness" and the "sufficient standard" tests. The petitions were dismissed.It logically follows that the COMELEC cannot validly promulgate rules and regulations to implement the exercise of the right of the people to directly propose amendments to the Constitution through the system of initiative. 1109 only resolved that the House of Representatives shall convene at a future time for the purpose of proposing amendments or revisions to the Constitution. 1109 involves a quintessential example of an uncertain contingent future event that may not occur as anticipated. The petitioners alleged that HR 1109 is unconstitutional for deviation from the prescribed procedures to amend the Constitution by excluding the Senate of the Philippines from the complete process of proposing amendments to the Constitution and for lack of thorough debates and consultations. No actual convention has yet transpired and no rules of procedure have yet been adopted. Petitioners have not sufficiently proven any adverse injury or hardship from the act complained of. Upon a Three-fourths Vote of All the Members of Congress. Lozano vs Nograles Facts: The two petitions.A. 1109 entitled “A Resolution Calling upon the Members of Congress to Convene for the Purpose of Considering Proposals to Amend or Revise the Constitution. Judicial review is exercised only to remedy a particular and concrete injury. prayed for the nullification of House Resolution No. House Resolution No. and hence. House Resolution No.
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