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Social Justice Society v. Atienza, Jr ., February 13,2008, Corona, J.

The Supreme Court denied the motions for reconsideration filed by the Department of Energy and oil giants Chevron, Petron, and Shell; and reiterated its March 7, 2007 decisionordering the Manila City mayor to enforce Ordinance No. 8027 directing the removal of theterminals from Pandacan by the said oil companies. The said Ordinance reclassified portionsof the Manila districts of Pandacan and Sta. Ana from industrial to commercial and directedcertain business owners and operators, including the three oil giants to cease and desistfrom operating their businesses there. Ordinance No. 8027, approved by Manila City Council on November 28, 2001 and effective December 28, 2001, reclassifies portions of Pandacan and Sta. Ana from industrial to commercial and directs the owners and operators of businesses to cease and desist from operating their businesses within 6 months from the ordinances effectivity. Among the businesses in the area are the so-called Pandacan Terminals of Chevron, Petron, and Shell. Chevron, Petron and Shell, questioned the validity of the said ordinance. They argued that they are fighting for their right to property alleging that they stand to lose billions of pesos if forced [to] relocate. Are the contentions of the oil companies tenable? SUGGESTED ANSWER: No. The Court described Ordinance No. 8027 as a measure enacted pursuant to the delegated police power of local government units to promote the order, safety, and health, morals, and general welfare of the society. It explained that based on the hierarchy of constitutionally protected rights, the right to life enjoys precedence over the right to property. The reason is obvious: life is irreplaceable, property is not. When the state or [local government unit] LGUs exercise of police power clashes with a few individuals right to property, the former should prevail. (GR No. 156052, Social Justice Society, et al. v. Atienza, Jr., February 13, 2008) Ordinance No. 8027 visit fellester.blogspot.com was enacted right after the Philippines, along with the rest of the world, witnessed the horror of the September 11, 2001 attack on the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. The objective of the ordinance is to protect the residents of Manila from the catastrophic devastation that will surely occur in case of a terrorist attack on the Pandacan Terminals. No reason exists why such a protective measure should

be delayed. NOTES: In 2007, the SC ruled that the Local Government Code imposes upon Mayor Atienza, to enforce all laws and ordinances relative to the governance of the city. One of these is Ordinance No. 8027. As the chief executive of the city, he has the duty to enforce Ordinance No. 8027 as long as it has not been repealed by the Sanggunian or annulled by the courts. He has no other choice. (GR No. 156052, Social Justice Society, et al. v. Atienza, Jr., March 7, 2007) In 2008, The Supreme Court denied the motions for reconsideration filed by Chevron, Petron, and Shell, and instead reiterated its March 7, 2007 decision. (GR No. 156052, Social Justice Society, et al. v. Atienza, Jr., February 13, 2008) In 2009, the SC recently denied with finality the second motion for reconsideration of the three big oil players. The Court stressed that the second motion for reconsideration is a prohibited pleading pursuant to sec. 2, Rule 52 of the Rules of Court. It said that it already passed upon the basic issues in its February 13, 2008 resolution and noted that the arguments of the oil firms were a mere rehash of their arguments raised in the first motion for reconsideration. (Min. Res., GR No. 156052, Social Justice Society, et al. v. Atienza, Jr., April 28, 2009)