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G.R. No. L-27299 June 27, 1973 QUIRICO DEL MAR, petitioner and appellee, vs. THE PHILIPPINE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION, respondent and appellant. CASTRO, J.: On June 20, 1964, Quirico del Mar (hereinafter referred to del Mar) filed with the Court of First Instance of Cebu petition formandamus (civil case R-8465) against the Philippine Veterans Administration (hereinafter referred to the PVA to compel the latter to continue paying him monthly life pension of P50 from the date of its cancellation in March 1950 to June 20, 1957, and thereafter, or from June 22 1957 his monthly life pension, as increased by Republic Act 1920, 1 of P100 and to pay to him as well the monthly living allowance of P10 for each of his unmarried minor children below eighteen years of age, 2 pursuant to the said Republic Act 1920 which took effect on June 22, 1957. Del Mar also asked for compensatory, moral and exemplary damages. In his petition below, del Mar averred that he served during World War II as chief judge advocate of the Cebu Area Command (a duly recognized guerrilla organization) with the rank of major; that he subsequently obtained an honorable discharge from the service on October 20, 1946 on a certificate of permanent total physical disability; that upon proper claim presented and after hearing and adjudication, the Philippine Veterans Board (the PVA's predecessor granted him a monthly life pension of P50 effective January 28, 1947; that in March 1950, the said Board discontinued payment of his monthly life pension on the ground that his receipt of a similar pension from the United States Government, through the United States Veterans Administration, by reason of military service rendered in the United States Army in the Far East during World War II, precluded him from receiving any further monthly life pension from the Philippine Government; that he wrote the said Board twice demanding that it continue paying his monthly life pension, impugning the cancellation thereof as illegal; and that his demands went unheeded. The PVA reiterated its contention that del Mar's receipt of a similar pension from the United States Government effectively barred him from claiming and receiving from the Philippine Government the monthly life pension granted him as well as the monthly allowances he claimed for his five living unmarried minor children below eighteen years of age. The PVA also asserted that it is discretionary on its part to grant or discontinue
and his monthly life pension corresponding to the period from June 22. 1957 to February 1965 at the amount of P100 a month totalling P9. adding up to P4. and (3 directed the PVA in the event of unavailability of funds to pay the claims aforementioned. 1957 as well as the current ones until each one of them ceases to be entitled to the same. or to cause the same to be appropriated in its budget in order to comply with the judgment. (2) in no finding as premature the petition for mandamus filed by del Mar due to the failure of the latter to exhaust available administrative remedies before seeking judicial intervention. and that the courta quo was without jurisdiction to try the case as del Mar demand partakes of a money claim against the PVA . Hence. to set aside funds from such as intended to pay the veterans' living pensions. the court a quo omitted to pass judgment on del Mar's claim for moral and exemplary damages. The PVA thus prayed for the dismissal of the petition. The PVA alleges that the court a quo erred (1) in not holding itself without jurisdiction to try civil case R-8465. (2) directed del Mar to file with the PVA the corresponding written application for the payment to him of the monthly living allowance of P10 for each of his five living unmarried minor children from June 22. of a suit against the Government which is not suitable without its consent. the court (1) ordered the PVA to pay to del Mar his monthly life pension corresponding to the period from April 1950 to May 1957 at the rate of P50 a month. This appeal raises several questions which will be discussed in seriatim. to make the necessary payment of the accumulated unpaid living allowances due to each of the said children from June 22. and ordered the PVA to give due course to the written application as soon as del Mar shall have filed the same with it. 2 relied upon by it in discontinuing the monthly life pension of del Mar since March 1950.a mere agency of the Philippine Government . and (6) in ordering it to give due course to and approve the application which the said court directed del Mar to file for the payment to the latter of the monthly living allowance for each of his living unmarried minor children below eighteen years of age. The PVA argues that the court a quo was without jurisdiction to try civil case R-8465 because it involves a money claim against the said PVA .200. (5) in ordering it to pay to del Mar the amounts stated in the judgment.a mere agency of the Government performing governmental functions with no juridical personality of its own . (4) in not finding it discretionary on the part of the PVA to grant or discontinue the said suspension. the present appeal by the PVA. in effect. (3) in declaring null and void section 6 of PVA Regulation No. After due trial. 1.the pension sought by del Mar.334. In addition. and once approved. the court a quo rendered judgment upholding del Mar claims. it alleged that the action of del Mar was premature because of his failure to exhaust administrative remedies before invoking judicial intervention. In its decision dated February 27.and. 1957. and thereafter to continue to pay his monthly life pension at the rate of P100.86. For lack of basis. 1965. a month.
Perforce. and the happenstance that the action is directed against the PVA as an entity and not against the Republic of the Philippines is of no moment. As a general proposition.a charge against the Government where the money involved is part of the public funds. the rule ." since the funds from which the claim was to be satisfied were funds appropriated by Congress for the PVA. This Court stated in precise language the sole issue for resolution in that case. Thus. partakes of an action against the Philippine Government which is immune from suit without its consent. we must initially determine whether the PVA is an agency or instrumentality of the Republic of the Philippines.. Indeed. is a suit against the Government. thus: Is the PVA exempt from the filing of an appeal bond? To resolve this issue.well-settled in this jurisdiction . this Court made a lengthy disquisition on the history. development and organization of the PVA to show conclusively that the same is an entity or agency of the Republic of the Philippines performing governmental functions. would render the Republic of the Philippines liable therefor.on the immunity of the Government from suit without its consent holds true in all actions resulting in "adverse consequences on the public treasury. acts and has to act through its agency and instrumentality. citing this Court's observation in Republic of the Philippine vs. in the affirmative. in the said case. if adjudged finally to be meritorious.and. and to their heirs and beneficiaries. the PVA is therefore exempt from the filing of an appeal bond. and. not to the nature of the claim sought to be enforced by the private respondent therein (del Mar) against the said PVA.. this Court referred to the claim of the private respondent therein as "a claim for a sum of money against the Government. 3 to wit: . on matters of administration of all benefits due to the veterans of revolutions and wars.. which claim. The suit should therefore be regarded as one against the Republic of the Philippines. The PVA labors under a muddled and mistaken appreciation of the aforecited observation. but this Court properly and advisedly omitted any study and consideration of the question of suitability or non-suitability of the Government in connection therewith.. the PVA. in reality. whether in the disbursements of funds . the Republic of the Philippines. Ramolete and Del Mar. the decisive point in the aforementioned case related to the status of the PVA as an agency or instrumentality of the Republic of the Philippines exercising governmental functions as to be entitled to exemption from the filing of the appeal bond per section 16 of Rule 141 of the Rules of Court. True. whether it exercises governmental functions.
involves a question solely of a legal nature. The PVA avers that it adopted the aforequoted section 6 in order to carry out and implement section 9 of Republic Act 65. which. there arises no need for the litigant to resort to all administrative remedies available to him before seeking judicial relief. That upon proper application. however. The validity of section 6 of Regulation No. the rule admits of an exception. further.or loss of property. Effect of receipt of USVA pension benefit . 7 particularly its excepting clause. Pursuant to the foregoing. the case at bar falls under the exception." 4 Needless to state. 2 of the "Rules and Regulations on Veterans' Benefits" adopted by the PVA constitutes the core of the present controversy. That if and while the disability compensation awarded by the US Veterans Administration is less than the pension granted hereunder. The second question posed by the PVA relates to del Mar alleged failure to exhaust administrative remedies before resorting to court action. 2. in effect. the PVA cancelled and discontinued the monthly life pension of del Mar reasoning that the latter's receipt of a similar pension from the United States Government precluded his enjoying any like benefit from the Philippine Government. 6. 5 As clearly discernible from the circumstances. Payment of pension thus restored shall take effect or shall commence only from the date of approval of restoration and when funds become available. in such actions. 3. the disability award previously cancelled may be restored upon the termination of the US Veterans Administration award if the cause of such termination is due to negative military service report of the pensioner certified by the US Department of the Army and not for any other valid cause: Provided. disease or . Suffice it to state that where a case as in the present controversy . the difference in amount shall be assumed and paid by the PVA: Provided. It finds no application where a claimant institutes an action against a functionary who fails to comply with his statutory duty to release the amount claimed from the public funds already appropriated by statute for the benefit of the said claimant. Nonetheless.termination. 9. constitute suits against the Government. reduction. That the veteran is medically determined to be still suffering from the disability for which he was previously awarded a pension. . finally. The said section 6 reads as follows: SEC. Said section 9 reads: SEC. the court has no option but to dismiss them. The persons mentioned in sections one and two hereof who are permanently incapacitated from work owing to sickness.An award of a similar disability compensation from the US Veterans Administration shall be a ground for the cancellation of a disability pension granted under the Regulation: Provided. as amended.
SEC. the necessary hospitalization and medical care. provided such rules and regulations conform to the terms and standards prescribed by the statute as well purport to carry into effect its general policies. unless they are actually receiving a similar pension from other Government funds. in addition. its provisions. The principle recognizing the necessity of vesting administrative authorities with the power to promulgate rules and regulations to implement a given statute and to effectual its policies. Members of the Board of Administrators. . There must be strict compliance with the legislative enactment. 8 The PVA reads the phrase "from other Government funds" in the excepting clause of the aforecited provision as necessarily including funds of the United States Government. . Its terms must be followed. the Constitution limits the authority of the President. 11. contrary to the express language of the Constitution. shall be given a life pension of one hundred pesos a month. Philippine Veterans Administration. this Court fittingly stated: . assert for itself a more extensive prerogative. 10 In Teoxon v. del Mar avers that section 6 of Regulation No. suprea. No lesser administrative executive office or agency then can. The statute requires adherence to. Necessarily. and shall receive. as amended.Subject to existing laws. as amended. constitutes well established doctrine in this jurisdiction. On the other hand. Furthermore. and argues that under section 20 9 of Republic Act 65. No deviation is allowable.. del Mar states. Policies. in the case at bar. illegally arrogated unto itself the said power. the Administration shall have the power to promulgate and issue rules and regulations as may be found necessary to govern its operations and to . not departure from. rules and regulations. and ten pesos a month for each of his unmarried minor children below eighteen years of age. it is bound to observe the constitutional mandate. to take care that the laws be faithfully executed.injuries sustained in line of duty. the PVA "deliberately misinterprets" the phrase from other Government funds" in extending its scope to include United States Government funds. And without question. the power suspend the payment of the monthly life pension awarded to disabled veteran belongs exclusively to the President of the Philippines. the pension del Mar receives from the United States Veterans Administration comes from the funds of the United States Government. not to the PVA which. Section 11 of Republic Act 2665 thus: 11 empowers the PVA to adopt rules and regulations. in whom all executive power resides. 2 illegally effects the suspension of the operation of section 9 of Republic Act 65..
the PVA by adopting section 6 of Regulation No. this Court perforce must uphold del Mar claims.of the operation of any of the provisions of the said statute. as amended. as amended promulgated its "Rules and Regulations on Veterans' Benefits. but paid out of the funds of the same Government. the PVA . but also contravenes the express mandate of section 20 thereof.the authority to act on and decide claims and applications in accordance with their judgment. as amended. although coursed through different departments or agencies." Clearly then. The record of the case at bar being completely bereft of any indication to show the suspension by the President of the Philippines . amended . 2 not only negates the very spirit behind section 9 of Republic Act 65. obviously intends to prevent the receipt the same beneficiary of concurrent or multiple pensions benefits similar to each other in nature and basis. conflicts with the establish axiom ordaining the construction of pension laws of war veterans in favor of those seeking their benefits. as amended. 2 of which cancels the disability pension granted if the beneficiary receives a similar compensation from the United States Veterans Administration. In effect. in the exercise of . 4.like the PVA . The rest of the assigned errors relate to the allege undue interference by the court a quo with the purely discretionary functions of the PVA in the matter of granting discontinuing the pension benefits.predicated upon its interpretation that the phrase other Government funds" includes funds of the United States Government .carry out that aims and purposes of this Act and of all other laws to be administered by the Administration. This.pursuant to section 20 of Republic Act 65. 2. in providing for the excepting clause. Any contrary interpretation resulting in the derogation of the interests of the beneficiary who likewise receives a similar pension paid out funds of other Governments. as amended. forbids the PVA to do for it expressly authorizes only the President of the Philippines to suspend the operation of any of its provisions "if and when the Congress of the United States approves the pending GI Bill of Rights applicable to the Philippines the provisions of which are identical or similar to the provisions of this Act. as amended.fails to persuade this Court as a valid argument to justify its cancellation of del Mar monthly life pens Section 9 of Republic Act 65. The PVA's pretense that del Mar case falls under the clause of section 9 of Republic Act 65. which excepts those who "are actually receiving a similar pension from other Government funds" from the coverage of said section 9 .allegedly' to implement section 9 of Republic Act 65." section 6 of Regulation No. suspended the operation of section 9' of Republic Act 65. section 6 of Regulation No. Republic Act 65. Pursuant to this rule making authority. The law concedes to administrative bodies .
. (2) at the rate of P100 a month effective as of June 22. and the latter is hereby ordered to consider and pass upon the merits of such application.. 1969 . grants every totally disabled veteran of World War II "a life pension of two hundred pesos a month. JJ. Makalintal. and to the judiciary alone. concur. to such a deference paid to the actuations or such bodies. Fernando. judicial power should assert itself. as amended. however. 1969. and thirty pesos a month for his wife and each of his unmarried minor children below eighteen years of age. that the final say on questions of law in appropriate cases coming before it is vested. as amended. the findings of these administrative bodies merit not only great weight but also respect and finality.chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library Antonio and Makasiar." it appearing that he has not filed any proper application therefor with the appellant PVA but simply included them in his claim for the restoration of his discontinued monthly life pension. Because of their acquired expertise in specific matters within the purview of their respective jurisdictions." ACCORDINGLY." All told. of the further amendment by Congress of section 9 of Republic Act 65. No pronouncement as to costs. comply with section 15 of Republic Act 65.their adjudicatory capacity.. 1957 to May 1969. This Court directs the appellant Philippine Veterans Administration to compute and then to pay to the appellee del Mar his past and accumulated monthly life pension at the aforementioned statutory rates. per Republic Act 65 as amended by Republic Act 1920. and (3) at the rate of P200 a month effective as of June 21. per Republic Act 65 as further amended by Republic Act 5753. Clearly. Regarding the monthly living allowance the appellee del Mar asks for each of his five "living unmarried minor children below eighteen years of age. Teehankee Barredo. Zaldivar. particular reference to the entitlement qualifications of intended beneficiaries. in further amending section 9 of Republic Act 65. if filed. JJ. took no part. however. per Republic Act 65. if he so desires. where there has been a failure to interpret and apply the statutory provisions in question. Under the theory of separation of power it is to the judiciary. the appellee del Mar may. and Esguerra.the provisions of which took effect on June 21. which requires that "[A]ny person who desires to take advantage of the rights and privileges provided for in this Act should file his application" with the Philippine Veterans Administration. "There is limit. this Court adjudges the appellee Quirico del Mar entitled to his life pension (1) at the rate of P50 a month effective as of April 1950 to May 1957. Republic Act 5753. through Republic Act 5753 . no roadblock stands in the way of del Mar's demand for the continuance of his monthly life pension In view. as amended.there arises the need to modify the judgment a quo in order to make it conform to the said statute as it now stands.
Rossi tends to alienate most co-workers and supervisors. which includes the said station. REGINO T. Court of First Instance of Zambales. 6 Their reaction was to protest this conversion and to institute grievance proceedings conformably to the pertinent rules and regulations of the U. 3 as so was private respondent Wyer. effective October 18. The report on the hearing contained the observation that "Special Services management practices an autocratic form of supervision. J.S. HON. ROSSI and RALPH L. who died two years ago.S." b) "Messrs. CRUZ. Department of Defense." 7 In a letter addressed to petitioner Moreau on May 17. 1988 DALE SANDERS. the other answers will fall into place and this petition need not detain us any longer than it already has. 1975. 5 On October 3. the private respondents were advised that their employment had been converted from permanent full-time to permanent part-time. The result was a recommendation from the hearing officer who conducted the proceedings for the reinstatement of the private respondents to permanent full-time status plus backwages. L-46930 June 10. respondents. AND A. The letter contained the statements that: a ) "Mr. No.: The basic issue to be resolved in this case is whether or not the petitioners were performing their official duties when they did the acts for which they have been sued for damages by the private respondents. Petitioner Sanders was. as Presiding Judge. Sanders disagreed with the hearing officer's report and asked for the rejection of the abovestated recommendation. 1 Petitioner Moreau was the commanding officer of the Subic Naval Base.R. vs. Branch I.Republic of the Philippines SUPREME COURT Manila FIRST DIVISION G. VERIDIANO II. at the time the incident in question occurred. ANTHONY M. 2 Private respondent Rossi is an American citizen with permanent residence in the Philippines. the special services director of the U. WYERS. Rossi . 1976 (Annex "A" of the complaint). 1975. Naval Station (NAVSTA) in Olongapo City. petitioners. JR. Olongapo City. the former having been hired in 1971 and the latter in 1969. 4 They were both employed as gameroom attendants in the special services department of the NAVSTA. MOREAU. Once this question is decided.S.
The letter did not carry his signature but was signed by W. and the motion for reconsideration of the denial of the motion to dismiss." and c) "even though the grievants were under oath not to discuss the case with anyone. who allegedly was then about to leave the Philippines." presumably of Moreau. Jr. . which was filed by the petitioner's new lawyers. The same order issued a writ of preliminary attachment. the petitioners argued that the acts complained of were performed by them in the discharge of their official duties and that. on the contention that the above-narrated acts of the respondent court are tainted with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack of jurisdiction. The motion to lift the default order on the ground that Moreau's failure to appear at the pre-trial conference was the result of some misunderstanding. However. 1977. the motion was denied in an order dated March 8. 9on the main ground that the petitioners had not presented any evidence that their acts were official in nature and not personal torts. conditioned upon the filing of a P10. against the properties of petitioner Moreau. On the basis of these antecedent facts. 1975. to make matters worse for the defendants. Moore. consequently. a-letter (Annex "B" of the complaint) purportedly corning from petitioner Moreau as the commanding general of the U.S. 1976. Subsequently. moreover. to be difficult employees to supervise. 1977. 1977. After extensive written arguments between the parties. prohibition and preliminary injunction was thereafter filed before this Court.00 bond by the plaintiffs. the private respondent filed in the Court of First Instance of Olongapo City a for damages against the herein petitioners on November 8. before the start of the grievance hearings. (they) placed the records in public places where others not involved in the case could hear. in a motion to dismiss filed under a special appearance. the court had no jurisdiction over them under the doctrine of state immunity.B. "by direction. Naval Station in Subic Bay was sent to the Chief of Naval Personnel explaining the change of the private respondent's employment status and requesting concurrence therewith. The private respondents made it clear that the petitioners were being sued in their private or personal capacity.and Wyers have proven. according to their immediate supervisors. This petition for certiorari. the allegation in the complaint was that the defendants had acted maliciously and in bad faith.000." On November 7. petitioner Moreau was declared in a default by the trial court in its order dated August 9. were denied by the respondent court on September 7. 8 The plaintiffs claimed that the letters contained libelous imputations that had exposed them to ridicule and caused them mental anguish and that the prejudgment of the grievance proceedings was an invasion of their personal and proprietary rights.
These well-settled principles are applicable not only to the officers of the local state but also where the person sued in its courts pertains to the government of a foreign state. 10 we held that a motion to dismiss a complaint against the commanding general of the Olongapo Naval Base should not have been denied because it had been sufficiently shown that the act for which he was being sued was done in his official capacity on behalf of the American government. It was the reverse situation in Syquia v." where we sustained the order of the lower court granting a where we motion to dismiss a complaint against certain officers of the U. The United States had also not waived its immunity from suit. in Baer v. By the same token. we issued a temporary restraining order on September 26.S. Only three years ago. decided to proceed to trial to determine inter alia their precise character on the strength of the evidence to be submitted by the parties. Ruiz. apparently finding that the complained acts were prima facie personal and tortious. in United States of America v. The respondent judge. armed forces also shown to be acting officially in the name of the American government. It is stressed at the outset that the mere allegation that a government functionary is being sued in his personal capacity will not automatically remove him from the protection of the law of public officers and. The United States had not given its consent to be sued. it is not necessary for the court to require them to belabor the point at a trial still to be conducted. the mere invocation of official character will not suffice to insulate him from suability and liability for an act imputed to him as a personal tort committed without or in excess of his authority. Almeda Lopez. Tizon. the doctrine of state immunity. that has since then suspended the proceedings in this case in the courta quo.We return now to the basic question of whether the petitioners were acting officially or only in their private capacities when they did the acts for which the private respondents have sued them for damages. 12 we set aside the denial by the lower court of a motion to dismiss a complaint for damages filed against the United States and several of its officials. The petitioners have objected. Pending resolution of this question. In past cases. and certainly not personal. if appropriate. arguing that no such evidence was needed to substantiate their claim of jurisdictional immunity. not to say unfair to the defendant who is subjected to unnecessary and avoidable inconvenience. In these and several other cases 13 the Court found it redundant to prolong the other case proceedings after it had become clear that the suit could not prosper because the acts complained of were covered by the doctrine of state immunity. this Court has held that where the character of the act complained of can be determined from the pleadings exchanged between the parties before the trial. . it appearing that the act complained of was governmental rather than proprietary. as in the present case. Such a proceeding would be superfluous. 1977. Thus.
" 17 Our adherence to . performed by Moreau as the immediate superior of Sanders and directly answerable to Naval Personnel in matters involving the special services department of NAVSTA In fact. including the private respondents. 15 The practical justification for the doctrine. So we have ruled not only in Baer but in many other decisions where we upheld the doctrine of state immunity as applicable not only to our own government but also to foreign states sought to be subjected to the jurisdiction of our courts. and not the petitioners personally. 14 Moreover. as director of the special services department of NAVSTA.what he is claimed to have done was write the Chief of Naval Personnel for concurrence with the conversion of the private respondents' type of employment even before the grievance proceedings had even commenced. the rule is derived from the principle of the sovereign equality of states which wisely admonishes that par in parem non habet imperium and that a contrary attitude would "unduly vex the peace of nations. he still was within his rights in reacting to the hearing officer's criticism in effect a direct attack against him -that Special Services was practicing "an autocratic form of supervision. we have to conclude that the petitioners were. This will require that government to perform an affirmative act to satisfy the judgment. Disregarding for the nonce the question of its timeliness." As for Moreau. and within the scope of their authority. this act is clearly official in nature. thus making the action a suit against that government without its consent. as Holmes put it. is that "there can be no legal right against the authority which makes the law on which the right depends. the other petitioner. such award will have to be satisfied not by the petitioners in their personal capacities but by the United States government as their principal. for more information regarding the case of the private respondents. viz. Sanders. It is not disputed that the letter he had written was in fact a reply to a request from his superior. As they have acted on behalf of that government. the letter dealt with the financial and budgetary problems of the department and contained recommendations for their solution. that is responsible for their acts. even in the absence of such request. including the re-designation of the private respondents. and had a hand in their employment. it is that government. 16 In the case of foreign states. Assuming that the trial can proceed and it is proved that the claimants have a right to the payment of damages. Given the official character of the above-described letters. legally speaking. the appropriation of the necessary amount to cover the damages awarded. work assignments. discipline. There should be no question by now that such complaint cannot prosper unless the government sought to be held ultimately liable has given its consent to' be sued. undoubtedly had supervision over its personnel. being sued as officers of the United States government. dismissal and other related matters. There was nothing personal or private about it.It is abundantly clear in the present case that the acts for which the petitioners are being called to account were performed by them in the discharge of their official duties.
the acts of the petitioners are protected by the presumption of good faith. is well settled . The government of the United States has not given its consent to be sued for the official acts of the petitioners. nor could it be validly impleaded as a party defendant. 20 or the commissioner of internal revenue to refund tax over-payments from a fund already available for the purpose. where we reiterate from our previous charters that the Philippines "adopts the generally accepted principles of international law as part of the law of the land. even under the law of public officers. To be sure. 19 or to compel the national treasurer to pay damages from an already appropriated assurance fund. to. As it is the American government itself that will have to perform the affirmative act of appropriating the amount that may be adjudged for the private respondents. applying now our own penal laws. It seems the private respondents have overstated their case. Fernando.this precept is formally expressed in Article II. who cannot satisfy any judgment that may be rendered against them. . It was not necessary to secure the previous consent of the state. 21 or. Section 2. 25 Furthermore. The Court finds that. the letters come under the concept of privileged communications and are not punishable. The case at bar. from enforcing a law claimed to be unconstitutional. in general. say. for example. to repeat. We have also held that where the government itself has violated its own laws. of our Constitution. as it was not responsible for the defendant's unauthorized act. It is clear that a public officer may be sued as such to compel him to do an act required by law. comes under the rule and not under any of the recognized exceptions. to secure a judgment that the officer impleaded may satisfy by himself without the government itself having to do a positive act to assist him. 18or to restrain a Cabinet member. Even mistakes concededly committed by such public officers are not actionable as long as it is not shown that they were motivated by malice or gross negligence amounting to bad faith. as the doctrine of state immunity "cannot be used as an instrument for perpetrating an injustice. there are a number of well-recognized exceptions. 26 let alone the fact that the resented remarks are not defamatory by our standards. All this is not to say that in no case may a public officer be sued as such without the previous consent of the state. the complaint must be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. as where." 22 This case must also be distinguished from such decisions as Festejo v. 24 This. 23 where the Court held that a bureau director could be sued for damages on a personal tort committed by him when he acted without or in excess of authority in forcibly taking private property without paying just compensation therefor although he did convert it into a public irrigation canal. which has not been overturned by the private respondents. a register of deeds refuses to record a deed of sale. the aggrieved party may directly implead the government even without first filing his claim with the Commission on Audit as normally required.
August 9. The petitioners' counsel have submitted a memorandum replete with citations of American cases. We appreciate the assistance foreign decisions offer us. they can at best be invoked only to support our own jurisprudence. which therefore has not acquired the competence to act on the said claim. Even assuming that our own laws are applicable. The respondent court is directed to DISMISS Civil Case No. SO ORDERED. JJ. if they are still sominded. The Court is bemused by such attitude. WHEREFORE. Our Temporary restraining order of September 26. Concur. pursue their claim against the petitioners in accordance with the laws of the United States. which we have developed and enriched on the basis of our own persuasions as a people. and of our qualities and even idiosyncrasies as a people. is made PERMANENT. But we should not place undue and fawning reliance upon them and regard them as indispensable mental crutches without which we cannot come to our own decisions through the employment of our own endowments We live in a different ambience and must decide our own problems in the light of our own interests and needs..1977. of which they are all citizens and under whose jurisdiction the alleged offenses were committed.1977. Grino-Aquiño and Medialdea. it would seem only proper for the courts of this country to refrain from taking cognizance of this matter and to treat it as coming under the internal administration of the said base. 1977. While these decisions do have persuasive effect upon us. The private respondents must. 2077-O. as if they were arguing before a court of the United States. are SET ASIDE.A final consideration is that since the questioned acts were done in the Olongapo Naval Base by the petitioners in the performance of their official duties and the private respondents are themselves American citizens.. The challenged orders dated March 8. particularly since we became independent in 1946. and always with our own concept of law and justice. and not only from the United States but also from Spain and other countries from which we have derived some if not most of our own laws. Narvasa. No costs. and September 7.1977. . the petition is GRANTED. Gancayco. the United States government has not decided to give its consent to be sued in our courts.
So. However. They instituted grievance proceedings to the rules and regulations of the U." and c) "even though the grievants were under oath not to discuss the case with anyone. it is that government and not the petitioners personally that is responsible for their acts. (they) placed the records in public places where others not involved in the case could hear. the motion was denied on the main ground that the petitioners had not presented any evidence that their acts were official in nature. ISSUE: Whether or not the petitioners were performing their official duties? RULING: Yes. Thus. No.S. It is stressed at the outset that the mere allegation that a government functionary is being sued in his personal capacity will not automatically remove him from the protection of the law of public officers and. 1975.Department of Defense. Private respondent Rossi is an American citizen with permanent residence in the Philippines. However. Naval Station. the doctrine of state immunity. Rossi tends to alienate most co-workers and supervisors. Rossi and Wyers have proven.R. MOREAU. These well-settled principles are applicable not only to the officers of the local state but also where the person sued in its courts pertains to the government of a foreign state. the court had no jurisdiction over them under the doctrine of state immunity. HON." b) "Messrs. if appropriate. JRvs. On October 3. 1988 DALE SANDERS.G. as in the present case. The hearing officer recommended for reinstatement of their permanent full-time status. the petitioners were being sued as officers of the United States government because they have acted on behalf of that government and within the scope of their authority. . REGINO T. private respondent filed for damages alleging that the letters contained libelous imputations and that the prejudgment of the grievance proceedings was an invasion of their personal and proprietary rights. the private respondents were advised that their employment had been converted from permanent full-time to permanent part-time. in a letter addressed to petitioner Moreau. to be difficult employees to supervise. Private respondent Rossi and Wyer were both employed as game room attendants in the special services department of the NAVSTA. consequently. a-letter from petitioner Moreau was sent to the Chief of Naval Personnel explaining the change of the private respondent's employment status. undoubtedly had supervision over its personnel. AND A. Sanders disagreed with the hearing officer's report. the mere invocation of official character will not suffice to insulate him from suability and liability for an act imputed to him as a personal tort committed without or in excess of his authority. The letter contained the statements that: a ) "Mr. according to their immediate supervisors. including the private respondents.S. L-46930 June 10.S. However. Sanders. Given the official character of the letters. petitioners argued that the acts complained of were performed by them in the discharge of their official duties and that. By the same token." Before the start of the grievance hearings. Petitioner Moreau was the commanding officer of the Subic Naval Base. VERIDIANO II FACTS:Petitioner Sanders was the special services director of the U. as director of the special services department of NAVSTA.
the appropriation of the necessary amount to cover the damages awarded. This will require that government to perform an affirmative act to satisfy the judgment.Assuming that the trial can proceed and it is proved that the claimants have a right to the payment of damages. thus making the action a suit against that government without its consent . viz. such award will have to be satisfied not by the petitioners in their personal capacities but by the United States government as their principal.
will not be inferred lightly. Feliciano alleged that he bought the property in question for Victor Gardiola by virtue of Contract of Sale and followed by a Deed of Absolute Sale. Waiver of State immunity can only be made by act of the legislative body . Municipality of Tinambac. Moreover. Feliciano prayed that he be declared the rightful and true owner of the property in question. the Land Authority. Camarines Sur. under settled jurisprudence is not permitted. situated in Barrio of Salvacion. President Ramon Magsaysay issued a Proclamation No. 90. that Gardiola had acquired the property by purchase from the heirs of Francisco Abrazado whose title to the said property was evidenced by an informacion posesoria that upon his purchase of the property. ISSUE: Can the State be sued for recovery and possession of a parcel of land? RULING: No. Feliciano [ 148 SCRA 424 ] Facts: Petitioner seeks the review of the decision of the Intermediate Appellate Court revising the order of the Court of First Instance which dismissed the complaint of Pablo Feliciano for the recovery of ownership and possession of a parcel of land on the ground of non-suability of the State. except upon a showing that the State has consented to be sued. but must be construed strictly. It may be invoked by the courts at any stage of the proceedings. 1954. On November 1. he took actual possession of the same.Republic v. either expressly of by implication through the use of statutory language too plain to be misinterpreted.4177 hectares.which survey was approved by the Director of Lands on October 24. Feliciano filed a complain with the Court of First Instance against the Republic of the Philippines.364. after which the NARRA and its successor agenby. represented by the Land Authority. introduced various improvements therein and caused it to be surveyed in July 1952. was the private property of Feliciano and should therefore be excluded. the suit against the State. The consent of the State to be sued must emanate from statutory authority. that the property in question. that his title of ownership based on the informacion posesoria of his predecessor-in-interest be declared legal valid and subsisting and that defendant be ordered to cancel and nullify all awards to the settlers. 90 reserving for settlement purposes. 1954. a tract of land situated in the Municipalities of Tinambac and Siruma. Waiver of immunity. the Proclamation is not the legislative act. while located within the reservation established under Proclamation No. under the administration of te National Resettlement and Rehabilitation Administration (NARRA). for the recovery of ownership and possession of a parcel of land consisting of four (4) lots with an aggregated area of 1. started sub-dividing and distributing the land to the settlers. Camarines Sur.
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