Facts: Petitioners Lorenzo M. Tanada, et. al.

invoked due process in demanding the disclosure of a number of Presidential Decrees which they claimed had not been published as required by Law. The government argued that while publication was necessary as a rule, it was not so when it was otherwise provided, as when the decrees themselves declared that they were to become effective immediately upon approval. The court decided on April 24, 1985 in affirming the necessity for publication of some of the decrees. The court ordered the respondents to publish in the official gazette all unpublished Presidential Issuances which are of general force and effect. The petitioners suggest that there should be no distinction between laws of general applicability and those which are not. The publication means complete publication, and that publication must be made in the official gazette. In a comment required by the solicitor general, he claimed first that the motion was a request for an advisory opinion and therefore be dismissed. And on the clause “unless otherwise provided” in Article 2 of the new civil code meant that the publication required therein was not always imperative, that the publication when necessary, did not have to be made in the official gazette.

Issues: (1) Whether or not all laws shall be published in the official gazette. (2) Whether or not publication in the official gazette must be in full.

Held: (1) The court held that all statute including those of local application shall be published as condition for their effectivity, which shall begin 15 days after publication unless a different effectivity date is fixed by the legislature. (2) The publication must be full or no publication at all since its purpose is to inform the public of the content of the laws.

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