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CD Simon, Jr. vs. CHR Edit 0 1 … Topic: Personal Dignity and Human Rights (Sec. 11, 1987 Constitution) SIMON, JR.

vs COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS G.R. No. 100150, January 5, 1994 FACTS: On July 23, 1990, the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) issued and order, directing the petitioners "to desist from demolishing the stalls and shanties at North EDSA pending the resolution of the vendors/squatters complaint before the Commission" and ordering said petitioners to appear before the CHR. On September 10, 1990, petitioner filed a motion to dismiss questioning CHR's jurisdiction and supplemental motion to dismiss was filed on September 18, 1990 stating that Commissioners' authority should be understood as being confined only to the investigation of violations of civil and political rights, and that "the rights allegedly violated in this case were not civil and political rights, but their privilege to engage in business". On March 1, 1991, the CHR issued and Order denying petitioners' motion and supplemental motion to dismiss. And petitioners' motion for reconsideration was denied also in an Order, dated April 25, 1991. The Petitioner filed a a petition for prohibition, praying for a restraining order and preliminary injunction. Petitioner also prayed to prohibit CHR from further hearing and investigating CHR Case No. 90-1580, entitled "Ferno, et.al vs. Quimpo, et.al".

ISSUE: Is the issuance of an "order to desist" within the extent of the authority and power of the CRH? HELD: No, the issuance of an "order to desist" is not within the extent of authority and power of the CHR. Article XIII, Section 18(1), provides the power and functions of the CHR to "investigate, on its own or on complaint by any part, all forms of human rights violation, involving civil and political rights". The "order to desist" however is not investigatory in character but an adjudicative power that the it does not possess. The Constitutional provision directing the CHR to provide for preventive measures and legal aid services to the underprivileged whose human rights have been violated or need protection may not be construed to confer jurisdiction on the Commission to issue an restraining order or writ of injunction, for it were the intention, the Constitution would have expressly said so. Not being a court of justice, the CHR itself has no jurisdiction to issue the writ, for a writ of preliminary injunction may only be issued by the Judge in any court in which the action is pending or by a Justice of the CA or of the SC. The writ prayed for the petition is granted. The CHR is hereby prohibited from further proceeding with CHR Case No. 90-1580.

Oposa vs. Factoran, G.R. 101083 Fact: cause of action to "prevent the misappropriation or impairment" of Philippine rainforests and "arrest the unabated hemorrhage of the country's vital life support systems and continued rape of Mother Earth."

The complaint2 was instituted as a taxpayers' class suit 3 and alleges that the plaintiffs "are all citizens of the Republic of the Philippines, taxpayers, and entitled to the full benefit, use and enjoyment of the natural resource treasure that is the country's virgin tropical forests." The same was filed for themselves and others who are equally concerned about the preservation of said resource but are "so numerous that it is impracticable to bring them all before the Court." The minors further asseverate that they "represent their generation as well as generations yet unborn." 4Consequently, it is prayed for that judgment be rendered: 1] Cancel all existing timber license agreements in the country; 2] Cease and desist from receiving, accepting, processing, renewing or approving new timber license agreements. Plaintiffs further assert that the adverse and detrimental consequences of continued and deforestation are so capable of unquestionable demonstration that the same may be submitted as a matter of judicial notice. Issue: Whether or not petitioners have a cause of action? HELD: YES petitioners have a cause of action. The case at bar is of common interest to all Filipinos. The right to a balanced and healthy ecology carries with it the correlative duty to refrain from impairing the environment. The said right implies the judicious management of the country’s forests. This right is also the mandate of the government through DENR. A denial or violation of that right by the other who has the correlative duty or obligation to respect or protect the same gives rise to a cause of action. All licenses may thus be revoked or rescinded by executive action. The right to a balanced and healthful ecology carries with it the correlative duty to refrain from impairing the environment Baldoza v. Dimaano (May 5, 1976) Administrative Matter in the Supreme Court.Antonio, J. Facts: • Municipal Secretary of Taal, Batangas, charges Municipal Judge Dimaano with abuse of authority inrefusing to allow employees of the Municipal Mayor to examine the criminal docket records of theMunicipal Court to secure data in connection with their contemplated report on peace and orderconditions of the municipality. • Respondent answered that there has never been an intention to refuse access to official courtrecords but that the same is always subject to reasonable regulation as to who, when, where andhow they may

be inspected. He further asserted that a court has the power to prevent an improperuse or inspection of its records and furnishing copies may be refuse when the motivation is notserious and legitimate interest, out of whim or fancy or mere curiosity or to gratify private site orpromote public scandal. • In his answer, respondent observed; O Restrictions are imposed by the Court for fear of an abuse in the exercise of the right. O There has been recent tampering of padlocks of the door of the Court and with this, to allowan indiscriminate and unlimited exercise of the right to free access, might do more harmthan good. O Request of such a magnitude cannot b immediately granted without adequate deliberationand advisement O Authority should first be secured from the Supreme Court • Case was referred to Judge Riodique for investigation and report. At the preliminary hearing, TaalMayor Corazon Caniza filed a motion to dismiss the complaint to preserve harmony and cooperationamong officers. This motion was denied by Investigating Judge but he recommended theexoneration of respondent. • Investigating Judge’s report avers that complainant was aware of the motion to dismiss and he wasin conformity with it. Communications between complainant and respondent reveal that respondentallowed the complainant to open and view the docket books of the respondent under certainconditions and under his control and supervision. • Under the conditions, the Court found that the respondent has not committed any abuse of authority Issue: WON respondent acted arbitrarily in the premises (when he allowed the complainant to open andview the docket books of respondent) Held : No. The respondent allowed the complainant to open and view the docket books of respondentunder certain conditions and under his control and supervision. It has not been shown that the rules andcondition imposed by the respondent were unreasonable. The access to public records is predicated onthe right of the people to acquire information on public concern. Rules/Principles: In People ex rel. Title Guarantee & T. Co vs. Railly, the Court said:“…What the law expects and requires from his is the exercise of an unbiased and impartial judgment, bywhich all persons resorting to the office, under legal authority, and conducting themselves in an orderlymanner, shall be secured their lawful rights and privileges, and that a corporation formed in the manner inwhich the relator has been, shall be permitted to obtain all the information either by searches, abstracts,or copies, that the law has entitled it to obtain.Except, perhaps, when it is clear that the purpose of the examination is unlawful, or sheer, idle curiosity…Itis not their prerogative to see that the information which the records contain is

not flaunted before publicgaze, or that scandal is not made of it…It is the legislature and not the officials having custody thereof which is called upon to devise a remedy.