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Carlo L. Cruz

Article I –The Archipelago Doctrine - teaches that the
outermost points of our terrestrial domain are to be
connected with straight baselines and all waters enclosed
thereby shall be considered as our internal waters. As
internal waters, they are subject to the exclusive
jurisdiction of the Philippines. Archipelagic sealanes are to
be laid on these waters over which foreign ships will have
the right of passage as if they were open seas.

Thus, baselines laws are nothing but statutory
mechanisms for UNCLOS III States parties to delimit with
precision the extent of their maritime zones and
continental shelves. In turn, this gives notice to the rest of
the international community of the scope of the maritime
space and submarine areas within which States parties
exercise treaty-based rights, namely, the exercise of
sovereignty over territorial waters (Article 2), the
jurisdiction to enforce customs, fiscal, immigration, and
sanitation laws in the contiguous zone (Article 33), and the
right to exploit the living and non-living resources in the
exclusive economic zone (Article 56) and continental shelf
(Article 77). [Magallona v. Ermita - G.R No. 187167,
August 16, 2011]

UN Convention on the Law of the Sea - Territorial Sea -
provides for a uniform breadth of 12 miles from the low-
water mark of the coast. Contiguous Zone - 12 miles from
the outer limits of the territorial sea – exercise of
“protective jurisdiction” – in a zone of the high seas
contiguous to its territorial sea, the coastal state may
exercise the control necessary to Prevent and Punish
infringement of its customs, fiscal, immigration or sanitary
regulations within its territory or territorial sea. Economic
Zone or Patrimonial Sea - extending 200 miles from the
low water mark of the coastal state – all living and non-
living resources found therein belong exclusively to the
coastal state. The Continental Shelf – refers to [a] the
seabed and the subsoil of the submarine areas adjacent to
the coast but outside of the territorial sea, to a depth of
200 meters, or beyond that limit, to where the depth of the
subjacent waters admits of the exploitation of the natural
resources of the said areas, and [b] to the seabed and
subsoil of similar areas adjacent to the coasts of the
islands. The costal state has the EXCLUSIVE sovereign
right to explore the continental shelf and to exploit its
natural resources, and no one else may do so without its

Whether referred to as Philippine “internal waters” under
Article I of the Constitution or as “archipelagic waters”
under UNCLOS III (Article 49 [1]), the Philippines
exercises sovereignty over the body of water lying
landward of the baselines, including the air space over it
and the submarine areas underneath. xxx The imposition
of these passage rights [right of innocent passage and the
right of transit passage through international straits]
through archipelagic waters under UNCLOS III was a
concession by archipelagic States, in exchange for their
right to claim all the waters landward of their baselines,
regardless of their depth or distance from the coast, as
archipelagic waters subject to their territorial sovereignty.
[Magallona v. Ermita - G.R No. 187167, August 16, 2011]

Petitioners’ argument that the KIG now lies outside
Philippine territory because the baselines that RA 9522
draws do not enclose the KIG is negated by RA 9522
itself. Section 2 of the law commits to text the Philippines’
continued claim of sovereignty and jurisdiction over the
KIG and the Scarborough Shoal: SEC. 2. The baselines in
the following areas over which the Philippines likewise
exercises sovereignty and jurisdiction shall be determined
as “Regime of Islands” under the Republic of the
Philippines consistent with Article 121 of the United
Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS): a)
The Kalayaan Island Group as constituted under
Presidential Decree No. 1596 and b) Bajo de Masinloc,
also known as Scarborough Shoal. [Magallona v. Ermita -
G.R No. 187167, August 16, 2011]

The Open Seas – res communes but a state may exercise
jurisdiction on the open seas over its vessels, over pirates,
in the exercise of the right to visit and search and under
the doctrine of hot pursuit.

Outer space, like the open seas, is res communes and
NOT susceptible to discovery and occupation – not subject
to national appropriation by claim of sovereignty. A state is
responsible for whatever injury or damage any object it
sends to outer space may cause.

The Bangsamoro Juridical Entity [BJE] xxx is not merely
an expanded version of the ARMM, the status of its
relationship with the national government being
fundamentally different from that of the ARMM. Indeed,
BJE is a state in all but name as it meets the criteria of a
state laid down in the Montevideo Convention, namely, a
permanent population, a defined territory, a government,
and a capacity to enter into relations with other states.
Even assuming arguendo that the MOA-AD would not
necessarily sever any portion of Philippine territory, the
spirit animating it – which has betrayed itself by its use of
the concept of association – runs counter to the national
sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic. [The
Province of North Cotabato v. The Government of the
Republic of the Philippines Peace Panel on Ancestral
Domain – GR No. 183591, October 14, 2008]

ARTICLE II - generally not a source of enforceable rights
EXCEPT the Incorporation Clause and Section 28 on the
policy of public disclosure – duty to disclose [which
presents a SPLENDID SYMMETRY to Article II, Section 7
on the Right to Information]. Section 16 – on ecology –
has been implemented by law.

Note that the Constitution now describes the Philippines
as, not only a republican but also a, democratic State.
NOTE provisions on initiative on national legislation
[Article VI (32)] and initiative on amendment of the
Constitution. [Article VII (2)]. - Besides, the 1987
Constitution accords to the citizens a greater participation
in the affairs of government. Indeed, it provides for
people's initiative, the right to information on matters of
public concern (including the right to know the state of
health of their President), as well as the right to file cases
questioning the factual bases for the suspension of the
privilege of writ of habeas corpus or declaration of martial
law. These provisions enlarge the people’s right in the
political as well as the judicial field. It grants them the right
to interfere in the affairs of government and challenge any
act tending to prejudice their interest. [Petitioner
Organizations v. Executive Secretary - G.R. Nos. 147036-
37, April 10, 2012] - SEE also – Article II [23] – The State
shall encourage non-governmental, community based, or
sectoral organizations that provide the welfare of the
nation. Article X [14] – The President shall provide for
regional development councils xxx composed of local
government officials, xxx and representatives from non-
governmental organizations xxx Article X [18] – The
Congress shall enact an organic act for each autonomous
region with the assistance and participation of the regional
consultative commission composed of representatives
appointed by the President from a list of nominees from
multisectoral bodies. x x x. Article XII [9] – The Congress
may establish an independent economic and planning
agency headed by the President, which shall, after
consultations with the xxx various private sectors xxx
Article XIII [15] – The State shall respect the role of
independent people’s organizations. Article XIII [16] –
The right of the people and their organizations to effective
and reasonable participation at all levels of social, political
and economic decision-making shall not be abridged.
Article XVI [12] – The Congress may create a consultative
body to advise the President on policies affecting
indigenous cultural communities, the majority of the
members of which shall come from the communities.

Whatever good is done by the government is attributed to
the State but every harm inflicted on the people is imputed
not to the State but to the government alone. Such injury
may justify the replacement of the government by
revolution, theoretically at the behest of the State, in a
development known as direct State action.

Parens Patriae – guardian of the rights of the people –
Soriano v. Laguardia [G.R. No. 164785, April 29, 2009] -
Offensive language in television may be regulated or even
banned for the sake of the children. Justification – parens

A belligerent occupation would have no effect on the
continued effectivity of the law on treason. Accordingly,
political laws, like the Constitution, were merely
suspended, subject to revival under the jus postliminium
upon the end of the occupation. Suspension of political
laws affects only the civilians, and not the soldiers or
“enemies in arms.” [Ruffy v. Chief of Staff] Also does not
apply to treason [Laurel v. Misa]. Non-political laws, like
the Civil Code, remain effective, unless changed by the
belligerent occupant. Judicial decisions, such as a
conviction for defamation, are valid during a belligerent
occupation except those of a political complexion.

Right to Self-Determination – right to freely determine their
political status and freely pursue their economic, social,
and cultural development. NOTE – Article II [7] – The
State shall pursue an independent foreign policy. In its
relations with other states the paramount consideration
shall be national sovereignty, territorial integrity, national
interest and the right to self-determination. - Internal self-
determination – a people’s pursuit of its political,
economic, social and cultural development within the
framework of an existing state. - External self-
determination - the establishment of a sovereign and
independent State, the free association or integration with
an independent State or the emergence into any other
political status freely determined by a people. The people’s
right to self-determination should not, however, be
understood as extending to a unilateral right of secession.

Distinguish the Incorporation Clause or Doctrine of
Incorporation from the Doctrine of Transformation –
accepted rules of international law must first be enacted
into legislation.

A stipulation in a treaty or executive agreement providing
for a state with the option to waive its criminal jurisdiction
to prosecute foreigners who commit crimes within its
territory is not to be considered as an abdication of its
sovereignty. On the rationale that the Philippines has
adopted the generally accepted principles of international
law as part of the law of the land, a portion of sovereignty
may be waived without violating the Constitution. Such
waiver does not amount to an unconstitutional diminution
or deprivation of jurisdiction of Philippine courts. [Bayan
Muna v. Romulo - G.R. No. 159618, February 1, 2011]

Under international law, there is no difference between
treaties and executive agreements in terms of their binding
effects on the contracting states concerned, as long as the
negotiating functionaries have remained within their
powers. Neither, on the domestic sphere, can one be held
valid if it violates the Constitution. Authorities are,
however, agreed that one is distinct from another for
accepted reasons apart from the concurrence-requirement
aspect. As has been observed by US constitutional
scholars, a treaty has greater “dignity” than an executive
agreement, because its constitutional efficacy is beyond
doubt, a treaty having behind it the authority of the
President, the Senate, and the people; a ratified treaty,
unlike an executive agreement, takes precedence over
any prior statutory enactment. [Bayan Muna v. Romulo -
G.R. No. 159618, February 1, 2011]

The terms “exchange of notes” and “executive
agreements” have been used interchangeably, exchange
of notes being considered a form of executive agreement
that becomes binding through executive action. [Bayan
Muna v. Romulo - G.R. No. 159618, February 1, 2011]

Renunciation of war as an instrument of national policy –
should be read with Article VI [23][1] – a declaration of the
existence of a state of war may be made upon two-thirds
vote of both Houses, in joint session assembled, voting

The UNITED NATIONS - Security Council – Yalta Formula
– procedural matters are decided by any 9 or more
members. Non-procedural matters – those that may
require the Council to invoke measures of enforcement - at
least 9 members including all the permanent members.
No member is allowed to vote on questions concerning the
pacific settlement of a dispute to which it is a party. Unlike
in the General Assembly, the characterization of a
question is considered a non-procedural matter in the
Security Council. Note: Veto and Double Veto prerogative
of a permanent member.

International Court of Justice – judicial organ of the UN
which functions in accordance with the Statute, of which all
the members are considered ipso facto parties. Even non-
members may be parties to the Statute on conditions to be
determined in each case by the General Assembly upon
the recommendation of the Security Council. May decide
contentious cases and render advisory opinions, upon
request of the General Assembly or the Security Council,
as well as other organs of the UN, when authorized by the
General Assembly, on legal questions arising within the
scope of their activities. Only members may be parties in
contentious cases. Jurisdiction of the Court is based on
the consent of the parties as manifested under the
“optional jurisdiction clause” or the “compromissary

Article II, Section 3. Civilian authority is, at all times,
supreme over the military. - See Article VII, Section 18 –
Gudani v. Senga - G.R. No. 170165, August 15, 2006 –
gag order against a general prohibiting him from testifying
in a legislative inquiry - Valid. Justification – military

Continental Steel Manufacturing Corporation v. Montano -
G.R. No. 182836, October 13, 2009 - an unborn child can
be considered a dependent. The term child can be
understood to include the unborn fetus in the mother’s

Article II, Section 19. The State shall develop a self-reliant
and independent national economy effectively controlled
by Filipinos. - Retail Trade Liberalization Act of 2000 - to
the extent that R.A. 8762, the Retail Trade Liberalization
Act, lessens the restraint on the foreigners’ right to
property or to engage in an ordinarily lawful business, it
cannot be said that the law amounts to a denial of the
Filipinos’ right to property and to due process of law.
Filipinos continue to have the right to engage in the kinds
of retail business to which the law in question has
permitted the entry of foreign investors. - First, aliens can
only engage in retail trade business subject to the
categories above-enumerated; Second, only nationals
from, or juridical entities formed or incorporated in
countries which allow the entry of Filipino retailers shall be
allowed to engage in retail trade business; and Third,
qualified foreign retailers shall not be allowed to engage in
certain retailing activities outside their accredited stores
through the use of mobile or rolling stores or carts, the use
of sales representatives, door-to-door selling, restaurants
and sari-sari stores and such other similar retailing
activities. [Espina v. Zamora - G.R. No. 143855,
September 21, 2010, Abad]

Indigenous peoples situated within states do not have a
general right to independence or secession from those
states under international law, but they do have rights
amounting to what was discussed above as the right to
internal self-determination. The Declaration clearly
recognized the right of indigenous peoples to self-
determination, encompassing the right to autonomy or
self-government, in matters relating to their internal and
local affairs, and to maintain and strengthen their distinct
political, legal, economic, social and cultural institutions,
while retaining their right to participate fully, if they so
choose, in the political, economic, social and cultural life of
the State. Self-government, as used in international legal
discourse pertaining to indigenous peoples, has been
understood as equivalent to “internal self-determination.”
[The Province of North Cotabato v. The Government of the
Republic of the Philippines Peace Panel on Ancestral
Domain – GR No. 183591, October 14, 2008]

Article II, Section 28. Subject to reasonable conditions
prescribed by law, the State adopts and implements a
policy of full public disclosure of all its transactions
involving public interest. - Article XII, Section 21 - Foreign
loans may only be incurred in accordance with law and the
regulation of the monetary authority. Information on foreign
loans obtained or guaranteed by the Government shall be
made available to the public. - SPLENDID SYMMETRY
between Section 28 and Article III, Section 7 on the right to

ARTICLE VI – Legislative power - appropriation, taxation,
expropriation - not exclusive to Congress – initiative and
referendum may be exercised directly by the people –RA

The power to grant immunity from prosecution is
essentially a legislative prerogative – springs from its
authority to define and prescribe punishment for crimes.
[Quarto v. the Honorable Ombudsman Simeon Marcelo -
G.R. No. 169042, October 5, 2011, Second Division,

The supermajority vote requirement set forth in Section 1,
Article XVII of RA No. 9054 [Section 1, Article XVII of RA
No. 9054 provides: “Consistent with the provisions of the
Constitution, this Organic Act may be re-amended or
revised by the Congress of the Philippines upon a vote of
two-thirds (2/3) of the Members of the House of
Representatives and of the Senate voting separately.”] is
unconstitutional for violating the principle that Congress
cannot pass irrepealable laws. [Datu Michael Abas Kida v.
Senate of the Philippines - G.R. No. 196271, February 28,
2012, En Banc, Brion]

We rule out the first option – holdover for those who were
elected in executive and legislative positions in the ARMM
during the 2008-2011 term – as an option that Congress
could have chosen because a holdover violates Section 8,
Article X of the Constitution. xxx. Thus, the term of three
years for local officials should stay at three (3) years as
fixed by the Constitution and cannot be extended by
holdover by Congress. xxx. If it will be claimed that the
holdover period is effectively another term mandated by
Congress, the net result is for Congress to create a new
term and to appoint the occupant for the new term. This
view – like the extension of the elective term – is
constitutionally infirm because Congress cannot do
indirectly what it cannot do directly, i.e., to act in a way that
would effectively extend the term of the incumbents. xxx.
Congress cannot also create a new term and effectively
appoint the occupant of the position for the new term. This
is effectively an act of appointment by Congress and an
unconstitutional intrusion into the constitutional
appointment power of the President. [Pimentel v. Ermita,
G.R. No. 164978, October 13, 2005] Hence, holdover –
whichever way it is viewed – is a constitutionally infirm
option that Congress could not have undertaken. [Datu
Michael Abas Kida v. Senate of the Philippines - G.R. No.
196271, October 18, 2011, En Banc, Brion]

The President, Congress and the Court cannot create
directly franchises for the operation of a public utility that
are exclusive in character. [Section 11, Article XII of the
1987 Constitution]

Non-legislative powers of Congress – canvass of
presidential elections [VII, 5], declaration of existence of a
state of war [VII, 23 (2)], confirmation of amnesties [VII,
19], and of presidential appointments [VII, 16], amendment
or revision of the Constitution [XVII], and impeachment

Congress is not a continuing body. [League of Cities of
the Philippines v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 176951,
November 18, 2008] The Senate as an institution is
“continuing,” as it is not dissolved as an entity with each
national election or change in the composition of its
members. However, in the conduct of its day-to-day
business the Senate of each Congress acts separately
and independently of the Senate of the Congress before it.
Accordingly, all pending matters and proceedings, i.e.,
unpassed bills and even legislative investigations, of the
Senate of a particular Congress are considered terminated
upon the expiration of that Congress and it is merely
optional on the Senate of the succeeding Congress to take
up such unfinished matters, not in the same status, but as
if presented for the first time. [Garcillano v. House of
Representatives - G.R. No. 170338, December 23, 2008]
BUT NOTE Arnault v. Nazareno – the Senate is a
continuing body for purposes of its power of contempt.

A law providing for the establishment of a congressional
oversight committee which would have the authority to
disapprove regulations promulgated by the executive
Branch in its enforcement of a law is unconstitutional.
Legislative Veto - entitles Congress, pursuant to its
“oversight functions,” to disapprove [or approve]
administrative regulations promulgated by the Executive
Branch, pursuant to a validly delegated power, in the
course of its enforcement of a duly enacted law. [A

The acts done by Congress purportedly in the exercise of
its oversight powers may be divided into three categories,
namely: scrutiny - to determine economy and efficiency of
the operation of government activities; investigation –
under Section 21; and supervision – which connotes a
continuing and informed awareness on the part of a
congressional committee regarding executive operations
in a given administrative area. While both congressional
scrutiny and investigation involve inquiry into past
executive branch actions in order to influence future
executive branch performance, congressional supervision
allows Congress to scrutinize the exercise of delegated
law-making authority, and permits Congress to retain part
of that delegated authority. xxx. The requirement that the
implementing rules of a law be subjected to approval by
Congress as a condition for their effectivity violates the
cardinal constitutional principles of bicameralism and the
rule on presentment. Every bill passed by Congress must
be presented to the President for approval or veto. In the
absence of presentment to the President, no bill passed by
Congress can become a law. - The so-called “rule on
presentment” pertains to the submission of a bill to the
President for his appropriate action. [Abakada Guro
Party List V. Purisima - G.R. No. 166715 August 14,
2008, Corona] See Macalintal v. COMELEC, G.R.
157013, July 10, 2003 – COMELEC rules implementing
RA 9189 subject to approval by Congressional oversight
committee – INVALID – constitutes a legislative veto;
contradicts the independence of the COMELEC.

Social Justice Society v. Dangerous Drugs Board - G.R.
No. 157870, November 3, 2008 – law [Sec. 36(g) of RA
9165] requiring candidates for senator to be certified
illegal-drug clean – unconstitutional – list of constitutional
qualifications exclusive, may not be “enlarged” by

Herrera v. COMELEC - The law clearly provides that the
basis for districting shall be the number of the inhabitants
of a city or a province, not the number of registered voters

Each additional legislative district in a city need not have
250,000 inhabitants provided that the initial or original
district formed in said city had, at the time of its
establishment, a population of 250,000. [Mariano v.
Congress may not authorize the ARMM to create
provinces and cities because the power to create them
inherently involves the power to create a legislative district,
which only Congress possesses. The ARMM may,
however, be authorized by law to create municipalities and
barangays. – Muslim Mindanao Autonomy Act – [Sema v.
COMELEC - G.R. No. 177597, July 16, 2008]

A proposed province composed of one or more islands
need not comply with the 2,000 square meter contiguous
territory requirement under the Local Government Code,
as provided for under the exemptions in the IRR of the
LGC. [Navarro v. Ermita - G.R. No. 180050, April 12,

Aquino v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 189793, April 7, 2010 -
Section 5(3) of the Constitution requires a 250,000
minimum population only for a city to be entitled to a
representative, but not so for a province. The “250,000
inhabitants” requirement does not apply to creation of
additional legislative districts for a province.

Bagabuyo v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 176970, December 8,
2008 – a law is passed increasing CDO’s legislative
district from one to two. No need for a plebiscite under
Article X, Section 10, because the territory remains a
single unit.
Lokin v. COMELEC – G.R. No. 180443, June 22, 2010,
Bersamin – the COMELEC cannot issue implementing
rules and regulations that provide an additional ground -
when the “nomination is withdrawn by the party” - for the
substitution of a party-list nominee not written in Republic
Act (R.A.) No. 7941.

Amores v. HRET – G.R. No. 189600, June 29, 2010 - a
party-list nominee who changes his sectoral affiliation
within the same party will only be eligible for nomination
under the new sectoral affiliation if the change has been
effected at least six months before the elections.

BANAT v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 179271, July 8, 2009 - for
every four district representatives, there shall be one
party-list representative. There is no need for legislation to
create an additional party-list seat whenever four
additional legislative districts are created by law. Section
5(2), Article VI of the 1987 Constitution automatically
creates such additional party-list seat. The filling-up of all
available party-list seats is not mandatory. Four
parameters in a Philippine-style party-list election system:

1. Twenty percent of the total number of the
membership of the House of Representatives
is the maximum number of seats available to
party-list organizations, such that there is
automatically one party-list seat for every four
existing legislative districts.

2. Garnering two percent of the total votes cast in
the party-list elections guarantees a party-list
organization one seat. The guaranteed seats
shall be distributed in a first round of seat
allocation to parties receiving at least two
percent of the total party-list votes.

3. The additional seats, that is, the remaining
seats after allocation of the guaranteed seats,
shall be distributed to the party-list
organizations including those that received
less than two percent of the total votes. The
continued operation of the two percent
threshold as it applies to the allocation of the
additional seats is now unconstitutional
because this threshold mathematically and
physically prevents the filling up of the
available party-list seats. The additional seats
shall be distributed to the parties in a second
round of seat allocation according to the two-
step procedure laid down in the Decision of 21
April 2009 as clarified in this Resolution.

[Two-Step Procedure - The percentage of votes
garnered by each party-list candidate is arrived
at by dividing the number of votes garnered by
each party by 15,950,900, the total number of
votes cast for party-list candidates. There are
two steps in the second round of seat allocation.
First, the percentage is multiplied by the
remaining available seats, 38, which is the
difference between the 55 maximum seats
reserved under the Party-List System and the 17
guaranteed seats of the two-percenters. The
whole integer of the product of the percentage
and of the remaining available seats corresponds
to a party’s share in the remaining available
seats. Second, we assign one party-list seat to
each of the parties next in rank until all available
seats are completely distributed. We distributed
all of the remaining 38 seats in the second round
of seat allocation.]

4. The three-seat cap is constitutional. The
three-seat cap is intended by the Legislature
to prevent any party from dominating the
party-list system. There is no violation of the
Constitution because the 1987 Constitution
does not require absolute proportionality for
the party-list system. The well-settled rule is
that courts will not question the wisdom of the
Legislature as long as it is not violative of the

Thus, the party-list system is composed of three different
groups: (1) national parties or organizations; (2) regional
parties or organizations; and (3) sectoral parties or
organizations. National and regional parties or
organizations are different from sectoral parties or
organizations. National and regional parties or
organizations need not be organized along sectoral lines
and need not represent any particular sector. [Atong
Paglaum, Inc. v. Commission on Elections - G.R. No.
203766, April 2, 2013, En Banc, Carpio]

Under the party-list system, an ideology-based or cause-
oriented political party is clearly different from a sectoral
party. A political party need not be organized as a sectoral
party and need not represent any particular sector. There
is no requirement in R.A. No. 7941 that a national or
regional political party must represent a “marginalized and
underrepresented” sector. It is sufficient that the political
party consists of citizens who advocate the same ideology
or platform, or the same governance principles and
policies, regardless of their economic status as citizens.
Section 5 of R.A. No. 7941 states that “the sectors shall
include labor, peasant, fisherfolk, urban poor, indigenous
cultural communities, elderly, handicapped, women, youth,
veterans, overseas workers, and professionals.” [Atong
Paglaum, Inc. v. Commission on Elections - G.R. No.
203766, April 2, 2013, En Banc, Carpio]

In determining who may participate in the coming 13 May
2013 and subsequent party-list elections, the COMELEC
shall adhere to the following parameters:

1. Three different groups may participate in the
party-list system: (1) national parties or
organizations, (2) regional parties or
organizations, and (3) sectoral parties or

2. National parties or organizations and regional
parties or organizations do not need to organize
along sectoral lines and do not need to represent
any “marginalized and underrepresented” sector.

3. Political parties can participate in party-list
elections provided they register under the party-
list system and do not field candidates in
legislative district elections. A political party,
whether major or not, that fields candidates in
legislative district elections can participate in
party-list elections only through its sectoral wing
that can separately register under the party-list
system. The sectoral wing is by itself an
independent sectoral party, and is linked to a
political party through a coalition.

4. Sectoral parties or organizations may either be
“marginalized and underrepresented” or lacking
in “well-defined political constituencies.” It is
enough that their principal advocacy pertains to
the special interest and concerns of their sector.
The sectors that are “marginalized and
underrepresented” include labor, peasant,
fisherfolk, urban poor, indigenous cultural
communities, handicapped, veterans, and
overseas workers. The sectors that lack “well-
defined political constituencies” include
professionals, the elderly, women, and the youth.

5. A majority of the members of sectoral parties
or organizations that represent the “marginalized
and underrepresented” must belong to the
“marginalized and underrepresented” sector they
represent. Similarly, a majority of the members of
sectoral parties or organizations that lack “well-
defined political constituencies” must belong to
the sector they represent. The nominees of
sectoral parties or organizations that represent
the “marginalized and underrepresented,” or that
represent those who lack “well-defined political
constituencies,” either must belong to their
respective sectors, or must have a track record
of advocacy for their respective sectors. The
nominees of national and regional parties or
organizations must be bona-fide members of
such parties or organizations.

6. National, regional, and sectoral parties or
organizations shall not be disqualified if some of
their nominees are disqualified, provided that
they have at least one nominee who remains
qualified. [Atong Paglaum, Inc. v. Commission on
Elections - G.R. No. 203766, April 2, 2013, En
Banc, Carpio]

There is no arguing that the COMELEC Resolution dated
January 5, 2010 granting LPGMA’s registration has since
become final. Such finality, however, pertains only to the
Resolution itself and not to the accreditation of LPGMA as
a party-list organization. xxx However, the Resolution did
not create in LPGMA’s favor a perpetual and indefeasible
right to its accreditation as a party-list organization. Neither
did it grant finality and indefeasibility to the factual findings
of the COMELEC on the qualifications of the group. Both
the accreditation and the facts substantiating the same
can be reviewed and revoked at any time by the
COMELEC, motu propio, or upon the instance of any
interested party thru a complaint for cancellation, as set
forth in Section 6 of R.A. No. 7941. [Dayao v. Commission
on Elections - G.R. No. 193643, January 29, 2013, En
Banc, Reyes]

Abayon v. HRET – G.R. No. 189466, February 11, 2010,
Abad – there are two kinds of congressmen – elected from
legislative districts and those elected through the party-list
system. Once elected, the party-list representative has the
same rights, privileges and duties as the district
representative. They are also subject to the same term
limitation of three years for a maximum of three
consecutive terms. The consistent judicial holding is that
the HRET has jurisdiction to pass upon the qualifications
of party-list nominees after their proclamation and
assumption of office.

Limkaichong v. COMELEC - G.R. Nos. 178831-32, April 1,
2009 - once a winning candidate has been proclaimed,
taken his oath, and assumed office as a Member of the
House of Representatives, the jurisdiction of the House of
Representatives Electoral Tribunal begins over election
contests relating to his election, returns, and qualifications,
and mere allegation as to the invalidity of her proclamation
does not divest the Electoral Tribunal of its jurisdiction.
Ten-day prescriptive period under the 1998 HRET Rules
does not apply to disqualification cases based on
citizenship. Being a continuing requirement, one who
assails a member's citizenship or lack of it may still
question the same at any time, the ten-day prescriptive
period notwithstanding. BUT it is the State, through its
representatives designated by statute that may question
the illegally or invalidly procured certificate of
naturalization in the appropriate denaturalization
proceedings. It is plainly not a matter that may be raised
by private persons in an election case involving the
naturalized citizen’s descendant.

The set up embodied in the Constitution and statutes
characterizes the resolution of electoral contests as
essentially an exercise of judicial power. xxx At the higher
levels – city, provincial, and regional, as well as
congressional and senatorial – exclusive and original
jurisdiction is lodged in the COMELEC and in the House of
Representatives and Senate Electoral Tribunals, which are
not, strictly and literally speaking, courts of law. Although
not courts of law, they are, nonetheless, empowered to
resolve election contests which involve, in essence, an
exercise of judicial power, because of the explicit
constitutional empowerment found in Section 2(2), Article
IX-C (for the COMELEC) and Section 17, Article VI (for the
Senate and House Electoral Tribunals) of the Constitution.
Besides, when the COMELEC, the HRET, and the SET
decide election contests, their decisions are still subject to
judicial review – via a petition for certiorari filed by the
proper party – if there is a showing that the decision was
rendered with grave abuse of discretion tantamount to lack
or excess of jurisdiction. [Macalintal v. Presidential
Electoral Tribunal - G.R. No. 191618, November 23, 2010
and June 7, 2011]

Navarro v. Ermita – G.R. No. 180050, February 10, 2010,
Peralta - “Gerrymandering” is a term employed to describe
an apportionment of representative districts so contrived
as to give an unfair advantage to the party in power. xxx
The Constitution proscribes gerrymandering, as it
mandates each legislative district to comprise, as far as
practicable, a contiguous, compact and adjacent territory.

The commencement of the terms and the regular election
of legislators may be changed by law. An increase in their
salaries shall take effect after the expiration of the full term
of all the Members of the Senate and the House of
Representatives approving such increase.

Instances when vote needs to be recorded – at the
request of 1/5 [16, 4], vote on third reading [26, 2],
overriding vote in case of veto [27, 1], HR impeachment
vote [XI, 3, 3].

REMEMBER the implied – public purpose and amount
must be determinate or determinable -and constitutional
limitations – Article VI, sections 24, 27 (2) and 29 (1) and
(2) of Congress’ power of appropriation, particularly the
prohibition against Congress from increasing the budget
proposed by the President and on the transfer of
appropriations - Nazareth v. Villar - the Supreme Court
clarified that the power conferred upon the President to
transfer appropriations could well be extended to his
Cabinet Secretaries as alter egos under the ‘doctrine of
qualified political agency’ “Thus, in the instant case, the
authority granted to the DOST by the Executive Secretary,
being one of the alter egos of the President, was legal and
valid but in so far as the use of agency’s savings for the
year 2000 only. Although 2000 budget was reenacted in
2001, the authority granted on the use of savings did not
necessarily extend to the succeeding year.”

The Commission on Appointments shall rule by a majority
of all its Members.

Pimentel v. Ermita – The President may not be compelled
to submit his “acting” appointments to the CA for
Ad interim appointments shall remain effective only until
disapproval by the Commission on Appointments or until
the adjournment of the next special or regular session of
Congress. [Guevarra v. Inocentes]

In a special session, the Congress may consider “general
legislation or only such subjects as the President may
designate.” In a regular session, “the power of the
Congress is not circumscribed except by limitations
imposed by organic law.” [in Araneta v. Dinglasan]

Electoral Tribunals shall be the sole judges of all contests
relating to the election, returns and qualifications of their
respective “Members” - the jurisdiction of an Electoral
Tribunal begins once a winning candidate has been
proclaimed, taken his oath, and assumed office, for it is
only after the occurrence of these events that a candidate
can be considered as either a Member of the House of
Representatives or a Senator. According to the Supreme
Court, to be considered a “Member” of the House of
Representatives, “there must be a concurrence of the
following requisites: (a) a valid proclamation, (b) a proper
oath, and (c) assumption of office.” It stressed that a
“proper oath” would be one taken before the Speaker of
the House of Representatives “in open session,”
consistent with the provisions of Section 6 of Rule II
(Membership) of the Rules of the House of
Representatives. [Reyes v. COMELEC - G.R. No.
207264, June 25, 2013]

Neri v. Senate Committee on Accountability of Public
Officers - G.R. No. 180643, March 25, 2008 -
Section 21 relates to the power to conduct inquiries in aid
of legislation. Its aim is to elicit information that may be
used for legislation. On the other hand, Section 22
pertains to the power to conduct a question hour, the
objective of which is to obtain information in pursuit of
Congress’ oversight function. Simply stated, while both
powers allow Congress or any of its committees to
conduct inquiry, their objectives are different.

Executive Privilege - Garcillano v. House of
Representatives - G.R. No. 170338, December 23, 2008 -
The Senate cannot be allowed to continue with the
conduct of the questioned legislative inquiry without duly
published rules of procedure, in clear derogation of the
constitutional requirement. New session, new publication
of rules.

AKBAYAN v. Aquino - G.R. No. 170516, July 16, 2008
- executive privilege with respect to the privilege for
diplomatic negotiations may be invoked not only against
citizens’ demands for information, but also in the context of
legislative investigations. - De la Paz v. Senate - G.R. No.
184849, February 13, 2009 - subject of a legislative
inquiry is a political question. Neri v. Senate Committee on
Accountability of Public Officers - G.R. No. 180643,
September 4, 2008, MR – the President’s claim of
executive privilege is not merely founded on her
generalized interest in confidentiality. The Letter dated
November 15, 2007 of Executive Secretary Ermita
specified presidential communications privilege in relation
to diplomatic and economic relations with another
sovereign nation as the bases for the claim. Congress
must not require the Executive to state the reasons for the
claim with such particularity as to compel disclosure of the
information which the privilege is meant to protect. - Neri v.
Senate Committee on Accountability of Public Officers -
G.R. No. 180643, September 4, 2008, Resolution on
Motion for Reconsideration – [1] executive privilege -
doctrine of “operational proximity” - the main consideration
is to limit the availability of executive privilege only to
officials who stand proximate to the President, not only by
reason of their function, but also by reason of their
positions in the Executive’s organizational structure. [2] It
must be stressed that the President’s claim of executive
privilege is not merely founded on her generalized interest
in confidentiality. The Letter dated November 15, 2007 of
Executive Secretary Ermita specified presidential
communications privilege in relation to diplomatic and
economic relations with another sovereign nation as the
bases for the claim.

David v. Arroyo – G.R. No. 171396, May 3, 2006 – The
President may not invoke Section 17 of Article XII, which
would authorize her during the emergency to temporarily
take over or direct the operation of any privately owned
public utility or business affected with public interest
without authority from Congress. BUT the President alone
can declare a state of national emergency, however,
without legislation, he has no power to take over privately-
owned public utility or business affected with public

Tolentino v. Secretary of Finance – presidential
certification [economic emergency] does away with the
requirements of three readings on separate days and
distribution of final copies three days before enactment
Note Article VII, Section 10 – simultaneous vacancies in
the offices of the President and the Vice-President - The
bill calling such special election shall be deemed certified
under paragraph 2, Section 26, Article V1 of this
Constitution and shall become law upon its approval on
third reading by the Congress. No special election shall be
called if the vacancy occurs within eighteen months before
the date of the next presidential election.
Although not provided for in the Constitution, Congress
has established the so-called Conference Committee,
composed of representatives from the Senate and the
House of Representatives, which is a “mechanism for
compromising differences” between their respective
versions of a bill or joint resolution. It has been ruled that
“it is within the power of a conference committee to include
in its report an entirely new provision that is not found
either in the House bill or in the Senate bill” and whatever
changes may be agreed upon by the Conference
Committee need not undergo another “three readings” in
the Senate and the House of Representatives. [Tolentino
v. Secretary of Finance]
Partial veto – general rule – approve entirely or disapprove
in toto, except with respect to appropriations bills.
Since building permit fees are not charges on property,
they are not impositions from which petitioner is exempt.
[Angeles University Foundation v. City of Angeles -G.R.
No. 189999, June 27, 2012, First Division, Villarama]
Any proposal to enact laws or approve or reject any act or
law or part thereof passed by the Congress shall be valid
only if ratified by a majority of the votes cast in a plebiscite
which shall be held not earlier than forty-five days but not
later than ninety days after the certification by the
Commission on Elections of the sufficiency of the petition.
ARTICLE VII – Review Center Association of the
Philippines v. Executive Secretary - G.R. No. 180046, April
2, 2009 –The President may not amend RA 7722 through
an Executive Order without a prior legislation granting her
such power.
The President is granted Ordinance Powers under
Chapter 2, Book III of Executive Order No. 292
(Administrative Code of 1987) and may issue any of the
following: xxx Sec. 2. Executive Orders. — Acts of the
President providing for rules of a general or permanent
character in implementation or execution of constitutional
or statutory powers shall be promulgated in executive
orders. Sec. 3. Administrative Orders. — Acts of the
President which relate to particular aspect of governmental
operations in pursuance of his duties as administrative
head shall be promulgated in administrative orders. Sec.
4. Proclamations. — Acts of the President fixing a date or
declaring a status or condition of public moment or
interest, upon the existence of which the operation of a
specific law or regulation is made to depend, shall be
promulgated in proclamations which shall have the force of
an executive order. Sec. 5. Memorandum Orders. — Acts
of the President on matters of administrative detail or of
subordinate or temporary interest which only concern a
particular officer or office of the Government shall be
embodied in memorandum orders. Sec. 6. Memorandum
Circulars. — Acts of the President on matters relating to
internal administration, which the President desires to
bring to the attention of all or some of the departments,
agencies, bureaus or offices of the Government, for
information or compliance, shall be embodied in
memorandum circulars. Sec. 7. General or Special
Orders. — Acts and commands of the President in his
capacity as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of
the Philippines shall be issued as general or special

Clearly, the abolition of the PAGC and the transfer of its
functions to a division specially created within the
ODESLA is properly within the prerogative of the President
under his continuing "delegated legislative authority to
reorganize" his own office pursuant to E.O. 292. [Pichay v.
Office of the Deputy Executive Secretary for Legal Affairs
Investigative and Adjudication Division - G.R. No. 196425,
July 24, 2012]

The Province of North Cotabato v. The Government of the
Republic of the Philippines Peace Panel on Ancestral
Domain – GR No. 183591, October 14, 2008 – [1] That the
authority of the President to conduct peace negotiations
with rebel groups is not explicitly mentioned in the
Constitution does not mean that she has no such
authority. As Chief Executive, the President has the
general responsibility to promote public peace, and as
Commander-in-Chief, she has the more specific duty to
prevent and suppress rebellion and lawless violence. [2]
While the President does not possess constituent powers
– as those powers may be exercised only by Congress, a
Constitutional Convention, or the people through initiative
and referendum – she may submit proposals for
constitutional change to Congress in a manner that does
not involve the arrogation of constituent powers. It will be
observed that the President has authority, as stated in her
oath of office, only to preserve and defend the
Constitution. Such presidential power does not, however,
extend to allowing her to change the Constitution, but
simply to recommend proposed amendments or revision.

Divinagracia v. Consolidated Broadcasting System, Inc. -
G.R. No. 162272, April 7, 2009 - The provisions of
Section 5 of R.A. No. 7477 and Section 3 of R.A. No.
7582, in relation to Section 11 of R.A. No. 3902, authorize
the President of the Philippines to exercise considerable
infringements on the right of the franchisees to operate
their enterprises and the right to free expression. Such
authority finds corollary constitutional justification as well
under Section 17, Article XII, xxx We do not doubt that the
President or the State can exercise such authority through
the NTC, which remains an agency within the executive
branch of government, but such can be exercised only
under limited and rather drastic circumstances. They still
do not vest in the NTC the broad authority to cancel
licenses and permits. xxx the NTC, in the exercise of its
prerogative to grant provisional authorities to operate or
certificates of public convenience, may nevertheless not
cancel legislative franchises, which only Congress can do.

The President’s “executive privilege” covers all presidential
communications. [AKBAYAN v. Aquino - G.R. No.
170516, July 16, 2008 - however, the privilege accorded to
presidential communications is not absolute, one
significant qualification being that “the Executive cannot,
any more than the other branches of government, invoke a
general confidentiality privilege to shield its officials and
employees from investigations by the proper governmental
institutions into possible criminal wrongdoing.” This
qualification applies whether the privilege is being invoked
in the context of a judicial trial or a congressional
investigation conducted in aid of legislation.

Senate v. Ermita – [1] Executive privilege, which includes
conversations and correspondence between the President
and the public official covered by this executive order
(Almonte vs. Vasquez - G.R. No. 95367, 23 May 1995;
Chavez v. Public Estates Authority, G.R. No. 133250, 9
July 2002); military, diplomatic and other national security
matters which in the interest of national security should not
be divulged (Almonte vs. Vasquez, G.R. No. 95367, 23
May 1995; Chavez v. Presidential Commission on Good
Government, G.R. No. 130716, 9 December 1998);
information between inter-government agencies prior to
the conclusion of treaties and executive agreements
(Chavez v. Presidential Commission on Good
Government, G.R. No. 130716, 9 December 1998);
discussion in close-door Cabinet meetings (Chavez v.
Presidential Commission on Good Government, G.R. No.
130716, 9 December 1998); and matters affecting national
security and public order (Chavez v. Public Estates
Authority, G.R. No. 133250, 9 July 2002), MAY BE
INVOKED against this legislative power. [2] BUT note that
executive officials are not exempt by the mere fact that
they are department heads. Only one executive official
may be exempted from this power — the President on
whom executive power is vested, hence, beyond the reach
of Congress except through the power of impeachment. A
claim of privilege, being a claim of exemption from an
obligation to disclose information, must, therefore, be
clearly asserted, and not merely implied. In light of this
highly exceptional nature of the privilege, the Court finds it
essential to limit to the President the power to invoke the
privilege. She may of course authorize the Executive
Secretary to invoke the privilege on her behalf, in which
case the Executive Secretary must state that the authority
is “By order of the President,” which means that he
personally consulted with her. The privilege being an
extraordinary power, it must be wielded only by the highest
official in the executive hierarchy. In other words, the
President may not authorize her subordinates to exercise
such power. [3] That a type of information is recognized
as privileged does not, however, necessarily mean that it
would be considered privileged in all instances. For in
determining the validity of a claim of privilege, the question
that must be asked is not only whether the requested
information falls within one of the traditional privileges, but
also whether that privilege should be honored in a given
procedural setting.

AKBAYAN v. Aquino - G.R. No. 170516, July 16, 2008 –
[1] “secrecy of negotiations with foreign countries is not
violative of the constitutional provisions of freedom of
speech or of the press nor of the freedom of access to
information.” [People’s Movement for Press Freedom
(PMPF) v. Manglapus] “Information on inter-government
exchanges prior to the conclusion of treaties and executive
agreements may be subject to reasonable safeguards for
the sake of national interest.” [Chavez v. PCGG]
Diplomatic negotiations, therefore, are recognized as
privileged in this jurisdiction, the JPEPA negotiations
constituting no exception. It bears emphasis; however,
that such privilege is only presumptive. For as Senate v.
Ermita holds, recognizing a type of information as
privileged does not mean that it will be considered
privileged in all instances. Only after a consideration of
the context in which the claim is made may it be
determined if there is a public interest that calls for the
disclosure of the desired information, strong enough to
overcome its traditionally privileged status. [2] Informer’s
Privilege - the privilege of the Government not to disclose
the identity of a person or persons who furnish information
of violations of law to officers charged with the
enforcement of that law. [3] Privilege accorded to
presidential communications, which are presumed
privileged without distinguishing between those which
involve matters of national security and those which do
not, the rationale for the privilege being that a frank
exchange of exploratory ideas and assessments, free from
the glare of publicity and pressure by interested parties, is
essential to protect the independence of decision-making
of those tasked to exercise Presidential, Legislative and
Judicial power. It bears emphasis, however, that the
privilege accorded to presidential communications is not
absolute, one significant qualification being that “the
Executive cannot, any more than the other branches of
government, invoke a general confidentiality privilege to
shield its officials and employees from investigations by
the proper governmental institutions into possible criminal
wrongdoing.” This qualification applies whether the
privilege is being invoked in the context of a judicial trial or
a congressional investigation conducted in aid of
legislation. [4] Deliberative Process Privilege - covers
documents reflecting advisory opinions, recommendations
and deliberations comprising part of a process by which
governmental decisions and policies are formulated.
Notably, the privileged status of such documents rests, not
on the need to protect national security but, on the
“obvious realization that officials will not communicate
candidly among themselves if each remark is a potential
item of discovery and front page news,” the objective of
the privilege being to enhance the quality of agency

The so-called “deliberative process privilege” refers to the
decision-making of executive officials.

Neri v. Senate Committee on Accountability of Public
Officers - G.R. No. 180643, March 25, 2008 -[1]
Presidential Communications Privilege applies to decision-
making of the President; rooted in the constitutional
principle of separation of power and the President’s unique
constitutional role. The elements of presidential
communications privilege are - 1) The protected
communication must relate to a “quintessential and non-
delegable presidential power.” 2) The communication
must be authored or “solicited and received” by a close
advisor of the President or the President himself. The
judicial test is that an advisor must be in “operational
proximity” with the President. The presidential
communications privilege remains a qualified privilege that
may be overcome by a showing of adequate need, such
that the information sought “likely contains important
evidence” and by the unavailability of the information
elsewhere by an appropriate investigating authority.

[2] Deliberative Process Privilege applies to decision-
making of executive officials; based on common law

[3] Unlike the deliberative process privilege, the
presidential communications privilege applies to
documents in their entirety, and covers final and post-
decisional materials as well as pre-deliberative ones As a
consequence, congressional or judicial negation of the
presidential communications privilege is always subject to
greater scrutiny than denial of the deliberative process

The commencement of the term of the President may be
changed only by constitutional amendment. Note – the
commencement of the terms of legislators may be
changed by law, so long as such change would not alter
the length of their terms.

Pursuant to the doctrine of command responsibility, the
President, as the Commander-in-Chief of the AFP, can be
held liable for affront against the petitioner’s rights to life,
liberty and security as long as substantial evidence exist to
show that he or she had exhibited involvement in or can
be imputed with knowledge of the violations, or had failed
to exercise necessary and reasonable diligence in
conducting the necessary investigations required under
the rules. The Court also stresses that rule that the
presidential immunity from suit exists only in concurrence
with the president’s incumbency. [Rodriguez v. Macapagal
Arroyo, G.R. No. 191805, November 15, 2011, citing
Estrada v. Desierto, G.R. Nos. 146710-15, 146738, March
2, 2001, 353 SCRA 452]

In Civil Liberties Union v. Executive Secretary, [G.R. No.
83896, February 22, 1991, 194 SCRA 317] this Court
explained that the prohibition contained in Section 13,
Article VII of the 1987 Constitution does not apply to posts
occupied by the Executive officials specified therein
without additional compensation in an ex-officio capacity
as provided by law and as required by the primary function
of said official's office.

Funa v. Ermita – G.R. No. 184740, February 11, 2010 -
The 1987 Constitution in prohibiting dual or multiple offices,
as well as incompatible offices, refers to the holding of the
office, and not to the nature of the appointment or
designation, words which were not even found in Section
13, Article VII nor in Section 7, paragraph 2, Article IX-B.
To “hold” an office means to “possess or occupy” the same,
or “to be in possession and administration,” which implies
nothing less than the actual discharge of the functions and
duties of the office.

De Castro v. Judicial and Bar Council - G. R. No. 191002,
March 17, 2010 – Section 15 does not apply to the
Judiciary. Under the Constitution, it is mandatory for the
JBC to submit to the President the list of nominees to fill a
vacancy in the Supreme Court in order to enable the
President to appoint one of them within the 90-day period
from the occurrence of the vacancy.

Sarmiento v. Mison – confirmation is required only for the
heads of the executive departments, ambassadors, other
public ministers and consuls, or officers of the armed
forces from the rank of colonel or naval captain, and other
officers whose appointments are vested in him in this
Constitution. Bautista v. Salonga – Commissioner of
Human Rights not subject to confirmation; not included in
the first sentence. Quintos-Deles v. Commission on
Appointments – sectoral representatives required
confirmation; included in the first sentence. Calderon v.
Carale – NLRC commissioners do not require
confirmation. Constitutional Commissioners require
confirmation. Members of the Judiciary do not require
confirmation, only JBC nomination. Judicial and Bar
Council [regular members] require confirmation.
Ombudsman and Deputy Ombudsmen – no confirmation,
just JBC nomination.

Soriano III v. Lista - GR 153881, 24 March 2003 - Now
that the Philippine Coast Guard is under the DOTC and no
longer part of the Philippine Navy or the Armed Forces of
the Philippines, the promotions and appointments of
respondent officers of the PCG, or any PCG officer from
the rank of captain and higher for that matter, do not
require confirmation by the CA.

Given that the President derives his power to appoint OICs
in the ARMM regional government from law, it falls under
the classification of presidential appointments covered by
the second sentence of Section 16, Article VII of the
Constitution; the President’s appointment power thus rests
on clear constitutional basis. [Datu Michael Abas Kida v.
Senate of the Philippines - G.R. No. 196271, February 28,
2012, En Banc, Brion]

The petitioners also jointly assert that RA No. 10153, in
granting the President the power to appoint OICs in
elective positions, violates Section 16, Article X of the
Constitution, [Section 16. The President shall exercise
general supervision over autonomous regions to ensure
that laws are faithfully executed.] which merely grants the
President the power of supervision over autonomous
regions. This is an overly restrictive interpretation of the
President’s appointment power. There is no incompatibility
between the President’s power of supervision over local
governments and autonomous regions, and the power
granted to the President, within the specific confines of RA
No. 10153, to appoint OICs. xxx. Once the President has
appointed the OICs for the offices of the Governor, Vice
Governor and members of the Regional Legislative
Assembly, these same officials will remain in office until
they are replaced by the duly elected officials in the May
2013 elections. Nothing in this provision even hints that
the President has the power to recall the appointments he
already made. Clearly, the petitioners’ fears in this regard
are more apparent than real. [Datu Michael Abas Kida v.
Senate of the Philippines - G.R. No. 196271, February 28,
2012, En Banc, Brion]

The power granted to the President, via RA No. 10153, to
appoint members of the Regional Legislative Assembly is
comparable to the power granted by BP 881 (the Omnibus
Election Code) to the President to fill any vacancy for any
cause in the Regional Legislative Assembly (then called
the Sangguniang Pampook). [Section 35. Filling of
vacancy. - Pending an election to fill a vacancy arising
from any cause in the Sangguniang Pampook, the
vacancy shall be filled by the President, upon
recommendation of the Sangguniang Pampook: Provided,
That the appointee shall come from the same province or
sector of the member being replaced.] [Datu Michael Abas
Kida v. Senate of the Philippines - G.R. No. 196271,
February 28, 2012, En Banc, Brion]

Generally, the power to appoint vested in the President
includes the power to make temporary appointments,
unless he is otherwise specifically prohibited by the
Constitution or by the law, or where an acting appointment
is repugnant to the nature of the office involved. [Cabiling
v. Pabualan, G.R. Nos. L-21764 and L-21765, May 31,
1965, 14 SCRA 274] The President’s power to issue an
acting appointment is particularly authorized by the
Administrative Code of 1987 (Executive Order No. 292).

Generally, the purpose for staggering the term of office is
to minimize the appointing authority’s opportunity to
appoint a majority of the members of a collegial body. It
also intended to ensure the continuity of the body and its
policies. A staggered term of office, however, is not a
statutory prohibition, direct or indirect, against the
issuance of acting or temporary appointment. It does not
negate the authority to issue acting or temporary
appointments that the Administrative Code grants.
[General v. Urro - G.R. No. 191560, March 29, 2011]

Sangguniang Barangay of Don Mariano Marcos v.
Martinez - G.R. No. 170626, March 3, 2008 - the President
is without any power to remove elected officials, since the
power is exclusively vested in the proper courts as
expressly provided for in the last paragraph of Section 60
of the Local Government Code. [Salalima v. Guingona, Jr.]

Lopez v. CSC - the authority of the CSC is only to
determine whether or not the appointees possess the legal
qualifications and the appropriate eligibility, nothing else.

Luego v. CSC – the CSC may not approve as “temporary”
an appointment designated as “permanent” by the
appointing authority.

The CSC classified the position of Graft Investigation
Officer III as belonging to the Career Executive Service;
appointee to the position required to acquire CES eligibility
[CES officers, under the Administrative Code, are
appointed by the President]. Ombudsman challenges the
classification, saying that it impairs his appointment
prerogative as guaranteed under the Constitution. SC:
classification would result in absurdity – [a] it would vest in
the President the power to appoint an employee of the
Ombudsman, in violation of the Constitution, or [b] it would
include in the CES a position not occupied by a
presidential appointee, contrary to the Administrative
Code. The CSC may not classify a position [Graft
Investigation Officer III of the Office of the Ombudsman] as
belonging to the Career Executive Service and require an
appointee thereto to acquire CES eligibility, because CES
officers are appointed by the President. This derogates
the appointing power of the Ombudsman. A CES
appointment not effected by the President is contrary to
the provisions of the Administrative Code. [Office of the
Ombudsman v. Civil Service Commission, 451 SCRA 570]

Matibag v. Benipayo - G.R. No. 149036, April 2, 2002 - An
ad interim appointment is a permanent appointment
because it takes effect immediately and can no longer be
withdrawn by the President once the appointee has
qualified into office.

An ad interim appointment that has lapsed by inaction of
the Commission on Appointments does not constitute a
term of office. The period from the time the ad interim
appointment is made to the time it lapses is neither a fixed
term nor an unexpired term. [Fetalino v. Commission on
Elections - G.R. No. 191890, December 04, 2012, En
Banc, Brion]

The designation of Agra as Acting Secretary of Justice
concurrently with his position of Acting Solicitor General
was unconstitutional and void for being in violation of the
constitutional prohibition under Section 13, Article VII of
the 1987 Constitution. Being designated as the Acting
Secretary of Justice concurrently with his position of Acting
Solicitor General, therefore, Agra was undoubtedly
covered by Section 13, Article VII, whose text and spirit
were too clear to be differently read. Hence, Agra could
not validly hold any other office or employment during his
tenure as the Acting Solicitor General, because the
Constitution has not otherwise so provided. xxx It is
equally remarkable, therefore, that Agra’s designation as
the Acting Secretary of Justice was not in an ex officio
capacity, by which he would have been validly authorized
to concurrently hold the two positions due to the holding of
one office being the consequence of holding the other.
[Funa v. Agra - G.R. No. 191644, February 19, 2013, En
Banc, Bersamin]

Under the doctrine of implication, the power to appoint
carries with it the power to remove. [Aguirre, Jr. v. De
Castro, 378 Phil. 714 (1999)] As a general rule, therefore,
all officers appointed by the President are also removable
by him. [Cruz, Carlo L., The Law of Public Officers, 154-
155 (1992)] The exception to this is when the law
expressly provides otherwise - that is, when the power to
remove is expressly vested in an office or authority other
than the appointing power. xxx In giving the President the
power to remove a Deputy Ombudsman and Special
Prosecutor, Congress simply laid down in express terms
an authority that is already implied from the President's
constitutional authority to appoint the aforesaid officials in
the Office of the Ombudsman. [Gonzales v. Office of the
President - G.R. No. 196231, September 4, 2012, En
Banc, Perlas-Bernabe]

Power of control - Araneta, et al. v. Hon. M. Gatmaitan, et
al., [101 Phil. 328 (1957)] - if a certain power or authority is
vested by law upon the Department Secretary, then such
power or authority may be exercised directly by the
President, who exercises supervision and control over the

Angeles v. Gaite - G.R. No. 165276, November 25, 2009 -
Memorandum Circular No. 58, promulgated by the Office
of the President on June 30, 1993 - no appeal from or
petition for review of decisions/orders/resolutions of the
Secretary of Justice on preliminary investigations of
criminal cases shall be entertained by the Office of the
President, except those involving offenses punishable by
reclusion perpetua to death. - The President's act of
delegating authority to the Secretary of Justice by virtue of
said Memorandum Circular is well within the purview of the
doctrine of qualified political agency.
But the doctrine of qualified political agency could not be
extended to the acts of the Board of Directors of
TIDCORP despite some of its members being
themselves the appointees of the President to the
Cabinet. xxx Such Cabinet members sat on the Board of
Directors of TIDCORP ex officio, or by reason of their
office or function, not because of their direct appointment
to the Board by the President. Evidently, it was the law,
not the President, that sat them in the Board. [Trade and
Investment Development Corporation of the Philippines v.
The Philippine Truth Commission [PTC] - The creation of
the PTC finds justification under Section 17, Article VII of
the Constitution, imposing upon the President the duty to
ensure that the laws are faithfully executed. [Section 17,
Article VII] [Biraogo v. The Philippine Truth Commission
of 2010 - G.R. No. 192935, December 7, 2010]
Santos v. Go - G.R. No. 156081, October 19, 2005 -
Since the DOJ is not a quasi-judicial body and it is not
one of those agencies whose decisions, orders or
resolutions are appealable to the Court of Appeals under
Rule 43, the resolution of the Secretary of Justice finding
probable cause to indict petitioners for estafa is,
therefore, not appealable to the Court of Appeals via a
petition for review under Rule 43.
It is evident that under the 1987 Constitution the
President and the Congress act in tandem in exercising
the power to proclaim martial law or suspend the privilege
of the writ of habeas corpus. They exercise the power,
not only sequentially, but in a sense jointly since, after the
President has initiated the proclamation or the
suspension, only the Congress can maintain the same
based on its own evaluation of the situation on the
ground, a power that the President does not have.
Consequently, although the Constitution reserves to the
Supreme Court the power to review the sufficiency of the
factual basis of the proclamation or suspension in a
proper suit, it is implicit that the Court must allow
Congress to exercise its own review powers, which is
automatic rather than initiated. Only when Congress
defaults in its express duty to defend the Constitution
through such review should the Supreme Court step in as
its final rampart. The constitutional validity of the
President’s proclamation of martial law or suspension of
the writ of habeas corpus is first a political question in the
hands of Congress before it becomes a justiciable one in
the hands of the Court. [Fortun v. Arroyo - G.R. No.
190293, March 20, 2012]
Culanag v. Director of Prisons – criminal and
administrative remedies for violation of conditional pardon
are not mutually exclusive and may be successively
availed of by the President for the punishment of the
conditional pardon. – recommitment/criminal prosecution
for violation of conditional pardon/criminal prosecution for
new offense if violation of the condition constitutes a
separate criminal offense.
Espuelas v. Provincial Warden of Bohol – conditional
pardonee committed usurpation of public functions. New
case dismissed for lack of witnesses. President ordered
his commitment. SC sustained saying mere commission,
not conviction required for recommitment. [Affirmed in
Sumulong v. Gonzales]
Amnesty commonly denotes a general pardon to rebels
for their treason or other high political offenses, or the
forgiveness which one sovereign grants to the subjects of
another, who have offended, by some breach, the law of
nations. Amnesty looks backward, and abolishes and
puts into oblivion, the offense itself; it so overlooks and
obliterates the offense with which he is charged, that the
person released by amnesty stands before the law
precisely as though he had committed no offense. x x x
Pardon is granted by the Chief Executive and as such it is
a private act which must be pleaded and proved by the
person pardoned, because the courts take no notice
thereof; while amnesty by Proclamation of the Chief
Executive with the concurrence of Congress, is a public
act of which the courts should take judicial notice. x x x”
[Magdalo Para sa Pagbabago - G.R. No. 190793, June
19, 2012, En Banc, Sereno]
Pimentel v. Executive Secretary - the power to ratify is
vested in the President, subject to the concurrence of the

The Contract Agreement xxx between Northrail and
CNMEG does not partake of the nature of an executive
agreement. It is merely an ordinary commercial contract
that can be questioned before the local courts. [China
National Machinery & Equipment Corporation v. Sta. Maria
- G.R. No. 185572, February 7, 2012, En Banc, Sereno]

Rubrico v. Arroyo - G.R. No. 183871, February 18, 2010 -
the President, during his tenure of office or actual
incumbency, may not be sued in any civil or criminal case,
and there is no need to provide for it in the Constitution or

In Marcos v. Chief of Staff, Armed Forces of the
Philippines [89 Phil, 246 (1951)], this Court ruled that a
court-martial case is a criminal case and the General
Court Martial is a "court" akin to any other courts. In the
case of Ramon Ruffy vs. Chief of Staff of the Philippine
Army, 43 Off. Gaz., 855, we did not hold that the word
"court" in general used in our Constitution does not include
a Court-Martial; what we held is that the words "inferior
courts" used in connection with the appellate jurisdiction of
the Supreme Court to "review on appeal certiorari or writ of
error, as the law or rules of court may provide, final
judgments of inferior courts in all criminal cases in which
the penalty imposed is death or life imprisonment," as
provided for in section 2, Article VIII, of the Constitution, do
not refer to Courts-Martial or Military Courts.

The fact that a judgment of conviction, not of acquittal,
rendered by a court-martial must be approved by the
reviewing authority before it can be executed (Article of
War 46), does not change or affect the character of a
court-martial as a court. A judgment of the Court of First
Instance imposing death penalty must also be approved
by the Supreme Court before it can be executed. [Garcia
v. Executive Secretary - G.R. No. 198554, July 30, 2012,
Third Division, Peralta]

The power to confirm a sentence of the President, as
Commander-in-Chief, includes the power to approve or
disapprove the entire or any part of the sentence given by
the court martial. [Garcia v. Executive Secretary - G.R. No.
198554, July 30, 2012, Third Division, Peralta]

Liberal Party v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 191771, May 6,
2010 - A facial objection is meritorious if, expressly and
on the face of the petition, what is evident as cited grounds
are erroneous applications of the law rather than grave
abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of

The issuance of subsequent resolutions by the Court is
simply an exercise of judicial power under Art. VIII of the
Constitution, because the execution of the Decision is but
an integral part of the adjudicative function of the Court.
xxx With the final and executory judgment in MMDA, the
writ of continuing mandamus issued in MMDA means that
until petitioner-agencies have shown full compliance with
the Court’s orders, the Court exercises continuing
jurisdiction over them until full execution of the judgment.
[MMDA v. Concerned Residents of Manila Bay - G.R. Nos.
171947-48, February 15, 2011]

People v. Sesbreno - The Supreme Court as guardian of
the legal profession has ultimate powers over attorneys.
Its authority to discipline lawyers stems from its
constitutional prerogative to regulate the practice of law
and the admission of the persons to engage therein
(Section 5(5), Article X, The 1973 Philippine Constitution;
In Re Cunanan, 94 Phil. 534, 1954). Apart from the
constitutional mandate, the disciplinary authority of the
Supreme Court over attorneys is an inherent power
incidental to its proper administration of justice and
essential to an orderly discharge of its judicial functions
(Tejan v. Cusi, 57 SCRA 154; In Re Almacen, 31 SCRA
562; Hilado v. David, 84 Phil. 573; In the Matter of the IBP
Membership Dues Delinquency of Edillon, G.R. No. AC-
1928 [IBP Adm. Case No. DD-1] August 3, 1978).
Furthermore, attorneys are the court's constituency - to aid
in the administration of justice (Doge S. State, 39 NE 745).
A lawyer occupies what may be termed a quasi-judicial
office since he is in fact an officer of the court, and like the
court itself, an instrument or agency to advance the ends
of justice (Kerlin v. Culkin, 60 ALR 851)

David v. Arroyo – PP1021 recalled PP1017. SC – not
moot and academic - The “moot and academic” principle is
not a magical formula that can automatically dissuade the
courts in resolving a case. Courts will decide cases,
otherwise moot and academic, if: first, there is a grave
violation of the Constitution; second, the exceptional
character of the situation and the paramount public
interest is involved; third, when constitutional issue raised
requires formulation of controlling principles to guide the
bench, the bar, and the public; and fourth, the case is
capable of repetition yet evading review.

The expiration of the term generally renders an election
protest moot and academic [Sales v. COMELEC - G.R.
No. 174668] BUT said case may still be resolved for
purposes of formulating controlling principles to guide the
bench, bar and the public [Atienza v. Villarosa], or in the
case of determining a question involving the one-year
residency requirement for those running for public office,
which is one capable of repetition, under the doctrine of
repetition yet evading review. [Gayo v. Verceles]; or
notwithstanding the election and proclamation of a new set
of municipal officers, to prevent a repetition of the acts
complained of [Albaña v. Commission on Elections]; or
despite the approval by the Civil Service Commission of the
questioned appointments, to avoid a repetition [Altres v.
Empleo - G.R. No. 180986, December 10, 2008]; or the
demise of one of the accused, to prevent a miscarriage of
justice against a co-accused [Constantino v. People - G.R.
No. 140656, September 13, 2007]; or even the separation
of the petitioner from government service, because other
penalties may be imposed upon her [Pagano v. Nazarro -
G.R. No. 149072, September 21, 2007].

Pimentel, Jr. v. Aguirre - by the mere enactment of the
questioned law or the approval of the challenged action,
the dispute is said to have ripened into a judicial
controversy even without any other overt act.

Earliest Opportunity – if not raised in pleadings, cannot be
considered at trial and, if not considered at trial, cannot be
considered on appeal. In criminal cases, constitutional
question can be raised any time in the discretion of the
court. In civil cases, question can be raised at any stage if
it is necessary to the determination of the case itself. In
every case, except where there is estoppel or laches
[Tijam v. Sibonghanoy], constitutional question may be
raised at any stage if it involves the jurisdiction of the

Necessity of Deciding Constitutional Questions –
justification -separation of powers [trias politica principle]

Planters Products Inc. v. Fertiphil Corporation - G.R. No.
166006, March 14, 2008 - The general rule is that an
unconstitutional law is void. The doctrine of operative fact,
as an exception to the general rule, only applies as a
matter of equity and fair play.

The operative fact doctrine also applies to [executive
orders and] executive acts subsequently declared as
invalid. [Hacienda Luisita, Incorporated v. Presidential
Agrarian Reform Council - G.R. No. 171101, November
22, 2011]

Bengzon v. Drilon – fiscal autonomy means freedom from
outside control. Congress could not have carved out an
exemption for the GSIS from the payment of legal fees
without transgressing another equally important
institutional safeguard of the Court’s independence - fiscal
autonomy. [Re: Petition for Recognition of the Exemption
of the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) for
Payment of Legal Fees,id. at 209 citing Section 3, Article
VIII of the Constitution, “[t]he Judiciary shall enjoy fiscal
autonomy.”] Fiscal autonomy recognizes the power and
authority of the Court to levy, assess and collect fees [Id.,
citing Bengzon v. Drilon, G.R. No. 103524, 15 April 1992,
208 SCRA 133, 150] including legal fees. xxx. Any
exemption from the payment of legal fees granted by
Congress to government-owned or controlled corporations
and local government units will necessarily reduce the JDF
and the SAJF. Undoubtedly, such situation is
constitutionally infirm for it impairs the Court’s guaranteed
fiscal autonomy and erodes its independence. [In the
Matter of Clarification of Exemption from Payment of All
Court and Sheriff’s Fees - A.M. No. 12-2-03-0, March 13,
2012, En Banc, Perez]

A vacancy in the Supreme Court must be filled within
ninety days from the occurrence thereof. A vacancy in the
lower courts must be filled within ninety days from the
submission of the list of nominees. [Vacancies in the
Offices of the Ombudsman and Deputy Ombudsmen shall
be filled within three months after they occur.]

Fortich v. Corona – division decides with a 3-2 vote. MR
denied with a 2-2 vote. Petitioner asks that the matter be
taken to the court en banc. SC denies request: the word
“decided” must refer to “cases.” “Resolved” must refer to

Planters Products Inc. v. Fertiphil Corporation - G.R. No.
166006, March 14, 2008, Reyes - Regional Trial Courts
(RTC) have the authority and jurisdiction to consider the
constitutionality of statutes, executive orders, presidential
decrees and other issuances. BUT note British American
Tobacco v. Camacho, G.R. No. 163583, August 20, 2008
– the Court of Tax Appeals cannot pass upon the
constitutionality of a statute.

Rules of procedure of special courts and quasi-judicial
bodies shall remain effective unless disapproved by the
National Power Corporation [A.M. NO. 05-10-20-SC,
March 10, 2010] and GSIS [A.M. No. 08-2-01-0, February
11, 2010] and the Land Bank of the Philippines [Land
Bank of the Philippines v. Rivera - G.R. No. 182431,
November 17, 2001] are not exempt from paying filing

Ampong v CSC - G.R. No. 167916, August 26, 2008 -
administrative jurisdiction over a court employee belongs
to the Supreme Court, regardless of whether the offense
was committed before or after employment in the
With respect to the power of the Court, Section 5 (6),
Article VIII of the 1987 Constitution provides that the
“Supreme Court shall have administrative supervision over
all courts and the personnel thereof.” This provision
empowers the Court to oversee all matters relating to the
effective supervision and management of all courts and
personnel under it. Recognizing this mandate,
Memorandum Circular No. 26 of the Office of the
President, dated July 31, 1986, considers the Supreme
Court exempt and with authority to promulgate its own
rules and regulations on foreign travels. Thus, the Court
came out with OCA Circular No. 49-2003 (B). [Leave
Division v. Heusdens - A.M. No. P-11-2927, December 13,

The regular members of the Judicial and Bar Council have
staggered terms.

Congress may designate only one (1) representative to the
JBC. [Chavez v. Judicial and Bar Council - G.R. No.
202242, July 17, 2012]

Caoibes, Jr. v. Ombudsman - The Ombudsman is duty
bound to have all cases against judges and court
personnel filed before it, referred to the Supreme Court for
determination as to whether an administrative aspect is
involved therein.

Solid Homes, Inc. v. Laserna - G.R. No. 166051, April 8,
2008 – Section 14 does not apply to decisions in
administrative proceedings, like those rendered by the
Office of the President. BUT note the cardinal rights of
parties in administrative proceedings in the landmark case
of Ang Tibay v. CIR.

ARTICLE IX-A - Philippine Lawyers Association v. Agrava
– rules of procedure should not encroach upon the
constitutional prerogatives of other bodies, like the SC.

Marcoleta v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 181377, April 24,
2009 - Section 5 (a) of Rule 3 of the Comelec Rules of
Procedure and Section 7 of Article IX-A of the Constitution
require that a majority vote of all the members of the
Comelec, and not only those who participated and took
part in the deliberations, is necessary for the
pronouncement of a decision, resolution, order or ruling.

Final decisions, orders or rulings of Constitutional
Commissions may be appealed to the Supreme Court - by
way of a petition for certiorari under Rule 64, with respect
to the COMELEC and The COA, and Rule 43 with respect
to the CSC.

Guevara v. COMELEC – the COMELEC’s contempt power
can be exercised only in connection with its power of
adjudication, and may not be invoked in connection with its
exercise of purely administrative functions.

Blanco v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 180164, June 17, 2008 –
The Supreme Court has no power to review via certiorari
an interlocutory order or even a final resolution of a
Division of the COMELEC, only final orders, rulings or
decisions of the COMELEC en banc, unless the
Resolution sought to be set aside is a nullity.

Filipinas Engineering and Machine Shop v. Ferrer – only
orders or rulings issued in connection with the
COMELEC’s quasi-judicial power can be the subject of
certiorari proceedings under section 7. Resolutions
awarding contracts should be the subject of ordinary civil
actions before trial courts.

To sum up, the Court restates its ruling on Sec. 1(2), Art.
IX(D) of the Constitution, viz:

1. The appointment of members of any of the
three constitutional commissions, after the
expiration of the uneven terms of office of the
first set of commissioners, shall always be for a
fixed term of seven (7) years; an appointment for
a lesser period is void and unconstitutional.
The appointing authority cannot validly shorten
the full term of seven (7) years in case of the
expiration of the term as this will result in the
distortion of the rotational system prescribed by
the Constitution.
2. Appointments to vacancies resulting from
certain causes (death, resignation, disability or
impeachment) shall only be for the unexpired
portion of the term of the predecessor, but such
appointments cannot be less than the unexpired
portion as this will likewise disrupt the staggering
of terms laid down under Sec. 1(2), Art. IX(D).
3. Members of the Commission, e.g. COA,
COMELEC or CSC, who were appointed for a full
term of seven years and who served the entire
period, are barred from reappointment to any
position in the Commission. Corollarily, the first
appointees in the Commission under the
Constitution are also covered by the prohibition
against reappointment.
4. A commissioner who resigns after serving in
the Commission for less than seven years is
eligible for an appointment to the position of
Chairman for the unexpired portion of the term of
the departing chairman. Such appointment is not
covered by the ban on reappointment, provided
that the aggregate period of the length of service
as commissioner and the unexpired period of the
term of the predecessor will not exceed seven
(7) years and provided further that the vacancy in
the position of Chairman resulted from death,
resignation, disability or removal by
impeachment. The Court clarifies that
“reappointment” found in Sec. 1(2), Art. IX(D)
means a movement to one and the same office
(Commissioner to Commissioner or Chairman to
Chairman). On the other hand, an appointment
involving a movement to a different position or
office (Commissioner to Chairman) would
constitute a new appointment and, hence, not, in
the strict legal sense, a reappointment barred
under the Constitution.
5. Any member of the Commission cannot be
appointed or designated in a temporary or acting
capacity. [Funa v. The Chairman, Commission
on Audit - G.R. No. 192791, April 24, 2012]


But while the grant of the CSC’s rule-making power is
untouchable by Congress, the laws that the CSC interprets
and enforces fall within the prerogative of Congress. As an
administrative agency, the CSC’s quasi-legislative power
is subject to the same limitations applicable to other
administrative bodies. The rules that the CSC formulates
must not override, but must be in harmony with, the law it
seeks to apply and implement. [Trade and Investment
Development Corporation of the Philippines v. Civil
Service Commission - G.R. No. 182249, March 5, 2013]

Manila International Airport Authority v. City of Pasay -
G.R. No. 163072, April 2, 2009 – The MIAA is a
government “instrumentality” that does not qualify as a
“government-owned or controlled corporation.” The term
government “instrumentality” is broader than the term
“government-owned or controlled corporation.” The fact
that two terms have separate definitions means that while
a government “instrumentality” may include a
“government-owned or controlled corporation,” there may
be a government “instrumentality” that will not qualify as a
“government-owned or controlled corporation.”

UP ranks with MIAA, a government instrumentality
exercising corporate powers but not organized as a stock
or non-stock corporation. While said corporations are
government instrumentalities, they are loosely called
government corporate entities but not government-owned
and controlled corporations in the strict sense. [Lockheed
Detective and Watchman Agency, Inc. v. University of the
Philippines - G.R. No. 185918, April 18, 2012]

Based on all of the foregoing, the inescapable conclusion
is that the CSC may take cognizance of an administrative
case filed directly with it against an official or employee of
a chartered state college or university. This is regardless
of whether the complainant is a private citizen or a
member of the civil service and such original jurisdiction is
shared with the Board of Regents of the school. [Civil
Service Commission v. Court of Appeals- G.R. No.
176162, October 9, 2012]

Which quasi-judicial agency has jurisdiction to hear and
decide complaints for illegal dismissal against an adjunct
government agency engaged in proprietary function? The
Armed Forces of the Philippines Commissary and
Exchange Services (AFPCES) is a unit/facility of the
Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) organized pursuant
to Letter of Instruction (LOI) No. 31, which was issued on
November 20, 1972 by then President Ferdinand Marcos.
Since it cannot be denied that petitioners are government
employees, the proper body that has jurisdiction to hear
the case is the CSC. [Hidalgo v. Republic of the
Philippines - G.R. No. 179793, July 5, 2010]

In Garcia v. Molina [G.R. Nos. 157383 & 174137, August
10, 2010, 627 SCRA 540], we declared the formal charges
issued by petitioner Government Service Insurance
System President without prior conduct of a preliminary
investigation as null and void. [Salva v. Valle – G. R. No.
193773, April 2, 2013]

Amores v. CSC - G.R. No. 170093, April 29, 2009 - the
mere fact that a particular position belongs to the career
service does not automatically confer security of tenure on
its occupant. Such right will have to depend on the nature
of his appointment, which in turn depends on his eligibility
or lack of it.

Tolentino v. de Jesus – acceptance of a temporary
appointment divests the temporary appointee of
constitutional security of tenure against removal without
cause even if he is a civil service eligible. Romualdez v.
CSC – a person’s acceptance of a temporary appointment
results in the termination of official relations with his former
permanent position, to which he may not demand
reinstatement if his temporary appointment is not renewed.

Maturan v. Maglana – where a temporary employee
acquires civil service eligibility during his tenure as such,
his temporary appointment does not thereby automatically
become permanent.

Ambas v. Buenaseda – even if appointment is temporary,
appointee may not be removed at will if appointment is for
a fixed period.

A government employee holding a casual or temporary
employment cannot be terminated within the period of his
employment except for cause. Thus, they may be laid-off
anytime before the expiration of the employment period
provided any of the following occurs: (1) when their
services are no longer needed; (2) funds are no longer
available; (3) the project has already been
completed/finished; or (4) their performance are below par.
Equally important, they are entitled to due process
especially if they are to be removed for more serious
causes or for causes other than the reasons mentioned in
CSC Form No. 001. This is pursuant to Section 2, Article
IX(B) of the Constitution and Section 46 of the Civil
Service Law. The reason for this is that their termination
from the service could carry a penalty affecting their rights
and future employment in the government. [PCSO v.
Lapid - G.R. No. 191940, April 12, 2011]

RA 6850 – temporary employees – 7 years – may be
granted civil service eligibility that will qualify them for
permanent appointment to their positions.

Daza v. Lugo – G.R No. 168999, April 30, 2008 - a
probationary employee may only be terminated for a just
cause, that is, unsatisfactory conduct or want of capacity.

Primarily confidential – one which denotes not only
confidence in the aptitude of the appointee for the duties of
the office but primarily close intimacy which ensures
freedom of intercourse without embarrassment or freedom
from misgivings or betrayals of personal trust or
confidential matters of state [De los Santos v. Mallare]; or
one declared to be so upon recommendation of the CSC
[Salazar v. Mathay] BUT see PAGCOR v. Angara
[involving token attendants at the PAGCOR, whose
positions are, by law, classified, as primarily confidential],
citing PAGCOR v. Rilloraza, CSC v. Salas and Pinero v.
Hechanova – an executive or legislative declaration that a
position is primarily confidential, highly technical or policy-
determining is not conclusive upon the courts, the true test
being the nature of the position. These employees still
have security of tenure, and are exempt only from the
requirement of competitive examinations. Examples –
private secretaries [Corpus v. Cuaderno] – bodyguards
[Borres v. CA] – city legal officer [Cadiente v. Santos] and
provincial attorney [Grino v. CSC]

Civil Service Commission v. Salas - a driver is not a
confidential employee. [See Re: Vehicular Accident -
A.M. No. 2008-13-SC, November 19, 2008]

Corpus v. Cuaderno – the three classes exempted from
competitive exams; enjoy security of tenure.

Nepotism – appointment or designation of relatives within
the 3
degree of consanguinity of affinity prohibited except
– [1] persons appointed in a confidential capacity [2]
teachers [3] members of the AFP [4] physicians – applies
even to designations.

In the local government career service, the prohibition
against nepotism extends to the relatives of the appointing
or recommending authority, within the fourth civil degree of
consanguinity or affinity. The nepotism rule covers all
kinds of appointments whether original, promotional,
transfer and reemployment regardless of status including
casuals and contractuals except consultants. (Emphasis
supplied.) [Galeos v. People - G.R. Nos. 174730-37,
February 9, 2011]

The principal distinctions between a detail [movement from
one agency to another -[Executive Order 292, Book V,
Title 1, Subtitle A, Chapter 5, Section 26 (6)] and
reassignment [reassignment from one organizational unit
to another in the same agency -E.O. 292, Book V, Title 1,
Subtitle A, Chapter 5, Section 26 (7)] lie in the place where
the employee is to be moved and in its effectivity pending
appeal with the CSC. Based on the definition, a detail
requires a movement from one agency to another while a
reassignment requires a movement within the same
agency. Moreover, pending appeal with the CSC, an order
to detail is immediately executory, whereas a
reassignment order does not become immediately
effective. [Republic of the Philippines v. Pacheco – G.R.
No. 178021, January 25, 2012]

University of the Philippines v. Regino –As a component of
the Civil Service, UP is therefore governed by PD 807 and
administrative cases involving the discipline of its
employees come under the appellate jurisdiction of the
Civil Service Commission. All members of the civil service
are under the jurisdiction of the CSC, unless otherwise
provided by law.

RA 4670 – under Magna Carta for Public School Teachers
– schools have exclusive jurisdiction over public school
teachers. But SC has declared CSC and Ombudsman
have concurrent jurisdiction.

Period of preventive suspension pending investigation
cannot be deducted from the penalty, because preventive
suspension is not a penalty. [Quimbo v. Gervacio]
Preventive suspension pending appeal is actually punitive;
so, if exonerated, respondent is entitled to be reinstated
with full pay for the period of suspension [pending appeal].
However, if penalty or conviction is affirmed, the period of
preventive suspension pending appeal becomes part of
the penalty of suspension or dismissal. [Gloria v. CA]

The present legal basis for an award of back salaries is
Section 47, Book V of the Administrative Code of 1987 –
“(4) An appeal shall not stop the decision from being
executory, and in case the penalty is suspension or
removal, the respondent shall be considered as having
been under preventive suspension during the pendency of
the appeal in the event he wins an appeal.” This
provision, however, on its face, does not support a claim
for back salaries since it does not expressly provide for
back salaries during this period; our established rulings
hold that back salaries may not be awarded for the period
of preventive suspension [Hon. Gloria v. CA, 365 Phil. 744
(1999)] as the law itself authorizes its imposition so that its
legality is beyond question. To resolve the seeming
conflict, the Court crafted two conditions before an
employee may be entitled to back salaries: a) the
employee must be found innocent of the charges and b)
his suspension must be unjustified. [Bangalisan v. CA,
342 Phil. 586 (1997)] The reasoning behind these
conditions runs this way: although an employee is
considered under preventive suspension during the
pendency of a successful appeal, the law itself only
authorizes preventive suspension for a fixed period;
hence, his suspension beyond this fixed period is
unjustified and must be compensated. [Civil Service
Commission v. Cruz - G.R. No. 187858, August 9, 2011,
En Banc, Brion]
Periods – CSC – 90 days - Public officers with pending
criminal cases – 90 days - Local elective officials – Local
Government Code – 60 days - Anti-Graft Law –
suspension pendente lite – 90 days - Ombudsman –
six months

An illegally terminated civil service employee is entitled to
back salaries limited only to a maximum period of five
years, and not full back salaries from his illegal termination
up to his reinstatement. [Yenko v. Gungon, G.R. Nos.
165450 & 165452, August 13, 2009, 595 SCRA 562, 580]
The illegally dismissed government employee shall be
paid back salaries at the rate he was receiving when he
was terminated unqualified by salary increases and
without deduction from earnings received elsewhere
during the period of his illegal dismissal. [Balquidra v. CFI
of Capiz, Branch II. No. L-40490, October 28, 1977, 80
SCRA 123] Being an incumbent at the time, Galang would
have continued to receive RATA, Meal Allowance and
Rice Subsidy, separate from his salary, had he not been
illegally dismissed from service. [Galang v. Land Bank of
the Philippines - G.R. No. 175276, May 31, 2011]

CSC v. Dacoycoy - the government party that can appeal
the decision in administrative cases must be the party
prosecuting the case and not the disciplining authority or
tribunal which heard the administrative case. [Office
of the Ombudsman v. Liggayu - G.R. No. 174297, June
20, 2012]

Quinto v. COMELEC – G.R. No. 189698, December 1,
2009, Nachura/[MR] February 22, 2010, Puno - Under
Section 13 of RA 9369, which reiterates Section 66 of the
Omnibus Election Code, any person holding a public
appointive office or position, including active members of
the Armed Forces of the Philippines, and officers and
employees in government-owned or -controlled
corporations, shall be considered ipso facto resigned from
his office upon the filing of his certificate of candidacy.
Upon the other hand, an elected official is not deemed to
have resigned from his office upon the filing of his
certificate of candidacy for the same or any other elected
office or position. In fine, an elected official may run for
another position without forfeiting his seat.

Elective officials can be appointed to civilian posts during
their term, but they shall be considered as having forfeited
their elective seats upon acceptance of said civilian posts.

Unless otherwise allowed by law or by the primary
functions of his position, no appointive official shall hold
any other office or employment in the Government or any
subdivision, agency or instrumentality thereof, including
Government-owned or controlled corporations or their
subsidiaries. Not applicable to President, Vice-President,
Members of the Cabinet, and their deputies or assistants,
who can hold other offices only if allowed under the
Constitution. [Article VII, Section 13] – Civil Liberties Union
v. Executive Secretary


Marcoleta v. Borra - A.C. No. 7732, March 30, 2009 -
complaint for disbarment against COMELEC
Commissioners - an impeachable officer who is a member
of the Bar cannot be disbarred without first being
impeached [Jarque v. Ombudsman, In Re: Raul M.
Gonzales and Cuenco v. Fernan] It bears emphasis that
the provision that majority of Comelec members should be
lawyers pertains to the desired composition of the
Comelec. While the appointing authority may follow such
constitutional mandate, the appointment of a full
complement of lawyers in the Comelec membership is not

Power to enforce and administer election laws Includes
the power to annul an illegal registry of voters; cancel a
proclamation made by a board of canvassers; oust a
candidate already proclaimed; reject nuisance candidates
[BUT Comelec may not refuse to give due course to a
certificate of candidacy duly accomplished and filed – its
duty is ministerial]; postpone or continue elections
[Ocampo v. COMELEC]; declare a failure of elections
[Omnibus Election Code/Sanchez v. COMELEC]

Philippine Press Institute v. COMELEC [244 SCRA272]– a
COMELEC resolution required newspapers to provide it
with free space of not less than ! page for the common
use of political parties and candidates. SC:
Unconstitutional – constituted “Taking” of private property
without payment of just compensation.

Telecommunications and Broadcast Attorneys of the
Philippines v. COMELEC [289 SCRA 337] – BP 881,
Section 92 requires radio and TV stations to give free air
time to the COMELEC to be used as the COMELEC hour
for broadcasting information regarding candidates.
Challenged on the ground of being unconstitutional for
constituting taking without just compensation, the SC said
the law was a valid regulation by the State of the use of
the State’s air waves. Valid exercise of the police power.

Presbiterio v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 178884, June 30,
2008 - a failure of election may be declared only in the
three instances stated in Section 6 of the OEC: the
election has not been held; the election has been
suspended before the hour fixed by law; and the
preparation and the transmission of the election returns
have given rise to the consequent failure to elect, meaning
nobody emerged as the winner. Furthermore, the reason
for such failure of election should be force majeure,
violence, terrorism, fraud or other analogous causes.
Finally, before the COMELEC can grant a verified petition
seeking to declare a failure of election, the concurrence of
2 conditions must be established, namely: (1) no voting
has taken place in the precincts concerned on the date
fixed by law or, even if there was voting, the election
nevertheless resulted in a failure to elect; and (2) the votes
cast would affect the result of the election.

Sangcopan v. COMELEC – G. R. No. 170216 , March 12,
2008 – the annulment of election can only be done when
the COMELEC finds that an election was vitiated by
widespread and pervasive terrorism and election frauds,
which resulted in the submission at gunpoint of falsified
and tampered election returns, and it is impossible to
purge the illegal from the valid returns, so that there are no
returns worthy of faith and credit and from which would be
gauged a fair and true expression of the popular will.
[Sanchez v. COMELEC]

Flauta v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 184586, July 22, 2009 - In
Duremdes v. Commission on Elections, this Court
sustained the power of the COMELEC en banc to order a
correction of the Statement of Votes to make it conform to
the election returns.

Bedol v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 179830, December 3, 2009
- The COMELEC has quasi-judicial, quasi-legislative and
administrative powers. CONTEMPT power sustained
because it was exercised in connection with its quasi-
judicial power, i.e., an investigation into alleged massive
electoral fraud.

Abainza v. Arellano –GR No. 181644, December 8, 2008 -
Under Section 5, Rule 27 of the COMELEC Rules of
Procedure, correction of manifest errors in the tabulation
or tallying of results during the canvassing may be filed
directly with the Commission, even after a proclamation of
the winning candidates. Despite the proclamation of the
winning candidates, the COMELEC still has jurisdiction to
correct manifest errors in the election returns for the
Sangguniang Bayan candidates. A “manifest error” is one
that is visible to the eye or obvious to the understanding;
that which is open, palpable, incontrovertible, needing no
evidence to make it more clear.

Duremdes v. Commission on Elections - a pre-
proclamation controversy is not proper after a
proclamation has been made, only if there had been a
valid proclamation.

Flores v. COMELEC – SC declared as unconstitutional a
law providing that decisions of the municipal or
metropolitan trial courts in barangay elections may be
appealed to regional trial courts.

Pacificador v. COMELEC – G.R. No. 178259, March 13,
2009 –The COMELEC sitting en banc, however, does not
have the authority to hear and decide election cases,
including pre-proclamation controversies in the first
instance, as the COMELEC in division has such authority.
The COMELEC en banc can exercise jurisdiction only on
motions for reconsideration of the resolution or decision of
the COMELEC in division. Pursuant to Rule 18 of the
Omnibus Election Code, decisions and resolutions of any
division of the COMELEC in special cases become final
and executory after the lapse of five days, unless a timely
motion for reconsideration is lodged with the COMELEC
en banc.

Only final orders of the COMELEC in Division may be
raised before the COMELEC en banc. Clearly, the
assailed status quo ante Order, being interlocutory, should
first be resolved by the COMELEC First Division via a
motion for reconsideration. [Cayetano v. COMELEC -
G.R. No. 193846, April 12, 2011]

Fernandez v. COMELEC – G.R. No. 176296, June 30,
2008 - trial courts of limited jurisdiction have exclusive
original jurisdiction over election protests involving
barangay officials, which include the SK chairman.

Ugdoracion v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 179851, April 18,
2008 – the certificate of candidacy of a green card holder
who states therein that he is a resident may be denied due
course or cancelled on the ground of material

Justimbaste v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 179413, November
28, 2008 – [1] the use of a name other than that stated in
the certificate of birth is not a material misrepresentation,
as “material misrepresentation” under the earlier-quoted
Section 78 of the Omnibus Election Code refers to
“qualifications for elective office.” [2] a petition for
disqualification based on material misrepresentation in the
certificate of candidacy is different from an election
protest. The purpose of an election protest is to ascertain
whether the candidate proclaimed elected by the board of
canvassers is really the lawful choice of the electorate.

Omnibus Election Code - Section 68 – petition for
disqualification – based on commission of prohibited acts
[e.g., vote-buying, terrorism, overspending, unlawful
electioneering] and the possession of a permanent
resident status in a foreign country – may be filed anytime
after the deadline for filing of CoCs but before
proclamation – person disqualified is prohibited from
continuing as a candidate.

Section 78 – petition to deny due course to or cancel a
Certificate of Candidacy [CoC] – based on false material
misrepresentations [on material matters - statements
regarding age, residence, citizenship or non-possession
of natural-born Filipino status , eligibility, as when one,
although precluded from running for a fourth term because
of the three-term limit rule, claims to be nonetheless
qualified, or when one claims to be eligible despite his
disqualification on the basis of an accessory penalty
imposed upon him in connection with his conviction in a
criminal case - the false representation must consist of a
deliberate attempt to mislead, misinform, or hide a fact
which would otherwise render a candidate ineligible. In
other words, it must be made with an intention to deceive
the electorate as to one’s qualification for public office. ] in
the CoC - must be filed within five days from the deadline
for filing of CoCs, or not later than 25 days from the filing
of the questioned CoC – person disqualified is not treated
as a candidate at all – has been likened to a petition for
quo warranto, but is filed before, and not after,
A candidate may be substituted if he dies, is
disqualified or withdraws. Substitutions in cases of death
or disqualification may usually be made until midday of
election day. An earlier deadline is usually prescribed for
substitutions by reason of withdrawal. Under Section 12 of
R.A. No. 9006, in order to obviate confusion, the name of
the substitute candidate should, as much as possible, bear
the same surname as that of the substituted candidate.
[Federico v. Commission on Elections, G.R. No. 199612,
January 22, 2013] Thus, in Federico v. Commission on
Elections, the Court invalidated the substitution of a
candidate for mayor who withdrew her candidacy for
purposes of substituting her husband as candidate for
governor because of the latter’s death. It said that, while
her substitution of her husband because of his death may
have been valid because said substitution may be done
until midday of election day, her substitution as a
candidate for mayor was invalid because the deadline for
the same had long prescribed. The Court stressed that
her substitution as a mayoralty candidate was not by
reason of her death or disqualification. A candidate whose
certificate of candidacy is cancelled or denied due course
may likewise not be substituted. [Talaga v. Commission on
Elections, G.R. No. 196804, October 9, 2012; Tagolino v.
HRET and Lucy Torres, G.R. No. 202202, March 19,
2013; see Miranda v. Abaya, G.R. No. 136351, July 28,
1999, 311 SCRA 617] “A cancelled certificate of candidacy
void ab initio cannot give rise to a valid candidacy, and
much less to valid votes.” [Aratea v. Commission on
Elections, G.R. No. 195229, October 9, 2012]
In Aratea v. COMELEC, the Supreme Court
acknowledged that there may be instances when the
grounds for both sections 68 and 78 may overlap, as when
a candidate who represents that he is a resident of the
place where he seeks election but is actually a permanent
resident or immigrant to a foreign country, in which case,
he would clearly also not be a resident of the place where
he seeks election for at least one year immediately
preceding the day of the election. In such cases, the
Court clarified that one who would like to assail the
candidacy of that person may avail himself of either
Nuisance candidates – stray votes - “We hold that the rule
in Resolution No. 4116 considering the votes cast for a
nuisance candidate declared as such in a final judgment,
particularly where such nuisance candidate has the same
surname as that of the legitimate candidate, not stray but
counted in favor of the latter, remains a good law.” [De la
Cruz v. Commission on Elections, G.R. No. 192221,
November 13, 2012]
Blanco v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 122258 - vote-buying has
its criminal and electoral aspects. Its criminal aspect to
determine the guilt or innocence of the accused cannot be
the subject of summary hearing. However, its electoral
aspect to ascertain whether the offender should be
disqualified from office can be determined in an
administrative proceeding that is summary in character.
Blanco v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 180164, June 17, 2008 –
petitioner was earlier found administratively, and not
criminally, liable for vote-buying, and disqualified under
Section 68 of the Omnibus Election Code. In G.R. No.
122258, petitioner was disqualified from continuing as a
candidate only in the May 8, 1995 elections.

Abayon v. COMELEC and Raul Daza- GR No. 181295,
April 2, 2009 - abduction of a voter, the killing of a political
leader, the threats which prevented the holding of the
campaign sorties, and the intimidation of voters, or of
terrorism [also massive vote-buying and bribery] are
proper grounds for an election protest, not a pre-
proclamation controversy - illegal composition or
proceedings of the board of canvassers, canvassed
election returns are incomplete, contain material defects,
appear to be tampered with or falsified, or contain
discrepancies in the same returns or in other authentic
copies thereof; election returns were prepared under
duress, threats, coercion, or intimidation, or they are
obviously manufactured or not authentic; substitute or
fraudulent returns in controverted polling places were
canvassed, the results of which materially affected the
standing of the aggrieved candidate or candidates. In fact,
had Abayon timely filed an election protest, bearing the
same allegations and raising identical issues, it would
have been given due course. The ten-day period for filing
an election contest or a petition for quo warranto cannot
be considered suspended with the filing thereof.

Ocampo v. House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal -
a subsequent disqualification of a winning candidate will
not entitle his opponent, the candidate who received the
second highest number of votes to be declared the winner.

NOTE - in subsequent decisions of the Supreme Court, it
made clear that its earlier rulings holding that the second-
placer cannot be proclaimed winner if the first-placer is
disqualified or declared ineligible should be limited to
situations where the certificate of candidacy of the first-
placer was valid at the time of filing but subsequently had
to be cancelled because of a violation of law that took
place, or a legal impediment that took effect, after the filing
of the certificate of candidacy. If the certificate of
candidacy is void ab initio, then legally the person who
filed such void certificate of candidacy was never a
candidate in the elections at any time. All votes for such
non-candidate should therefore be considered as stray
votes and should not be counted. Thus, such non-
candidate can never be a first-placer in the elections. If a
certificate of candidacy void ab initio is cancelled on the
day, or before the day, of the election, prevailing
jurisprudence holds that all votes for that candidate are
stray votes. [Cayat v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 163776, April
24, 2007, 522 SCRA 23] If a certificate of candidacy void
ab initio is cancelled one day or more after the elections,
all votes for such candidate should also be stray votes
because the certificate of candidacy is void from the very
beginning. This, according to the Supreme Court, is the
more equitable and logical approach on the effect of the
cancellation of a certificate of candidacy that is void ab
initio. Otherwise, a certificate of candidacy void ab initio
can operate to defeat one or more valid certificates of
candidacy for the same position. [Jalosjos v. Commission
on Elections, G.R. No. 193237, October 9, 2012]

Atienza v. COMELEC – G.R. No. 188920, February 16,
2010, Abad - the COMELEC may resolve an intra-party
leadership dispute, in a proper case brought before it, as
an incident of its power to register political parties.

Liberal Party v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 191771, May 6,
2010 - political coalitions need to register in accordance
with the established norms and procedures, if they are to
be recognized as such and be given the benefits accorded
by law to registered coalitions.

BANAT v. COMELEC, G.R. NO. 177508, August 7, 2009 -
It is clear that the grant of the “exclusive power” to
investigate and prosecute election offenses to the
COMELEC was not by virtue of the Constitution but by BP
881, a legislative enactment.

Dino v. Olivarez – G.R. No. 170447, December 4, 2009 - It
is clear that the Chief State Prosecutor, all Provincial and
City Fiscals, and/or their respective assistants have been
given continuing authority, as deputies of the Commission,
to conduct a preliminary investigation of complaints
involving election offenses under the election laws and to
prosecute the same. Such authority may be revoked or
withdrawn anytime by the COMELEC, either expressly or
impliedly, when in its judgment such revocation or
withdrawal is necessary to protect the integrity of the
process to promote the common good, or where it believes
that successful prosecution of the case can be done by the

Eriguel v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 190526, February 26,
2010 - The Special Second Division of the COMELEC
clearly acted with grave abuse of discretion when it
immediately transferred to the Commission en banc a
case that ought to be heard and decided by a division.
Such action cannot be done without running afoul of
Section 3, Article IX-C of the 1987 Constitution. Instead of
peremptorily transferring the case to the Commission en
banc, the Special Second Division of COMELEC, should
have instead assigned another Commissioner as
additional member of its Special Second Division, not only
to fill in the seat temporarily vacated by Commissioner
Ferrer, but more importantly so that the required quorum
may be attained.

Thus, it is the Court, under its power to review decisions,
orders, or resolutions of the COMELEC provided under
Section 7, Article IX-A of the 1987 Constitution and
Section 1, Rule 37 of the COMELEC Rules of Procedure
that has jurisdiction to hear the instant petition. In this
case, the COMELEC En Banc cannot be compelled to
resolve Layug’s Motion for Reconsideration of the
Resolution dated June 15, 2010 that was filed on July 28,
2010 after said Resolution had already attained finality. In
fact, the COMELEC Second Division denied the same
Motion in its Order dated August 4, 2010 precisely for the
reason that it was filed out of time. [Layug v. Commission
on Elections - G.R. No. 192984, February 28, 2012]

Since it is the COMELEC which has jurisdiction to take
cognizance of an appeal from the decision of the regional
trial court in election contests involving elective municipal
officials, then it is also the COMELEC which has
jurisdiction to issue a writ of certiorari in aid of its appellate
jurisdiction. Clearly, petitioner erred in invoking this
Court's power to issue said extraordinary writ. [Galang v.
Geronimo - G.R. No. 192793, February 22, 2011; see also
Bulilis v. Nuez - G. R. No. 195953, August 9, 2011]

There is no question, therefore, that the Court has no
jurisdiction to take cognizance of the petition for certiorari
assailing the denial by the COMELEC First Division of the
special affirmative defenses of the petitioner. The proper
remedy is for the petitioner to wait for the COMELEC First
Division to first decide the protest on its merits, and if the
result should aggrieve him, to appeal the denial of his
special affirmative defenses to the COMELEC en banc
along with the other errors committed by the Division upon
the merits xxx Otherwise stated, the Court has no power
to review on certiorari an interlocutory order or even a final
resolution issued by a Division of the COMELEC. [Ambil v.
Commission on Elections

- G.R. No. 143398, October 25,
2000, 344 SCRA 358, 365-366; Cagas v. Commission on
Elections - G.R. No. 194139, January 24, 2012]

Under the exception, therefore, the [Supreme] Court may
take cognizance of a petition for certiorari under Rule 64 to
review an interlocutory order issued by a Division of the
COMELEC on the ground of the issuance being made
without jurisdiction or in excess of jurisdiction or with grave
abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of
jurisdiction when it does not appear to be specifically
provided under the COMELEC Rules of Procedure that the
matter is one that the COMELEC en banc may sit and
consider, or a Division is not authorized to act, or the
members of the Division unanimously vote to refer to the
COMELEC en banc. Of necessity, the aggrieved party can
directly resort to the Court because the COMELEC en
banc is not the proper forum in which the matter
concerning the assailed interlocutory order can be
reviewed. [Kho v. Commission on Elections -G.R. No.
124033, September 25, 1997, 279 SCRA 463, 471-473;
Cagas v. Commission on Elections - G.R. No. 194139,
January 24, 2012]

Not all criminal offenses committed during the election
period are election offenses.

The election period may be changed by resolution of the
Commission on Elections. The election period may, under
the Constitution, commence earlier than ninety days
before the day of election. - Special case – Article VII,
Section 10 – special election, to be called within 7 days
after vacancy, and must be held not earlier than 45 days
nor later than 60 days from such call.

Penera v. COMELEC - G. R. No. 181613, November 25,
2009 - “any person who files his certificate of candidacy
within [the filing] period shall only be considered a
candidate at the start of the campaign period for which he
filed his certificate of candidacy.”


Riel v. Wright – Insular Auditor denied a claim for payment
of his salary for services as a temporary clerk of the
Senate on the ground that his services were unnecessary.
SC: invalid/this is a matter within the peculiar province of
the Legislature and for which its members are responsible
to their constituents. Insular Auditor cannot question the
necessity of an appropriation BUT in Matute v. Hernandez
– Insular Auditor refused to authorize payment under a
contract, which was novated without a second public
bidding. SC: valid because the Insular Auditor can reject
an account that is demonstrably unlawful.

Philippine Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
v. Commission on Audit - G.R. No. 169752, September
25, 2007 - Petitioner is DECLARED a private domestic
corporation subject to the jurisdiction of the Securities and
Exchange Commission.

The Boy Scouts of the Philippines is a public corporation
and its funds are subject to the COA’s audit jurisdiction.
[Boy Scouts of the Philippines v. Commission on Audit -
G.R. No. 177131, June 7, 2011]

Local water districts, such as the LMWD, are GOCCs with
special charter. P.D. No. 198 constitutes the special
charter by virtue of which local water districts exist.
[Feliciano v. Aranez - G.R. No. 165641, August 25, 2010]

LGUs, though granted local fiscal autonomy, are still within
the audit jurisdiction of the COA. [Veloso v. Commission
on Audit - G.R. No. 193677, September 6, 2011, En Banc,

Sanchez v. Commission on Audit - G.R. No. 127545, April
23, 2008 - The Court had therefore previously upheld the
authority of the COA to disapprove payments which it finds
excessive and disadvantageous to the Government; to
determine the meaning of “public bidding” and when there
is “failure” in the bidding; to disallow expenditures which it
finds unnecessary according to its rules even if
disallowance will mean discontinuance of foreign aid;
to disallow a contract even after it has been executed and
goods have been delivered. Likewise, we sustained the
findings of the COA disallowing the disbursements of the
National Home Mortgage Finance Corporation for failure to
submit certain documentary requirements and for being
irregular and excessive. We have also ruled that the final
determination of the Department of Finance and the BIR
as to a person’s entitlement to an informer’s reward is
conclusive only upon the executive agencies concerned
and not on the COA, the latter being an independent
constitutional commission. The COA is traditionally given
free rein in the exercise of its constitutional duty to
examine and audit expenditures of public funds especially
those which are palpably beyond what is allowed by law.
[Barbo v Commission on Audit – G.R. No. 157542,
October 10, 2008] - in Rodolfo S. de Jesus [Catbalogan
Water District] v. COA, the Court upheld the authority and
jurisdiction of the COA to rule on the legality of the
disbursement of government funds by a water district and
declared that such power does not conflict with the
jurisdiction of the courts, the DBM, and the LWUA.

Section 2[2] – the critical function of the COA authorizes it
to VETO disbursements.
Pacete v. Acting Chairman of the COA – monetary claims
must be acted upon by the COA within 60 days. Failure to
do so within said period would not result in the automatic
approval of the claim pursuant to section1 of CA 327. SC:
NO, claimant can file petition for mandamus to compel
COA to render a decision.

Civil Service Commission v. Pobre, 438 SCRA 334 - While
the determination of leave benefits is within the functions
of the Civil Service Commission as the central personnel
agency of the government, the duty to examine accounts
and expenditures relating to such benefits properly
pertains to the Commission on Audit. Even as the
Supreme Court recognizes the Civil Service Commission’s
jurisdiction in this case, it is not exclusive as it is shared
with the Commission on Audit.

NHMFC v. Abayari – G.R. No. 166508, October 2, 2009 -
Be that as it may, assuming for the sake of argument that
execution by garnishment could proceed in this case
against the funds of petitioner, it must bear stress that the
latter is a government-owned or controlled corporation with
a charter of its own. Its juridical personality is separate
and distinct from the government and it can sue and be
sued in its name. As such, while indeed it cannot evade
the effects of the execution of an adverse judgment and
may not ordinarily place its funds beyond an order of
garnishment issued in ordinary cases, it is imperative in
order for execution to ensue that a claim for the payment
of the judgment award be first filed with the Commission
on Audit (COA).

An absolution from a criminal charge is not a bar to an
administrative prosecution or vice versa. The criminal case
filed before the Office of the Ombudsman is distinct and
separate from the proceedings on the disallowance before
the COA. So also, the dismissal by Margarito P. Gervacio,
Jr., Deputy Ombudsman for Mindanao, of the criminal
charges against petitioners does not necessarily foreclose
the matter of their possible liability as warranted by the
findings of the COA. [Soria v. Commission on Audit - G.R.
No. 167219, February 8, 2011] With respect to the liability
of petitioner, we likewise affirm the COA’s ruling that he is
personally and solidarily liable for the disallowed amount.
The doctrine of separate personality of a corporation finds
no application because CDA is not a private entity but a
government agency created by virtue of Republic Act No.
6939 in compliance with the provisions of Section 15,
Article XII of the 1987 Constitution. Moreover, respondents
satisfactorily established that petitioner acted in bad faith
when he prevailed upon the DAP-TEC to modify the initial
result of the technical evaluation of the computers by
imposing an irrelevant grading system that was intended
to favor one of the bidders, after the bids had been
opened. [Versoza v. Carague - G.R. No. 157838, March 8,


RECALL - Section 70 of the Local Government Code –
Percentage requirements – at least 25% in the case of
LGUs with a voting population of not more than 20,000/At
least 20% in the case of LGUs with a voting population of
at least 20,000 but not more than 75,000, provided
petitioners shall not be less than 5,000/At least 15% in the
case of LGUs with a voting population of at least 75,000
but not more than 300,000, provided petitioners shall not
be less than 15,000/At least 10% in case the voting
population exceeds 300,000, provided petitioners shall not
be less than 45,000

Batangas CATV, Inc. v. Court of Appeals - the LGU did not
have the authority to grant franchises to operate a CATV
system because it was the National Telecommunications
Commission (NTC) that had the power under EO Nos. 205
and 436 to regulate CATV operations. EO 205 mandated
the NTC to grant certificates of authority to CATV
operators while EO 436 vested on the NTC the power to
regulate and supervise the CATV industry.

Social Justice Society v. Atienza - G.R. No. 156052,
February 13, 2008 - Section 4 of Article X of the
Constitution confines the President’s power over LGUs to
one of general supervision. Supervisory power, when
contrasted with control, is the power of mere oversight
over an inferior body; it does not include any restraining
authority over such body. It does not allow the supervisor
to annul the acts of the subordinate. Here, what the DOE
seeks to do is to set aside an ordinance enacted by local
officials, a power that not even its principal, the President,
has. Thus, the President and his or her alter egos, the
department heads, cannot interfere with the activities of
local governments, so long as they act within the scope of
their authority. Accordingly, the DOE cannot substitute its
own discretion for the discretion exercised by the
sanggunian of the City of Manila. In local affairs, the
wisdom of local officials must prevail as long as they are
acting within the parameters of the Constitution and the

Governors do not have emergency military powers. -
Respondents cannot rely on paragraph 1, subparagraph
(vii) of Article 465 [of the Local Government Code], as the
said provision expressly refers to calamities and disasters,
whether man-made or natural. The governor, as local
chief executive of the province, is certainly empowered to
enact and implement emergency measures during these
occurrences. But the kidnapping incident in the case at
bar cannot be considered as a calamity or a disaster.
Respondents cannot find any legal mooring under this
provision to justify their actions. Paragraph 2,
subparagraph (vi) of the same provision is equally
inapplicable for two reasons. First, the Armed Forces of
the Philippines does not fall under the category of a
“national law enforcement agency,” to which the National
Police Commission (NAPOLCOM) and its departments
belong. Its mandate is to uphold the sovereignty of the
Philippines, support the Constitution, and defend the
Republic against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Its
aim is also to secure the integrity of the national territory.
Second, there was no evidence or even an allegation on
record that the local police forces were inadequate to cope
with the situation or apprehend the violators. If they were
inadequate, the recourse of the provincial governor was to
ask the assistance of the Secretary of Interior and Local
Government, or such other authorized officials, for the
assistance of national law enforcement agencies. [[Jamar
M. Kulayan, et al. vs. Gov. Abdusakur M. Tan etc., et al. -
G.R. No. 187298, July 3, 2012, En Banc, Sereno]

Three-Term Limit

1. When a permanent vacancy occurs in an elective
position and the official merely assumed the position
pursuant to the rules on succession under the LGC, then
his service for the unexpired portion of the term of the
replaced official cannot be treated as one full term as
contemplated under the subject constitutional and
statutory provision that service cannot be counted in the
application of any term limit (Borja, Jr. v. Commission on
Elections and Jose T. Capco, Jr. [G.R. No. 133495,
September 3, 1998, 295 SCRA 157 (1998)]). If the official
runs again for the same position he held prior to his
assumption of the higher office, then his succession to
said position is by operation of law and is considered an
involuntary severance or interruption (Montebon v.
Commission on Elections [G.R. No. 180444, April 8, 2008,
551 SCRA 50 (2008)).

2. An elective official, who has served for three
consecutive terms and who did not seek the elective
position for what could be his fourth term, but later won in
a recall election, had an interruption in the continuity of the
official’s service. For, he had become in the interim, i.e.,
from the end of the 3rd term up to the recall election, a
private citizen (Adormeo v. Commission on Elections [G.R.
No. 147927, February 4, 2002, 376 SCRA 90 (2002)] and
Socrates v. Commission on Elections [G.R. No. 154512,
November 12, 2002, 391 SCRA 457]).

3. The abolition of an elective local office due to the
conversion of a municipality to a city does not, by itself,
work to interrupt the incumbent official’s continuity of
service (Latasa v. Commission on Elections.

- G.R. No.
154829, December 10, 2003, 417 SCRA 601 (2003).

4. Preventive suspension is not a term-interrupting event
as the elective officer’s continued stay and entitlement to
the office remain unaffected during the period of
suspension, although he is barred from exercising the
functions of his office during this period (Aldovino, Jr. v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 184836, December 23, 2009, 609
SCRA 234).

5. When a candidate is proclaimed as winner for an
elective position and assumes office, his term is
interrupted when he loses in an election protest and is
ousted from office, thus disenabling him from serving what
would otherwise be the unexpired portion of his term of
office had the protest been dismissed (Lonzanida v.
Commission on Elections, G.R. No. 135150, July 28,
1999, 311 SCRA 602 (1999)and Dizon v. Commission on
Elections [G.R. No. 182088, January 30, 2009, 577 SCRA
589 (2009)). The break or interruption need not be for a
full term of three years or for the major part of the 3-year
term; an interruption for any length of time, provided the
cause is involuntary, is sufficient to break the continuity of
service (Socrates v. Commission on Elections [G.R. No.
154512, November 12, 2002, 391 SCRA 457], citing
Lonzanida v. Commission on Elections, G.R. No. 135150,
July 28, 1999, 311 SCRA 602 (1999)).

6. When an official is defeated in an election protest and
said decision becomes final after said official had served
the full term for said office, then his loss in the election
contest does not constitute an interruption since he has
managed to serve the term from start to finish. His full
service, despite the defeat, should be counted in the
application of term limits because the nullification of his
proclamation came after the expiration of the term (Ong v.
Alegre, G.R. Nos. 163295 & 163354, January 23, 2006,
479 SCRA 473 (2006)and Rivera III v. Commission on
Elections [G.R. Nos. 167591 & 170577, May 9, 2007, 523
SCRA 41 (2007)).

There can be no quibbling that, during the term 2004-
2007, and with the enforcement of the decision of the
election protest in his favor, Abundo assumed the
mayoralty post only on May 9, 2006 and served the term
until June 30, 2007 or for a period of a little over one year
and one month. Consequently, unlike Mayor Ong in Ong
and Mayor Morales in Rivera, it cannot be said that Mayor
Abundo was able to serve fully the entire 2004-2007 term
to which he was otherwise entitled. [Abundo v.
Commission on Elections - G.R. No. 201716, January 8,
2013, En Banc, Velasco]

Laceda v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 182867, November 25,
2008 – punong barangay of municipality of Sorsogon for
1st two terms. By the time he was elected for his 3
the municipality had been merged with another
municipality to form the City of Sorsogon. Territorial
jurisdiction and inhabitants the same. Latasa v.
COMELEC affirmed. Disqualified for a fourth term.

A winner who dislodges in a recall election an incumbent
elective local official merely served the balance of the
latter’s term of office; it is not a full three-year term. It also
goes without saying that an incumbent elective local
official against whom a recall election is initiated and who
nevertheless wins in a recall election must be viewed as
being a continuing term of office and not as a break in
reckoning three consecutive terms. - A recall election term
then, not being a full three-year term, is not to be counted
or used as a basis for disqualification whether it is held
prior or subsequent to the nine-year full three-term limit.
[Mendoza v. COMELEC – NOT MENTIONED in Abundo v.
Commission on Elections - G.R. No. 201716, January 8,



People v. Benipayo - G.R. No. 154473, April 24, 2009 – a
COMELEC Commissioner may not be charged with libel
without first being impeached. [The RTC, not the
Ombudsman, or the Sandiganbayan, has jurisdiction over
libel charges leveled against public officers.]

BETRAYAL OF PUBLIC TRUST - "acts which are just
short of being criminal but constitute gross faithlessness
against public trust, tyrannical abuse of power,
inexcusable negligence of duty, favoritism, and gross
exercise of discretionary powers." In other words, acts that
should constitute betrayal of public trust as to warrant
removal from office may be less than criminal but must be
attended by bad faith and of such gravity and seriousness
as the other grounds for impeachment. [Gonzales v. Office
of the President - G.R. No. 196231, September 4, 2012,
En Banc, Perlas-Bernabe]

Hence, where betrayal of public trust, for purposes of
impeachment, was not intended to cover all kinds of
official wrongdoing and plain errors of judgment, this
should remain true even for purposes of removing a
Deputy Ombudsman and Special Prosecutor from office.
Hence, the fact that the grounds for impeachment have
been made statutory grounds for the removal by the
President of a Deputy Ombudsman and Special
Prosecutor cannot diminish the seriousness of their nature
nor the acuity of their scope. Betrayal of public trust could
not suddenly "overreach" to cover acts that are not vicious
or malevolent on the same level as the other grounds for
impeachment. [Gonzales v. Office of the President - G.R.
No. 196231, September 4, 2012, En Banc, Perlas-
The House of Representatives shall have the exclusive
power to initiate all cases of impeachment.

Indubitably, an impeachment is not a judicial proceeding,
but rather a political exercise. [Gutierrez v. The House of
Representatives - G.R. No. 193459, March 8, 2011]

Francisco v. HR - G.R. No. 160261 November 10, 2003 -
“…initiation takes place by the act of filing of the
impeachment complaint AND referral to the House of
Committee on Justice…”

Referring the complaint to the proper committee ignites the
impeachment proceeding. With a simultaneous referral of
multiple complaints filed, more than one lighted
matchsticks [sic] light the candle at the same time. What
is important is that there should only be ONE CANDLE
that is kindled in a year, such that once the candle starts
burning, subsequent matchsticks can no longer rekindle
the candle. [Gutierrez v. The House of Representatives -
G.R. No. 193459, February 15, 2011]

No impeachment proceedings shall be initiated against the
same official more than once within a period of one year.

Contrary to petitioner’s emphasis on impeachment
complaint, what the Constitution mentions is impeachment
“proceedings.” Suffice it to state that the Constitution
allows the indictment for multiple impeachment offenses,
with each charge representing an article of impeachment,
assembled in one set known as the “Articles of
Impeachment.” It, therefore, follows that an impeachment
complaint need not allege only one impeachable offense.
[Gutierrez v. The House of Representatives - G.R. No.
193459, February 15, 2011]

A person no longer in office may still be impeached –
penalty: disqualification from public office.

Promulgation must thus be used in the context in which it
is generally understood—that is, to make known. It is
within the discretion of Congress to determine on how to
promulgate its Impeachment Rules, in much the same way
that the Judiciary is permitted to determine that to
promulgate a decision means to deliver the decision to the
clerk of court for filing and publication. It is not for this
Court to tell a co-equal branch of government how to
promulgate when the Constitution itself has not prescribed
a specific method of promulgation [Gutierrez v. The House
of Representatives - G.R. No. 193459, February 15, 2011]
To reiterate, when the Constitution uses the word
“promulgate,” it does not necessarily mean to publish in
the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general
circulation. Promulgation, as used in Section 3(8), Article
XI of the Constitution, suitably takes the meaning of “to
make known” as it should be generally understood.
[Gutierrez v. The House of Representatives - G.R. No.
193459, March 8, 2011]

Sandiganbayan -Original Jurisdiction – [a] violations of
Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, where the accused
are officials occupying the following positions, whether in a
permanent, acting or interim capacity – Official of the
Executive Branch with the position of regional director or
higher or with a salary grade level 27, including provincial
governors, vice-governors, board members, provincial
treasurers, assessors, engineers and other provincial
department heads/city mayors, vice-mayors, city
councilors, city treasurers, assessors, engineers and other
city department heads/officials of the diplomatic service
from consuls or higher/PA-PAF colonels or PN captains
and all officers of higher rank/officers of the PNP while
occupying the position of provincial director and those
holding the rank of senior superintendent or higher/city or
provincial prosecutors and their assistants and officials
and prosecutors in the Office of the Ombudsman and
Special Prosecutor/presidents, directors, trustees or
managers of GOCCs, state universities or educational
institutions or foundations / Members of Congress and
officials with SG27 and up / Members of the judiciary
without prejudice to the Constitution / Chairmen and
Members of the Constitutional Commissions without
prejudice to the Constitution / All other national and local
officials with SG27 or higher. / [b] other offenses or
felonies whether simple or complexed with other crimes
committed by public officials and employees mentioned
above in relation to their office [where the penalty
prescribed by law is higher than prision correccional or
imprisonment for six years or a fine of P6,000.00
[Madarang v. Sandiganbayan] / [c] civil and criminal cases
filed pursuant to and in connection with EO Nos. 1, 2, 14
and 14-A issued in 1986 – sequestration cases.

Original Jurisdiction over petitions for writs of mandamus,
prohibition, certiorari, habeas corpus, injunction and other
ancillary writs and processes in aid of its appellate
jurisdiction, provided that jurisdiction over these petitions
shall not be exclusive of the SC.

Appellate Jurisdiction over final judgments, resolutions or
orders of regional trial courts whether in the exercise of
their own original jurisdiction or their appellate jurisdiction.

Caballero v. Sandiganbayan - G.R. Nos. 137355-58,
September 25, 2007 - violations of RA No. 3019 by a
municipal mayor come within the exclusive original
jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan because under RA No.
6758, otherwise known as the Compensation and Position
Classification Act of 1989, municipal mayors are local
officials classified as Grade “27.” [Binay v.
Sandiganbayan] - The Sandiganbayan has jurisdiction
over a member of the Sangguniang Panlungsod whose
salary grade is below 27 and charged with violation of The
Auditing Code of the Philippines. [People v.
Sandiganbayan - G.R. No. 169004, September 15, 2010]

Carandang was correct in insisting that being a private
individual he was not subject to the administrative
authority of the Ombudsman and to the criminal
jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan because Radio
Philippines Network, Inc. (RPN), was not a government-
owned or -controlled corporation, although sequestered by
the PCGG; hence, he was not a public official or
employee. [Azarcon v. Sandiganbayan, G.R. No. 116033,
February 26, 1997, 268 SCRA 747] [Carandang v.
Desierto - G.R. No. 148076, January 11, 2011]

People v. Sandiganbayan – Sandiganbayan has
jurisdiction over presidents, directors, trustees or
managers of all GOCCs, whether or not with original

Orap v. Sandiganbayan – judges may be prosecuted
before the Sandiganbayan even if they come under the
administrative supervision of the SC. Administrative
charges shall defer filing of criminal charges based on the
same offense by the Special Prosecutor before the
Sandiganbayan. BUT - Balsamo v. Suan [citing Rallos v.
Gako and Calleja v. Santelices] – an administrative case
against a judge must be held in abeyance if the basis for
the administrative case is a case pending review by or
appeal before the CA.

While it is true that the interlocutory order issued by the
RTC is reviewable by certiorari, the same was incorrectly
filed with the CA. Magno should have filed the petition for
certiorari with the Sandiganbayan, which has exclusive
appellate jurisdiction over the RTC since the accused are
public officials charged of committing crimes in their
capacity as Investigators of the National Bureau of
Investigation. [Magno v. People - G.R. No. 171542, April 6,

[Ombudsman v. Racho - G.R. No. 185685, January 31,

The primary jurisdiction of the Ombudsman to investigate
any act or omission of a public officer or employee applies
only in cases cognizable by the Sandiganbayan. In cases
cognizable by regular courts, the Ombudsman has
concurrent jurisdiction with other investigative agencies of
government. [Office of the Ombudsman v. Rodriguez -
G.R. No. 172700, July 23, 2010]

Estandarte v. People – G.R. Nos. 156851-55, February 18,
2008 - when the City Prosecutor is deputized by the Office
of the Ombudsman, he comes under the “supervision and
control” of the Ombudsman which means that he is subject
to the power of the Ombudsman to direct, review, approve,
reverse or modify the prosecutor’s decision.

Aware of the constitutional imperative of shielding the
Office of the Ombudsman from political influences and the
discretionary acts of the executive, Congress laid down
two restrictions on the President's exercise of such power
of removal over a Deputy Ombudsman, namely: (1) that
the removal of the Deputy Ombudsman must be for any of
the grounds provided for the removal of the Ombudsman
and (2) that there must be observance of due process. xxx
Thus, it cannot be rightly said that giving the President the
power to remove a Deputy Ombudsman, or a Special
Prosecutor for that matter, would diminish or compromise
the constitutional independence of the Office of the
Ombudsman. It is, precisely, a measure of protection of
the independence of the Ombudsman's Deputies and
Special Prosecutor in the discharge of their duties that
their removal can only be had on grounds provided by law.
[Gonzales v. Office of the President - G.R. No. 196231,
September 4, 2012, En Banc, Perlas-Bernabe]

Unquestionably, the Ombudsman is possessed of
jurisdiction to discipline his own people and mete out
administrative sanctions upon them, including the extreme
penalty of dismissal from the service. However, it is
equally without question that the President has concurrent
authority with respect to removal from office of the Deputy
Ombudsman and Special Prosecutor, albeit under
specified conditions. Considering the principles attending
concurrence of jurisdiction where the Office of the
President was the first to initiate a case against petitioner
Gonzales, prudence should have prompted the
Ombudsman to desist from proceeding separately against
petitioner through its Internal Affairs Board, and to defer
instead to the President's assumption of authority,
especially when the administrative charge involved
"demanding and soliciting a sum of money" which
constitutes either graft and corruption or bribery, both of
which are grounds reserved for the President's exercise of
his authority to remove a Deputy Ombudsman. [Gonzales
v. Office of the President - G.R. No. 196231, September 4,
2012, En Banc, Perlas-Bernabe]

Uy v. Sandiganbayan G.R .No. 105965-70, March 20,
2001 – The Ombudsman can conduct preliminary
investigations and prosecute criminal cases involving
public officers and employees; not only those within the
jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan, but those falling within
the jurisdiction of regular courts as well.

The Ombudsman need not conduct a preliminary
investigation upon receipt of a complaint. Indeed, we have
said in Knecht v. Desierto [353 Phil. 494 (1998)] and later
in Mamburao, Inc. v. Office of the Ombudsman [398 Phil.
762 (2000)] and Karaan v. Office of the Ombudsman [476
Phil. 536 (2004)] that should investigating officers find a
complaint utterly devoid of merit, they may recommend its
outright dismissal. Moreover, it is also within their
discretion to determine whether or not
preliminary investigation should be conducted. The Court
has undoubtedly acknowledged the powers of the
Ombudsman to dismiss a complaint outright without a
preliminary investigation in The Presidential Ad Hoc Fact-
Finding Committee on Behest Loans v. Desierto. [437 Phil.
702 (2002)] We reiterate that the Ombudsman has full
discretion to determine whether a criminal case should be
filed, including whether a preliminary investigation is
warranted. The Court therefore gives due deference to the
Ombudsman’s decision to no longer conduct a preliminary
investigation in this case on the criminal charges levelled
against respondent Velasco. [Judge Angeles v. Gutierrez
- G.R. Nos. 189161 & 189173, March 21, 2012, Second
Division, Sereno]

PRIVATE TRANSACTIONS - the Ombudsman can
investigate on its own or on complaint by any person any
act or omission of any public official or employee when
such act or omission appears to be illegal, unjust, or
improper It does not require that the act or omission be
related to or be connected with or arise from the
performance of official duty. [See Santos v. Rasalan,
citing Vasquez v. Hobilla-Alinio, G.R. Nos. 118813-14,
April 8, 1997, 271 SCRA 67, 74]

The Court has repeatedly ruled that the power of the
Ombudsman to investigate offenses involving public
officials is not exclusive, but is concurrent with other
similarly authorized agencies of the government in relation
to the offense charged. [Honasan v. Panel of Investigating
Prosecutors of the Department of Justice, G.R. No.
159747, April 13, 2004, 427 SCRA 46] Therefore, with
respect to petitioners, the Ombudsman may share its
authority to conduct an investigation concerning
administrative charges against them with other agencies
[like the Presidential Anti-Graft Commission or the Civil
Service Commission]. [Lacson v. Executive Secretary -
G.R. Nos. 165399 and 165475, May 30, 2011]

Office of the Ombudsman v. Medrano - G.R. No. 177580,
October 17, 2008 - the administrative disciplinary authority
of the Ombudsman over a public school teacher is not an
exclusive power but is concurrent with the proper
committee of the DepEd, which has concurrent jurisdiction
under the provisions of the Magna Carta for Public School

Palma v. Fortich – there are 2 kinds of administrative
cases against municipal officers – [1] those related to the
discharge of the functions of their office [neglect of duty,
oppression, corruption or other forms of maladministration
of office] and [2] those not so connected with said
functions. Under the 2
category, when the crime
involving moral turpitude is not linked with the performance
of official duties, conviction by final judgment is required as
a condition precedent to administrative action.

Office of the Ombudsman v. de Sahagun – G.R. No.
167982, August 13, 2008347 - administrative offenses do
not prescribe.

Melchor v. Gironella - the period [of one year] stated in
Section 20(5) of R.A. No. 6770 does not refer to the
prescription of the offense but to the discretion given to the
Ombudsman on whether it would investigate a particular
administrative offense. The use of the word “may” in the
provision is construed as permissive and operating to
confer discretion. It is, therefore, discretionary upon the
Ombudsman whether or not to conduct an investigation of
a complaint even if it was filed after one year from the
occurrence of the act or omission complained of.

The principle of res judicata would not preclude the
Ombudsman from ordering another review of a complaint,
for he or she may revoke, repeal or abrogate the acts or
previous rulings of a predecessor in office. [Alvarez v.
People - G.R. No. 192591, June 29, 2011]

The doctrine in Montemayor v. Bundalian [453 Phil. 158,
169 (2003)] that res judicata applies only to judicial or
quasi-judicial proceedings, and not to the exercise of
administrative powers, has been abandoned in
subsequent cases [Borlongan v. Buenaventura; Executive
Judge Basilia v. Judge Becamon, 487 Phil. 490 (2004);
Atty. De Vera v. Judge Layague, 395 Phil. 253 (2000)]
which have since applied the principle of res judicata to
administrative cases.

The decision of the Ombudsman is immediately executory
pending appeal and may not be stayed by the filing of an
appeal or the issuance of an injunctive writ. The
aforementioned Section 7 is also clear in providing that in
case the penalty is removal and the respondent wins his
appeal, he shall be considered as having been under
preventive suspension and shall be paid the salary and
such other emoluments that he did not receive by reason
of the removal. The CA’s issuance of a preliminary
mandatory injunction, staying the penalty of dismissal
imposed by the Ombudsman in this administrative case, is
thus an encroachment on the rule-making powers of the
Ombudsman under Section 13 (8), Article XI of the
Constitution, and Sections 18 and 27 of R.A. No. 6770,
which grants the Office of the Ombudsman the authority to
promulgate its own rules of procedure. The issuance of an
injunctive writ renders nugatory the provisions of Section
7, Rule III of the Rules of Procedure of the Office of the
Ombudsman. [Facura v. Court of Appeals - G.R. No.
166495, February 16, 2011]

In Soriano v. Cabais, G.R. No. 157175, June 21, 2007,
525 SCRA 261, 265 this Court had the occasion to discuss
the appropriate recourse to take from decisions or
resolutions of the Ombudsman, and said - In Fabian, we
ruled that appeals from the decisions of the Office of the
Ombudsman in administrative disciplinary cases should be
taken to the Court of Appeals by way of a petition for
review under Rule 43 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure,
as amended. Here, petitioner’s complaint is criminal in
nature. In Estrada v. Desierto, we held that the remedy of
aggrieved parties from resolutions of the Office of the
Ombudsman finding probable cause in criminal cases or
non-administrative cases, when tainted with grave abuse
of discretion, is to file an original action for certiorari with
this Court, not with the Court of Appeals. In cases when
the aggrieved party is questioning the Office of the
Ombudsman’s finding of lack of probable cause, as in this
case, there is likewise the remedy of certiorari under Rule
65 to be filed with this Court and not with the Court of
Appeals. [Belongilot v. Cua - G.R. No. 160933, November
24, 2010]

The Ombudsman has the constitutional power to directly
remove from government service an erring public official
other than a member of Congress and the Judiciary.
[Republic of the Philippines v. Bajao – G.R. No. 160596,
March 20, 2009]

Section 15. The right of the State to recover properties
unlawfully acquired by public officials or employees, from
them or from their nominees or transferees, shall not be
barred by prescription, laches, or estoppel.


Republic of the Philippines v. Imperial Credit Corporation -
G.R. No. 173088, June 25, 2008 - under the Regalian
doctrine, the State is the source of any asserted right to
ownership of land. This is premised on the basic doctrine
that all lands not otherwise appearing to be clearly within
private ownership are presumed to belong to the State.
Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural
Resources v. Yap - G.R. No. 167707, October 8, 2008 -
lands of the public domain are classified into agricultural,
forest or timber [1935 Constitution] and national parks
[1987 Constitution]. Only agricultural lands may be
alienated, but a prior positive act of the Government,
declaring land as alienable and disposable, by way of
proclamation, executive order, administrative action,
report, statute, or certification, is required.

Roman Catholic Administrator of Davao Diocese, Inc. v.
Land Registration Commission – a religious corporation
controlled by non-Filipinos cannot acquire and own lands
even for religious purposes.

Republic of the Philippines v. T.A.N. Properties - G.R. No.
154953, June 26, 2008 The 1987 Constitution absolutely
prohibits private corporations from acquiring any kind of
alienable land of the public domain. The length of
possession of the land by the corporation cannot be
tacked on to complete the statutory 30 years acquisitive
prescriptive period. Only an individual can avail of such
acquisitive prescription since both the 1973 and 1987
Constitutions prohibit corporations from acquiring lands of
the public domain.

Land Bank of the Philippines v. Republic of the Philippines
- G.R. No. 150824, February 4, 2008, Reyes - FOREST
lands are outside the commerce of man and unsusceptible
of private appropriation in any form. A certificate of title is
void when it covers property of public domain classified as
forest, timber or mineral lands.
Borromeo v. Descallar - G.R. No. 159310, February 24,
2009 - The transfer of land from Agro-Macro Development
Corporation to Jambrich, who is an Austrian, would have
been declared invalid if challenged, had not Jambrich
conveyed the properties to petitioner who is a Filipino
citizen. Since the ban on aliens is intended to preserve
the nation’s land for future generations of Filipinos, that
aim is achieved by making lawful the acquisition of real
estate by aliens who became Filipino citizens by
naturalization or those transfers made by aliens to Filipino
citizens. As the property in dispute is already in the hands
of a qualified person, a Filipino citizen, there would be no
more public policy to be protected. The objective of the
constitutional provision to keep our lands in Filipino hands
has been achieved. [United Church Board for World

Ho v. Gui - G.R. No. 130115, July 16, 2008 - in Muller v.
Muller, [500 SCRA 65] wherein the respondent, a German
national, was seeking reimbursement of funds claimed by
him to be given in trust to his petitioner wife, a Philippine
citizen, for the purchase of a property in Antipolo, the
Court, in rejecting the claim, ruled that: Respondent was
aware of the constitutional prohibition and expressly
admitted his knowledge thereof to this Court. He declared
that he had the Antipolo property titled in the name of the
petitioner because of the said prohibition. His attempt at
subsequently asserting or claiming a right on the said
property cannot be sustained. The Court of Appeals erred
in holding that an implied trust was created and resulted
by operation of law in view of petitioner's marriage to
respondent. Save for the exception provided in cases of
hereditary succession, respondent's disqualification from
owning lands in the Philippines is absolute. Not even an
ownership in trust is allowed. Besides, where the purchase
is made in violation of an existing statute and in evasion of
its express provision, no trust can result in favor of the
party who is guilty of the fraud. To hold otherwise would
allow circumvention of the constitutional prohibition.
Hulst v. PR Builders, Inc. - G.R. No. 156364, September
25, 2008 - Under Republic Act (R.A.) No. 4726, otherwise
known as the Condominium Act, foreign nationals can own
Philippine real estate through the purchase of
condominium units or townhouses constituted under the
Condominium principle with Condominium Certificates of
Title. Considering that the rights and liabilities of the
parties under the Contract to Sell is covered by the
Condominium Act wherein petitioner as unit owner was
simply a member of the Condominium Corporation and the
land remained owned by respondent, then the
constitutional proscription against aliens owning real
property does not apply to the present case.

The term “capital” in Section 11, Article XII of the
Constitution refers only to shares of stock entitled to vote
in the election of directors, and thus in the present case
only to common shares, and not to the total outstanding
capital stock comprising both common and non-voting
preferred shares. [Gamboa v. Finance Secretary - G.R.
No. 176579, June 28, 2011]

Since the constitutional requirement of at least 60 percent
Filipino ownership applies not only to voting control of the
corporation but also to the beneficial ownership of the
corporation, it is therefore imperative that such
requirement apply uniformly and across the board to all
classes of shares, regardless of nomenclature and
category, comprising the capital of a corporation. xxx The
Constitution expressly declares as State policy the
development of an economy "effectively controlled" by
Filipinos. Consistent with such State policy, the
Constitution explicitly reserves the ownership and
operation of public utilities to Philippine nationals, who are
defined in the Foreign Investments Act of 1991 as Filipino
citizens, or corporations or associations at least 60
percent of whose capital with voting rights belongs to
Filipinos. The FIA’s implementing rules explain that "[f]or
stocks to be deemed owned and held by Philippine
citizens or Philippine nationals, mere legal title is not
enough to meet the required Filipino equity. Full beneficial
ownership of the stocks, coupled with appropriate voting
rights is essential." In effect, the FIA clarifies, reiterates
and confirms the interpretation that the term "capital" in
Section 11, Article XII of the 1987 Constitution refers to
shares with voting rights, as well as with full beneficial
ownership. This is precisely because the right to vote in
the election of directors, coupled with full beneficial
ownership of stocks, translates to effective control of a
corporation. xxx The 1935, 1973 and 1987 Constitutions
have the same 60 percent Filipino ownership and control
requirement for public utilities like PLDT. Any deviation
from this requirement necessitates an amendment to the
Constitution as exemplified by the Parity Amendment. This
Court has no power to amend the Constitution for its
power and duty is only to faithfully apply and interpret the
Constitution. [Heirs of Wilson Gamboa v. Finance
Secretary - G.R. No. 176579, October 9, 2012]

Section 14. xxx The practice of all professions in the
Philippines shall be limited to Filipino citizens, save in
cases prescribed by law.


Serrano v. Gallant Maritime Services, Inc. - G.R. No.
167614, March 24, 2009 – the provisions of Article XIII
are not judicially enforceable, particularly Section 3
thereof. Article XIII, by itself, without the application of the
equal protection clause, has no life or force of its own.

The wording of the provision is unequivocal––the farmers
and regular farmworkers have a right TO OWN DIRECTLY
law allows two (2) modes of land distribution—direct and
indirect ownership. Direct transfer to individual farmers is
the most commonly used method by DAR and widely
accepted. Indirect transfer through collective ownership of
the agricultural land is the alternative to direct ownership
of agricultural land by individual farmers. The aforequoted
Sec. 4 EXPRESSLY authorizes collective ownership by
farmers. No language can be found in the 1987
Constitution that disqualifies or prohibits corporations or
cooperatives of farmers from being the legal entity through
which collective ownership can be exercised. xxx.
Clearly, workers’ cooperatives or associations under Sec.
29 of RA 6657 and corporations or associations under the
succeeding Sec. 31, as differentiated from individual
farmers, are authorized vehicles for the collective
ownership of agricultural land. Cooperatives can be
registered with the Cooperative Development Authority
and acquire legal personality of their own, while
corporations are juridical persons under the Corporation
Code. Thus, Sec. 31 is constitutional as it simply
implements Sec. 4 of Art. XIII of the Constitution that land
can be owned COLLECTIVELY by farmers. xxx.
[Hacienda Luisita Incorporated v. Luisita Industrial Park
Corporation – GR No. 171101, July 5, 2011,]

The State shall promote the principle of shared
responsibility between workers and employers and the
preferential use of voluntary modes in settling disputes,
including conciliation, and shall enforce their mutual
compliance therewith to foster industrial peace. [The
University of the Immaculate Conception v. NLRC - G.R.
No. 181146, January 26, 2011]

Section 10. Urban or rural poor dwellers shall not be
evicted nor their dwelling demolished, except in
accordance with law and in a just and humane manner. No
resettlement of urban or rural dwellers shall be undertaken
without adequate consultation with them and the
communities where they are to be relocated.

Anak Mindanao Party-List Group v. The Executive
Secretary - G.R. No. 166052, August 29, 2007 - Penalty
for failure on the part of the government to consult could
only be reflected in the ballot box and would not nullify
government action.


Section 3. - All educational institutions shall include the
study of the Constitution as part of the curricula. They shall
inculcate patriotism and nationalism, foster love of
humanity, respect for human rights, appreciation of the
role of national heroes in the historical development of the
country, teach the rights and duties of citizenship,
strengthen ethical and spiritual values, develop moral
character and personal discipline, encourage critical and
creative thinking, broaden scientific and technological
knowledge, and promote vocational efficiency. At the
option expressed in writing by the parents or guardians,
religion shall be allowed to be taught to their children or
wards in public elementary and high schools within the
regular class hours by instructors designated or approved
by the religious authorities of the religion to which the
children or wards belong, without additional cost to the

Educational institutions, other than those established by
religious groups and mission boards, shall be owned
solely by citizens of the Philippines or corporations or
associations at least sixty per centum of the capital of
which is owned by such citizens. The Congress may,
however, require increased Filipino equity participation in
all educational institutions. The control and administration
of educational institutions shall be vested in citizens of the
Philippines. No educational institution shall be established
exclusively for aliens and no group of aliens shall comprise
more than one-third of the enrollment in any school. The
provisions of this sub section shall not apply to schools
established for foreign diplomatic personnel and their
dependents and, unless otherwise provided by law, for
other foreign temporary residents. All revenues and
assets of non-stock, non-profit educational institutions
used actually, directly, and exclusively for educational
purposes shall be exempt from taxes and duties. Upon the
dissolution or cessation of the corporate existence of such
institutions, their assets shall be disposed of in the manner
provided by law. Proprietary educational institutions,
including those cooperatively owned, may likewise be
entitled to such exemptions, subject to the limitations
provided by law, including restrictions on dividends and
provisions for reinvestment. Subject to conditions
prescribed by law, all grants, endowments, donations, or
contributions used actually, directly, and exclusively for
educational purposes shall be exempt from tax.

Institutional academic freedom - consists of four essential
freedoms to determine for itself on academic grounds: (1)
who may teach; (2) what may be taught; (3) how it shall be
taught; and (4) who may be admitted to study. Note that
these four essential freedoms are given to the university
as an institution, not to the professors or to the
researchers in that institution. [Justice Felix Frankfurter]
Camacho vs. Corresis - G.R. No. 134372., August 22,
2002; 387 SCRA 628; 636-637 -"Academic freedom is
two-tiered — that of the academic institution and the

Civil Service Commission v. Sojor - G.R. No. 168766, May
22, 2008 - While a school’s academic freedom entitles it
to determine “who may teach,” said academic freedom
may not be invoked because the administrative charges
against the respondent, i.e., nepotism, dishonesty,
falsification of official documents, grave misconduct, and
conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service, are
classified as grave offenses under civil service rules,
punishable with suspension or even dismissal. Although
Section 4 of R.A. No. 8292 grants to the board [of the
school] the power to remove school faculty members,
administrative officials, and employees for cause, this
power is not exclusive in the matter of disciplining and
removing its employees and officials. Being a non-career
civil servant does not remove respondent from the ambit of
the CSC. Career or non-career, a civil service official or
employee, is within the jurisdiction of the CSC.

Every citizen has a right to select a profession or course of
study, subject to fair, reasonable, and equitable admission
and academic requirements.

Section 7. For purposes of communication and instruction,
the official languages of the Philippines are Filipino and,
until otherwise provided by law, English.


Silverio v. Republic - G.R. No. 174689, October 22, 2007,
Corona - sex reassignment – In our system of
government, it is for the legislature, should it choose to do
so, to determine what guidelines should govern the
recognition of the effects of sex reassignment. The need
for legislative guidelines becomes particularly important in
this case where the claims asserted are statute-based. It
might be theoretically possible for this Court to write a
protocol on when a person may be recognized as having
successfully changed his sex. However, this Court has no
authority to fashion a law on that matter, or on anything
else. The Court cannot enact a law where no law exists. It
can only apply or interpret the written word of its co-equal
branch of government, Congress.

Section 3. The State shall defend [1] The right of spouses
to found a family in accordance with their religious
convictions and the demands of responsible parenthood;
[2] The right of children to assistance, including proper
care and nutrition, and special protection from all forms of
neglect, abuse, cruelty, exploitation and other conditions
prejudicial to their development.


The Philippine flag may be changed only by constitutional

The national anthem may be changed by law, subject to
ratification in a referendum.

foreign states insofar as they are sought to be sued in the
courts of the local state. [Syquia v. Almeda Lopez]

There are two conflicting concepts of sovereign immunity,
each widely held and firmly established. According to the
classical or absolute theory, a sovereign cannot, without
its consent, be made a respondent in the courts of another
sovereign. According to the newer or restrictive theory, the
immunity of the sovereign is recognized only with regard to
public acts or acts jure imperii of a state, but not with
regard to private acts or acts jure gestionis. (Emphasis
supplied; citations omitted.) xxx The restrictive theory
came about because of the entry of sovereign states into
purely commercial activities remotely connected with the
discharge of governmental functions. This is particularly
true with respect to the Communist states which took
control of nationalized business activities and international
trading. [Holy See v. Rosario - G.R. No. 101949, 1
December 1994, 238 SCRA 524, 535, cited in China
National Machinery & Equipment Corporation v. Sta. Maria
- G.R. No. 185572, February 7, 2012, En Banc, Sereno]

Sanders v. Veridiano – suit for damages for defamatory
remarks – statements were made by petitioners as officers
of the US Government – considered suit against the state.

IF A SUIT ASKS FOR affirmative relief on the part of the
State, like the passage of a special appropriations law,
then it is against it, and the State may invoke its immunity.
Otherwise, it is only a suit against its officers, which can
act on the relief prayed for in the suit without further State

Garcia v. Chief of Staff – claim for damages for injuries
was considered a suit against the State, since the latter
would need to appropriate funds to satisfy the claim. - Ruiz
v. Cabahug – claim for payment of architectural fees, for
which appropriations had already been made was
considered a suit against the Secretary of National
defense alone, and did not involve the State. - Santiago v.
Republic – suit purely for the revocation of a donation on
the ground of the failure of the Government to comply with
its obligations is not a suit against the State.

If a government agency is incorporated, the test of its
suability is found in its charter. The simple rule is that it is
suable if its charter says so, and this is true regardless of
the functions it is performing. Municipal corporations, for
example, like provinces and cities, are agencies of the
State when they are engaged in governmental functions
and therefore should enjoy the sovereign immunity from
suit. Nevertheless, they are subject to suit even in the
performance of such functions because their charter
provides that they can sue and be sued. If it is not
incorporated, it is necessary to determine the nature of the
functions in which the agency is engaged, so as to hold it
suable if they are proprietary and not suable if they are
governmental. The test in every case is the nature of the
primary functions being discharged.

MUNICIPAL CORPORATIONS may be suable because
their charters grant them the competence to sue and be
sued; BUT they are generally not liable for torts committed
by them in the discharge of governmental functions and
can be held answerable only if it can be shown that they
were acting in a proprietary capacity. [Palafox v. Province
of Ilocos Norte – where the injury occurred in connection
with the repair of streets; and Torio v. Fontanilla – where a
municipality was held liale for a tort committed in
connection with the celebration of a town fiesta, which was
considered a proprietary function. In this case, people
were injured when the stage for the fiesta collapsed.]

CONSENT – EXPRESS – General Law – CA 327, as
amended [claims against government to be filed with the
COA – Special Law – Merritt v. Government – special law
which allowed a person to sue the Philippine Government
for injuries he sustained when his motorcycle collided with
a government ambulance. [Government eventually found
not to be liable, because the ambulance was driven by a
regular driver, who was not considered to be a special
agent of the government.]

IMPLIED –when the State institutes a complaint BUT

Froilan v. Pan Oriental Shipping Co. – where the
government was held to have impliedly allowed itself to be
sued when it filed a complaint in intervention for the
purpose of asserting a claim for affirmative relief against
the plaintiff, to wit, the recovery of a vessel.

Lim v. Brownell – the State is not considered to have
impliedly waived its immunity when it files, as successor-
in-interest, a complaint in intervention to join the defendant
in invoking the doctrine of State immunity to secure the
dismissal of the action. Its purpose was merely to resist
the claim. Hence. No waiver of state immunity.

– implied waiver when the Government enters into a
contract, but, as ruled by the Supreme Court in USA v.
Ruiz, suability would follow only if the contract is entered
into by the state in its proprietary capacity. Governmental
contracts [such as for the repair of wharves] do not result
in implied waiver of the immunity of the State from suit.

Note USA v. Guinto, where the Supreme Court said that
the operation by the US Government of restaurants in
Camp John Hay in Baguio City, and of barber shops in
Clark Air Base not covered by the doctrine of state
Republic v. Villasor – when the State consents to be sued,
it does not thereby also consent to the execution of any
judgment against it. Such execution will require another

We further observe the doctrine of sovereign immunity
cannot be successfully invoked to defeat a valid claim for
compensation arising from the taking without just
compensation and without the proper expropriation
proceedings being first resorted to of the plaintiffs’
property. [Republic v. Sandiganbayan, G.R. No. 90478,
Nov. 2, 1991, 204 SCRA 212, 231; Ministerio v. Court of
First Instance of Cebu, No. L-31635, Aug. 31, 1971, 40
SCRA 464; Santiago v. Republic, No. L-48214, Dec. 19,
1978, 87 SCRA 294]

In National Electrification Administration v. Morales, the
order of garnishment against the NEA funds to implement
the RTC Decision was in issue, and we said that the COA
had exclusive jurisdiction to decide on the allowance or
disallowance of money claims arising from the
implementation of Republic Act No. 6758. We observed
therein that “the RTC acted prudently in halting
implementation of the writ of execution to allow the parties
recourse to the processes of the COA.” [See National
Electrification Administration v. Morales, G.R. No. 154200,
July 24, 2007, 528 SCRA 79, 81.] In fact, we even stated
there that “it is not for this Court to preempt the action of
the COA on the post-audit to be conducted by it per its
Indorsement dated March 23, 2000.” [Id., cited in Agra v.
Commission on Audit - G. R. No. 167807, December 6,
2011, En Banc, Leonardo-de Castro]

No member of the armed forces in the active service shall,
at any time, be appointed or designated in any capacity to
a civilian position in the Government, including
government-owned or controlled corporations or any of
their subsidiaries.

Laws on retirement of military officers shall not allow
extension of their service.

The tour of duty of the Chief of Staff of the armed forces
shall not exceed three years. However, in times of war or
other national emergency declared by the Congress, the
President may extend such tour of duty.

Section 6. The State shall establish and maintain one
police force, which shall be national in scope and civilian in
character, to be administered and controlled by a national
police commission. The authority of local executives over
the police units in their jurisdiction shall be provided by

Section 11. – [1] The ownership and management of mass
media shall be limited to citizens of the Philippines, or to
corporations, cooperatives or associations, wholly-owned
and managed by such citizens. [2] The Congress shall
regulate or prohibit monopolies in commercial mass media
when the public interest so requires. No combinations in
restraint of trade or unfair competition therein shall be

The advertising industry is impressed with public interest,
and shall be regulated by law for the protection of
consumers and the promotion of the general welfare. Only
Filipino citizens or corporations or associations at least
seventy per centum of the capital of which is owned by
such citizens shall be allowed to engage in the advertising
industry. The participation of foreign investors in the
governing body of entities in such industry shall be limited
to their proportionate share in the capital thereof, and all
the executive and managing officers of such entities must
be citizens of the Philippines.


Changes in the Constitution may be effected by a mere
modification in its interpretation. People v. Pomar –
declared a law granting maternity leave privileges as
unconstitutional, for violating the non-impairment clause.
Lambino v. COMELEC - G.R. No. 174153, October 25,
2006 - [1] Two essential elements must be present. First,
the people must author and thus sign the entire proposal.
No agent or representative can sign on their behalf.
Second, as an initiative upon a petition, the proposal must
be embodied in a petition. The full text of the proposed
amendments may be either written on the face of the
petition, or attached to it. If so attached, the petition must
state the fact of such attachment.

The framers of the Constitution intended, and wrote, a
clear distinction between “amendment” and “revision” of
the Constitution. A people’s initiative can only propose
amendments to the Constitution since the Constitution
itself limits initiatives to amendments.

Revision broadly implies a change that alters a
basic principle in the constitution, like altering the principle
of separation of powers or the system of checks-and-
balances. There is also revision if the change alters the
substantial entirety of the constitution, as when the change
affects substantial provisions of the constitution. On the
other hand, amendment broadly refers to a change that
adds, reduces, or deletes without altering the basic
principle involved. Revision generally affects several
provisions of the constitution, while amendment generally
affects only the specific provision being amended.

The quantitative test asks whether the proposed
change is “so extensive in its provisions as to change
directly the ‘substantial entirety’ of the constitution by the
deletion or alteration of numerous existing provisions.”
The court examines only the number of provisions affected
and does not consider the degree of the change.
The qualitative test inquires into the qualitative effects of
the proposed change in the constitution. The main inquiry
is whether the change will “accomplish such far reaching
changes in the nature of our basic governmental plan as to
amount to a revision.” Whether there is an alteration in the
structure of government is a proper subject of inquiry.
Thus, “a change in the nature of [the] basic governmental
plan” includes “change in its fundamental framework or the
fundamental powers of its Branches.” A change in the
nature of the basic governmental plan also includes
changes that “jeopardize the traditional form of
government and the system of check and balances.”

A change in the structure of government is a revision
of the Constitution. A shift from a Bicameral-Presidential
to a Unicameral-Parliamentary system, involving the
abolition of the Office of the President and the abolition of
one chamber of Congress, is beyond doubt a revision, not
a mere amendment.

Imbong v. COMELEC –Congress, acting as a constituent
assembly, may, with the concurrence of two thirds of all its
members, call a constitutional convention in general terms
only. Thereafter, the same Congress, acting this time as a
legislative body, may pass the necessary implementing
law providing for the details of the constitutional

Gonzales v. COMELEC [reiterated in Occena v.
COMELEC] – plebiscite may be scheduled on the same
day as the regular elections. Note JBL Reyes’ dissent –
there must be fair submission, intelligent consent or

Tolentino v. COMELEC – no piecemeal ratification. Whole
proposal must be submitted for approval, so the people
can have a proper “frame of reference.”