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G.R. No.

170093 April 29, 2009


JOSE PEPITO M. AMORES, M.D., Petitioner,
vs.
CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, BOARD O TR!STEES O T"E L!NG CENTER O T"E
P"ILIPPINES, #$ r%pr%$%&'%( )* "o&. MAN!EL M. DA+RIT, #&( ERNANDO A.
MELENDRES, M.D., Respondents.
D E C I S I O N
PERALTA, J.:
In this petition for review under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court, petitioner Jose Pepito M. !ores
"ss"ils the De#ision
$
of the Court of ppe"ls in C%&.R. SP No. '()*$, d"ted Septe!+er ,-, ,((4, "s
well "s its Resolution
,
d"ted Septe!+er ,(, ,((5 whi#h denied re#onsider"tion. .he "ss"iled De#ision
"ffir!ed the O#to+er $4, ,((- Resolution
-
of the Civil Servi#e Co!!ission whi#h, in turn, ordered
petitioner/s sep"r"tion fro! servi#e "s Deput0 Dire#tor for 1ospit"l Support Servi#es "t the 2un3
Center of the Philippines on "##ount of his l"#4 of the ne#ess"r0 #ivil servi#e eli3i+ilit0.
5ell est"+lished "re the f"#ts of the #"se.
Petitioner Jose Pepito M. !ores w"s the Deput0 Dire#tor for 1ospit"l Support Servi#es "t the 2un3
Center of the Philippines 62CP7. 1is #ivil servi#e #"reer +e3"n in $)', when he w"s initi"ll0 en3"3ed
"t the 2CP "s " resident ph0si#i"n.
4
In the #ourse of his servi#e, he h"d +een pro!oted to the position of
Medi#"l Spe#i"list,
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then to Dep"rt!ent M"n"3er,
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"nd fin"ll0 to Deput0 Dire#tor. Dr. C"li9to :"ldiv"r
w"s then the E9e#utive Dire#tor of the 2CP "nd when he retired fro! servi#e in $))), petitioner w"s
desi3n"ted "s offi#er%in%#h"r3e of the 2CP +0 the Dep"rt!ent of 1e"lth 6DO17 Se#ret"r0 l+erto
Ro!u"lde;, Jr.
*
Petitioner h"d t"4en #h"r3e of the 2CP in the interi! th"t the DO1 sele#tion +o"rd w"s in the pro#ess
of sele#tin3 " new e9e#utive dire#tor. In the !e"nti!e, Dr. <ern"ndo Melendres 6Melendres7, one of the
respondents in this #"se, w"s "ppointed +0 then President Joseph Estr"d" "s E9e#utive Dire#tor of the
2CP. Melendres w"s holdin3 the offi#e of the Deput0 Dire#tor for Medi#"l Support Servi#es +efore his
"ppoint!ent "s E9e#utive Dire#tor, "nd "lthou3h petitioner #l"i!s th"t he w"s not #h"llen3in3
Melendres/ ri3ht to the offi#e, he nevertheless +elieved th"t he hi!self w"s the ri3htful person to +e
"ppointed "s e9e#utive dire#tor in"s!u#h "s he h"d top%+illed the ev"lu"tion results of the DO1
Sele#tion =o"rd, with Melendres t"ilin3 +ehind in se#ond pl"#e.
'
It see!s th"t the #ontrovers0 st"rted when petitioner "nd the other do#tors "nd r"n4%"nd%file e!plo0ees
"t the 2CP dr"fted " !"nifesto
)
whi#h supposedl0 ventil"ted their #olle#tive dis!"0 "nd de!or"li;"tion
"t Melendres/ "ppoint!ent "nd le"dership, "nd "t so!e of his >un?ustified "nd @uestion"+le "#ts> "s
E9e#utive Dire#tor of the 2CP. In " nutshell, the s"id !"nifesto +oldl0 e9posed the "lle3ed "no!"lous
#ir#u!st"n#es surroundin3 Melendres/ "ppoint!entA the re"ssi3n!ent of so!e of the !e!+ers of the
2CP personnel whi#h "!ounted to de!otion in their r"n4 "nd st"tusA the "no!"lies in the pro#ure!ent
of propert0 "nd suppliesA his "+usive #ondu#t in pu+li#l0 "##usin3 so!e of the do#tors of h"vin3
#"used the fire th"t 3utted the #enter in M"0 $))'A in "##usin3 :"ldiv"r of h"vin3 entered into
"no!"lous #ontr"#ts "nd ne3oti"tions with the DP51 rel"tive to #ert"in pro?e#tsA "nd in pr"#ti#in3
f"voritis! "nd nepotis!. .he tenor of the !"nifesto even went "s f"r "s to +e deepl0 person"l "s it
li4ewise @uestioned Melendres/ fitness to "#t "s e9e#utive dire#tor on the 3round of his previous +rush
with su+st"n#e "+use "nd the f"#t th"t he #ould no lon3er 4eep his !"rri"3e fro! f"ilin3.
$(
.he seriousness of these "lle3"tions led the DO1 to #re"te " <"#t%findin3 Co!!ittee to #ondu#t "n
investi3"tion.
$$
=ut "t the pro#eedin3s +efore the s"id Co!!ittee, Melendres filed #h"r3es of
dishonest0 "nd dou+le #o!pens"tion "3"inst petitioner "lle3in3 th"t the l"tter h"d +een en3"3in3 in the
priv"te pr"#ti#e of !edi#ine within the 2CP/s pre!ises durin3 offi#i"l hours.
$,
t the #lose of the
investi3"tion, the <"#t%findin3 Co!!ittee issued " report de#l"rin3 Melendres 3uilt0 of the #h"r3es
"3"inst hi!.
$-
s for petitioner, the Co!!ittee "+solved hi! of the #h"r3e of re#eivin3 dou+le
#o!pens"tion, +ut nevertheless found hi! 3uilt0 of h"vin3 #o!!itted dishonest0 +0 en3"3in3 in the
priv"te pr"#ti#e of his profession durin3 the hours th"t he should +e en3"3in3 in pu+li# servi#e in
viol"tion of the Civil Servi#e 2"w.
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1avvphil.net
Petitioner w"s #"u3ht +0 surprise when, on u3ust ,*, ,((,, he re#eived " letter fro! the 2CP =o"rd
of .rustees infor!in3 hi! of his sep"r"tion fro! servi#e "s Deput0 Dire#tor effe#tive Septe!+er -(,
,((,.
$5
.o the s"id letter w"s "tt"#hed " #op0 of the =o"rd/s Resolution
$8
d"ted u3ust ,-, ,((,,
prin#ip"ll0 dire#tin3 petitioner/s ter!in"tion fro! servi#e "fter #onsult"tion with the C"reer E9e#utive
Servi#e =o"rd 6CES =o"rd7.
$*
Petitioner +rou3ht "n "ppe"l fro! the resolution to the Civil Servi#e
Co!!ission 6CSC7.
$'
Resolvin3 the "ppe"l, the CSC de#l"red th"t the 2CP =o"rd of .rustees h"d properl0 "nd v"lidl0
sep"r"ted petitioner fro! his post "s Deput0 Dire#tor. In its Resolution No. (-$(5(,
$)
the CSC de#lined
to p"ss upon the #h"r3e of dishonest0 on the 3round of pre%!"turit0 "s the issue h"d not 0et +een
fin"ll0 deter!ined in " proper pro#eedin3 "nd the =o"rd h"d not 0et in f"#t !"de " definite findin3 of
3uilt fro! whi#h petitioner !i3ht "s " !"tter of #ourse "ppe"l.
,(
1owever, it pointed out th"t
petitioner/s sep"r"tion fro! servi#e w"s "n#hored on his l"#4 of " CES eli3i+ilit0 whi#h is re@uired for
the position of deput0 dire#tor "nd, "s su#h, he en?o0ed no se#urit0 in his tenure.
,$
Petitioner lod3ed "n ppe"l
,,
with the Court of ppe"ls. 1owever, it w"s dis!issed "nd CSC
Resolution No. (-$(5( w"s "ffir!ed.
,-
.his present petition for review i!putes error to the Court of ppe"ls. <irst, in !issin3 the f"#t th"t
petitioner h"d +een denied due pro#ess when his sep"r"tion fro! offi#e w"s ordered on " 3round not
r"ised +efore the DO1 <"#t%findin3 Co!!ittee
,4
"nd, se#ond, in f"ilin3 to "ppre#i"te the f"#t th"t his
ri3hts to e@u"l prote#tion h"d li4ewise +een viol"ted in"s!u#h "s he w"s si!il"rl0 situ"ted with other
dep"rt!ent !"n"3ers in the 2CP who h"d no CES eli3i+ilit0 +ut who, however, h"d not +een sep"r"ted
fro! servi#e.
,5
1e theori;es th"t his ri3ht to se#urit0 of tenure h"d +een +re"#hed "nd th"t he w"s
entitled to re!"in "s deput0 dire#tor +e#"use his pro!otion to the s"id position supposedl0 issued +0
:"ldiv"r B whi#h w"s " re#o3nition of his #o!peten#e B w"s per!"nent in #h"r"#ter.
,8
.he 2CP, the CSC "nd the DO1, "ll represented +0 the Offi#e of the Soli#itor &ener"l, "nd Melendres,
"re one in "ssertin3 th"t there #"n +e no @uestion "s to the v"lidit0 of petitioner/s re!ov"l fro! offi#e
for the +"si# f"#t th"t he en?o0ed no se#urit0 of tenure on "##ount of his l"#4 of eli3i+ilit0. In his
Co!!ent
,*
on the petition, Melendres #"pit"li;es on the f"#t th"t the 2CP =o"rd of .rustees "rrived "t
the resolution to sep"r"te petitioner fro! servi#e upon #onsult"tion with the CES =o"rd "nd the CSCA
thus, #on#ludes Melendres, it #"n onl0 +e sur!ised th"t the #"use for the re!ov"l of petitioner fro!
offi#e is "#tu"ll0 his l"#4 of eli3i+ilit0 "nd not his #o!!ission of dishonest0. .he 2CP, for its p"rt, is
!ore to the point. It posits th"t petitioner/s sep"r"tion fro! offi#e did not result fro! "n "d!inistr"tive
dis#iplin"r0 "#tion, +ut r"ther fro! his f"ilure to @u"lif0 for the offi#e of Deput0 Dire#tor on "##ount of
l"#4 of eli3i+ilit0. <or their p"rt, the CSC "nd the DO1 #h"r"#teri;es petitioner "s " third%level
"ppointee who, "3"in, !ust +e in possession of the #orrespondin3 third%level eli3i+ilit0A +ut sin#e
petitioner h"s none, then he en?o0s no se#urit0 of tenure "nd !"0 thus +e re!oved "t " !o!ent/s noti#e
even without #"use.
.here is !erit in the "r3u!ents of respondents.
5h"t "t the outset wei3hs he"vil0 on petitioner/s #"se is the f"#t th"t the position of Deput0 Dire#tor
for 1ospit"l Support Servi#es "t the 2CP +elon3s to the #"reer e9e#utive servi#e "ppoint!ents to whi#h
+0 l"w re@uire th"t the "ppointees possess the #orrespondin3 CES eli3i+ilit0. Petitioner, however, does
not profess th"t "t "n0 ti!e he w"s holdin3 the s"id position he w"s "+le to "#@uire the re@uired
eli3i+ilit0 therefor +0 t"4in3 the CES e9"!in"tions "nd, su+se@uentl0, #onferred su#h eli3i+ilit0 upon
p"ssin3 the s"id e9"!in"tions. In f"#t, no sli3htest su33estion #"n +e derived fro! the re#ords of this
#"se whi#h would tend to show th"t in his entire tenure "t the 2CP he, "t "n0 3iven point, h"d +een
#onferred " CES eli3i+ilit0. It is thus "s !u#h surprisin3 "s it is "+surd wh0 petitioner, despite the
li!it"tions in his @u"lifi#"tions 4nown to hi!, would insist th"t he h"d served "s Deput0 Dire#tor "t the
2CP in " per!"nent #"p"#it0.
5e +e3in with the pre#ept, fir!l0 est"+lished +0 l"w "nd ?urispruden#e, th"t " per!"nent "ppoint!ent
in the #ivil servi#e is issued to " person who h"s !et the re@uire!ents of the position to whi#h the
"ppoint!ent is !"de in "##ord"n#e with l"w "nd the rules issued pursu"nt thereto.
,'
n "ppoint!ent is
per!"nent where the "ppointee !eets "ll the re@uire!ents for the position to whi#h he is +ein3
"ppointed, in#ludin3 the "ppropri"te eli3i+ilit0 pres#ri+ed, "nd it is te!por"r0 where the "ppointee
!eets "ll the re@uire!ents for the position e9#ept onl0 the "ppropri"te #ivil servi#e eli3i+ilit0.
,)
Cnder Se#tion *
-(
of the Civil Servi#e 2"w,
-$
positions in the #ivil servi#e "re #l"ssified into open
#"reer positions, #losed #"reer positions "nd positions in the #"reer servi#e. In turn, positions in the
#"reer servi#e "re tiered in three levels "s followsD
SEC.ION '. Classes of Positions in the Career Service. % 6$7 Cl"sses of positions in the #"reer servi#e
"ppoint!ent to whi#h re@uires e9"!in"tions whi#h sh"ll +e 3rouped into three !"?or levels "s followsD
6"7 .he first level sh"ll in#lude the #leri#"l, tr"des, #r"fts "nd #ustodi"l servi#e positions whi#h
involve non%profession"l or su+profession"l wor4 in " non%supervisor0 or supervisor0
#"p"#it0 re@uirin3 less th"n four 0e"rs of #olle3i"te studiesA
6+7 .he se#ond level sh"ll in#lude profession"l, te#hni#"l "nd s#ientifi# positions whi#h
involve profession"l, te#hni#"l or s#ientifi# wor4 in " non%supervisor0 or supervisor0 #"p"#it0
re@uirin3 "t le"st four 0e"rs of #olle3e wor4 up to the Division Chief levelA "nd
6#7 .he third level sh"ll #over positions in the C"reer E9e#utive Servi#e.
5ith p"rti#ul"r referen#e to positions in the #"reer e9e#utive servi#e 6CES7, the re@uisite #ivil servi#e
eli3i+ilit0 is "#@uired upon p"ssin3 the CES e9"!in"tions "d!inistered +0 the CES =o"rd "nd the
su+se@uent #onfer!ent of su#h eli3i+ilit0 upon p"ssin3 the e9"!in"tions.
-,
On#e " person "#@uires
eli3i+ilit0, he either e"rns the st"tus of " per!"nent "ppointee to the CES position to whi#h he h"s
previousl0 +een "ppointed, or he +e#o!es @u"lified for " per!"nent "ppoint!ent to th"t position
provided onl0 th"t he "lso possesses "ll the other @u"lifi#"tions for the position.
--
Eeril0, it is #le"r th"t
the possession of the re@uired CES eli3i+ilit0 is th"t whi#h will !"4e "n "ppoint!ent in the #"reer
e9e#utive servi#e " per!"nent one. Petitioner does not possess su#h eli3i+ilit0, however, it #"nnot +e
s"id th"t his "ppoint!ent to the position w"s per!"nent.
Indeed, the l"w per!its, on !"n0 o##"sions, the "ppoint!ent of non%CES eli3i+les to CES positions in
the 3overn!ent
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in the "+sen#e of "ppropri"te eli3i+les "nd when there is ne#essit0 in the interest of
pu+li# servi#e to fill v"#"n#ies in the 3overn!ent.
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=ut in "ll su#h #"ses, the "ppoint!ent is "t +est
!erel0 te!por"r0
-8
"s it is s"id to +e #onditioned on the su+se@uent o+tention of the re@uired CES
eli3i+ilit0.
-*
.his rule, "##ordin3 to De 2eon v. Court of ppe"ls,
-'
Di!"0u3" v. =enedi#to,
-)
C"rin3"l
v. Philippine Ch"rit0 Sweepst"4es Offi#e,
4(
"nd #h"#oso v. M"#"r"i3,
4$
is inv"ri"+le even thou3h the
3iven "ppoint!ent !"0 h"ve +een desi3n"ted "s per!"nent +0 the "ppointin3 "uthorit0.
5e now #o!e to "ddress the issue of whether petitioner/s sep"r"tion fro! servi#e viol"ted his ri3ht to
se#urit0 of tenure.
Se#urit0 of tenure in the #"reer e9e#utive servi#e, whi#h presupposes " per!"nent "ppoint!ent, t"4es
pl"#e upon p"ssin3 the CES e9"!in"tions "d!inistered +0 the CES =o"rd. It is th"t whi#h entitles the
e9"!inee to #onfer!ent of CES eli3i+ilit0 "nd the in#lusion of his n"!e in the roster of CES
eli3i+les.
4,
Cnder the rules "nd re3ul"tions pro!ul3"ted +0 the CES =o"rd, #onfer!ent of the CES
eli3i+ilit0 is done +0 the CES =o"rd throu3h " for!"l +o"rd resolution "fter "n ev"lu"tion h"s +een
done of the e9"!inee/s perfor!"n#e in the four st"3es of the CES eli3i+ilit0 e9"!in"tions. Cpon
#onfer!ent of CES eli3i+ilit0 "nd #o!pli"n#e with the other re@uire!ents pres#ri+ed +0 the =o"rd, "n
in#u!+ent of " CES position !"0 @u"lif0 for "ppoint!ent to " CES r"n4. ppoint!ent to " CES r"n4
is !"de +0 the President upon the =o"rd/s re#o!!end"tion. It is this pro#ess whi#h #o!pletes the
offi#i"l/s !e!+ership in the CES "nd #onfers on hi! se#urit0 of tenure in the CES.
4-
Petitioner does
not see! to h"ve 3one throu3h this definitive pro#ess.
t this ?un#ture, wh"t #o!es un!ist"4"+l0 #le"r is the f"#t th"t +e#"use petitioner l"#4ed the proper
CES eli3i+ilit0 "nd therefore h"d not held the su+?e#t offi#e in " per!"nent #"p"#it0, there #ould not
h"ve +een "n0 viol"tion of petitioner/s supposed ri3ht to se#urit0 of tenure in"s!u#h "s he h"d never
+een in possession of the s"id ri3ht "t le"st durin3 his tenure "s Deput0 Dire#tor for 1ospit"l Support
Servi#es. 1en#e, no #h"llen3e !"0 +e offered "3"inst his sep"r"tion fro! offi#e even if it +e for no
#"use "nd "t " !o!ent/s noti#e.
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Not even his own self%servin3 #l"i! th"t he w"s #o!petent to
#ontinue servin3 "s Deput0 Dire#tor !"0 "#tu"ll0 "nd le3"ll0 3ive even the sli3htest se!+l"n#e of
"uthorit0 to his thesis th"t he should re!"in in offi#e. =e th"t "s it !"0, it +e"rs e!ph"sis th"t, in "n0
#"se, the !ere f"#t th"t "n e!plo0ee is " CES eli3i+le does not "uto!"ti#"ll0 oper"te to vest se#urit0 of
tenure on the "ppointee in"s!u#h "s the se#urit0 of tenure of e!plo0ees in the #"reer e9e#utive servi#e,
e9#ept first "nd se#ond%level e!plo0ees, pert"ins onl0 to r"n4 "nd not to the offi#e or position to whi#h
the0 !"0 +e "ppointed.
45
nent the other issues r"ised in this petition, we find the s"!e to +e !erel0 petitioner/s l"st%dit#h
"tte!pts, futile "s the0 "re, to re!"in in offi#e. Suffi#e it to s"0 th"t no further 3ood !"0 +e served in
needlessl0 e9poundin3 on the!.
ll told, we reiter"te the lon3%st"ndin3 rule th"t the !ere f"#t th"t " p"rti#ul"r position +elon3s to the
#"reer servi#e does not "uto!"ti#"ll0 #onfer se#urit0 of tenure on its o##up"nt. Su#h ri3ht will h"ve to
depend on the n"ture of his "ppoint!ent, whi#h in turn depends on his eli3i+ilit0 or l"#4 of it. person
who does not h"ve the re@uisite @u"lifi#"tions for the position #"nnot +e "ppointed to it in the first
pl"#e or, onl0 "s "n e9#eption to the rule, !"0 +e "ppointed to it in "n "#tin3 #"p"#it0 in the "+sen#e of
"ppropri"te eli3i+les.
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51ERE<ORE, the petition is DENIED. .he De#ision of the Court of ppe"ls in C%&.R. SP No.
'()*$, d"ted Septe!+er ,-, ,((4, "ffir!in3 Resolution No. (-$(5( of the Civil Servi#e Co!!ission,
d"ted O#to+er $4, ,((-, is AIRMED.
G.R. No. 179,-2 J.&% 11, 2009
CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, Petitioner,
vs.
LARR+ M. ALONSO, Respondent.
D E C I S I O N
NAC"!RA, J.:
.his is " Rule 45 petition "ss"ilin3 the M"0 ,$, ,((* De#ision
$
"nd u3ust ,-, ,((* Resolution
,
of the
Court of ppe"ls 6C7 in C%&.R. SP No. )*,'4, whi#h reversed Civil Servi#e Co!!ission 6CSC7
Resolution Nos. (8$',$
-
"nd (8$)('
4
d"ted O#to+er $8, ,((8 "nd Nove!+er *, ,((8, respe#tivel0, "s
well "s its Order
5
d"ted De#e!+er $$, ,((8, for!"ll0 #h"r3in3 respondent 2"rr0 lfonso with &r"ve
Mis#ondu#t "nd Condu#t Pre?udi#i"l to the =est Interest of the Servi#e "nd preventivel0 suspendin3
hi! fro! his position "s Dire#tor of the 1u!"n Resour#es M"n"3e!ent Dep"rt!ent of the Pol0te#hni#
Cniversit0 of the Philippines 6PCP7.
.he f"#ts, "s su!!"ri;ed +0 the C, "re "s followsD
Respondent 2"rr0 M. lfonso is the Dire#tor of the 1u!"n Resour#es M"n"3e!ent Dep"rt!ent of
PCP. On Jul0 8, ,((8, Dr. :en"id" Pi", Professor IE in PCP%St". Mes", "nd Dindo E!!"nuel ="utist",
President of Cn0on n3 !3" F"w"ni s" PCP, ?ointl0 filed "n ffid"vit%Co!pl"int "3"inst lfonso for
viol"tion of Repu+li# #t 6R7 No. 8*$-, #h"r3in3 the l"tter with 3r"ve !is#ondu#t, #ondu#t
pre?udi#i"l to the +est interest of the Servi#e, "nd viol"tion of Civil Servi#e 2"w, rules "nd re3ul"tions.
.he "ffid"vit%#o!pl"int w"s lod3ed +efore the Civil Servi#e Co!!ission 6CSC7. In their "ffid"vit, Dr.
Pi" "nd ="utist" "lle3ed, "!on3 others, th"t respondent repe"tedl0 "+used his "uthorit0 "s he"d of
PCP/s personnel dep"rt!ent when the l"tter prep"red "nd in#luded his n"!e in Spe#i"l Order Nos.
()8( "nd $((4 for overni3ht servi#es, ostensi+l0 "uthori;in3 hi! to wor4 for ,4 hours str"i3ht fro!
M"0 $8 to ,(, M"0 ,, to ,* "nd M"0 ,) to June ,, ,((8. s " result thereof, lfonso !"de
#onsider"+le e"rnin3s for "lle3edl0 wor4in3 in hu!"nl0 i!possi+le #onditions ,4 hours str"i3ht d"il0,
for three #onse#utive wee4s.
8
In support of their #o!pl"int, Dr. Pi" "nd ="utist" su+!itted the followin3 do#u!ent"r0 eviden#eD
$. Spe#i"l Order No. $((4, s. ,((8A
,. Spe#i"l Order No. ()8(, s. ,((8A
-. D"il0 ti!e re#ords of S"turd"0 "nd Overni3ht Servi#es of lfonsoA
4. PCP Per!%O. overni3ht M"0 ,((8 p"0roll re3isterA
5. Gero9 #op0 of #he#4 no. $8,'-- d"ted M"0 -$, ,((8A
8. Su!!"r0 of lfonso/s S"turd"0, overni3ht "nd overti!e s#heduleA
*. Co!put"tion of the nu!+er of hours, d"0s "nd wee4s th"t lfonso "lle3edl0 servedA "nd
'. E9pl"n"tion of offi#i"l ti!e, ni3ht servi#e, S"turd"0 overti!e "nd overni3ht servi#es
rendered +0 lfonso for the !onth of M"0.
*
On u3ust $(, ,((8, the Offi#e of 2e3"l ff"irs 6O27 of the CSC issued "n order dire#tin3 lfonso to
su+!it his #ounter%"ffid"vitH#o!!ent within three 6-7 d"0s fro! re#eipt thereof.
In his Counter%ffid"vit
'
d"ted u3ust -(, ,((8, respondent "verred th"t he onl0 rendered overni3ht
wor4 on M"0 $*, $), ,,, ,4, ,8, ,) "nd -$, ,((8. 1e e9pl"ined th"t his d"il0 ti!e re#ord e9pli#itl0
indi#"tes th"t it #overs overni3ht servi#es pursu"nt to S.O. No. $((4, series of ,((8, "nd th"t "n entr0
su#h "s >D"0 $*, "rriv"l 'D(( PMA D"0 $', dep"rture 'D(( M> #onnoted onl0 " d"0 of overni3ht wor4
"nd not #ontinuous two 6,7 d"0s of rendition of servi#es.
)
.he CSC, however, found lfonso/s e9pl"n"tion w"ntin3. On O#to+er ,5, ,((8, it issued Resolution
No. (8$',$ for!"ll0 #h"r3in3 lfonso with 3r"ve !is#ondu#t "nd #ondu#t pre?udi#i"l to the +est
interest of the Servi#e, "nd i!posin3 " )(%d"0 preventive suspension "3"inst hi!.
$(
33rieved, respondent filed "n o!ni+us !otion for re#onsider"tion of the preventive suspension order
"nd re@uested " #h"n3e of venue
$$
fro! the CSC%Centr"l Offi#e to the CSC%N"tion"l C"pit"l Re3ion
6CSC%NCR7. In the !otion, he "r3ued th"t it is the CSC%NCR re3ion"l offi#e th"t h"s ?urisdi#tion over
the !"tter pursu"nt to Se#tion 8 of CSC Resolution No. ))%$)-8, "nd th"t to hold otherwise !"0
deprive hi! of his ri3ht to "ppe"l.
$,
.he !otion w"s denied.
$-
Cnd"unted, lfonso filed "nother !otion for re#onsider"tion on Nove!+er ,(, ,((8, "##o!p"nied +0 "
!otion to "d!it his supple!ent"l "nswer.
$4
.his ti!e, however, respondent "r3ued th"t the CSC h"d no
?urisdi#tion to he"r "nd de#ide the "d!inistr"tive #"se filed "3"inst hi!. ##ordin3 to hi!, it is the PCP
=o"rd of Re3ents th"t h"s the e9#lusive "uthorit0 to "ppoint "nd re!ove PCP e!plo0ees pursu"nt to
the provisions of R.. No. ',),
$5
in rel"tion to R.. No. 48*(.
$8
5ithout rulin3 on the !otion, ssist"nt Co!!issioner tt0. ni#i" M"r"si3"n%de 2i!", he"d of CSC%
NCR, issued "n Order
$*
d"ted De#e!+er $$, ,((8 dire#tin3 the Offi#e of the President of PCP to
i!ple!ent the preventive suspension order "3"inst respondent.
$'
Diss"tisfied, respondent sou3ht relief +efore the C vi" " petition for #ertior"ri "nd prohi+ition.
On M"0 ,$, ,((*, the C rendered " De#ision
$)
in f"vor of lfonso. .he pertinent portion of the
de#ision de#l"resD
ppl0in3 the fore3oin3 provisions, it "ppe"rs th"t the CSC !"0 t"4e #o3ni;"n#e of "n "d!inistr"tive
#"se in two w"0sD 6$7 throu3h " #o!pl"int filed +0 " priv"te #iti;en "3"inst " 3overn!ent offi#i"l or
e!plo0eeA "nd 6,7 "ppe"led #"ses fro! the de#isions rendered +0 Se#ret"ries or he"ds of "3en#ies,
instru!ent"lities, provin#es, #ities "nd !uni#ip"lities in #"ses filed "3"inst offi#ers "nd e!plo0ees
under their ?urisdi#tion.
Indisput"+l0, the persons who filed the "ffid"vit%#o!pl"int "3"inst petitioner held positions in "nd were
under the e!plo0 of PCP. 1en#e, the0 #"nnot +e #onsidered "s priv"te #iti;ens in the #onte!pl"tion of
the s"id provision. It is li4ewise undisputed th"t the su+?e#t CSC resolutions were not rendered in the
e9er#ise of its power to review or its "ppell"te ?urisdi#tion +ut w"s "n ordin"r0 "d!inistr"tive #"se.
1en#e, the present #"se f"lls short of the re@uire!ent th"t would otherwise h"ve ?ustified the CSC/s
i!!edi"te e9er#ise of its ?urisdi#tion over the "d!inistr"tive #"se "3"inst petitioner.
Even "ssu!in3 th"t the CSC !"0 dire#tl0 entert"in the #o!pl"ints filed with it, the do#trine of
e9h"ustion IofJ "d!inistr"tive re!edies still prevents it fro! entert"inin3 the present "d!inistr"tive
#"se. If " re!ed0 within the "d!inistr"tive !"#hiner0 #"n still +e h"d +0 3ivin3 the "d!inistr"tive
offi#er #on#erned ever0 opportunit0 to de#ide on the !"tter th"t #o!es within his ?urisdi#tion, then
su#h re!ed0 should +e priorl0 e9h"usted.
.he #ir#u!st"n#es in this #"se do not ?ustif0 the disre3"rd of the do#trine. 1en#e, the "d!inistr"tive
#o!pl"int should h"ve +een lod3ed with the PCP +o"rd of re3ents.
9 9 9
.he C r"tio#in"ted th"t sin#e Presidenti"l De#ree 6P.D.7 No. $-4$, the l"w #re"tin3 PCP, is the spe#i"l
l"w 3overnin3 PCP, then it is the =o"rd of Re3ents 6=OR7 th"t should #"rr0 out the duties of the
investi3"tin3 #o!!ittee "nd h"s the proper "uthorit0 to dis#ipline PCP personnel #oroll"r0 to the
=OR/s 3ener"l powers of "d!inistr"tion.
,(
##ordin3 to the C, the power of the =OR to hire #"rries
with it the #orrespondin3 power to dis#ipline PCP personnel pursu"nt to Se#tion *6#7 of P.D.$-4$, to
witD
Se#tion *. .he =o"rd of Re3ents sh"ll h"ve the followin3 powers "nd duties in "ddition to his 3ener"l
powers of "d!inistr"tion "nd the e9er#ise of "ll the powers of " #orpor"tion "s provided in Se#tion $-
of #t Nu!+ered fourteen hundred fift0%nine "s "!ended, otherwise 4nown "s the Philippine
Corpor"tion 2"wD
9 9 9 9
6#7 .o "ppoint, on the re#o!!end"tion of the President of the Cniversit0, professors, instru#tors,
le#turers "nd other !e!+ers of the f"#ult0, "nd other offi#i"ls "nd e!plo0ees of the Cniversit0A to fi9
their #o!pens"tion, hours of servi#e, "nd su#h, other duties "nd #onditions "s it !"0 dee! proper, "n0
other provisions of the l"w to the #ontr"r0 notwithst"ndin3A to 3r"nt to the! in his dis#retion, le"ve of
"+sen#e under su#h re3ul"tions "s it !"0 pro!ul3"te, "n0 other #onditions of the l"w to the #ontr"r0
notwithst"ndin3, "nd to re!ove the! for #"use "fter "n investi3"tion "nd he"rin3 sh"ll h"ve +een h"dA
9 9 9
.his provision in the PCP Ch"rter is su+st"nti"ll0 in "##ord with Se#tion 46h7 of R.. ',),,
Se#tion 4. Powers "nd Duties of &overnin3 =o"rds. K .he 3overnin3 +o"rd sh"ll h"ve the followin3
spe#ifi# powers "nd duties in "ddition to its 3ener"l powers of "d!inistr"tion "nd the e9er#ise of "ll the
powers 3r"nted to the +o"rd of dire#tors of " #orpor"tion under Se#tion -8 of ="t"s P"!+"ns" =l3. 8',
otherwise 4nown "s the Corpor"tion Code of the PhilippinesD
9 9 9 9
6h7 to fi9 "nd "d?ust s"l"ries of f"#ult0 !e!+ers "nd "d!inistr"tive offi#i"ls "nd e!plo0ees su+?e#t to
the provisions of the revised #o!pens"tion "nd #l"ssifi#"tion s0ste! "nd other pertinent +ud3et "nd
#o!pens"tion l"ws 3overnin3 hours of servi#e, "nd su#h other duties "nd #onditions "s it !"0 dee!
properA to 3r"nt the!, "t its dis#retion, le"ves of "+sen#e under su#h re3ul"tions "s it !"0 pro!ul3"te,
"n0 provisions of e9istin3 l"w to the #ontr"r0 notwithst"ndin3A "nd to re!ove the! for #"use in
"##ord"n#e with the re@uire!ents of due pro#ess of l"w.
&iven the fore3oin3 "nte#edents, the pivot"l issue we h"ve to resolve is whether the CSC h"s
?urisdi#tion to he"r "nd de#ide the #o!pl"int filed "3"inst lfonso.
5e find in f"vor of petitioner.
Se#tion ,6$7 "nd Se#tion -, rti#le IG%= of our Constitution, "re #le"r, "s the0 provide th"tD
Se#. ,. 6$7 .he #ivil servi#e e!+r"#es "ll +r"n#hes, su+divisions, instru!ent"lities, "nd "3en#ies of the
&overn!ent, in#ludin3 3overn!ent%owned or #ontrolled #orpor"tions with ori3in"l #h"rters.
Se#. -. .he Civil Servi#e Co!!ission, "s the #entr"l personnel "3en#0 of the &overn!ent, sh"ll
est"+lish " #"reer servi#e "nd "dopt !e"sures to pro!ote !or"le, effi#ien#0, inte3rit0, responsiveness,
pro3ressiveness, "nd #ourtes0 in the #ivil servi#e. It sh"ll stren3then the !erit "nd rew"rds s0ste!,
inte3r"te "ll hu!"n resour#es develop!ent pro3r"!s for "ll levels "nd r"n4s, "nd institution"li;e "
!"n"3e!ent #li!"te #ondu#ive to pu+li# "##ount"+ilit0. It sh"ll su+!it to the President "nd the
Con3ress "n "nnu"l report on its personnel pro3r"!s.
s the #entr"l personnel "3en#0 of the 3overn!ent,
,$
the CSC h"s ?urisdi#tion to supervise the
perfor!"n#e of "nd dis#ipline, if need +e, "ll 3overn!ent e!plo0ees, in#ludin3 those e!plo0ed in
3overn!ent%owned or #ontrolled #orpor"tions with ori3in"l #h"rters su#h "s PCP. ##ordin3l0, "ll PCP
offi#ers "nd e!plo0ees, whether the0 +e #l"ssified "s te"#hers or professors pursu"nt to #ert"in
provisions of l"w, "re dee!ed, first "nd fore!ost, #ivil serv"nts "##ount"+le to the people "nd
"nswer"+le to the CSC in #"ses of #o!pl"ints lod3ed +0 " #iti;en "3"inst the! "s pu+li# serv"nts.
d!ittedl0, the CSC h"s "ppell"te ?urisdi#tion over dis#iplin"r0 #"ses de#ided +0 3overn!ent
dep"rt!ents, "3en#ies "nd instru!ent"lities. 1owever, " #o!pl"int !"0 +e filed dire#tl0 with the CSC,
"nd the Co!!ission h"s the "uthorit0 to he"r "nd de#ide the #"se, "lthou3h it !"0 opt to deputi;e "
dep"rt!ent or "n "3en#0 to #ondu#t the investi3"tion. Spe#ifi#"ll0, Se#tions )6?7 "nd -*6"7 of P.D. '(*,
otherwise 4nown "s the Civil Servi#e 2"w of $)*5, provideD
SEC.ION ). Powers "nd <un#tions of the Co!!ission. K .he Co!!ission sh"ll "d!inister the Civil
Servi#e "nd sh"ll h"ve the followin3 powers "nd fun#tionD
9 9 9 9
6?7 1e"r "nd de#ide "d!inistr"tive dis#iplin"r0 #"ses instituted dire#tl0 with it in "##ord"n#e with
Se#tion -* or +rou3ht to it on "ppe"lA
9 9 9 9
Se#tion -*. Dis#iplin"r0 Jurisdi#tion. K 6"7 .he Co!!ission sh"ll de#ide upon "ppe"l "ll "d!inistr"tive
dis#iplin"r0 #"ses involvin3 the i!position of " pen"lt0 of suspension for !ore th"n thirt0 d"0s, or fine
in "n "!ount e9#eedin3 thirt0 d"0s/ s"l"r0, de!otion in r"n4 or s"l"r0 or tr"nsfer, re!ov"l or dis!iss"l
fro! Offi#e. #o!pl"int !"0 +e filed dire#tl0 with the Co!!ission +0 " priv"te #iti;en "3"inst "
3overn!ent offi#i"l or e!plo0ee in whi#h #"se it !"0 he"r "nd de#ide the #"se or it !"0 deputi;e "n0
dep"rt!ent or "3en#0 or offi#i"l or 3roup of offi#i"ls to #ondu#t the investi3"tion. .he results of the
investi3"tion sh"ll +e su+!itted to the Co!!ission with re#o!!end"tion "s to the pen"lt0 to +e
i!posed or other "#tion to +e t"4en.
,,
5e "re not un!indful of #ert"in spe#i"l l"ws th"t "llow the #re"tion of dis#iplin"r0 #o!!ittees "nd
3overnin3 +odies in different +r"n#hes, su+divisions, "3en#ies "nd instru!ent"lities of the 3overn!ent
to he"r "nd de#ide "d!inistr"tive #o!pl"ints "3"inst their respe#tive offi#ers "nd e!plo0ees. =e th"t "s
it !"0, we #"nnot interpret the #re"tion of su#h +odies nor the p"ss"3e of l"ws su#h "s K R.. Nos.
',), "nd 48*( "llowin3 for the #re"tion of su#h dis#iplin"r0 +odies K "s h"vin3 divested the CSC of its
inherent power to supervise "nd dis#ipline 3overn!ent e!plo0ees, in#ludin3 those in the "#"de!e. .o
hold otherwise would not onl0 ne3"te the ver0 purpose for whi#h the CSC w"s est"+lished, i.e. to instill
profession"lis!, inte3rit0, "nd "##ount"+ilit0 in our #ivil servi#e, +ut would "lso i!pliedl0 "!end the
Constitution itself.
In Offi#e of the O!+uds!"n v. M"sin3,
,-
we e9pl"ined th"t it is error to #ontend th"t R.. No. 48*(
#onferred e9#lusive dis#iplin"r0 "uthorit0 on the Dep"rt!ent of Edu#"tion, Culture "nd Sports 6DECS,
now Dep"rt!ent of Edu#"tion or DepEd7 over pu+li# s#hool te"#hers "nd to h"ve pres#ri+ed e9#lusive
pro#edure in "d!inistr"tive investi3"tions involvin3 the!.
,4
1en#e, it is e@u"ll0 erroneous for
respondent to "r3ue th"t the PCP Ch"rter "nd R.. No. ',), in rel"tion to R.. 48*( #onfer upon the
=OR of PCP e9#lusive ?urisdi#tion to he"r dis#iplin"r0 #"ses "3"inst universit0 professors "nd
personnel.
In Civil Servi#e Co!!ission v. So?or,
,5
"n "d!inistr"tive #"se w"s filed "3"inst " st"te universit0
president. .here, we stru#4 down the "r3u!ent th"t the =OR h"s e9#lusive ?urisdi#tion to he"r "nd
de#ide "n "d!inistr"tive #"se filed "3"inst the respondent. 5e s"idD
In li3ht of the other provisions of R.. No. ),)), respondent/s "r3u!ent th"t the =OR h"s e9#lusive
power to re!ove its universit0 offi#i"ls !ust f"il. Se#tion * of R.. No. ),)) st"tes th"t the power to
re!ove f"#ult0 !e!+ers, e!plo0ees, "nd offi#i"ls of the universit0 is 3r"nted to the =OR >in "ddition
to its 3ener"l powers of "d!inistr"tion.> .his provision is essenti"ll0 " reprodu#tion of Se#tion 4 of its
prede#essor, R.. No. ',),, de!onstr"tin3 th"t the intent of the l"w!"4ers did not #h"n3e even with
the en"#t!ent of the new l"w. 9 9 9
9 9 9 9
Eeril0, the =OR of NORSC h"s the sole power of "d!inistr"tion over the universit0. =ut this power is
not e9#lusive in the !"tter of dis#iplinin3 "nd re!ovin3 its e!plo0ee "nd offi#i"ls.
lthou3h the =OR of NORSC is 3iven the spe#ifi# power under R.. No. ),)) to dis#ipline its
e!plo0ees "nd offi#i"ls, there is no showin3 th"t su#h power is e9#lusive. 5hen the l"w +estows upon
" 3overn!ent +od0 the ?urisdi#tion to he"r "nd de#ide #"ses involvin3 spe#ifi# !"tters, it is to +e
presu!ed th"t su#h ?urisdi#tion is e9#lusive unless it +e proved th"t "nother +od0 is li4ewise vested
with the s"!e ?urisdi#tion, in whi#h #"se, +oth +odies h"ve #on#urrent ?urisdi#tion over the !"tter.
,8

6E!ph"sis supplied7
=ut it is not onl0 for this re"son th"t lfonso/s "r3u!ent !ust f"il. E@u"ll0 si3nifi#"nt is the f"#t th"t he
h"d "lre"d0 su+!itted hi!self to the ?urisdi#tion of the CSC when he filed his #ounter%"ffid"vit
,*
"nd
his !otion for re#onsider"tion "nd re@uested for " #h"n3e of venue, not fro! the CSC to the =OR of
PCP, +ut fro! the CSC%Centr"l Offi#e to the CSC%NCR.
,'
It w"s onl0 when his !otion w"s denied th"t
he suddenl0 h"d " #h"n3e of he"rt "nd r"ised the @uestion of proper ?urisdi#tion.
,)
.his #"nnot +e
"llowed +e#"use it would viol"te the do#trine of res ?udi#"t", " le3"l prin#iple th"t is "ppli#"+le to
"d!inistr"tive #"ses "s well.
-(
t the ver0 le"st, respondent/s "#tive p"rti#ip"tion in the pro#eedin3s +0
see4in3 "ffir!"tive relief +efore the CSC "lre"d0 +"rs hi! fro! i!pu3nin3 the Co!!ission/s "uthorit0
under the prin#iple of estoppel +0 l"#hes.
-$
In this #"se, the #o!pl"int%"ffid"vits were filed +0 two PCP e!plo0ees. .hese #o!pl"ints were not
lod3ed +efore the dis#iplin"r0 tri+un"l of PCP, +ut were inste"d filed +efore the CSC, with "ver!ents
det"ilin3 respondent/s "lle3ed viol"tion of #ivil servi#e l"ws, rules "nd re3ul"tions. fter " f"#t%findin3
investi3"tion, the Co!!ission found th"t " pri!" f"#ie #"se e9isted "3"inst lfonso, pro!ptin3 the
Co!!ission to file " for!"l #h"r3e "3"inst the l"tter.
-,
Eeril0, sin#e the #o!pl"ints were filed dire#tl0
with the CSC, "nd the CSC h"s opted to "ssu!e ?urisdi#tion over the #o!pl"int, the CSC/s e9er#ise of
?urisdi#tion sh"ll +e to the e9#lusion of other tri+un"ls e9er#isin3 #on#urrent ?urisdi#tion. .o repe"t, it
!"0, however, #hoose to deputi;e "n0 dep"rt!ent or "3en#0 or offi#i"l or 3roup of offi#i"ls su#h "s the
=OR of PCP to #ondu#t the investi3"tion, or to dele3"te the investi3"tion to the proper re3ion"l
offi#e.
--
=ut the s"!e is !erel0 per!issive "nd not !"nd"tor0 upon the Co!!ission.
5e li4ewise "ffir! the order of preventive suspension issued +0 the CSC%NCR "3"inst respondent.
.here "re two 4inds of preventive suspension of 3overn!ent e!plo0ees #h"r3ed with offenses
punish"+le +0 re!ov"l or suspension, vi;D 6$7 preventive suspension pendin3 investi3"tionA "nd 6,7
preventive suspension pendin3 "ppe"l if the pen"lt0 i!posed +0 the dis#iplinin3 "uthorit0 is suspension
or dis!iss"l "nd, "fter review, the respondent is e9oner"ted. Preventive suspension pendin3
investi3"tion is not " pen"lt0. It is " !e"sure intended to en"+le the dis#iplinin3 "uthorit0 to investi3"te
#h"r3es "3"inst respondent +0 preventin3 the l"tter fro! inti!id"tin3 or in "n0 w"0 influen#in3
witnesses "3"inst hi!. If the investi3"tion is not finished "nd " de#ision is not rendered within th"t
period, the suspension will +e lifted "nd the respondent will "uto!"ti#"ll0 +e reinst"ted. If "fter
investi3"tion, respondent is found inno#ent of the #h"r3es "nd is e9oner"ted, he should +e reinst"ted.
-4
.he first 4ind, su+?e#t of the CSC Order "3"inst the respondent, is "ppropri"tel0 #overed +0 Se#tions
5$ "nd 5, of the Revised d!inistr"tive Code of $)'* 6E9e#utive Order No. ,),7 whi#h provideD
SEC. 5$. Preventive Suspension. % .he proper dis#iplinin3 "uthorit0 !"0 preventivel0 suspend "n0
su+ordin"te offi#er or e!plo0ee under his "uthorit0 pendin3 "n investi3"tion, if the #h"r3e "3"inst su#h
offi#er or e!plo0ee involves dishonest0, oppression or 3r"ve !is#ondu#t, or ne3le#t in the perfor!"n#e
of dut0, or if there "re re"sons to +elieve th"t the respondent is 3uilt0 of #h"r3es whi#h would w"rr"nt
his re!ov"l fro! the servi#e.1avvphi1
SEC. 5,. Lifting of Preventive Suspension. Pending Administrative Investigation. % 5hen the
"d!inistr"tive #"se "3"inst the offi#er or e!plo0ee under preventive suspension is not fin"ll0 de#ided
+0 the dis#iplinin3 "uthorit0 within the period of ninet0 6)(7 d"0s "fter the d"te of suspension of the
respondent who is not " presidenti"l "ppointee, the respondent sh"ll +e "uto!"ti#"ll0 reinst"ted in the
servi#eD Provided, .h"t when the del"0 in the disposition of the #"se is due to the f"ult, ne3li3en#e or
petition of the respondent, the period of del"0 sh"ll not +e #ounted in #o!putin3 the period of
suspension herein provided.1avvphi1
Respondent w"s #h"r3ed with 3r"ve !is#ondu#t "nd #ondu#t pre?udi#i"l to the +est interest of the
servi#e. person #h"r3ed with 3r"ve !is#ondu#t is put on noti#e th"t he st"nds "##used of !is#ondu#t
#oupled with "n0 of the ele!ents of #orruption or willful intent to viol"te the l"w or est"+lished rules.
-5

Me"nwhile, #ondu#t pre?udi#i"l to the +est interest of the servi#e is #l"ssified "s " 3r"ve offense with "
#orrespondin3 pen"lt0 of suspension for si9 687 !onths "nd one 6$7 d"0 to one 6$7 0e"r for the first
offense, "nd the pen"lt0 of dis!iss"l for the se#ond offense.
-8
In "ddition to the 3r"vit0 of the #h"r3es "3"inst lfonso, "nd e@u"ll0 relev"nt, is the opportunit0
"v"il"+le to hi! to use his position "s Dire#tor of the 1u!"n Resour#es M"n"3e!ent Dep"rt!ent of
the universit0 to e9ert undue influen#e or pressure on the potenti"l witnesses th"t the #o!pl"in"nts !"0
produ#e, or to t"!per with the do#u!ent"r0 eviden#e th"t !"0 +e used "3"inst hi!. Preventive
suspension is, therefore, ne#ess"r0 so th"t respondent/s deli#"te 0et powerful position in the universit0
!"0 not +e used to #o!pro!ise the inte3rit0 "nd i!p"rti"lit0 of the entire pro#eedin3s.
51ERE<ORE, pre!ises #onsidered, the M"0 ,$, ,((* De#ision
-*
"nd u3ust ,-, ,((* Resolution
-'
of
the Court of ppe"ls in C%&.R. SP No. )*,'4 "re here+0 REEERSED "nd SE. SIDE. ##ordin3l0,
Civil Servi#e Co!!ission Resolution Nos. (8$',$
-)
"nd (8$)('
4(
d"ted O#to+er $8, ,((8 "nd
Nove!+er *, ,((8, respe#tivel0, "s well "s its Order
4$
d"ted De#e!+er $$, ,((8 pl"#in3 respondent
under preventive suspension "re here+0 REINS..ED. .he CSC is ordered to pro#eed he"rin3 the
"d!inistr"tive #"se "3"inst respondent with disp"t#h.
SO ORDERED.
Bi'o/O&o& 0$. "o&. %r&#&(%1
&R No. $-)'$- <"#tsD
=ito%Onon is the dul0 ele#ted ="r"n3"0 Ch"ir!"n of ."#r"s, N"rr" P"l"w"n "nd is the
Muni#ip"l 2i3" Ch"pter President for the Muni#ip"lit0 of N"rr", P"l"w"n. Respondent Lue?"no Jr., on
the other h"nd, is the dul0 ele#ted ="r"n3"0 Ch"ir!"n of Ri;"l, M"3s"0s"0, P"l"w"n "nd is the
Muni#ip"l 2i3" Ch"pter President of M"3s"0s"0, P"l"w"n. =oth =ito%Onon "nd Lue?"no were
#"ndid"tes for the position of E9e#utive Ei#e% President in the u3ust ,-, $))* ele#tion for the 2i3" n3
=r30 Provin#i"l Ch"pter in the provin#e of P"l"w"n. =ito%Onon w"s the pro#l"i!ed winner pro!ptin3
Lue?"no to file " " post pro#l"!"tion protest with the =o"rd of Ele#tion Supervisors 6=ES7, whi#h w"s
de#ided "3"inst hi!. Not s"tisfied with the de#ision of =ES Lue?"no filed " petition for review of the
de#ision of =ES. On $))), Onon filed " petition to dis!iss the review r"isin3 the issue of ?urisdi#tion.
.he l"tter #l"i!ed th"t R.C h"s no ?urisdi#tion to review the =ES/ de#ision in "n0 post pro#l"!"tion
ele#tor"l protest in #onne#tion with the $))* 2i3" n3 !3" =r30 Ele#tion of Offi#ers "nd Dire#tors . In
his !otion to dis!iss, =ito%Onon #l"i!ed th"t the Supple!ent"l &uidelines for the $))* 3uidelines for
the 2i3" n3 =r30 Ele#tion issued +0 the DI2& in its Me!or"ndu! Cir#ul"r No. )*%$)-, providin3 for
review of de#isions or resolutions of the =ES +0 the re3ul"r #ourts of l"w is "n Cltr" Eires "#t "nd is
void for +ein3 issued without or in e9#ess of ?urisdi#tion, "s its issu"n#e is not " !ere "#t of supervision
+ut r"ther "n e9er#ise of #ontrol over the 2i3"/s Intern"l Or3.
IssueD
$. 5hether or not the President/s supervision e9tend to the 2i3" n3 ="r"3"0 whi#h is not "n
2&C.
,. 5hether or not the 3uidelinesHprovision in the Me!or"ndu! issued +0 the DI2& within its
supervisor0 li!it.
Rulin3D
$. Mes, DOJ ruled th"t the 2i3" n3 =r30 is " 3overn!ent or3., +ein3 "n "sso#i"tion
feder"tionHle"3ueHunion +0 l"w or "uthorit0 of l"w whose !e!+ers "re either "ppointed or ele#ted
3ov/t offi#i"ls. .he li3"s "re pri!"ril0 3overned +0 2&C. 1owever, their respe#tive #onstitution "nd
+0%l"ws sh"ll 3overn "ll !"tters "ffe#tin3 the intern"l or3 of the li3" not otherwise provided for in the
2&C, provided th"t su#h #onsti "nd +0 l"ws sh"ll +e supple!ent"r0 to =oo4 II .itle EI O< 2&Code
"nd sh"ll #onfor! to Consti "nd e9istin3 l"ws.
,. No, In "uthori;in3 the filin3 of petition for review of =ES de#ision with re3ul"r #ourts under
MC No. )*%$)-, the DI2& Se#ret"r0 in effe#t "!ended "nd !odified the 3uidelines pro!ul3"ted +0
the 2i3" whi#h provides th"t review of =ES de#ision is with N"t/l 2i3" =o"rd. .he "!end!ent of the
3uidelines is !ore th"n the e9er#ise of supervision +ut is "n e9er#ise of the power of #ontrol whi#h the
President doesn/t h"ve over the 2i3"
JOE2=I.O%ONON, petitioner, vs. 1ON. JCD&E NE2I MP <ERNNDE:, R...C. =r. 5( K Puerto
Prin#es" Cit0 "nd P"l"w"n, "nd E2E&IO LCEJNO, JR., respondents.
D E C I S I O N
&ON:&%REMES, J.D
.his Petition for Certiorari "nd Prohi+ition with pr"0er for the issu"n#e of " te!por"r0 restr"inin3
order "nd writ of in?un#tion see4s the revers"l of the Order of the Re3ion"l .ri"l Court of P"l"w"n "nd
Puerto Prin#es" Cit0,
i
I$J =r"n#h 5( in SP2. PROC. NO. $(58 entitled NEle3io <. Lue?"no, Jr.,
petitioner vs. Joel =ito%Onon, et. "l., respondentsO whi#h denied herein petitioner/s !otion to dis!iss
the Petition for Review of the Resolution of the =o"rd of Ele#tion Supervisors d"ted u3ust ,5, $))*
in #"se nu!+er 2%$(%)* filed +0 herein priv"te respondent with s"id #ourt.
It "ppe"rs fro! the re#ords th"t the petitioner, Joel =ito%Onon is the dul0 ele#ted ="r"n3"0 Ch"ir!"n
of ="r"n3"0 ."#r"s, N"rr", P"l"w"n "nd is the Muni#ip"l 2i3" Ch"pter President for the Muni#ip"lit0
of N"rr", P"l"w"n. .he priv"te respondent, Ele3io Lue?"no, Jr. on the other h"nd, is the dul0 ele#ted
="r"n3"0 Ch"ir!"n of ="r"n3"0 Ri;"l, M"3s"0s"0, P"l"w"n "nd is the Muni#ip"l 2i3" Ch"pter
President for the Muni#ip"lit0 of M"3s"0s"0, P"l"w"n. =oth Onon "nd Lue?"no were #"ndid"tes for
the position of E9e#utive Ei#e%President in the u3ust ,-, $))* ele#tion for the 2i3" n3 ="r"n3"0
Provin#i"l Ch"pter of the provin#e of P"l"w"n. Onon w"s pro#l"i!ed the winnin3 #"ndid"te in the s"id
ele#tion pro!ptin3 Lue?"no to file " post pro#l"!"tion protest with the =o"rd of Ele#tion Supervisors
6=ES7, whi#h w"s de#ided "3"inst hi! on u3ust ,5, $))*.
Not s"tisfied with the de#ision of the =ES, Lue?"no filed " Petition for Review of the de#ision of the
=ES with the Re3ion"l .ri"l Court of P"l"w"n "nd Puerto Prin#es" Cit0 6R.C7. On pril ,8, $))),
Onon filed " !otion to dis!iss the Petition for Review r"isin3 the issue of ?urisdi#tion. Onon #l"i!ed
th"t the R.C h"d no ?urisdi#tion to review the de#isions rendered +0 the =ES in "n0 post pro#l"!"tion
ele#tor"l protest in #onne#tion with the $))* 2i3" n3 !3" ="r"n3"0 ele#tion of offi#ers "nd dire#tors.
In his !otion to dis!iss, Onon #l"i!ed th"t the Supple!ent"l &uidelines for the $))* 2i3" n3 !3"
="r"n3"0 ele#tion issued +0 the DI2& on u3ust $$, $))* in its Me!or"ndu! Cir#ul"r No. )*%$)-,
providin3 for review of de#isions or resolutions of the =ES +0 the re3ul"r #ourts of l"w is "n ultra vires
"#t "nd is void for +ein3 issued without or in e9#ess of ?urisdi#tion, "s its issu"n#e is not " !ere "#t of
supervision +ut r"ther "n e9er#ise of #ontrol over the 2i3"/s intern"l or3"ni;"tion.
On June ,,, $))), the R.C denied Onon/s !otion to dis!iss. In its order, the R.C r"tio#in"ted th"t the
Se#ret"r0 of the Dep"rt!ent of Interior "nd 2o#"l &overn!ent
ii
I,J is vested with the power Nto
est"+lish "nd pres#ri+e rules, re3ul"tions "nd other issu"n#es "nd i!ple!entin3 l"ws on the 3ener"l
supervision of lo#"l 3overn!ent units "nd the pro!otion of lo#"l "utono!0 "nd !onitor #o!pli"n#e
thereof +0 s"id units.O
iii
I-J .he R.C "dded th"t DI2& Cir#ul"r No. )*%$)- w"s issued +0 the DI2&
Se#ret"r0 pursu"nt to his rule%!"4in3 power "s provided for under Se#tion *, Ch"pter II, =oo4 IE of
the d!inistr"tive Code.
iv
I4J Conse@uentl0, the R.C ruled th"t it h"d ?urisdi#tion over the petition for
review filed +0 Lue?"d".
v
I5J
Motion for re#onsider"tion of the "fores"id Order w"s denied
vi
I8J pro!ptin3 the petitioner to file the
present petition wherein the followin3 issues "re r"isedD
A. 2"ET"ER OR NOT T"E 3!ESTIONED PROVISION IN MEMORAND!M
CIRC!LAR 97/193 2AS ISS!ED B+ T"E DILG SECRETAR+ IN E4CESS O "IS
A!T"ORIT+.
B. 2"ET"ER OR NOT T"E RESPONDENT J!DGE COMMITTED GRAVE AB!SE O
DISCRETION IN ISS!ING T"E 3!ESTIONED ORDERS.
vii
I*J
In support of his petition, Onon "r3ues th"t the NSupple!ent"l &uidelines for the $))* S0n#hroni;ed
Ele#tion of the Provin#i"l "nd Metropolit"n Ch"pters "nd for the Ele#tion of the N"tion"l Ch"pter of
the 2i3" n3 !3" ="r"n3"0O #ontr"di#ts the NI!ple!entin3 Rules "nd &uidelines for the $))* &ener"l
Ele#tions of the 2i3" n3 !3" ="r"n3"0 Offi#ers "nd Dire#torsO "nd is therefore inv"lid. Onon "lle3es
th"t the 2i3" n3 !3" ="r"n3"0 62I&7 is not " lo#"l 3overn!ent unit #onsiderin3 th"t " lo#"l
3overn!ent unit !ust h"ve its own sour#e of in#o!e, " #ert"in nu!+er of popul"tion, "nd " spe#ifi#
l"nd "re" in order to e9ist or +e #re"ted "s su#h. Conse@uentl0, the DI2& onl0 h"s " li!ited
supervisor0 "uthorit0 over the 2I&. Moreover, Onon "r3ues th"t even if the DI2& h"s supervisor0
"uthorit0 over the 2I&, the "#t of the DI2& in issuin3 Me!or"ndu! Cir#ul"r No. )*%$)- or the
supple!ent"l rules "nd 3uidelines for the #ondu#t of the $))* 2I& ele#tions h"d the effe#t of
!odif0in3, "lterin3 "nd nullif0in3 the rules pres#ri+ed +0 the N"tion"l 2i3" =o"rd. Onon posits th"t
the issu"n#e of s"id 3uidelines "llowin3 "n "ppe"l of the de#ision of the =ES to the re3ul"r #ourts
r"ther th"n to the N"tion"l 2i3" =o"rd is no lon3er "n e9er#ise of supervision +ut "n e9er#ise of
#ontrol.
viii
I'J
In his #o!!ent to the petition, priv"te respondent Lue?"no "r3ues th"t the Se#ret"r0 of the DI2& h"s
#o!petent "uthorit0 to issue rules "nd re3ul"tions li4e Me!or"ndu! Cir#ul"r No. )*%')-. .he
Se#ret"r0 of DI2&/s rule%!"4in3 power is #onferred +0 the d!inistr"tive Code. Considerin3 th"t the
Me!or"ndu! Cir#ul"r w"s issued pursu"nt to his rule !"4in3 power, Lue?"no insists th"t the lower
#ourt did not #o!!it "n0 reversi+le error when it denied Onon/s !otion to dis!iss.
i9
I)J
On the other h"nd, the pu+li# respondent represented herein +0 the Soli#itor &ener"l, filed " sep"r"te
M"nifest"tion "nd Motion in 2ieu of Co!!ent "3reein3 with the position of petitioner Onon. .he
Soli#itor &ener"l "ffir!s Onon/s #l"i! th"t in issuin3 the @uestioned Me!or"ndu! Cir#ul"r, the
Se#ret"r0 of the DI2& effe#tivel0 "!ended the rules "nd 3uidelines pro!ul3"ted +0 N"tion"l 2i3"
=o"rd. .his "#t w"s no lon3er " !ere "#t of supervision +ut one of #ontrol. .he Soli#itor &ener"l
su+!its th"t the R.C #o!!itted 3r"ve "+use of dis#retion in not dis!issin3 the petition for review of
the =ES de#ision filed +efore it for f"ilure of the petitioner to e9h"ust the ri3htful re!ed0 whi#h w"s to
"ppe"l to the N"tion"l 2i3" =o"rd.
9
I$(J
On O#to+er ,*, $))), this Court denied petitioner Onon/s !otion for the issu"n#e of restr"inin3 order
for l"#4 of !erit.
fter " #"reful review of the #"se, we sust"in the position of the petitioner.
.he resolution of the present #ontrovers0 re@uires "n e9"!in"tion of the @uestioned provision of
Me!or"ndu! Cir#ul"r No. )*%$)- "nd the I!ple!entin3 Rules "nd &uidelines for the $))* &ener"l
Ele#tions of the 2i3" n3 !3" ="r"n3"0 Offi#ers "nd Dire#tors 6&CIDE2INES7. .he !e!or"ndu!
#ir#ul"r re"ds, insof"r "s pertinent, "s followsD
Nn0 post%pro#l"!"tion protest !ust +e filed with the =ES within twent0%four 6,47 hours fro! the
#losin3 of the ele#tion. .he =ES sh"ll de#ide the s"!e within fort0%ei3ht 64'7 hours fro! re#eipt
thereof. .he de#ision of the =ES sh"ll +e fin"l "nd i!!edi"tel0 e9e#utor0 without prejudice to the
filing of a Petition for eview with the regular courts of law.O
9i
I$$J 6e!ph"sis supplied7
On the other h"nd, the &CIDE2INES provides th"t the =ES sh"ll h"ve the followin3 "!on3 its dutiesD
N.o resolve "n0 post%pro#l"!"tion ele#tor"l protest whi#h !ust +e su+!itted in writin3 to this =o"rd
within twent0%four 6,47 hours fro! the #lose of ele#tionA provided s"id =o"rd sh"ll render its de#ision
within fort0%ei3ht 64'7 hours fro! re#eipt hereofA "nd provided further th"t the de#ision !ust +e
su+!itted to the N"tion"l 2i3" 1e"d@u"rters within twent0%four 6,47 hours fro! the s"id de#ision. .he
de#ision of the =o"rd of Ele#tion Supervisors in this respe#t shall !e su!ject to review !" the #ational
Liga $oard the decision of which shall !e final and e%ecutor".O
9ii
I$,J 6e!ph"sis supplied7
Me!or"ndu! Cir#ul"r No. )*%$)- w"s issued +0 the DI2& Se#ret"r0 pursu"nt to the power of 3ener"l
supervision of the President over "ll lo#"l 3overn!ent units whi#h w"s dele3"ted to the DI2&
Se#ret"r0 +0 virtue of d!inistr"tive Order No. ,8* d"ted <e+ru"r0 $', $)),.
9iii
I$-J .he President/s
power of 3ener"l supervision over lo#"l 3overn!ent units is #onferred upon hi! +0 the Constitution.
9iv
I$4J .he power of supervision is defined "s Nthe power of " superior offi#er to see to it th"t lower
offi#ers perfor! their fun#tions in "##ord"n#e with l"w.O
9v
I$5J .his is distin3uished fro! the power of
#ontrol or Nthe power of "n offi#er to "lter or !odif0 or set "side wh"t " su+ordin"te offi#er h"d done in
the perfor!"n#e of his duties "nd to su+stitute the ?ud3!ent of the for!er for the l"tter.O
9vi
I$8J
On !"n0 o##"sions in the p"st, this #ourt h"s h"d the opportunit0 to distin3uish the power of
supervision fro! the power of #ontrol. In &aule vs. Santos,
9vii
I$*J we held th"t the Chief E9e#utive
wielded no !ore "uthorit0 th"n th"t of #he#4in3 whether " lo#"l 3overn!ent or the offi#ers thereof
perfor! their duties "s provided +0 st"tutor0 en"#t!ents. 1e #"nnot interfere with lo#"l 3overn!ents
provided th"t the s"!e or its offi#ers "#t within the s#ope of their "uthorit0. Supervisor0 power, when
#ontr"sted with #ontrol, is the power of !ere oversi3ht over "n inferior +od0A it does not in#lude "n0
restr"inin3 "uthorit0 over su#h +od0.
9viii
I$'J Offi#ers in #ontrol l"0 down the rules in the doin3 of "n
"#t. If the0 "re not followed, it is dis#retion"r0 on his p"rt to order the "#t undone or re%done +0 his
su+ordin"te or he !"0 even de#ide to do it hi!self. Supervision does not #over su#h "uthorit0.
Supervisin3 offi#ers !erel0 sees to it th"t the rules "re followed, +ut he hi!self does not l"0 down su#h
rules, nor does he h"ve the dis#retion to !odif0 or repl"#e the!. If the rules "re not o+served, he !"0
order the wor4 done or re%done to #onfor! to the pres#ri+ed rules. 1e #"nnot pres#ri+e his own
!"nner for the doin3 of the "#t.
9i9
I$)J
Does the President/s power of 3ener"l supervision e9tend to the li3" n3 !3" +"r"n3"0, whi#h is not "
lo#"l 3overn!ent unitP
99
I,(J
5e rule in the "ffir!"tive. In Opinion No. 4$, Series of $))5, the Dep"rt!ent of Justi#e ruled th"t the
li3" n3 !3" +"r"n3"0 is " 3overn!ent or3"ni;"tion, +ein3 "n "sso#i"tion, feder"tion, le"3ue or union
#re"ted +0 l"w or +0 "uthorit0 of l"w, whose !e!+ers "re either "ppointed or ele#ted 3overn!ent
offi#i"ls. .he 2o#"l &overn!ent Code
99i
I,$J defines the li3" n3 !3" +"r"n3"0 "s "n or3"ni;"tion of "ll
+"r"n3"0s for the pri!"r0 purpose of deter!inin3 the represent"tion of the li3" in the s"n33uni"ns, "nd
for ventil"tin3, "rti#ul"tin3 "nd #r0st"lli;in3 issues "ffe#tin3 +"r"n3"0 3overn!ent "d!inistr"tion "nd
se#urin3, throu3h proper "nd le3"l !e"ns, solutions thereto.
99ii
I,,J .he li3" sh"ll h"ve #h"pters "t the
!uni#ip"l, #it0, provin#i"l "nd !etropolit"n politi#"l su+division levels. .he !uni#ip"l "nd #it0
#h"pters of the li3" sh"ll +e #o!posed of the +"r"n3"0 represent"tives of the !uni#ip"l "nd #it0
+"r"n3"0s respe#tivel0. .he dul0 ele#ted presidents of the #o!ponent !uni#ip"l "nd #it0 #h"pters sh"ll
#onstitute the provin#i"l #h"pter or the !etropolit"n politi#"l su+division #h"pter. .he dul0 ele#ted
presidents of hi3hl0 ur+"ni;ed #ities, provin#i"l #h"pters, the Metropolit"n M"nil" #h"pter "nd
!etropolit"n politi#"l su+division #h"pters sh"ll #onstitute the N"tion"l 2i3" n3 !3" ="r"n3"0.
99iii
I,-J
.he li3" "t the !uni#ip"l, #it0, provin#i"l, !etropolit"n politi#"l su+division, "nd n"tion"l levels
dire#tl0 ele#t " president, " vi#e%president "nd five 657 !e!+ers of the +o"rd of dire#tors. .he +o"rd
sh"ll "ppoint its se#ret"r0 "nd tre"surer "nd #re"te su#h other positions "s it !"0 dee! ne#ess"r0 for the
!"n"3e!ent of the #h"pter.
99iv
I,4J
.he li3"s "re pri!"ril0 3overned +0 the provisions of the 2o#"l &overn!ent Code.
99v
I,5J 1owever,
their respe#tive #onstitution "nd +0%l"ws sh"ll 3overn "ll other !"tters "ffe#tin3 the intern"l
or3"ni;"tion of the li3" not otherwise provided for in the 2o#"l &overn!ent Code provided th"t the
#onstitution "nd +0%l"ws sh"ll +e suppletor0 to the provisions of =oo4 III, .itle EI of the 2o#"l
&overn!ent Code "nd sh"ll "lw"0s #onfor! to the provisions of the Constitution "nd e9istin3 l"ws.
99vi
I,8J
1"vin3 in !ind the fore3oin3 prin#iples, we rule th"t Me!or"ndu! Cir#ul"r No. )*%$)- of the DI2&
insof"r "s it "uthori;es the filin3 " Petition for Review of the de#ision of the =ES with the re3ul"r
#ourts in " post pro#l"!"tion ele#tor"l protest is of dou+tful #onstitution"lit0. 5e "3ree with +oth the
petitioner "nd the Soli#itor &ener"l th"t in "uthori;in3 the filin3 of the petition for review of the
de#ision of the =ES with the re3ul"r #ourts, the DI2& Se#ret"r0 in effe#t "!ended "nd !odified the
&CIDE2INES pro!ul3"ted +0 the N"tion"l 2i3" =o"rd "nd "dopted +0 the 2I& whi#h provides th"t
the de#ision of the =ES sh"ll +e su+?e#t to review +0 the N"tion"l 2i3" =o"rd. .he "!end!ent of the
&CIDE2INES is !ore th"n "n e9er#ise of the power of supervision +ut is "n e9er#ise of the power of
#ontrol, whi#h the President does not h"ve over the 2I&. lthou3h the DI2& is 3iven the power to
pres#ri+e rules, re3ul"tions "nd other issu"n#es, the d!inistr"tive Code li!its its "uthorit0 to !erel0
N!onitorin3 #o!pli"n#eO +0 lo#"l 3overn!ent units of su#h issu"n#es.
99vii
I,*J .o !onitor !e"ns Nto
w"t#h, o+serve or #he#4O "nd is #o!p"ti+le with the power of supervision of the DI2& Se#ret"r0 over
lo#"l 3overn!ents, whi#h is li!ited to #he#4in3 whether the lo#"l 3overn!ent unit #on#erned or the
offi#ers thereof perfor! their duties "s per st"tutor0 en"#t!ents.
99viii
I,'J =esides, "n0 dou+t "s to the
power of the DI2& Se#ret"r0 to interfere with lo#"l "ff"irs should +e resolved in f"vor of the 3re"ter
"utono!0 of the lo#"l 3overn!ent.
99i9
I,)J
.he pu+li# respondent ?ud3e therefore #o!!itted 3r"ve "+use of dis#retion "!ountin3 to l"#4 or e9#ess
of ?urisdi#tion in not dis!issin3 the respondent/s Petition for Review for f"ilure to e9h"ust "ll
"d!inistr"tive re!edies "nd for l"#4 of ?urisdi#tion.
2"EREORE, the inst"nt petition is here+0 &RN.ED. .he Order of the Re3ion"l .ri"l Court
d"ted June ,,, $))) is REEERSED "nd SE. SIDE. .he Petition for Review filed +0 the priv"te
respondent do#4eted "s SP2. PROC. NO. $(58 is DISMISSED.
i
ii
iii
iv
v
viDE &C:MN ES COME2EC
On M"r#h -$, ,((4, the S"n33uni"n3 P"nlun3sod of .u3ue3"r"o Cit0 p"ssed Resolution No. (4'%,((4 to "uthori;e
Cit0 M"0or .in3 to "#@uire two p"r#els of l"nd for use "s " pu+li# #e!eter0 of the Cit0. Pursu"nt to the resolution, Cit0
M"0or .in3 pur#h"sed the two p"r#els of l"nd, identified "s 2ot Nos. 5'8( "nd 5'8$ "nd lo#"ted "t tul"0"n Sur,
.u3ue3"r"o Cit0, with "n "33re3"te "re" of ,4,'$8 s@u"re !eters 6#overed +0 .r"nsfer Certifi#"tes of .itle I.C.J No.
.%-8)4, "nd .C. No. .%-8)4- of the Re3ister of Deeds in .u3ue3"r"o Cit07, fro! nsel!o l!";"n, n3elo l!";"n
"nd nsel!o l!";"n III. s p"0!ent, Cit0 .re"surer &"r#i" issued "nd rele"sed .re"sur0 5"rr"nt No. ((($5-45$4
d"ted pril ,(, ,((4 in the su! of P',4'8,(,*.((. On M"0 5, ,((4, the Cit0 &overn!ent of .u3ue3"r"o #"used the
re3istr"tion of the s"le "nd the issu"n#e of new #ertifi#"tes in its n"!e 6i.e., .C. No. .%$444,' "nd .C. No. .%$444,)7.
="sed on the tr"ns"#tion, the petitioner filed " #o!pl"int in the Offi#e of the Provin#i"l Ele#tion Supervisor of C"3"0"n
Provin#e "3"inst Cit0 M"0or .in3 "nd Cit0 .re"surer &"r#i", #h"r3in3 the! with " viol"tion of Se#tion ,8$, p"r"3r"phs
6v7 "nd 6w7, of the O!ni+us Ele#tion Code, for h"vin3 undert"4en to #onstru#t " pu+li# #e!eter0 "nd for h"vin3
rele"sed, dis+ursed "nd e9pended pu+li# funds within 45 d"0s prior to the M"0 ), ,((4 ele#tion, in disre3"rd of the
prohi+itions under s"id provisions due to the ele#tion +"n period h"vin3 #o!!en#ed on M"r#h ,8, ,((4 "nd ended on
M"0 ), ,((4.
Issues
.he issues to +e resolved "reD
6,7 5hether or not the "#@uisition of 2ots 5'8( "nd 5''$ durin3 the period of the ele#tion +"n w"s #overed +0
the ter! pu+li# wor4s "s to +e in viol"tion of Se#tion ,8$ 6v7 of the O!ni+us Ele#tion CodeA "nd
6-7 5hether or not the issu"n#e of .re"sur0 5"rr"nt No. ((($5-45$4 durin3 the period of the ele#tion +"n w"s
in viol"tion of Se#tion ,8$ 6w7 of the O!ni+us Ele#tion Code.
.he COME2EC held in its resolution d"ted <e+ru"r0 $', ,((' th"tD
.o +e li"+le for viol"tion of Se#tion ,8$ 6v7, supr", four 647 essenti"l ele!ents !ust #on#ur "nd the0 "reD
$. pu+li# offi#i"l or e!plo0ee rele"ses, dis+urses, or e9pends "n0 pu+li# fundsA
,. .he rele"se, dis+urse!ent or e9penditure of su#h funds !ust +e within fort0%five d"0s +efore re3ul"r
ele#tionA
-. .he rele"se, dis+urse!ent or e9penditure of s"id pu+li# funds is for "n0 "nd "ll 4inds of pu+li# wor4sA "nd
4. .he rele"se, dis+urse!ent or e9penditure of the pu+li# funds should not #over "n0 e9#eptions of Se#tion ,8$
6v7. 6Cnders#orin3 supplied7.
ppl0in3 the fore3oin3 "s 3uideline, it is #le"r th"t wh"t is prohi+ited +0 l"w is the rele"se, dis+urse!ent or e9penditure
of pu+li# funds for "n0 "nd "ll 4inds of pu+li# wor4s. Pu+li# wor4s is defined "s fi9ed wor4s 6"s s#hools, hi3hw"0s,
do#4s7 #onstru#ted for pu+li# use or en?o0!ent esp. when fin"n#ed "nd owned +0 the 3overn!ent. <ro! this definition,
the pur#h"se of the lots purportedl0 to +e utili;ed "s #e!eter0 +0 the Cit0 &overn!ent of .u3ue3"r"o #"nnot +0 "n0
stret#h of i!"3in"tion +e #onsidered "s pu+li# wor4s, hen#e it #ould not f"ll within the pros#ription "s !"nd"ted under
the "fore!entioned se#tion of the O!ni+us Ele#tion Code. nd sin#e the pur#h"se of the lots is not within the
#onte!pl"tion of the word pu+li# wor4s, the third of the ele!ents st"ted in the fore3oin3 3uideline is not present in this
#"se. 1en#e sin#e not "ll the ele!ents #on#urred, the respondents "re not li"+le for viol"tion of Se#tion ,8$ 6v7 of the
O!ni+us Ele#tion Code.
##ordin3l0, "+sent "n indi#"tion of "n0 #ontr"r0 le3isl"tive intention, the ter! pu+li# wor4s "s used in Se#tion ,8$ 6v7
of the O!ni+us Ele#tion Code is properl0 #onstrued to refer to "n0 +uildin3 or stru#ture on l"nd or to stru#tures 6su#h "s
ro"ds or d"!s7 +uilt +0 the &overn!ent for pu+li# use "nd p"id for +0 pu+li# funds. Pu+li# wor4s "re #le"rl0 wor4s,
whether of #onstru#tion or "d"pt"tion undert"4en "nd #"rried out +0 the n"tion"l, st"te, or !uni#ip"l "uthorities,
desi3ned to su+serve so!e purpose of pu+li# ne#essit0, use or #onvenien#e, su#h "s pu+li# +uildin3s, ro"ds, "@uedu#ts,
p"r4s, et#.A or, in other words, "ll fi9ed wor4s #onstru#ted for pu+li# use.
$,

It +e#o!es inevit"+le to #on#lude, therefore, th"t the petitionerQs insisten#e R th"t the "#@uisition of 2ots 5'8( "nd 5''$
for use "s " pu+li# #e!eter0 +e #onsidered " dis+urse!ent of the pu+li# funds for pu+li# wor4s in viol"tion of Se#tion
,8$6v7 of the O!ni+us Ele#tion Code R w"s unfounded "nd unw"rr"nted.
I$$.#&5% o6 '7% Tr%#$.r* 2#rr#&'
D.ri&8 '7% P%rio( o6 '7% El%5'io& B#&
Viol#'%( S%5'io& 291 :;<, Omnibus Election Code
Se#tion ,8$6w7 of the O!ni+us Ele#tion Code re"ds thusD
6w7 Prohi!ition against construction of pu!lic wor's, deliver" of materials for pu!lic wor's and issuance of treasur"
warrants and similar devices.% Durin3 the period of fort0 five d"0s pre#edin3 " re3ul"r ele#tion "nd thirt0 d"0s +efore "
spe#i"l ele#tion, "n0 person whoD 6"7 undert"4es the #onstru#tion of "n0 pu+li# wor4s, e9#ept for pro?e#ts or wor4s
e9e!pted in the pre#edin3 p"r"3r"phA or 6+7 issues, uses or "v"ils of tre"sur0 w"rr"nts or "n0 devi#e undert"4in3 future
deliver0 of !one0, 3oods or other thin3s of v"lue #h"r3e"+le "3"inst pu+li# funds.
.he OS& posits th"t the fore3oin3 provision is viol"ted in either of two w"0sD 6"7 +0 "n0 person who, within 45 d"0s
pre#edin3 " re3ul"r ele#tion "nd -( d"0s +efore " spe#i"l ele#tion, undert"4es the #onstru#tion of "n0 pu+li# wor4s
e9#ept those enu!er"ted in the pre#edin3 p"r"3r"phA or 6+7 +0 "n0 person who issues, uses or "v"ils of tre"sur0
w"rr"nts or "n0 devi#e undert"4in3 future deliver0 of !one0, 3oods or other thin3s of v"lue #h"r3e"+le "3"inst pu+li#
funds within 45 d"0s pre#edin3 " re3ul"r ele#tion "nd -( d"0s +efore " spe#i"l ele#tion.
5e #on#ur with the OS&/s position.
Se#tion ,8$ 6w7 #overs not onl0 one "#t +ut two, i.e., the "#t under su+p"r"3r"ph 6"7 "+ove "nd th"t under su+p"r"3r"ph
6+7 "+ove. <or purposes of the prohi+ition, the "#ts "re sep"r"te "nd distin#t, #onsiderin3 th"t Se#tion ,8$6w7 uses the
dis?un#tive or to sep"r"te su+p"r"3r"phs 6"7 "nd 6+7. In le3"l her!eneuti#s, or is " dis?un#tive th"t e9presses "n
"ltern"tive or 3ives " #hoi#e of one "!on3 two or !ore thin3s.
$-
.he word si3nifies dis"sso#i"tion "nd independen#e of
one thin3 fro! "nother thin3 in "n enu!er"tion. It should +e #onstrued, "s " rule, in the sense th"t it ordin"ril0 i!plies
"s " dis?un#tive word.
$4
##ordin3 to =l"#4,
$5
too, the word "nd #"n never +e re"d "s or, or vi#e vers", in #ri!in"l "nd
pen"l st"tutes, where the rule of stri#t #onstru#tion prev"ils. Conse@uentl0, whether or not the tre"sur0 w"rr"nt in
@uestion w"s intended for pu+li# wor4s w"s even of no !o!ent in deter!inin3 if the le3"l provision w"s viol"ted.
.here w"s " pro+"+le #"use to +elieve th"t Se#tion ,8$6w7, su+p"r"3r"ph 6+7, of the O!ni+us Ele#tion Code w"s
viol"ted when Cit0 M"0or .in3 "nd Cit0 .re"surer &"r#i" issued .re"sur0 5"rr"nt No. ((($5-45$4 durin3 the ele#tion
+"n period. <or this re"son, our #on#lusion th"t the COME2EC en !anc 3r"vel0 "+used its dis#retion in dis!issin3 E.O.
C"se No. (8%$4 for l"#4 of !erit is inevit"+le "nd irrefr"3"+le.
.rue, the COME2EC, "s the +od0 t"s4ed +0 no less th"n the $)'* Constitution to investi3"te "nd prose#ute viol"tions
of ele#tion l"ws,
$8
h"s the full dis#retion to deter!ine whether or not "n ele#tion #"se is to +e filed "3"inst " person "nd,
#onse@uentl0, its findin3s "s to the e9isten#e of pro+"+le #"use "re not su+?e#t to review +0 #ourts. Met, this poli#0 of
non%interferen#e does not "ppl0 where the COME2EC, "s the prose#utin3 or investi3"tin3 +od0, w"s "#tin3 "r+itr"ril0
"nd #"pri#iousl0, li4e herein, in re"#hin3 " different +ut p"tentl0 erroneous result.
$*
.he COME2EC w"s pl"inl0 3uilt0
of 3r"ve "+use of dis#retion.
&r"ve "+use of dis#retion is present >when there is " #"pri#ious "nd whi!si#"l e9er#ise of ?ud3!ent "s is e@uiv"lent to
l"#4 of ?urisdi#tion, su#h "s where the power is e9er#ised in "n "r+itr"r0 or despoti# !"nner +0 re"son of p"ssion or
person"l hostilit0, "nd it !ust +e so p"tent "nd 3ross "s to "!ount to "n ev"sion of positive dut0 or to " virtu"l refus"l to
perfor! the dut0 en?oined or to "#t "t "ll in #onte!pl"tion of l"w.>
$'

2"EREORE, 5E 3r"nt the petition for #ertior"ri "nd set "side the resolution d"ted <e+ru"r0 $', ,((' issued in E.O.
C"se No. (8%$4 +0 the Co!!ission of Ele#tions en !anc.
.he Co!!ission on Ele#tions is ordered to file the "ppropri"te #ri!in"l infor!"tion "3"inst respondents Cit0 M"0or
R"ndolph S. .in3 "nd Cit0 .re"surer S"lv"#ion &"r#i" of .u3ue3"r"o Cit0 for viol"tion of Se#tion ,8$ 6w7,
su+p"r"3r"ph 6+7, of the O!ni+us Ele#tion Code.
Costs of suit to +e p"id +0 the priv"te respondents.
SO ORDERED.
9%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%9
PANLA3!I VS COMELEC

Petitioner Mo;"rt P"nl"@ui 6P"nl"@ui7 "ss"ils the Co!!ission on Ele#tions 6Co!ele#7 (n $anc Resolution of June $*,
,(() den0in3 his !otion for pro#l"!"tion, whi#h he filed "fter this Court "ffir!ed in &.R. No. $'((5$I$J the
nullifi#"tion of the pro#l"!"tion of priv"te respondent N"rdo Eel"s#o 6Eel"s#o7 "s !"0or of S"s!u"n, P"!p"n3".
Eel"s#o w"s +orn in S"s!u"n on June ,,, $)5, to <ilipino p"rents. 1e !"rried Evel0n C"stillo on June ,),
$)*5. In $)'-, he !oved to the Cnited St"tes where he su+se@uentl0 +e#"!e " #iti;en.
Cpon Eel"s#o/s "ppli#"tion for du"l #iti;enship under Repu+li# #t No. ),,5I,J w"s "pproved on Jul0 -$,
,((8, he too4 on even d"te his o"th of "lle3i"n#e to the Repu+li# of the Philippines "nd returned to the Philippines on
Septe!+er $4, ,((8.
On O#to+er $-, ,((8, Eel"s#o "pplied for re3istr"tion "s " voter of S"s!u"n, whi#h "ppli#"tion w"s denied +0
the Ele#tion Re3istr"tion =o"rd 6ER=7. 1e thus filed " petition for the in#lusion of his n"!e in the list of voters +efore
the Muni#ip"l .ri"l Court 6M.C7 of S"s!u"n whi#h, +0 De#ision of <e+ru"r0 ), ,((*, reversed the ER=/s de#ision "nd
ordered his in#lusion in the list of voters of S"s!u"n.
On "ppe"l, the Re3ion"l .ri"l Court 6R.C7 of &u"3u", P"!p"n3", +0 De#ision of M"r#h $, ,((*, reversedI-J
the M.C De#ision, dr"win3 Eel"s#o to elev"te the !"tter vi" Rule 4, to the Court of ppe"ls whi#h, +0 !ended
De#isionI4J of u3ust $), ,((', dis!issed the "ppe"l for l"#4 of ?urisdi#tion. In the !e"nti!e, Eel"s#o filed on
M"r#h ,', ,((* his Certifi#"te of C"ndid"#0 6COC7 for !"0or of S"s!u"n, therein #l"i!in3 his st"tus "s " re3istered
voter. P"nl"@ui, who vied for the s"!e position, thereupon filed +efore the Co!ele# " Petition to Den0 Due Course .o
"ndHor .o C"n#el Eel"s#o/s COC +"sed on 3ross !"teri"l !isrepresent"tion "s to his residen#0 "nd, #onse@uentl0, his
@u"lifi#"tion to vote.
In the ele#tor"l +out of M"0 ,((*, Eel"s#o won over P"nl"@ui "s !"0or of S"s!u"n. s the
Co!ele# f"iled to resolve P"nl"@ui/s petition prior to the ele#tions, Eel"s#o too4 his o"th of offi#e
"nd "ssu!ed the duties of the offi#e. <indin3 !"teri"l !isrepresent"tion on the p"rt of Eel"s#o, the
Co!ele# #"n#elled his COC "nd nullified his pro#l"!"tion, +0 Resolutions of Jul0 8, ,((* "nd
O#to+er $5, ,((*, whi#h this Court "ffir!ed in &.R. No. $'((5$.
P"nl"@ui there"fter filed " !otion for pro#l"!"tion whi#h the Co!ele# denied +0 the "ss"iled Resolution,
pointin3 out th"t the rule on su##ession does not oper"te in f"vor of P"nl"@ui "s the se#ond pl"#er +e#"use Eel"s#o w"s
not dis@u"lified +0 fin"l ?ud3!ent !efore ele#tion d"0.
1en#e, the present petition whi#h i!putes 3r"ve "+use of dis#retion on the p"rt of the Co!ele# for not
re3"rdin3 the R.C M"r#h $, ,((* De#ision "s the fin"l ?ud3!ent of dis@u"lifi#"tion "3"inst Eel"s#o prior to the
ele#tions, so "s to f"ll within the "!+it of Ca"at v. Commission on (lectionsI5J on the e9#eption to the do#trine on the
re?e#tion of the se#ond pl"#er.
Eel"s#o filed his Co!!ent of Septe!+er $', ,(() with !otion to #onsolid"te the present #"se with &.R. No.
$')--8, his petition #h"llen3in3 the Co!ele#/s Septe!+er ', ,(() Order whi#h dire#ted hi! to v"#"te his !"0or"lt0
post for the in#u!+ent vi#e%!"0or to "ssu!e offi#e "s !"0or. perus"l of the re#ords of the petition shows, however,
th"t it h"d "lre"d0 +een dis!issed +0 the Court +0 Resolution of O#to+er 8, ,(().I8J
In his present petition, P"nl"@ui i!plores this Court to "ppl0 in his f"vor the #"se of Ca"at where the Court
"ffir!ed, inter alia, the Co!ele# Order dire#tin3 the pro#l"!"tion of the se#ond pl"#er "s M"0or of =u3ui"s, =en3uet
in this wiseD
.here is no dou+t "s to the propriet0 of P"lilen3/s pro#l"!"tion for two +"si# re"sons.

)irst, the COME2EC <irst Division/s Resolution of $, pril ,((4 #"n#ellin3 C"0"t/s
#ertifi#"te of #"ndid"#0 due to dis@u"lifi#"tion +e#"!e 6i&#l #&( %=%5.'or* o& 17 April 200, when
C"0"t f"iled to p"0 the pres#ri+ed filin3 fee. .hus, P"lilen3 w"s the o&l* #"ndid"te for M"0or of
=u3ui"s, =en3uet in the $( M"0 ,((4 ele#tions. .went0Kthree d"0s +efore ele#tion d"0, C"0"t w"s
"lre"d0 (i$>.#li6i%( )* 6i&#l ?.(8@%&' to run for M"0or in the $( M"0 ,((4 ele#tions. s the onl0
#"ndid"te, P"lilen3 w"s not " se#ond pl"#er. On the #ontr"r0, P"lilen3 w"s the sole "nd onl0 pl"#er,
$%5o&( 'o &o&% . .he do#trine on the re?e#tion of the se#ond pl"#er, whi#h tri33ers the rule on
su##ession, does not "ppl0 in the present #"se +e#"use P"lilen3 is not " se#ond%pl"#er +ut the onl0
pl"#er. Conse@uentl0, P"lilen3/s pro#l"!"tion "s M"0or of =u3ui"s, =en3uet is +e0ond @uestion.

Second, there "re spe#ifi# re@uire!ents for the "ppli#"tion of the do#trine on the re?e#tion
of the se#ond pl"#er. .he do#trine will "ppl0 in ="0"#s"n/s f"vor, re3"rdless of his intervention in
the present #"se, if two #onditions #on#urD 6$7 the de#ision on C"0"t/s dis@u"lifi#"tion r%@#i&%(
p%&(i&8 o& %l%5'io& (#*, $( M"0 ,((4, resultin3 in the presen#e of two !"0or"lt0 #"ndid"tes for
=u3ui"s, =en3uet in the ele#tionsA "nd 6,7 the de#ision on C"0"t/s dis@u"lifi#"tion +e#"!e fin"l onl0
#6'%r the ele#tions.I*J 6e!ph"sis "nd it"li#s in the ori3in"lA unders#orin3 supplied7
Rep"#4"3in3 the present petition in Ca"at*s f"shion, P"nl"@ui "sserts th"t the R.C M"r#h $, ,((* De#ision in the
voter/s in#lusion pro#eedin3s !ust +e #onsidered "s the fin"l ?ud3!ent of dis@u"lifi#"tion "3"inst Eel"s#o, whi#h
de#ision w"s issued !ore th"n two !onths prior to the ele#tions. P"nl"@ui posits th"t when Eel"s#o/s petition for
in#lusion w"s denied, he w"s "lso de#l"red "s dis@u"lified to run for pu+li# offi#e.
Cnwr"ppin3 the present petition, the Court finds th"t the true #olor of the issue of distin#tion +etween "
petition for in#lusion of voters in the list "nd " petition to den0 due #ourse to or #"n#el " #ertifi#"te of #"ndid"#0 h"s
"lre"d0 +een defined in +elasco v. Commission on (lectionsABC where the Court held th"t the two pro#eedin3s !"0
ulti!"tel0 h"ve #o!!on f"#tu"l +"ses +ut the0 "re poles "p"rt in ter!s of the issues, reliefs "nd re!edies involved,
thusD
In ter!s of purpose, voters/ in#lusionHe9#lusion "nd COC deni"lH#"n#ell"tion "re different
pro#eedin3sA one refers to the "ppli#"tion to +e re3istered "s " voter to +e eli3i+le to vote, while the
other refers to the "ppli#"tion to +e " #"ndid"te. =e#"use of their differin3 purposes, the0 "lso involve
different issues "nd ent"il different reliefs, "lthou3h the f"#ts on whi#h the0 rest !"0 h"ve
#o!!on"lities where the0 !"0 +e s"id to #onver3e or interf"#e. 9 9 9A9C 6unders#orin3 supplied7
Eoters/ in#lusionHe9#lusion pro#eedin3s, on the one h"nd, essenti"ll0 involve the issue of whether " petitioner
sh"ll +e in#luded in or e9#luded fro! the list of voters +"sed on the @u"lifi#"tions re@uired +0 l"w "nd the f"#ts
presented to show possession of these @u"lifi#"tions.A10C
On the other h"nd, COC deni"lH#"n#ell"tion pro#eedin3s involve the issue of whether there is " f"lse represent"tion of "
!"teri"l f"#t. .he f"lse represent"tion !ust ne#ess"ril0 pert"in not to " !ere inno#uous !ist"4e +ut to " !"teri"l f"#t or
those th"t refer to " #"ndid"te/s @u"lifi#"tions for ele#tive offi#e. p"rt fro! the re@uire!ent of !"teri"lit0, the f"lse
represent"tion !ust #onsist of " deli+er"te "tte!pt to !isle"d, !isinfor!, or hide " f"#t whi#h would otherwise render "
#"ndid"te ineli3i+le or, otherwise st"ted, with the intention to de#eive the ele#tor"te "s to the would%+e #"ndid"te/s
@u"lifi#"tions for pu+li# offi#e.A11C
In +elasco, the Court re?e#ted Eel"s#o/s #ontention th"t the Co!ele# i!properl0 ruled on the ri3ht to vote when it
#"n#elled his COC. .he Court st"ted th"t the Co!ele# !erel0 relied on or re#o3ni;ed the R.C/s fin"l "nd e9e#utor0
de#ision on the !"tter of the ri3ht to vote in the pre#in#t within its territori"l ?urisdi#tion. In the present petition, it is
P"nl"@ui/s turn to proffer the novel interpret"tion th"t the R.C properl0 #"n#elled Eel"s#o/s COC when it ruled on his
ri3ht to vote. .he Court re?e#ts the s"!e.
It is not within the provin#e of the R.C in " voter/s in#lusionHe9#lusion pro#eedin3s to t"4e #o3ni;"n#e of "nd
deter!ine the presen#e of " f"lse represent"tion of " !"teri"l f"#t. It h"s no ?urisdi#tion to tr0 the issues of whether the
!isrepresent"tion rel"tes to !"teri"l f"#t "nd whether there w"s "n intention to de#eive the ele#tor"te in ter!s of one/s
@u"lifi#"tions for pu+li# offi#e. .he findin3 th"t Eel"s#o w"s not @u"lified to vote due to l"#4 of residen#0 re@uire!ent
does not tr"nsl"te into " findin3 of " deli+er"te "tte!pt to !isle"d, !isinfor!, or hide " f"#t whi#h would otherwise
render hi! ineli3i+le. ssu!in3 arguendo the pl"usi+ilit0 of P"nl"@ui/s theor0, the Co!ele# #orre#tl0 o+served th"t
when the R.C issued its M"r#h $, ,((* De#ision, there w"s 0et no COC to #"n#el +e#"use Eel"s#o/s COC w"s filed
onl0 on M"r#h ,', ,((*. Indeed, not onl0 would it +e in e9#ess of ?urisdi#tion +ut "lso +e0ond the re"l! of possi+ilit0
for the R.C to rule th"t there w"s deli+er"te #on#e"l!ent on the p"rt of Eel"s#o when he st"ted under o"th in his COC
th"t he is " re3istered voter of S"s!u"n despite his 4nowled3e of the R.C de#ision whi#h w"s 0et forth#o!in3.
IN <INE, the Co!ele# did not 3r"vel0 "+use its dis#retion when it denied P"nl"@ui/s !otion for pro#l"!"tion. Sin#e
Eel"s#o/s dis@u"lifi#"tion
"s " #"ndid"te h"d not +e#o!e fin"l !efore the ele#tions, the Co!ele# properl0 "pplied the rule on su##ession.
9 9 9 .o si!plisti#"ll0 "ssu!e th"t the se#ond pl"#er would h"ve re#eived the
other votes would +e to su+stitute our ?ud3!ent for the !ind of the voter. .he se#ond
pl"#er is ?ust th"t, " se#ond pl"#er. 1e lost the ele#tions. 1e w"s repudi"ted +0 either "
!"?orit0 or plur"lit0 of voters. 1e #ould not +e #onsidered the first "!on3 @u"lified
#"ndid"tes +e#"use in " field whi#h e9#ludes the dis@u"lified #"ndid"te, the #onditions
would h"ve su+st"nti"ll0 #h"n3ed. 5e "re not prep"red to e9tr"pol"te the results under
su#h #ir#u!st"n#es.

.o "llow the defe"ted "nd repudi"ted #"ndid"te to t"4e over the !"0or"lt0 despite his
re?e#tion +0 the ele#tor"te is to disenfr"n#hise the! throu3h no f"ult on their p"rt, "nd to under!ine
the i!port"n#e "nd the !e"nin3 of de!o#r"#0 "nd the ri3ht of the people to ele#t offi#i"ls of their
#hoi#e.

.heoreti#"ll0, the se#ond pl"#er #ould re#eive ?ust one vote. In su#h " #"se, it would +e
"+surd to pro#l"i! the tot"ll0 repudi"ted #"ndid"te "s the voters/ #hoi#e. 9 9 9I$,J
2"EREORE, the petition is DISMISSED. .he "ss"iled June $*, ,(() Resolution of the Co!!ission on Ele#tions
is AIRMED.
vii
viii
i9
9
RO3!E VS COMELEC
#5'$D
.his #"se is " !otion for re#onsider"tion filed +0 the petitioners of the Septe!+er $(, ,(()
rulin3 of the Supre!e Court, whi#h denied the petition of 1. 1"rr0 2. Ro@ue, Jr., et "l. for
certiorari, prohi!ition, "nd mandamus to nullif0 the #ontr"#t%"w"rd of the ,($( Ele#tion
uto!"tion Pro?e#t to the ?oint venture of .ot"l Infor!"tion M"n"3e!ent Corpor"tion 6.IM7 "nd
S!"rt!"ti# Intern"tion"l Corpor"tion 6S!"rt!"ti#7.
In this MR, petitioners Ro@ue, et "l. "re "3"in +efore the Supre!e Court "s4in3 th"t the #ontr"#t
"w"rd +e de#l"red null "nd void on the st"ted 3round th"t it w"s !"de in viol"tion of the
Constitution, st"tutes, "nd ?urispruden#e. Intervenin3 petitioner "lso interposed " si!il"r !otion, +ut
onl0 to pr"0 th"t the =o"rd of Ele#tion Inspe#tors +e ordered to !"nu"ll0 #ount the +"llots "fter the
printin3 "nd ele#troni# tr"ns!ission of the ele#tion returns.
Petitioners Ro@ue, et "l., "s !ov"nts herein, see4 " re#onsider"tion of the Septe!+er $(, ,(()
De#ision on the followin3 issues or 3roundsD

$. .he Co!ele#/s pu+li# pronoun#e!ents show th"t there is " >hi3h pro+"+ilit0> th"t there will +e
f"ilure of "uto!"ted ele#tionsA
,. Co!ele# "+di#"ted its #onstitution"l fun#tions in f"vor of S!"rt!"ti#A
-. .here is no le3"l fr"!ewor4 to 3uide the Co!ele# in "ppre#i"tin3 "uto!"ted +"llots in #"se the
PCOS !"#hines f"ilA
4. Respondents #"nnot #o!pl0 with the re@uire!ents of R '4-8 for " sour#e #ode reviewA
5. Certifi#"tions su+!itted +0 priv"te respondents "s to the su##essful use of the !"#hines in
ele#tions "+ro"d do not fulfill the re@uire!ent of Se#. $, of R '4-8A
8. Priv"te respondents will not +e "+le to provide tele#o!!uni#"tions f"#ilities th"t will "ssure
$((S #o!!uni#"tions #over"3e "t "ll ti!es durin3 the #ondu#t of the ,($( ele#tionsA "nd
*. Su+#ontr"#tin3 the !"nuf"#ture of PCOS !"#hines to Luisdi viol"tes the Co!ele#/s +iddin3
rules.

I$$.%D Is the !otion for re#onsider"tion !eritoriousP
R.li&8D
No.
Cpon t"4in3 " se#ond h"rd loo4 into the issues in the #"se "t +"r "nd the "r3u!ents e"rnestl0
pressed in the inst"nt !otions, the Court #"nnot 3r"nt the desired re#onsider"tion.
Petitioners/ threshold "r3u!ent delves on possi+ilities, on !"tters th"t !"0 or !"0 not o##ur. .he
#on?e#tur"l "nd spe#ul"tive n"ture of the first issue r"ised is refle#ted in the ver0 !"nner of its
for!ul"tion "nd +0 st"te!ents, su#h "s >the pu+li# pronoun#e!ents of pu+li# respondent
COME2EC 9 9 9 #le"rl0 show th"t there is " hi3h pro+"+ilit0 th"t there will +e "uto!"ted f"ilure of
ele#tions>A >there is " hi3h pro+"+ilit0 th"t the use of PCOS !"#hines in the M"0 ,($( ele#tions
will result in f"ilure of ele#tions>A >the un"ddressed lo3isti#"l ni3ht!"resB"nd the l"#4 of
#ontin3en#0 pl"ns th"t should h"ve +een #r"fted "s " result of " pilot testB!"4e "n "uto!"ted
f"ilure of ele#tions ver0 pro+"+le>A "nd >COME2EC #o!!itted 3r"ve "+use of dis#retion when it
si3ned 9 9 9 the #ontr"#t for full "uto!"tion 9 9 9 despite the li4elihood of " f"ilure of ele#tions.>
Spe#ul"tions "nd #on?e#tures "re not e@uiv"lent to proofA the0 h"ve little, if "n0, pro+"tive v"lue
"nd, surel0, #"nnot +e the +"sis of " sound ?ud3!ent.
Petitioners, to support their spe#ul"tive venture vis%T%vis the possi+ilit0 of Co!ele# 3oin3 !"nu"l,
h"ve "ttri+uted #ert"in st"te!ents to respondent Co!ele# Ch"ir!"n Melo, #itin3 for the purpose "
news ite! on In@uirer.net, posted Septe!+er $8, ,(().
Re"#tin3 to the "ttri+ution, however, respondents .IM "nd S!"rt!"ti#, in their #o!!ent, des#ri+ed
the Melo pronoun#e!ents "s !"de in the #onte9t of Co!ele#/s #ontin3en#0 pl"n. Petitioners,
however, the s"!e respondents "dded, put " !isle"din3 spin to the Melo pronoun#e!ents +0
reprodu#in3 p"rt of the news ite!, +ut o!ittin3 to !"4e referen#e to his su##eedin3 st"te!ents to
"rrive "t " #le"rer "nd true pi#ture.
Priv"te respondents/ o+serv"tion is well%t"4en. Indeed, it is e"s0 to sele#tivel0 #ite portions of wh"t
h"s +een s"id, so!eti!es out of their proper #onte9t, in order to "ssert " !isle"din3 #on#lusion. .he
effe#t #"n +e d"n3erous. I!proper !e"nin3 !"0 +e deli+er"tel0 "tt"#hed to inno#ent views or even
o##"sion"l #rude #o!!ents +0 the si!ple e9pedien#0 of liftin3 the! out of #onte9t fro! "n0
pu+li#"tion.
Petitioners/ posture "nent the third issue, i.e, there no is le3"l fr"!ewor4 to 3uide Co!ele# in the
"ppre#i"tion of "uto!"ted +"llots or to 3overn !"nu"l #ount should PCOS !"#hines f"il, #"nnot +e
"##orded #o3en#0. <irst, it 3losses over the #ontinuit0 "nd +"#4%up pl"ns th"t would +e i!ple!ented
in #"se the PCOS !"#hines f"lter durin3 the ,($( ele#tions. .he over"ll f"ll+"#4 str"te30 "nd
options to "ddress even the worst%#"se s#en"rioBthe wholes"le +re"4down of the '(,((( needed
!"#hines n"tionwide "nd of the ,,((( reserved unitsBh"ve +een dis#ussed in so!e det"il in the
De#ision su+?e#t of this re#ourse. .he Court need not +el"+or the! "3"in.
5hile " !otion for re#onsider"tion !"0 tend to dwell on issues "lre"d0 resolved in the de#ision
sou3ht to +e re#onsideredB"nd this should not +e "n o+st"#le for " re#onsider"tionBthe h"rd
re"lit0 is th"t petitioners h"ve f"iled to r"ise !"tters su+st"nti"ll0 pl"usi+le or #o!pellin3l0
persu"sive to w"rr"nt the desired #ourse of "#tion.
Si3nifi#"ntl0, petitioners, in support of their position on the l"#4%of%le3"l%fr"!ewor4 issue, invo4e
the opinion of sso#i"te, l"ter Chief, Justi#e rte!io P"n3"ni+"n in Loong v. Comelec, where he
!"de the followin3 o+serv"tionsD >Resort to !"nu"l "ppre#i"tion of the +"llots is pre#luded +0 the
+"si# fe"tures of the "uto!"ted ele#tion s0ste!,> "nd >the rules l"id down in the O!ni+us Ele#tion
Code 6OEC7 for the "ppre#i"tion "nd #ountin3 of +"llots #"st in " !"nu"l ele#tion 9 9 9 "re
in"ppropri"te, if not downri3ht useless, to the proper "ppre#i"tion "nd re"din3 of the +"llots used in
the "uto!"ted s0ste!.> 5ithout delvin3 on its wisdo! "nd v"lidit0, the view of Justi#e P"n3"ni+"n
thus #ited #"!e +0 w"0 of " dissentin3 opinion. s su#h, it is without +indin3 effe#t, " dissentin3
opinion +ein3 " !ere e9pression of the individu"l view of " !e!+er of the Court or other #olle3i"l
"d?udi#"tin3 +od0, while dis"3reein3 with the #on#lusion held +0 the !"?orit0.
nd 3oin3 to "nother +ut re#0#led issue, petitioners would h"ve the Court inv"lid"te the "uto!"tion
#ontr"#t on the 3round th"t the #ertifi#"tions su+!itted +0 S!"rt!"ti# durin3 the +iddin3, showin3
th"t the PCOS te#hnolo30 h"s +een used in ele#tions "+ro"d, do not #o!pl0 with Se#. $,,, of R
'4-8. Presentl0, petitioners "ssert th"t the s0ste! #ertified "s h"vin3 +een used in New Mor4 w"s the
Do!inion I!"3e C"st, " +"llot !"r4in3 devi#e.
Petitioners h"ve o+viousl0 inserted, "t this st"3e of the #"se, "n entirel0 new f"#tu"l di!ension to
their #"use. .his we #"nnot "llow for #o!pellin3 re"sons. <or st"rters, the Court #"nnot pl"usi+l0
v"lid"te this f"#tu"l "ssertion of petitioners. s it is, priv"te respondents h"ve even @uestioned the
reli"+ilit0 of the we+site,4 when#e petitioners +"se their "ssertion, "l+eit the for!er, #itin3 the s"!e
we+site, st"te th"t the I!"3e C"st Pre#in#t t"+ul"tion devi#e refers to the Do!inion/s PCOS
!"#hines.
Moreover, "s " !"tter of sound est"+lished pr"#ti#e, points of l"w, theories, issues, "nd "r3u!ents
not r"ised in the ori3in"l pro#eedin3s #"nnot +e +rou3ht out on review. ="si# #onsider"tions of f"ir
pl"0 i!pel this rule. .he i!per"tives of orderl0, if not speed0, ?usti#e frown on " pie#e!e"l
present"tion of eviden#e "nd on the pr"#ti#e of p"rties of 3oin3 to tri"l h"ph";"rdl0.
Movin3 still to "nother issue, petitioners #l"i! th"t >there "re ver0 stron3 indi#"tions th"t Priv"te
Respondents will not +e "+le to provide for tele#o!!uni#"tion f"#ilities for "re"s without these
f"#ilities.> .his "r3u!ent, +ein3 "3"in hi3hl0 spe#ul"tive, is without evidenti"r0 v"lue "nd h"rdl0
provides " 3round for the Court to nullif0 the "uto!"tion #ontr"#t. Surel0, " possi+le +re"#h of "
#ontr"#tu"l stipul"tion is not " le3"l re"son to pre!"turel0 res#ind, !u#h less "nnul, the #ontr"#t.
<in"ll0, petitioners "r3ue th"t, +"sed on news reports,,' the .IM%S!"rt!"ti# ?oint venture h"s
entered into " new #ontr"#t with Luisdi, " Sh"n3h"i%+"sed #o!p"n0, to !"nuf"#ture on its +eh"lf
the needed PCOS !"#hines to full0 "uto!"te the ,($( ele#tions.,) .his "rr"n3e!ent, petitioners
"ver, viol"tes the +id rules pros#ri+in3 su+%#ontr"#tin3 of si3nifi#"nt #o!ponents of the "uto!"tion
pro?e#t.
.he "r3u!ent is unten"+le, +"sed "s it is "3"in on news reports. Surel0, petitioners #"nnot e9pe#t
the Court to "#t on unverified reports foisted on it.
G.R. No. 20,B2B D%5%@)%r 3, 2013
JAIME C. REGIO, Petitioner,
vs.
COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS #&( RONNIE C. CO, Respondents.
D E C I S I O N
VELASCO, JR., J.:
.he C"se
.his petition for #ertior"ri filed under Rule 84, in rel"tion to Rule 85, see4s to nullif0 "nd set "side
the Resolution d"ted De#e!+er *, ,($, of the Co!!ission on Ele#tions 6COME2ECU EN ="n# in
EC 6=R&M%SF7 No. $8$%,($$. .he "ss"iled Resolution reversed "nd set "side the Resolution of
the COME2EC <irst Division d"ted u3ust ,-, ,($$, whi#h, in turn, "ffir!ed the M"0 4, ,($$
De#ision in Ele#tion C"se No. (,4'(%EC of the Metropolit"n .ri"l Court 6Me.C7, =r"n#h 4 in
M"nil".
.he <"#ts
Petitioner J"i!e C. Re3io 6Re3io7 "nd priv"te respondent Ronnie C. Co 6Co7, "!on3 other
#"ndid"tes, r"n in the O#to+er ,5, ,($( +"r"n3"0 ele#tions in ="r"n3"0 ,)8, :one ,', Distri#t III of
the Cit0 of M"nil" for the position of punon3 +"r"n3"0. I!!edi"tel0 followin3 the #ountin3 "nd
#"nv"ssin3 of the votes fro! seven #lustered pre#in#ts in the "dverted +"r"n3"0, Re3io, who
3"rnered four hundred sevent0%ei3ht 64*'7 votes, "s "3"inst the three hundred thirt0%si9 6--87 votes
o+t"ined +0 Co, w"s pro#l"i!ed winner for the #ontested post of punon3 +"r"n3"0. .he det"iled
t"ll0 of the votes per pre#in#t, "s refle#ted in the St"te!ent of Eotes, is "s followsD$
C#&(i(#'%Cl.$'%r%( Pr%5i&5' N.@)%rTo'#l$-(, $-(-$-(4 $-(5$-(8$-(* $-(*=Co,
Ronnie C.*8$$-4'))--8Re3io, J"i!e C.$*$$5$*-'-4*'On Nove!+er 4, ,($(, Co filed "n
ele#tion protest +efore the Me.C. 1e #l"i!ed, "!on3 other thin3s, th"t the =o"rd of Ele#tion
.ellers 6=E.7 did not follow COME2EC Resolution No. )(-(, "s itD 6$7 did not per!it his
supporters to voteA 6,7 "llowed >fl0in3 voters> to #"st votesA "nd 6-7 i3nored the rules on
"ppre#i"tion of +"llots, resultin3 in !isre"din3, !is#ountin3, "nd !is"ppre#i"tion of +"llots.
ddition"ll0, he "lle3ed th"t Re3io #o!!itted vote%+u0in3, "nd en3"3ed in distri+ution of s"!ple
+"llots inside the pollin3 #enters durin3 the d"0 of the ele#tions.,
Of the seven #lustered pre#in#ts 6CPs7 initi"ll0 protested, Co would l"ter e9#lude CP Nos. $-(4
"nd $-(5 fro! the protest. Durin3 the preli!in"r0 #onferen#e, the tri"l #ourt "llowed the revision
of +"llots. .he revision of +"llots o##urred on J"nu"r0 $-%$4, ,($$.- Per the report of the revision
#o!!ittee, the nu!+er of votes o+t"ined +0 +oth #"ndid"tes in the #ontested pre#in#ts, "s shown
+elow, indi#"ted " su+st"nti"l re#over0 on the p"rt of CoD
C"ndid"teClustered Pre#in#t Nu!+er.ot"l$-(, $-(-$-(4 $-(5$-(8$-(* $-(*=Co,
Ronnie C.$8(%%8-)'-,$Re3io, J"i!e C.'8%%8,'4,-,Durin3 his turn to present eviden#e, Co li!ited
his offer to the revision #o!!ittee report, showin3 th"t he 3"rnered the hi3hest nu!+er of votes.
Re3io, on the other h"nd, denied th"t the ele#tions were t"inted with irre3ul"rities. 1e #l"i!ed th"t
the results of the revision "re produ#ts of post%ele#tions oper"tions, "s the +"llots were t"!pered
with, swit#hed, "nd "ltered dr"sti#"ll0 to #h"n3e the results of the ele#tions. 1e presented "s
witnesses the followin3D poll w"t#hers Ev"n3eline &"r#i", Ce;"r Re3io, "nd Ru+en Merilles, who
"ll testified th"t there were no inst"n#es of ele#tor"l fr"ud, irre3ul"rities, "nd "no!"lies durin3 the
d"0 of the ele#tions. Presented too were volunteers 2ove 3p"o" "nd Ro!0 Lue, who +elied
"lle3"tions of !is#ountin3, !isre"din3, "nd !is"ppre#i"tion of the +"llots durin3 the #ountin3, "nd
Do!in"dor Del" Cru;, Ch"irperson of the =E. for CP Nos. $-(,H$-(-, "s well "s Erlin"
1ern"nde;, Ch"irperson of the =E. for CP No. $-(8, who +oth testified th"t the0 followed the
rules "nd re3ul"tions in #ondu#tin3 the ele#tions in ="r"n3"0 ,)8, "nd th"t e"#h +"llot w"s #orre#tl0
t"+ul"ted.4
.he results of the revision notwithst"ndin3, the tri"l #ourt, in its De#ision of M"0 4, ,($$, dis!issed
Co/s protest "nd de#l"red Re3io "s the dul0%ele#ted punon3 +"r"n3"0 of ="r"n3"0 ,)8. It disposed
of the #"se, "s followsD
51ERE<ORE, the pro#l"!"tion of protestee J"i!e C. Re3io "s the dul0 ele#ted >Punon3
="r"n3"0> or >="r"n3"0 Ch"ir!"n> of ="r"n3"0 ,)8, Distri#t III, M"nil" +0 the ="r"n3"0 =o"rd of
C"nv"ssers is "ffir!ed +0 this #ourt. .he ele#tion protest filed +0 the protest"nt Ronnie C. Co is
dis!issed for l"#4 of !erit.5
##ordin3 to the tri"l #ourt, +efore it #"n "##ord #reden#e to the results of the revision, it should
first +e "s#ert"ined th"t the +"llots found in the +o9 durin3 the revision "re the s"!e +"llots
deposited +0 the voters. In fine, the #ourt >should first +e #onvin#ed th"t the +"llots #ounted durin3
the revision h"ve not +een t"!pered with +efore it #"n de#l"re the +"llots "7 "s superior eviden#e of
how the ele#tor"te voted, "nd +7 "s suffi#ient eviden#e to set "side the ele#tion returns. <or the
+"llots to +e #onsidered the +est eviden#e of how the voters voted, their inte3rit0 should +e
s"tisf"#toril0 est"+lished.>8 Invo4in3 Ros"l v. COME2EC,* the tri"l #ourt ruled th"t Co f"iled to
suffi#ientl0 show th"t the inte3rit0 of the #ontested +"llots h"d +een preserved. It then #ited the
presu!ption th"t ele#tion returns "re 3enuine, "nd th"t the d"t" "nd infor!"tion supplied +0 the
+o"rd of ele#tion inspe#tors "re true "nd #orre#t.'
.he tri"l #ourt s"idD
#loser s#rutin0 of the pre!ise !"de +0 the protest"nt will reve"l th"t he is tr0in3 to prove the
!isre"din3, !is#ountin3, "nd !is"ppre#i"tion of +"llots +0 introdu#in3 "s eviden#e the !"r4ed
differen#e of the results of the revision "nd of the results in the ele#tion returns. .his pre!ise is too
presu!ptuous. .he !"r4ed differen#e #"nnot +e used to prove the !isre"din3, !is#ountin3, "nd
!is"ppre#i"tion of +"llots +e#"use the !isre"din3, !is#ountin3, "nd !is"ppre#i"tion of +"llots is
pre#isel0 wh"t the protest"nt needs to prove to ?ustif0 the !"r4ed differen#e in the results. Pruden#e
di#t"tes th"t the protest"nt should first e9pl"in where this hu3e dis#rep"n#0 is #o!in3 fro! +efore
usin3 it "s eviden#e. In other words, the !isre"din3, !is#ountin3, "nd !is"ppre#i"tion of +"llots
should +e proven +0 other independent eviden#e. 5ithout "n0 eviden#e, the "lle3"tion of
!isre"din3, !is#ountin3, "nd !is"ppre#i"tion of +"llots re!"ins " !ere "lle3"tion without "n0
pro+"tive v"lue.)
.r"versin3 the "lle3"tions of post%ele#tions t"!perin3, the tri"l #ourt re?e#ted Co/s "lle3"tion th"t
the +"llot +o9es were properl0 lo#4ed "nd se"led. In f"#t, the tri"l #ourt s"id, the envelope
#ont"inin3 the +"llots for CP Nos. $-(,H$-(- w"s 3lued on +oth sides, pro!ptin3 protestee/s
revisor to #o!!ent th"t the envelope "ppe"rs to +e re%p"sted "nd t"!pered. In CP No. $-(8, the
report st"ted th"t the +"llots were not pl"#ed in " se"led envelope.$( Coroll"ril0, the tri"l #ourt
st"ted the o+serv"tion th"t Re3io h"s presented #redi+le witnesses to prove th"t there were no
irre3ul"rities or "no!"lies durin3 the #"stin3 "nd #ountin3 of votes. 33rieved, Co filed "n "ppe"l
+efore the COME2EC, "r3uin3 th"t the tri"l #ourt erredD
$.7 In disre3"rdin3 the result of the ph0si#"l #ount of the revised +"llots found in Pre#in#t Nos.
$-(,H$-(- "nd $-(8A
,.7 In de#l"rin3 th"t the protest"nt "ppell"nt w"s not "+le to suffi#ientl0 show th"t the inte3rit0 of
the #ontested +"llots in Pre#in#t Nos. $-(,H$-(- "nd $-(8 w"s preservedA
-.7 In de#l"rin3 th"t protest"nt%"ppell"nt w"s not "+le to over#o!e the presu!ption of re3ul"rit0 of
the ele#tion, #ountin3, "nd #"nv"ssin3 pro#eedin3s in the protested pre#in#ts of ="r"n3"0 ,)8,
M"nil"A
4.7 In de#l"rin3 th"t the votes o+t"ined +0 the p"rties in Pre#in#t Nos. $-(,H$-(- "nd $-(8 "s
refle#ted in their respe#tive Ele#tion Returns "re ItheJ true "nd "#tu"l results of the ele#tionsA
5.7 In 3ivin3 wei3ht to the in#redulous "nd #onfli#tin3 testi!onies of the o+viousl0 +i"sed witnesses
of the protestee%"ppelleeA
8.7 In refusin3 to lend #reden#e to the testi!on0 of the e9pert witness fro! the Co!!ission on
Ele#tions th"t the +"llots o+t"ined fro! Pre#in#t Nos. $-(,H$-(- "nd $-(8 "re 3enuine +"llotsA
"nd
*.7 In refusin3 to "ppre#i"te the #ontested "nd revised +"llots for Pre#in#t Nos. $-(,H$-(- "nd
$-(8 "nd the "ppre#i"tion of the #ontested +"llots found in Pre#in#t No. $-(*H$-(*=.$$
In " Resolution d"ted u3ust ,-, ,($$, the COME2EC <irst Division$, dis!issed the "ppe"l,
notin3, "s the Me.C did, th"t Co f"iled to show th"t the inte3rit0 of the +"llots in @uestion w"s in
f"#t preserved. E#hoin3 the tri"l #ourt, the COME2EC <irst Division ruled th"t the "+sen#e of "n0
report or re#ord of t"!perin3 of the +"llot +o9es does not pre#lude the possi+ilit0 of +"llot
t"!perin3.$-
It "lso "ffir!ed the re?e#tion of Co/s reli"n#e on the revision #o!!ittee report "s proof th"t no post%
ele#tion t"!perin3 o##urred. .he COME2EC <irst Division o+servedD
5e note th"t protest"nt%"ppell"nt did not offer "n0 eviden#e to prove his #l"i!s of !isre"din3,
!is#ountin3, "nd !is"ppre#i"tion of the +"llotsA he posits th"t the v"ri"n#e +etween the ele#tion
results "##ordin3 to the ele#tion do#u!ents "nd the revision of the +"llots is in itself enou3h to
prove his "lle3"tions of !isre"din3, !is#ountin3, "nd !is"ppre#i"tion of the +"llots +0 the =o"rd of
Ele#tion .ellers. Protest"nt%"ppell"nt +e3s the @uestion inste"d of l"0in3 support to his #l"i!s. 9 9 9
9 Sin#e it #ould not divine the will of the ele#tor"te fro! the +"llots, the tri"l #ourt h"d no other
re#ourse other th"n to rel0 on the "v"il"+le ele#tion do#u!ents. nd, 5e #"nnot f"ult the tri"l #ourt
for doin3 so when there w"s no @uestion "s to the ele#tion do#u!ents/ "uthenti#it0 "nd v"lidit0.
Protest"nt%"ppell"nt h"rps th"t the ele#tion do#u!ents "re >!ere +0%produ#ts of the ele#tor"l fr"ud
#o!!itted to +enefit 6protestee%"ppellee7 in#ludin3 +ut not li!ited to !isre"din3, !is#ountin3, "nd
!is"ppre#i"tion of +"llots +0 the Ch"irpersons of the =o"rd of Ele#tion .ellers in order to in#re"se
the votes of the Protestee%ppellee "nd de#re"se the votes th"t should h"ve +een properl0 #redited
to Protest"nt%ppell"nt Co.>
6e!ph"sis in the ori3in"l7
s previousl0 !entioned, protest"nt%"ppell"nt/s "ssertion is spe#ious 9 9 9. .he re#ords of the #"se
is +ereft of "n0 eviden#e supportin3 protest"nt%"ppell"nt/s #l"i!s of ele#tor"l fr"ud "nd, thus, 5e
#on#ur with the tri"l #ourt st"tin3, >6w7ithout "n0 eviden#e, the "lle3"tion of !isre"din3,
!is#ountin3, "nd !is"ppre#i"tion of +"llots re!"ins " !ere "lle3"tion without pro+"tive v"lue.>$4
.he COME2EC <irst Division noted th"t Co #ould h"ve, +ut did not, presented testi!onies of
witnesses to su+st"nti"te his #l"i!s of ele#tor"l fr"ud, "l+eit he "tt"#hed "ffid"vits of v"rious
witnesses in his protest. .he "ffid"vits, the COME2EC <irst Division s"id, "sserted, in one for! or
"nother, the ele#tor"l !"lfe"s"n#e or !isfe"s"n#e "lle3edl0 #o!!itted +0 the =E.. In dis!issin3
the "r3u!ents of Co for his f"ilure to present eviden#e, the COME2EC #o!!ented, >IIJt "ppe"rs
th"t protest"nt%"ppell"nt ICoJ rested on l"urels "fter seein3 the result of the ph0si#"l #ount of the
revised +"llots "nd the #on#lusion of the .e#hni#"l E9"!in"tion. In fine, protest"nt%"ppell"nt
prover+i"ll0 lost the w"r for w"nt of " n"il.>$5
.he f"llo of the COME2EC <irst Division Resolution re"dsD
51ERE<ORE, pre!ises #onsidered, the Co!!ission 6<irst Division7 RESO2EED, "s it here+0
RESO2EES, to DENM the protest"nt/s ppe"l for 2CF O< MERI.. .he De#ision d"ted (4 M"0
,($$ +0 Metropolit"n .ri"l Court K =r"n#h (4 Cit0 of M"nil" is here+0 <<IRMED.$8
Co then filed " Motion for Re#onsider"tion. In its "ss"iled De#e!+er *, ,($, Resolution, the
COME2EC En ="n#$* re#onsidered the u3ust ,-, ,($$ Resolution of the <irst Division, "nd
"##ordin3l0 de#l"red Co "s the dul0 ele#ted punon3 +"r"n3"0. Eit"l to the En ="n#/s disposition is
its findin3 th"t the +"llots su+?e#ted to revision were 3enuine. .he En ="n# foundD
9 9 9 I5Je find !erit in "ppell"nt/s !otion for re#onsider"tion. <or, protest"nt ICoJ h"s suffi#ientl0
est"+lished th"t no untow"rd in#ident h"d "ttended the preserv"tion of the +"llots "fter the
ter!in"tion of the pro#eedin3s of the =o"rd of Ele#tion .ellers or fro! the ti!e the #ustod0 of the
+"llot +o9es is tr"nsferred fro! the =E. to the Cit0 .re"surer "nd fin"ll0 to the tri"l #ourt. Protestee
who #ried post%ele#tion fr"ud is dut0% +ound to est"+lish th"t the 3enuine +"llots found inside the
+o9es were #o!pro!ised "nd t"!pered "t "n0 ti!e durin3 th"t period "nd +efore the revision.
1owever, no su#h proof h"s +een "ddu#ed +0 protestee e9#ept the dis#rep"n#0 +etween the fi3ures
in the ERs "nd the ph0si#"l #ount on revision. =ut then, s"id dis#rep"n#0 #ould h"ve +een #"used +0
errors in the tr"nsposition of the nu!+ers fro! the +"llots to the ERs durin3 the #"nv"ssin3 "nd not
due to t"!perin3. s e"rlier inti!"ted, the dis#rep"n#0 #ould +e "ttri+uted to ER !"nipul"tion
durin3 the #"nv"ssin3 "nd not +e#"use of the t"!perin3 of the +"llots whi#h were "lre"d0 found +0
"n e9pert "nd independent +od0 to +e 3enuine "nd "uthenti#.$'
.he f"llo of the COME2EC En ="n#/s Resolution re"dsD
51ERE<ORE, pre!ises #onsidered, the Co!!ission RESO2EED "s it here+0 RESO2EES to
re#onsider its Resolution d"ted u3ust ,-, ,($$ "nd pro#l"i! protest"nt%"ppell"nt "s the dul0
ele#ted Punon3 ="r"n3"0 of ="r"n3"0 ,)8, Distri#t III, M"nil".$)
.hus, the present re#ourse, on the "r3u!ent th"t the COME2EC En ="n# #o!!itted 3r"ve "+use of
dis#retion "!ountin3 to l"#4 or e9#ess of ?urisdi#tion when it "r+itr"ril0 set "side the De#ision of
the Me.C "nd the Resolution of the COME2EC <irst Division, in the #hoi#e +etween the revision
results in the protested pre#in#ts "nd the offi#i"l vote #ount re#orded in the ele#tion returns.
Petitioner further "r3ues th"t the COME2EC 3r"vel0 "+used its dis#retion when it de!"nded fro!
protestee dire#t proof of "#tu"l t"!perin3 of +"llots to ?ustif0 #onsider"tion of the use of the ele#tion
returns in deter!inin3 the winnin3 #"ndid"te in the ele#tions. In fine, petitioner @uestions the rulin3
of the COME2EC 3ivin3 pre#eden#e to the results of the revision over the offi#i"l #"nv"ssin3
results.
.he Issues
I. 51E.1ER .1E RESPONDEN. COMMISSION COMMI..ED &REE =CSE O<
DISCRE.ION MOCN.IN& .O 2CF OR EGCESS O< JCRISDIC.ION IN RC2IN& .1.
PRIE.E RESPONDEN. CO 1D SCCCESS<C22M DISC1R&ED .1E =CRDEN O<
PROEIN& .1E IN.E&RI.M O< .1E =22O.S SC=JEC.ED .O REEISION. II. 51E.1ER
.1E RESPONDEN. COMMISSION COMMI..ED &REE =CSE O< DISCRE.ION
MOCN.IN& .O 2CF OR EGCESS O< JCRISDIC.ION IN REEERSIN& .1E RC2IN& O<
.1E COME2EC <IRS. DIEISION, .O .1E E<<EC. .1. PE.I.IONER RE&IO IS .1E
DC2M%E2EC.ED PCNON& =RN&M.
.he Court/s Rulin3
t the outset, it !ust +e noted th"t the protest #"se is dis!issi+le for +ein3 !oot "nd "#"de!i#.
#"se +e#o!es !oot when there is no !ore "#tu"l #ontrovers0 +etween the p"rties or no useful
purpose #"n +e served in p"ssin3 upon the !erits. &ener"ll0, #ourts will not deter!ine " !oot
@uestion in " #"se in whi#h no pr"#ti#"l relief #"n +e 3r"nted.,(
In M"l"lu"n v. COME2EC,,$ this Court settled the !"tter on when "n ele#tion protest #"se
+e#o!es !oot "nd "#"de!i#D
5hen the "ppe"l fro! " de#ision in "n ele#tion #"se h"s "lre"d0 +e#o!e !oot, the #"se +ein3 "n
ele#tion protest involvin3 the offi#e of !"0or the ter! of whi#h h"d e9pired, the "ppe"l is
dis!issi+le on th"t 3round, unless the renderin3 of " de#ision on the !erits would +e of pr"#ti#"l
v"lue. 6e!ph"sis "dded7
In the #"se now +efore the Court, the position involved is th"t of " punon3 +"r"n3"0. .he 3overnin3
l"w, therefore, is Repu+li# #t No. 6R7 )$84, "s "!ended +0 R )-4(. Se#. 4 of the l"w st"tesD
Se#. 4. ssu!ption of Offi#e. % .he ter! of offi#e of the +"r"n3"0 "nd s"n33uni"n3 4"+"t""n
offi#i"ls ele#ted under this #t sh"ll #o!!en#e on u3ust $5, ,((,, ne9t followin3 their ele#tions.
.he ter! of offi#e of the +"r"n3"0 "nd s"n33uni"n3 4"+"t""n offi#i"ls ele#ted in the O#to+er ,((*
ele#tion "nd su+se@uent ele#tions sh"ll #o!!en#e "t noon of Nove!+er -( ne9t followin3 their
ele#tion. 6e!ph"sis "dded7
.he #ourt t"4es ?udi#i"l noti#e of the holdin3 of +"r"n3"0 ele#tions l"st O#to+er ,', ,($-.
<ollowin3 the ele#tions, the new set of +"r"n3"0 offi#i"ls "lre"d0 "ssu!ed offi#e "s of noon of
Nove!+er -(, ,($-. It 3oes without s"0in3, then, th"t the ter! of offi#e of those who were ele#ted
durin3 the O#to+er ,($( +"r"n3"0 ele#tions "lso e9pired +0 noon on Nove!+er -(, ,($-. In fine,
with the ele#tion of " new punon3 +"r"n3"0 durin3 the O#to+er ,', ,($- ele#tions, the issue of who
the ri3htful winner of the ,($( +"r"n3"0 ele#tions h"s "lre"d0 +een rendered !oot "nd "#"de!i#.
Notwithst"ndin3 the !ootness of the #"se, 5e find the need to de#ide the petition on its !erits, in
view of the findin3 of the COME2EC En ="n# th"t protest"nt Co should h"ve +een de#l"red the
winner for the post of punon3 +"r"n3"0 for the ter! ,($(%,($-. 5e find th"t the 3r"ve "+use of
dis#retion #o!!itted +0 the COME2EC En ="n#, spe#ifi#"ll0 in i3norin3 the rules on eviden#e,
!erits #onsider"tion. Still in line with the Court/s de#ision in M"l"lu"n,, to the effe#t th"t the
Court #"n de#ide on the !erits " !oot protest if there is pr"#ti#"l v"lue in so doin3, 5e find th"t the
nullifi#"tion of the COME2EC En ="n#/s Resolution is in order, due to its 3ross #ontr"vention of
est"+lished rules on eviden#e in ele#tion protest #"ses. 5e sh"ll dis#uss the issues ?ointl0, rel"ted "s
the0 "re to the findin3 of the COME2EC En ="n# 3ivin3 pri!"#0 to the results of the revision
pro#eedin3s over the results of the #"nv"ssin3 "s refle#ted in the ele#tion returns.
.he do#trine in Ros"l v. COME2EC,- "nd #onsiderin3 the results of the revision vis%T%vis the
results refle#ted in the offi#i"l #"nv"ssin3 In Ros"l, this Court su!!"ri;ed the st"nd"rds to +e
o+served in "n ele#tion #ontest predi#"ted on the theor0 th"t the ele#tion returns do not "##ur"tel0
refle#t the will of the voters due to "lle3ed irre3ul"rities in the "ppre#i"tion "nd #ountin3 of +"llots.
.hese 3uidin3 st"nd"rds "reD
6$7 .he +"llots #"nnot +e used to overturn the offi#i"l #ount "s refle#ted in the ele#tion returns
unless it is first shown "ffir!"tivel0 th"t the +"llots h"ve +een preserved with " #"re whi#h
pre#ludes the opportunit0 of t"!perin3 "nd suspi#ion of #h"n3e, "+str"#tion or su+stitutionA
6,7 .he +urden of provin3 th"t the inte3rit0 of the +"llots h"s +een preserved in su#h " !"nner is on
the protest"ntA
6-7 5here " !ode of preservin3 the +"llots is en?oined +0 l"w, proof !ust +e !"de of su#h
su+st"nti"l #o!pli"n#e with the re@uire!ents of th"t !ode "s would provide "ssur"n#e th"t the
+"llots h"ve +een 4ept inviol"te notwithst"ndin3 sli3ht devi"tions fro! the pre#ise !ode of
"#hievin3 th"t endA
647 It is onl0 when the protest"nt h"s shown su+st"nti"l #o!pli"n#e with the provisions of l"w on
the preserv"tion of +"llots th"t the +urden of provin3 "#tu"l t"!perin3 or li4elihood thereof shifts to
the protesteeA "nd
657 Onl0 if it "ppe"rs to the s"tisf"#tion of the #ourt of COME2EC th"t the inte3rit0 of the +"llots
h"s +een preserved should it "dopt the result "s shown +0 the re#ount "nd not "s refle#ted in the
ele#tion returns. In the s"!e #"se, the Court referred to v"rious provisions in the O!ni+us Ele#tion
Code providin3 for the s"fe%4eepin3 "nd preserv"tion of the +"llots, !ore spe#ifi#"ll0 Se#s. $8(,
,$*, ,$), "nd ,,( of the Code.
Ros"l w"s pro!ul3"ted pre#isel0 to honor the presu!ption of re3ul"rit0 in the perfor!"n#e of
offi#i"l fun#tions. <ollowin3 Ros"l, it is presu!ed th"t the =E. "nd =o"rd of C"nv"ssers h"d
f"ithfull0 perfor!ed the sole!n dut0 reposed unto the! durin3 the d"0 of the ele#tions. .hus,
pri!"#0 is 3iven to the offi#i"l results of the #"nv"ssin3, even in #"ses where there is " dis#rep"n#0
+etween su#h results "nd the results of the revision pro#eedin3s. It is onl0 when the protest"nt h"s
su##essfull0 dis#h"r3ed the +urden of provin3 th"t the re%#ounted +"llots "re the ver0 s"!e ones
#ounted durin3 the revision pro#eedin3s, will the #ourt or the Co!!ission, "s the #"se !"0 +e, even
#onsider the revision results. Even then, the results of the revision will not "uto!"ti#"ll0 +e 3iven
!ore wei3ht over the offi#i"l #"nv"ssin3 results or the ele#tion returns. 5h"t h"ppens in the event
of dis#rep"n#0 +etween the revision results "nd the ele#tion returns is th"t the +urden of proof shifts
to the protestee to provide eviden#e of "#tu"l t"!perin3 of the +"llots, or "t le"st " li4elihood of
t"!perin3. It is onl0 when the #ourt or the COME2EC is full0 s"tisfied th"t the +"llots h"ve +een
well preserved, "nd th"t there h"d +een no t"!perin3 of the +"llots, th"t it will "##ord #redi+ilit0 to
the results of the revision. In E"ri"s v. COME2EC, the Court s"idD
.he Ros"l rulin3, to +e sure, does not involve issues !erel0 rel"ted to the "ppre#i"tion or #"li+r"tion
of eviden#eA its #riti#"l rulin3 is on the propriet0 of rel0in3 on the revision of +"llot results inste"d
of the ele#tion returns in the pro#l"!"tion of " winnin3 #"ndid"te. In de#idin3 this issue, wh"t it
not"+l0 est"+lished w"s " #riti#"l 3uide in "rrivin3 "t its #on#lusion K the need to deter!ine whether
the #ourt or the COME2EC loo4ed "t the #orre#t #onsider"tions in !"4in3 its rulin3.,4 .his Court
h"d lon3 st"ted th"t >IuJpholdin3 the soverei3nt0 of the people is wh"t de!o#r"#0 is "ll "+out.
5hen the soverei3nt0 of the people e9pressed thru the +"llot is "t st"4e, it is not enou3h for this
Court to !"4e " st"te!ent +ut it should do ever0thin3 to h"ve th"t soverei3nt0 o+e0ed +0 "ll. 5ell
done is "lw"0s +etter th"n well s"id.>,5
.his is re"ll0 wh"t the Ros"l do#trine is "ll "+out. .he Ros"l do#trine ensures th"t in ele#tion protest
#"ses, the supre!e !"nd"te of the people is ulti!"tel0 deter!ined. In l"0in3 down the rules in
"ppre#i"tin3 the #onfli#tin3 results of the #"nv"ssin3 "nd the results of " revision l"ter !"de, the
Court h"s no other intention +ut to deter!ine the will of the ele#tor"te. .he Ros"l do#trine is "lso
supple!ented +0 .M. No. (*%4%$5%SC,,8 est"+lishin3 the followin3 disput"+le presu!ptionsD
SEC. 8. Disput"+le presu!ptions. % .he followin3 presu!ptions "re #onsidered "s f"#ts, unless
#ontr"di#ted "nd over#o!e +0 other eviden#eD 6"7 On the ele#tion pro#edureD 6$7 .he ele#tion of
#"ndid"tes w"s held on the d"te "nd ti!e set "nd in the pollin3 pl"#e deter!ined +0 the Co!!ission
on Ele#tionsA 6,7 .he =o"rds of Ele#tion Inspe#tors were dul0 #onstituted "nd or3"ni;edA 6-7
Politi#"l p"rties "nd #"ndid"tes were dul0 represented +0 pollw"t#hersA 647 Pollw"t#hers were "+le
to perfor! their fun#tionsA "nd 657 .he Minutes of Eotin3 "nd Countin3 #ont"ins "ll the in#idents
th"t tr"nspired +efore the =o"rd of Ele#tion Inspe#tors. 6+7 On ele#tion p"r"phern"li"D 6$7 ="llots
"nd ele#tion returns th"t +e"r the se#urit0 !"r4in3s "nd fe"tures pres#ri+ed +0 the Co!!ission on
Ele#tions "re 3enuineA 6,7 .he d"t" "nd infor!"tion supplied +0 the !e!+ers of the =o"rds of
Ele#tion Inspe#tors in the "##ount"+le for!s "re true "nd #orre#tA "nd 6-7 .he "llo#"tion, p"#4in3
"nd distri+ution of ele#tion do#u!ents or p"r"phern"li" were properl0 "nd ti!el0 done. 6#7 On
"ppre#i"tion of +"llotsD 6$7 +"llot with "ppropri"te se#urit0 !"r4in3s is v"lidA 6,7 .he +"llot
refle#ts the intent of the voterA 6-7 .he +"llot is properl0 "##o!plishedA 647 voter person"ll0
prep"red one +"llot, e9#ept in the #"se of "ssistorsA "nd 657 .he e9er#ise of one/s ri3ht to vote w"s
volunt"r0 "nd free.
Priv"te respondent Co h"s not proved th"t the inte3rit0 of the +"llots h"s +een preserved ppl0in3
Ros"l, viewed in #on?un#tion with .M. No. (*%4%$5%SC, this Court rules th"t the COME2EC En
="n# #o!!itted 3r"ve "+use of dis#retion in rulin3 th"t priv"te respondent h"d su##essfull0
dis#h"r3ed the +urden of provin3 th"t the +"llots #ounted durin3 the revision pro#eedin3s "re the
s"!e +"llots #"st "nd #ounted durin3 the d"0 of the ele#tions. .h"t is the essen#e of the se#ond
p"r"3r"ph in the Ros"l do#trine. It is well to note th"t the respondent Co did not present "n0
testi!oni"l eviden#e to prove th"t the ele#tion p"r"phern"li" inside the protested +"llot +o9es h"d
+een preserved. 1e !"inl0 relied on the report of the revision #o!!ittee. .here w"s no
independent, dire#t or indire#t, eviden#e to prove the preserv"tion of the +"llots "nd other ele#tion
p"r"phern"li". .his le"ds Cs to no other #on#lusion +ut th"t respondent Co f"iled to dis#h"r3e his
+urden under the Ros"l do#trine. 5ith no independent eviden#e to spe"4 of, respondent Co #"nnot
si!pl0 rel0 on the report of the revision #o!!ittee, "nd fro! there #on#lude th"t the report itself is
proof of the preserv"tion of the +"llots. 5h"t he needs to provide is eviden#e independent of the
revision pro#eedin3s. 5ithout "n0 su#h eviden#e, the Court or the COME2EC, "s the #"se !"0 +e,
will +e #onstr"ined to honor the presu!ption est"+lished in .M. No. (*%4%$5%SC, th"t the d"t" "nd
infor!"tion supplied +0 the !e!+ers of the =o"rds of Ele#tion Inspe#tors in the "##ount"+le for!s
"re true "nd #orre#t.
Respondent Co "d!its h"vin3, under the Ros"l do#trine, the +urden of provin3 the preserv"tion of
the +"llots, "nd #oroll"ril0, th"t their inte3rit0 h"ve not +een #o!pro!ised +efore the revision
pro#eedin3s. 1e, however, "r3ues th"t he h"d su##essfull0 dis#h"r3ed th"t +urden. nd howP )irst,
he pointed out th"t fro! the !o!ent the v"rious =E.s pl"#ed the #ounted offi#i"l +"llots inside the
+"llot +o9es until the0 were tr"nsported for #"nv"ssin3, "nd until the0 were tr"ns!itted to the
Ele#tion Offi#erHCit0 .re"surer of M"nil" for stor"3e "nd #ustod0, no irre3ul"rities or +"llot%+o9
sn"t#hin3 were reportedA neither w"s there "n0 news or re#ord of +"llot +o9 t"!perin3 in the
protested pre#in#ts. Second, no untow"rd in#ident or irre3ul"rit0 whi#h !"0 t"int or "ffe#t the
inte3rit0 of the +"llot +o9es w"s ever reported when the0 were tr"nsported to the stor"3e "re" of the
tri"l #ourt. &hird, the stor"3e pl"#e of the +"llot +o9es w"s "t "ll ti!es ti3htl0 se#ured, properl0
prote#ted, "nd well s"fe3u"rded. )ourth, "ll the protested +"llot +o9es were properl0 lo#4ed "nd
se"led. )ifth, the petitioner never @uestioned or r"ised "n0 issue on the preserv"tion of the inte3rit0
of the protested +"llot +o9es. nd si%th, the .e#hni#"l E9"!in"tion Report si3ned +0 the
COME2EC represent"tive #onfir!ed the 3enuineness, "uthenti#it0, "nd inte3rit0 of "ll the +"llots
found durin3 the revision.,*
5e hold, however, th"t the fore3oin3 st"te!ents do not, +0 the!selves, #onstitute suffi#ient
eviden#e th"t the +"llots h"ve +een preserved. Respondent Co #"nnot si!pl0 rel0 on the "lle3ed
"+sen#e of eviden#e of reports of untow"rd in#idents, "nd fro! there i!!edi"tel0 #on#lude th"t the
+"llots h"ve +een preserved. 5h"t he should h"ve presented "re #on#rete pie#es of eviden#e,
independent of the revision pro#eedin3s th"t will tend to show th"t the +"llots #ounted durin3 the
revision pro#eedin3s were the ver0 s"!e ones #ounted +0 the =E.s durin3 the ele#tions, "nd the
ver0 s"!e ones #"st +0 the pu+li#. 1e #"nnot ev"de his dut0 +0 si!pl0 rel0in3 on the "+sen#e of
reports of untow"rd in#idents th"t h"ppened to the +"llot +o9es. t +est, this reli"n#e on the
#ondition of the +"llot +o9es the!selves is spe#ul"tiveA "t worst, it is self%servin3. 5ithout
presentin3 to the #ourt "n0 eviden#e outside of the pro#eedin3s, respondent Co "s protest"nt !"0
si!pl0 #l"i! th"t the +"llot +o9es the!selves "re the proof th"t the0 were properl0 preserved. .his
3oes #ontr"r0 to the do#trine in Ros"l.
.he respe#tive #ustodi"ns of the +"llot +o9es, fro! the ti!e the0 were used in the ele#tions until
the0 were delivered to the #ourt, were not, to stress, presented in #ourt. .he0 #ould h"ve testified "s
to the se#urit0 "fforded the +"llot +o9es while in their #ustod0. Moreover, no witness "t "ll w"s
presented +0 respondent Co durin3 the pro#eedin3s in the tri"l #ourt. .he Court re!inds respondent
Co th"t the tri"l #ourt/s #onsider"tion of the #"se is #onfined to wh"tever eviden#e is presented
+efore it. .his is "!pl0 st"ted in Rule $-, Se#. , of .M. No. (*%4%$5%SCD
Se#. ,. Offer of eviden#e. K .he #ourt sh"ll #onsider no eviden#e th"t h"s not +een for!"ll0 offered.
Offer of eviden#e sh"ll +e done or"ll0 on the l"st d"0 of he"rin3 "llowed for e"#h p"rt0 "fter the
present"tion of the l"st witness. .he opposin3 p"rt0 sh"ll +e re@uired to i!!edi"tel0 interpose
o+?e#tions thereto. .he #ourt sh"ll rule on the offer of eviden#e in open #ourt. 1owever, the #ourt
!"0, "t its dis#retion, "llow the p"rt0 to !"4e "n offer of eviden#e in writin3, whi#h sh"ll +e
su+!itted within three d"0s. If the #ourt re?e#ts "n0 eviden#e offered, the p"rt0 !"0 !"4e " tender
of e9#luded eviden#e.
Cnfortun"tel0 for respondent Co, the witnesses whose "ffid"vits he "tt"#hed to his Protest were
never presented durin3 tri"l. 5hile he "3"in r"ised the tenor of these "ffid"vits in his Co!!ent filed
+efore Cs, those #"nnot +e #onsidered "n0!ore due to his f"ilure to present the! +efore the tri"l
#ourt. Respondent #"nnot si!plisti#"ll0 insist on the #onsider"tion of s"id "ffid"vits, the tri"l #ourt
not h"vin3 +een 3iven the opportunit0 to o+serve their testi!onies, "nd petitioner not h"vin3 +een
"##orded the opportunit0 to #ross%e9"!ine the!. .he f"#t th"t respondent "tt"#hed the "ffid"vits in
his Protest does not !e"n th"t the tri"l #ourt is +ound to #onsider the!, pre#isel0 +e#"use the0 h"ve
not +een for!"ll0 offered +efore the #ourt. .he "tt"#h!ents to the Protest will not +e #onsidered
unless for!"ll0 offered. .he Court notes th"t respondent Co h"s offered no e9pl"n"tion wh"tsoever
wh0 he f"iled to present his witnesses. Nevertheless, he would h"ve this Court #onsider "s eviden#e
their purported testi!onies. .his would +e in#on3ruousl0 unf"ir to petitioner, who ende"vored to
prove his #"se +0 presentin3 eviden#e +efore the tri"l #ourt. Neither #"n respondent Co dis#l"i!
responsi+ilit0 on the "r3u!ent th"t the petitioner never r"ised "s "n issue the preserv"tion of the
+"llot +o9es. Inherent in "ll ele#tion protest #"ses is the dut0 of the protest"nt to provide eviden#e of
su#h preserv"tion. .he f"ilure of the protestee to r"ise th"t "s "n issue will not ipso f"#to !e"n th"t
protest"nt need not present eviden#e to th"t effe#t. Moreover, the .e#hni#"l E9"!in"tion Report, is
not, without !ore, eviden#e of preserv"tion. .he Report !erel0 st"tes th"t the +"llots "re 3enuine.
5h"t the protest"nt should ende"vor to prove, however, in presentin3 eviden#e of preserv"tion, is
not th"t the +"llots the!selves "re 3enuine or offi#i"l, +ut th"t the0 "re the ver0 s"!e ones #"st +0
the ele#tor"te. .he Report #"nnot possi+l0 deter!ine th"t. 5hile it !"0 +e th"t the +"llots
the!selves "re offi#i"l +"llots, there is still " de"rth of eviden#e on whether or not the0 were the
s"!e offi#i"l +"llots #"st +0 the pu+li# durin3 the ele#tions. .he Report, therefore, #"nnot +e
#onsidered "s eviden#e of the preserv"tion, "s re@uired +0 Ros"l. .he f"#t of preserv"tion is not, "s
respondent Co #l"i!s, >in#ontroverti+le.> In f"#t, there is tot"l "+sen#e of eviden#e to th"t effe#t.
.he in#ontroverti+le f"#t is th"t priv"te respondent, durin3 the pro#eedin3s +efore the tri"l #ourt, did
not present "n0 independent eviden#e to prove his #l"i!. 5ithout "n0 independent eviden#e, the
tri"l #ourt, the COME2EC, "s well "s this Court, is #onstr"ined to "ffir! "s " f"#t the disput"+le
presu!ption th"t the +"llots were properl0 #ounted durin3 the #ountin3 "nd #"nv"ssin3 of votes. In
su!, 5e find th"t the COME2EC 3r"vel0 "+used its dis#retion in rulin3 th"t priv"te respondent h"d
dis#h"r3ed the +urden of provin3 the inte3rit0 of the +"llots. 5e rule, on the #ontr"r0, th"t there is
utter l"#4 of eviden#e to th"t effe#t.
Petitioner need not prove "#tu"l t"!perin3 of the +"llots Coroll"ril0, the COME2EC En ="n# h"d
ruled th"t petitioner, "s protestee, f"iled to "ddu#e eviden#e th"t the +"llots found inside the +"llot
+o9es were #o!pro!ised "nd t"!pered. .his stri4es us "s +"seless "nd " #le"r dep"rture fro! the
te"#hin3s of Ros"l.
.he dut0 of the protestee in "n ele#tion #ontest to provide eviden#e of "#tu"l t"!perin3 or "n0
li4elihood "rises onl0 when the protest"nt h"s first su##essfull0 dis#h"r3e the +urden or providin3
th"t the +"llots h"ve +een se#ured to prevent t"!perin3 or sus#epti+ilit0 of #h"r3e, "+str"#tion or
su+stitution. Su#h need to present proof of t"!perin3 did not "rise sin#e protest"nt hi!self f"iled to
provide eviden#e of the inte3rit0 of the +"llots.
#"ndid"te for " pu+li# ele#tive position ou3ht to f"!ili"ri;e hi!self with ele#tion l"ws, pertinent
?urispruden#e, "nd COME2EC resolutions, rules "nd re3ul"tions. ltern"tivel0, he should h"ve "n
e9perien#ed "nd 4nowled3e"+le ele#tion l"w0er to 3uide hi! on the different "spe#ts of ele#tion.
S"ns #o!!ent le3"l "dvi#e "nd represent"tion " vi#tor0 in the ele#tions !"0 turn out to +e "
#rushin3 defe"t for the #"ndid"te who "#tu"ll0 3ot the nod of the ele#tor"te. Cnfortun"tel0 for
respondent Co, he #o!!itted sever"l !is#ues th"t eventu"ll0 led to his de+"#le in the inst"nt
ele#tion protest.
51ERE<ORE, pre!ises #onsidered, this Petition for Certior"ri is &RN.ED. .he Resolution
d"ted De#e!+er *, ,($, of the COME2EC En ="n# in EC 6=R&M%SF7 No. $8$%,($$ is here+0
NC22I<IED "nd SE. SIDE. .he Resolution of the COME2EC <irst Division d"ted u3ust ,-,
,($$, "ffir!in3 the De#ision in Ele#tion C"se No. (,4'(%EC of the Me.C. =r"n#h 4 in M"nil" is
here+0 REINS..ED.
SO ORDERED.
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