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SC Clarifies "Three-Term Limit" Rule, Proclaims Abundo Winner of 2010 Mayoral

Elections in Viga, Catanduanes
The Supreme Court En Banc has partly granted the petition for certiorari under rule 65 of Abelardo Abundo, Sr., Mayor of
Viga, Catanduanes, setting aside the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Second Division Resolution dated February 8,
2012, COMELEC’s En Banc resolution in EAC (EA) No. A-25-2010 dated May 10, 2012, and the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of
Virac, Catanduanes Branch 43’s Decision in Election Case No. 55 dated August 9, 2010, which declared Abundo ineligible to
run in the 2010 Mayoral elections of Viga, Catanduanes under the three-term limit rule.
Abundo ran for the position of Municipal Mayor of Viga, Catanduanes in the years 2001, 2004, 2007, and 2010. He was
proclaimed winner of the 2001 and 2007 elections. In the 2004 election, however, Jose Torres was proclaimed the winner of
the electoral race and Mayor of Viga, performing the functions of the office. Abundo protested Torres’ election and was
eventually declared the winner of the 2004 mayoralty electoral contest. He assumed office from May 9, 2006 until the end of
the 2004-2007 term on June 30, 2007.
As a result of such reversal, the Court declared Abundo eligible for another term as Mayor to which he was duly elected in the
May 2010 elections and immediately reinstated him to such position. Emeterio M. Tarin and Cesar O. Cervantes were also
ordered to immediately vacate the positions of Mayor and Vice-Mayor of Viga, Catanduanes, respectively and to revert to
their original positions of Vice-Mayor and first Councilor, respectively, upon receipt of this Decision, which is immediately
executory. The Court likewise lifted the Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) it issued on July 3, 2012 to restrain the
COMELEC from enforcing the abovementioned resolutions.
As provided for in Section 8, Article X of the 1987 Constitution and Sec. 43(b) of the Local Government Code, the three-term
limit rule constitutes a disqualification to run for an elective local office when an official has been elected for three
consecutive terms in the same local government post and has fully served those three consecutive terms.
In the Court’s 35-page decision, written by Justice Presbitero J. Velasco, Jr., it unanimously held that Abundo did not serve
three consecutive terms as Mayor of Viga, Catanduanes due to an actual involuntary interruption during the 2004-2007 term.
This was because he assumed the mayoralty post only on May 9, 2006 and served a little over one year and one month only.
Thus, “the two-year period which his opponent, Torres, was serving as mayor should be considered as an interruption, which
effectively removed Abundo’s case from the ambit of the three-term limit rule,” ruled the Court.
The Court further ruled that the COMELEC erred in applying Aldovino, Jr. v. Commission on Elections, which held that
“service of the unexpired portion of a term by a protestant who is declared winner in an election protest is considered as
service for one full term within the contemplation of the three-term limit rule” as the doctrine refers to a situation where the
elected official is under preventive suspension and is only temporarily unable to discharge his functions yet is still entitled to
the office as compared to the situation of Abundo where he did not have title to the office. The Court emphasized that pending
the favorable resolution of Abundo’s election protest, he was relegated to being an ordinary constituent and private citizen
since his opponent, as presumptive victor in the 2004 elections, was occupying the mayoralty seat. While awaiting the
pendency of the election protest, Abundo ceased from exercising power or authority over the constituents of Viga and cannot
be said to have retained title to the mayoralty office as he was at that time not the duly proclaimed winner. It stressed that
Abundo’s case differs from other cases involving the “effects of an election protest because while Abundo was the winning
candidate, he was the one deprived of his right and opportunity to serve his constitutents.”
In his separate opinion, Justice Arturo D. Brion wrote to “briefly expound on the Court’s ruling in Aldovino, Jr. v.
Commission on Elections which the COMELEC erroneously relied upon in affirming the grant of the quo warranto petition
against Abundo, and to express my own views on how our present Decision should be read in light of other three-term limit
cases that have been decided under a protest case scenario.” He stressed that “the Court cannot avoid considering the
attendant factual and legal realities, based on the requirements that Borja established, and has no choice but to adjust its
appreciation of these realities, as may be necessary.”
Justice Brion agreed that the Aldovino ruling relied upon by COMELEC “cannot be used as a basis for the conclusion that
there had been no interruption in the case of Abundo - the eventual winner who is so recognized only after winning his
protest case. Notably in Aldovino, while preventive suspension is an involuntary imposition, what it affects is merely the
authority to discharge the functions of an office that the suspended local official continues to hold… the local elective official
continues to possess title to his office while under preventive suspension, so that no interruption of his term ensues.”
After discussing the prevailing jurisprudence cited by the majority (Ong v. Alegre, Lonzanida v. Commission on Elections,
and Borja, Jr. v. Commission on Elections), Justice Brion pointed out that “the differing factual situations of the cited cases
and Abundo that necessarily gave rise to different perspectives in appreciating the same legal question, immediately suggest
that the Court’s ruling in the cited cases cannot simply be combined nor wholly be bodily lifted and applied to Abundo. At the
simplest, both Lonzanida and Ong were protestees who faced the same legal reality of losing the election, although Ong fully
served the elected term; for Abundo, the legal reality is his recognized and declared election victory, In terms of factual
reality, Lonzanida and Abundo may be the same since they only partially served their term, but this similarity is fully negated

by their differing legal realities with respect to the element of ‘election.’ Ong and Abundo, on the other hand, have differing
legal and factual realities; aside from their differing election results, Ong served the full term, while Abundo only enjoyed
abbreviated term.”
Based on this analysis, Justice Brion concluded his separate opinion by stressing that “Abundo should not be considered to
have been elected for the full term for purposes of the three-term limit rule, despite the legal reality that he won the election;
as in Ong, the factual reality should prevail, and that reality is that he served for less than this full term. Thus, where less than
a full term is served by a winning protestant, no continous and uninterrupted term should be recognized. This is the view that
best serves the purpose of the three-term limit rule.”
Justice Teresita J. Leonardo-De Castro joined Justice Brion’s separate opinion.

The Court also summarized the prevailing jurisprudence on issues affecting consecutiveness of terms and involuntary
Borja, Jr. v. Commission on Elections provides that when a permanent vacancy occurs in an elective position and the official
merely assumed the position through succession, his service for the unexpired portion of the term cannot be treated as one
full term.
Montebon v. Commission on Elections supplemented this by saying that if the official runs again for the same position he
held rior to his assumption of the higher office, his succession to said position is by operation of law and is considered an
involuntary severance or interruption.
On the issue of recall elections, Adormeo v. Commission on Elections and Socrates v. Commission on Elections held that an
elective official, who has served for three consecutive terms and who did not seek the elective position for what could be his
fourth trm, but later won in a recall election, had an interruption in the continuity of the official’s servicefor he had become in
the interim a private citizen.
Latasa v. Commission on Elections ruled that the abolition of an elective office due to the conversion of a municipality to a
city does not, by itself, work to interrupt the incumbent official’s continuity of service.
As mentioned above, Aldovino, Jr. v. Commission on Elections states that preventive suspension is not a term interrupting
event as the elective officer’s continued stay and entitlement to the office remain unaffected during the period of suspension,
although he is barred from exercising the functions of the office during this period.
Lonzanida v. Commission on Elections and Dizon v. Commission on Elections continued on to rule that when a candidate is
proclaimed as winner for an elective position and assumes office, his term is interrupted when he losess in an election protest
and is ousted from office. An interruption for any length of time, provided the cause is involuntary is sufficient to break the
continuity of service.
Lastly, Ong v. Alegre and Rivera III v. Commission on Elections declared when an official is defeated in an election protest
and decision becomes final only after the official had served the full term for the office, then his loss in the election contest
does not constitute an interruption since he has managed to serve the term from start to finish. His full service should be
counted in the application of term limits because the nullification of his proclamation came after the expiration of the term.
(GR No. 201716, Abundo v. Commission on Elections, January 8, 2013)

SC Reinstates Remorseful Lawyer Dismissed for Immorality
Posted: February 7, 2013; By Jay B. Rempillo

The Supreme Court recently granted the petition (for extraordinary mercy) of a lawyer dismissed for immorality in 2004 to
be reinstated in the Roll of Attorneys after the same “has sufficiently atoned for his transgressions.”
In a six-page resolution penned by Justice Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe, the Court En Banc ordered the reinstatement in the Roll
of Edmundo L. Macarubbo who, at 58 years of age, “still has productive years ahead of him that could significantly contribute
to the upliftment of the law profession and the betterment of society.” It added that while the Court was mindful of its duty to
discipline and even remove its errant officers, it also has a duty to show compassion to those who have reformed their ways as
in Macarubbo’s case.
In 2004, Macarubbo was disbarred for having contracted a bigamous marriage with complainant Florence Teves and a third
marriage with one Josephine Constantino while his first marriage to Helen Esparza was still subsisting, which acts
constituted gross immoral conduct in violation of Canon 1, Rule 1.01 and Canon 7, Rule 7.03 of the Code of Professional
The Court held that Macarubbo “has sufficiently shown his remorse and acknowledged his indiscretion in the legal profession
and in his personal life” and has since asked forgiveness from his children by complainant Teves and maintained a cordial
relationship with them as proved by his photo evidence. It noted that following his disbarment, Macarubbo has returned to
his hometown in Enrile, Cagayan and devoted his time tending an orchard and taking care of his ailing mother until her death

in 2008. He also worked for the local government of Enrile, Cagayan, as well as taught part-time instructor at the University
of Cagayan Valley and F.L. Vargas College and took an active part in socio-civic activities.
Macarubbo’s plea for reinstatement, the Court noted, was also duly supported by the Integrated Bar of the Philippines,
Cagayan Chapter and his parish priest Rev. Fr. Camilo Castillejos, Jr., among others. Furthermore, records reveal that he has
already settled his previous marital squabbles and sends regular support to his children. (Macarubbo v. Macarubbo, AC No.
6148, January 22, 2013)

SC Reiterates Prior Payment of Taxes Not Required in Applying Transitional Input
Tax Credit
Posted: February 7, 2013; By Bianca M. Padilla

Voting 10-4, the Supreme Court En Banc denied with finality the Commissioner of Internal Revenue’s (CIR) motion for
reconsideration asking to reverse the Court’s decision dated September 4, 2012. The decision found the CIR liable to Fort
Bonifacio Development Corporation (FBDC) for the amount of P359,652,009.47, which was erroneously paid by FBDC as
output VAT for the first quarter of 1997 in light of the transitional input tax credit available to it for that quarter. The 2012
decision gave the CIR the option to refund or issue a tax credit certificate the aforementioned amount in favor of FBDC.
Earlier, the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) denied FBDC’s claim for refund since “the benefit of transitional input tax credit
comes with the condition that business taxes should have been paid first.” The Court of Appeals (CA) affirmed the decision of
the CTA claiming no VAT was paid when FBDC bought Fort Bonifacio Global City. The Supreme Court En Banc, however,
found merit in FBDC’s petition for review on certiorari and reversed the CA’s decision granting FBDC its refund since Section
105 of the old National Internal Revenue Code (NIRC) makes no mention “that prior payment of taxes is necessary for the
availment of the 8% transitional input tax credit.”
In a 10-page resolution penned by Justice Mariano C. Del Castillo, the Court, with a vote of 10-4, stressed that the same issues
presented have been squarely ruled upon by this Court in the earlier Fort Bonifacio case and no substantial argument had
been adduced to warrant the reconsideration sought.
Citing Fort Bonifacio Development Corporation v. CIR dated April 2, 2009 and Commissioner of Internal Revenue v. Central
Luzon Drug Corp. dated April 15, 2005, the Court repeated that prior payment of taxes is not necessary before a taxpayer can
avail of the 8% transitional input tax credit. All that is required by Section 105 to avail of the refund or tax credit is for the
taxpayer to file a beginning inventory with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).
In his dissenting opinion, Senior Associate Justice Antonio T. Carpio argued that the grant of a cash refund to reimburse
FBDC for excess transitional input tax it previously paid is not authorized by law based on four reasons: first, the land sold
was not subject to input VAT; second, the Tax Code does not allow a cash refund of excess input VAT; third, even for zerorated or effectively zer-rated VAT-registered taxpayes, the Tax Code does not allow any cash refund or credit of transitional
input tax; and fourth, a cash refund, not being supported by any prior actual tax payment, would result in public funds being
used to pay for the refund which is for the exclusive benefit of a private entity, thus unconstitutional. Chief Justice Maria
Lourdes P.A. Sereno and Associate Justices Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe and Marvic M.V.F. Leonen joined Justice Carpio’s
dissent. (GR No. 173425, Fort Bonifacio Development Corporation v. CIR, January 22, 2013)

SC Upholds Dismissal of Malversation Raps against Arroyo, et al. re Alleged OWWA
Funds Misuse
Posted: February 6, 2013; By Jay B. Rempillo

In a two-page minute resolution dated January 17, 2013, the Supreme Court effectively upheld the Office of the Ombudsman
(Ombudsman)’s dismissal of the criminal charges filed by former Solicitor General Francisco I. Chavez against former
President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, et al. in connection with the alleged misuse of Overseas Workers Welfare Administration
(OWWA) funds in 2004.
The Court’s Third Division denied the petition and affirmed the February 10, 2012 memorandum and September 25, 2012
supplemental memorandum of the Ombudsman for petitioner Chavez’s failure to show any reversible error committed by the
The Court agreed with the Ombudsman in: (a) dismissing the complaint against Arroyo, et al.; (2) holding that the transfer of
OWWA funds to Philhealth is valid, and; (c) the OWWA funds were used legally. “Unless tainted with grave abuse of
discretion, the judgments and orders of the Ombudsman shall not be reversed, modified or otherwise interfered with by the
Court,” the resolution stated.
In his Petition for Review on Certiorari under Rule 45, Chavez, among others, sought the reversal of the assailed Ombudsman
rulings approving the resolution of a Department of Justice (DOJ) Panel of Investigators that recommended the dismissal of
malversation charges against Arroyo for the alleged illegal transfer of P530,382,445 in OWWA Medicare Fund to the
Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PHIC) and of the $350,000 from the OWWA Capital Fund to several labor
attachés in the Middle East during the US-Iraq crisis. (Chavez v. Arroyo, GR Nos. 203884-85, Min. Res., January 17, 2013)

SC Grants PLDT's Petition to Set Aside Quashal of Search Warrants
Posted: February 4, 2013

The Supreme Court has granted the petition of the Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT) to reverse and set aside the
rulings of the Court of Appeals (CA) that upheld a trial court’s joint order quashing two search warrants and ordering the
return of seized equipment to a company allegedly involved in International Simple Resale (ISR) or unauthorized sale of
international long distance calls.
In a 39-page consolidated decision, the Court agreed with the former Fourth (4th) Division of CA which had ruled that there
was indeed grave abuse of discretion on the part of the trial court in the premature haste attending the release of the items
The search warrants were sought by the Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Task Force (PAOCTF) in 2000 against HPS
Corporation, et al. for violation of Art. 308 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) and PD 401 (unauthorized installation of
telephone communication equipment) following PLDT’s complaint that they were able to monitor the use of HPS
Corporation, et al.’s in their premises of Mabuhay card and equipment capable of receiving and transmitting calls from the
United States of America to the Philippines without these calls passing through PLDT’s facilities. HPS Corporation, et al. were
engaged in the business of ISR. An alternative call pattern employed by communication provider outside of the country, ISR
is a method of routing and completing international long distance calls using lines, cables, antennae, and/or air wave
frequency which connect directly to the local or domestic exchange facilities of the country where the call is destined.
The High Court ruled that the two search warrants were improperly quashed. It found merit in PLDT’s arguments that the CA
Eighteenth (18th) Division erroneously appreciated the facts of the case and the significance of the evidence on record when it
sustained the quashal of the subject search warrants by the trial court mainly on the basis of test calls using a Mabuhay card
with PIN code number 332 1479224, which was the same Mabuhaycard that was presented by PLDT to support its
application for a search warrant against HPS Corporation, et al.
The Court refused to subscribe to the conclusion that the determination of whether or not test calls were indeed made by
PLDT on the Mabuhay card with PIN code number 332 1479224 cannot be ascertained solely by checking the value reflected
on the said Mabuhay card. It noted that PLDT never represented that the Mabuhay card had an accurate recording system
that would automatically deduct the value of a call from the value of the card at the time the call was made.
The Court also held that since the value of the subject Mabuhay card may be susceptible to tampering, it would have been
more prudent for the trial court and the CA to weigh the other evidence on record.
The Court found that the pieces of evidence presented by PLDT, when taken together, were more than sufficient to support a
finding that test calls were indeed made by PLDT’s witnesses using Mabuhay card with PIN code number 332 1479224 and,
more importantly, that probable cause necessary to engender a belief that HPS Corporation, et al. had probably committed

The private prosecutor shall be charged in the applicable cases the duty to prepare the required judicial affidavits of the complainant and his or her witnesses and cause the service of the copies of the same upon the accused. 2013. the Court stressed that it was “apparent that PLDT was deprived of due process when the trial court expeditiously released the items seized by virtue of the subject search warrants without waiting for PLDT to file its memorandum and despite the fact that no motion for execution was filed by respondents which is required in this case. results of a traffic study conducted by PLDT on 20 direct telephone lines subscribed by HPS. The Court further held that PLDT’s petition before the CA was properly given due course despite the non-fulfillment of the requirement of the filing of a motion of reconsideration (of the May 23. In the case at bar. when the filing of a petition for certiorari is proper notwithstanding the failure to file a motion for reconsideration. HPS Software and Communication Corporation.the crime of Theft through illegal ISR activities exists. and that the business of providing telecommunication or telephone service is personal property. GR No. 2012) . Upon presenting the witness. 2012) SC Modifies Compliance by Public Prosecutors with Judicial Affidavit Rule Posted: January 9. The Court held that PLDT had legal personality to file the petition saying that the case at bar does not involve an ordinary criminal action which requires the participation and conformity of the City Prosecutor or the Solicitor General when raised before appellate courts. It said that the said rule is not absolute and that jurisprudence has laid down exceptions. 170217. a search warrant issued must particularly describe the place to be searched and persons or things to be seized in order for it to be valid. January 8. These pieces of evidence include affidavits of PLDT people. among others. the attending public prosecutor shall require the witness to affirm what the sworn statement contains and may only ask the witness additional direct examination questions that have not been amply covered by the sworn statement. which can be object of Theft under Article 308 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC). Here. Dec. The Court reversed Laurel v. Judicial Affidavit Rule. otherwise. as follows: For the purpose of complying with the Judicial Affidavit Rule. resolved instead to modify the public prosecutors’ compliance therewith from January 1 to December 31. on the other hand. The Court also clarified in its three-page unsigned resolution that the modified compliance does not apply to criminal cases where the complainant is represented by a duly empowered private prosecutor. 2001 Joint Order) due to the peculiar circumstances obtaining in this case. PLDT. and lack of PAO lawyers. acting on the petition dated December 12. AM No 12-8-8-SC. (HPS Software and Communication Corporation v. (Unsigned Res. public prosecutors in the first. The Court also stated that the Rule shall remain in full force and effect in all other cases and situations not covered by the resolution.and second-level courts shall use the sworn statements that the complainant and his or her witnesses submit during the initiation of the criminal action before the office of the public prosecutor or directly before the trial court. which include where petitioner was deprived of due process. 2001 Joint Order had not yet become final and executory. Padilla The Supreme Court En Banc. GR No. 170694. The Court acknowledged that 80% of the backlog in the first-and second-level courts involve criminal cases. 2013. 308 of the RPC when it granted PLDT’s motion for reconsideration. Bianca M. 308 of the RPC since international long distance calls and the business of providing telecommunication or telephone services are not personal properties under Art. call detail records.” The Court also held that PLDT did not commit forum shopping because the appeal that PLDT elevated to the CA was an examination of the validity of the trial court’s action of quashing the search warrants that it initially issued while. 10. It thus expressed its expectation that public prosecutors will use the one-year modified compliance period to take the necessary steps to seek the needed augmentation of their ranks and develop methods and systems that would enable them to fully comply with the requirements of the Judicial Affidavit Rule when the modified compliance period ends. According to the Court. and that delays in those cases are caused mainly by lack of prosecutors. absence of prosecution witnesses. the Court categorically stated that an ISR activity is an act of subtraction covered by the provisions on Theft. the petition for certiorari was an inquiry on whether or not the trial court judge committed grave abuse of discretion when he ordered the release of the seized items subject of the search warrants despite the fact that its May 23. PLDT v. 2012 from the Prosecutors’ League of the Philippines (PLP) for the deferment of the effectivity of the Judicial Affidavit Rule for at least a year in criminal cases. The Court also found that the subject search warrants were not general warrants because the items to be seized were sufficiently identified physically and were also specifically identified by stating their relation to the offenses charged which are Theft and Violation of PD 401 through the conduct of illegal ISR activities.. Abrogar which had ruled that ISR activity does not constitute the crime of theft under Art. it is considered as a general warrant which is proscribed by both jurisprudence and the 1987 Constitution.

The final list and sequence of issues to be argued. he/she should get another pass/card. which signals the start of the oral argument proper. silence and proper decorum shall be observed. . Before the start of the oral arguments. A. effective for 120 days. a new pass/card and registration shall be required for every scheduled date of the oral arguments. and additional dates for oral arguments. Seating and placement of broadcast equipment in the designated area inside the Session hall shall be on a first-come-firstserved basis. against the implementation/enforcement of the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 after various groups from the media and civil society. cameras. While the Court is in session. One of the purposes of the meeting was to determine which of the many issues presented by the various petitions should be heard on oral arguments and which of the remaining issues could be argued in written Memoranda to be submitted to the Court after the oral arguments. 10175. January 15. Smoking inside the Supreme Court premises is strictly prohibited. will be resolved by the Court en banc in its first session of the year on January 8. Sereno since her appointment as such on August 24. and any other gadgets shall be deposited at the SC Security counter. and several individuals. attaché cases. They may fax their letter-request to this number: (02)525-3208. 2 Posted: January 9. Media photographers and television crew will be allowed inside the Session Hall only until the banging of the gavel. 2012. To help prepare the counsels for the parties in relation to the multiple issues raised. The viewing area will be at the lobby of the New Building. Admission is on a first-come-first-served basis. tape recorders. will be coming up for oral arguments before the Supreme Court in the afternoon of Tuesday. 2013 at 2 p. Last October 9. the counsels to argue the same. Should the hearing continue on another day and the bearer decides to observe the oral arguments again. and embodied in an Advisory to be issued to all the parties. By Gleo Sp. the Court had issued a temporary restraining order. January 15. SC Associate Justice Roberto A. 2013. all shall stand and shall remain standing in their respective places until all the Justices of the Court shall have left the session hall. FOR YOUR STRICT COMPLIANCE AND GUIDANCE. the time allotted for the said counsels to present their arguments.m. more commonly known as the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012. Enriqueta Esguerra-Vidal to secure passes. 2012. When the Court adjourns. and shall be escorted out of the Session Hall. Justice Abad Confers with Counsels for Orderly Oral Arguments Posted: January 4.CYBERCRIME PETITIONS SC BULLETIN No. Guerra The 15 petitions challenging the constitutionality of Republic Act No. The reserved area for the media will be the last row of seats inside the Session Hall and the first three rows at the viewing area. if any. (CKDSLD) Cybercrime Law Oral Arguments Set on January 15. For security reasons. It is the first oral arguments of the Court to be presided over by Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P. the media shall proceed to their designated area at the back of the Session Hall. The media and the public are required to register at the SC Security. including some members of Congress. Please do not forget to bring another valid ID which will be left with the Security when you register. has already submitted its Comment to the various petitions arguing in favor of the constitutionality of a majority of the provisions of the law. 2013 The SC Public Information Office is issuing this ADVISORY on the oral arguments on the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 scheduled on Tuesday. at the En Banc Session Hall. 2013. as counsel for the government. The Solicitor General. the media photographers and television crew shall remove their respective broadcast and recording equipment and other gadgets from the courtroom as quickly and as unobtrusively as possible. Abad took the initiative of meeting with the said counsels this afternoon to discuss possible ground rules. no one shall enter or leave the session hall. had petitioned the Court to strike down some or all of the provisions of the law. Bearer of the passes/card shall sign the same. firearms and other deadly weapons. The SC Security will issue color-coded stickers for the members of the media who must wear their media IDs at all times. The pass/card is non-transferable. Before entering the Session Hall. Thereafter. SC Main Building. 2nd Floor. Only those who have passes and the media with IDs issued by their media outfits who have registered with Security shall be allowed inside the En BancSession Hall on a first-come-first-served basis. Those who wish to observe the said oral arguments in the En Banc Session Hall must write to the Office of the Clerk of Court through Atty. The IDs must be worn visibly throughout the coverage.

whatever the penalties are. an upper margin of 1. unless six-month voluntary period is extended. of 14-size font. It further requires the parties’ documentary or object evidence to be attached to the judicial affidavits. and similar papers intended for the consideration of all courts and quasijudicial bodies under the supervision of the Supreme Court must be written in single space with a one-and-a-half space between paragraphs. avoid landslides. Guerra Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P.judiciary. E-filing also asked for the creation of an ad hoc Committee to revisit the Rule’s provisions. the parties need to submit also two sets of annexes. under the Rule. one attached to the original and one extra copy. the Supreme Court. Peralta and Lucas P.5 inches from the edge. simultaneously with their court-bound papers. the Court noted the need to cut the judicial system’s use of excessive quantities of costly paper. For efficient use of paper. the Rule applies to all criminal actions where the maximum of the imposable penalty does not exceed six years. using an easily readable font style of the party’s choice. the parties shall file 10 additional copies. requires the compulsory use of judicial affidavits of witnesses in lieu of their direct testimonies in all first-level (except as to small claims cases) to third-level courts. requires parties before the Supreme Court to submit. the PLP cited as among the reasons for its request the heavy workloads of the prosecutors affording them “limited time to prepare judicial affidavits. Bersamin. and special courts and quasi-judicial bodies whose rules of procedure are subject to the SC’sdisapproval. By Gleo Sp. In its letter dated December 12. E-filing. resolutions. A. Thereafter. 2012) which takes effect on January 1. the parties need to submit only two sets of annexes. investigating officers and bodies authorized by the SC to receive evidence.” as well as the “deficiency in the number of prosecutors” in many field offices.2 inches from the edge.” SC Establishes E-Mail Address for E-Filing and Other Requirements for Efficient Use of Paper Posted: December 29. 2013. This is pursuant to the Efficient Use of Paper Rule (AM No. save the forests. through its Management Information System Office. For the En Banc. in which event. All court-bound papers to be submitted by every party shall likewise maintain a left hand margin of 1. Prior to the Rule’s promulgation last September 4. or with respect to the civil aspect of the actions. one attached to the original. Abad. For the Division. and on a 13-inch by 8. The Rule specifies the number of copies of court-bound papers in a particular court that a party is required or desires to file unless otherwise directed by the court. The same requirements apply to all decisions. as well as reports submitted to the courts and transcripts of stenographic notes.SC to Take Up Prosecutors' Request for Deferment of the Judicial Affidavit Rule in Criminal Cases Posted: January 2. the Rule also requires that all pleadings. which is meant to address the twin problems of case congestion and delay in the resolution of cases. be ona voluntary basis for the first six months following the effectivity of the Rule. motions. 2012.5-inch white bond paper. composed of active and retired prosecutors. By Gleo Sp. Sereno. soft copies of the same and their annexes (the latter in PDF format) either by e-mail to the Court’s e-mail address or by compact disc (CD). He. also met with officers of the National League of Prosecutors last December 21 to discuss the latter’s concerns regarding the Rule. 2013. In these cases.Associate Justice Abad emphasized that the intent of the Judicial Affidavit Rule is to “elevate the trustworthiness and the integrity of judicial affidavits by requiring that only lawyers be allowed to draft them and that they be made accountable for their contents. Every page must be consecutively numbered. unless the case is referred to the CourtEn Banc. In promulgating this Rule. responding to a request from the Prosecutors’ League of the Philippines (PLP) for the deferment of the implementation of the Judicial Affidavit Rule for at least a year in criminal cases. as well as an extra copy. addressed to Chief Justice Sereno and the Associate Justices. 11-9-4-SC. has set up the e-mail address efile@sc. November 13. the judicial affidavits must be submitted by the prosecution not later than five days before the pre-trial. Relevant to the PLP’s request. along with SC Associate Justices Diosdado M. has directed that the request be included in the agenda of the Supreme Court’s first En Banc session of the year on January 8. a right hand margin of one inch from the edge. met with a number of prosecutors from the Department of Justice. . 2012. where the parties agreed to the use of judicial affidavits irrespective of the penalty involved. Associate Justice Roberto A. and a lower margin of one inch from the edge. parties are required to file one original (properly marked) and four copies. The Rule. and mitigate the worsening effects of climate change. and orders issued by courts and quasi-judicial bodies under the administrative supervision of the Supreme Court. Chair of the Sub-Committee on the Revision of Rules on Civil Procedure that drafted the Rule. 2013 after its publication in two newspapers of general circulation. All members of the Court shall share the extra copies of annexes in the interest of economy of paper. Guerra In preparation for the eventual establishment of an e-filing paperless system in the Judiciary. In the Supreme Court for instance. The PLP. it shall be compulsory.

hiring. and observe honesty and good faith. 183026. utilizing. Finally. Section 9 of RA 8042 allowed the filing of criminal actions arising from “illegal recruitment” before the RTC of the province or city where the offense was committed or where the offended party actually resides at the time of the commission of the offense. reversing the ruling of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in Manila. and bad faith.” The Court also held that the Spouses Padalhin’s petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Civil Procedure against Laviña was procedurally flawed because it was Spouses Padalhin’s son. Laviña. etc. without his consent. Abad. Reyes. he testified that he was the one who voluntarily and freely prepared his affidavit. the Court ruled that his surreptitious acts negate his allegation of good faith. officers. the Court declared Sections 6. Despite Nestor’s insistence that this was all done without any malice. Section 7 provides the penalties for prohibited acts. the petition was filed before it (the Supreme Court) when it is not a trier of facts but a trier of law. contracting. 2012. inviolability of his diplomatic residence.00 in damages by the Court of Appeals (CA) to the former Philippine Ambassador to Kenya Nelson Laviña (Laviña) against former Consul General to Kenya. Padilla The Supreme Court En Banc has recently upheld certain provisions of RA 8042 (Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995). and not the spouses themselves who personally signed the verification and certification of non-forum shopping attached to it. (GR No. On the witness stand. 7. Philippine National Bank that the substantive issue of questioning an award for damages and attorney’s fees is a factual issue and beyond the jurisdiction of a petition for review on certiorari. His affidavit likewise contained an apology for his lack of judgment and discretion. give everyone his due. the CA has affirmed the decision of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Pasig City. for damages for violating his right to privacy. Nestor caused the taking of pictures of raw elephant tusks in Laviña’s home. infringement of his right against illegal searches and seizures. although with the . Laviña filed a case against Nestor. enlisting.” The Court cited Article 19 of the New Civil Code providing that “every person must in the exercise of his rights and the performance of his duties. Nestor Padalhin (Nestor) and his wife.” ruled the Court. Annie. Padalhin v. The Court reiterated the ruling in Vda. On the other hand. the last sentence of the second paragraph of Section 10 holds the corporate directors. By Bianca M. Padilla The Supreme Court has recently affirmed the award of P700. Laviña and Nestor were both Filipino diplomats formerly assigned to Kenya. enlisting. De Formoso v. malice and deceit for conspiring to conduct raids on his (Laviña’s) residence.000. among others. ordering Nestor to pay Laviña moral. and the last sentence of the second paragraph of Section 10 of RA 8042 “valid and constitutional. the Supreme Court through its First Division unanimously held that the award of damages and attorney’s fees granted inLaviña’s favor is proper because Nestor himself admitted that he caused the taking of the pictures of Laviña’s residence without the latter’s knowledge and consent. which declared the same unconstitutional.SC Affirms Award of Damages to Former Filipino Ambassador to Kenya Posted: December 7. 2012) SC Upholds Certain Provisions of Migrant Workers Act as Constitutional Posted: December 7. “Nestor’s affidavit constitutes an admission against his interest… Thus it is fair to presume the declaration corresponds with the truth.000. also. Except for reducing the award of attorney’s fees by P75. of OFWs. and partners of recruitment and placement agencies jointly and solidarily liable for money claims and damages that may be adjudged against the latter agencies. recruiters who engage in the canvassing. In a 17-page consolidated decision penned by Justice Roberto A. In a 15-page decision penned by Justice Bienvenido L. 9. Norman. “By its terms. transporting.00. It stated that “Nestor’s participation in the invasion of Laviña’s diplomatic residence and his act of ordering an employee to take photographs of what was inside the diplomatic residence without the consent of Laviña were clearly done to prejudice the latter. The Court found "illegal recruitment” as defined in Section 6 of RA 8042 clear and unambiguous. or procuring workers’ without the appropriate government license or authority are guilty of illegal recruitment whether or not they commit the wrongful acts enumerated in that section.” Section 6 defines the crime of “illegal recruitment” and enumerates the acts constituting the same. nominal and exemplary damages as well as attorney’s fees and litigation expenses for a raid that occurred in Laviña’s home in Kenya while the latter was still the Philippine Ambassador to Kenya. persons who engage in ‘canvassing. By Bianca M. Branch 165. 2012. November 14. He further stated that the contents thereof are true. act with justice.

which allows offended parties to file the criminal case in their place of residence in addition to the place where the crime is committed. Arceo formerly of the San Fernando. Philippines v. (GR No. in granting judicial clemency to Arceo.appropriate government license or authority.. The Court found that after his dismissal. the Court noted that the “liability of corporate directors and officers is not automatic.” The Court also held moot the issue as to the constitutionality of the deregulation provisions of recruitment and migration of overseas workers in Sections 29 and 30 of RA 8042 as these provisions had been repealed by RA 9422. former Clerk of Court of the San Fernando.” held the Court. the High Court ordered its Fiscal Management and Budget Office to compute Arceo’s accrued leave credits. He sought for judicial clemency in October this year. White Falcon Services. For these services. neighbors. held that he has sufficiently shown his remorse and reformation after his dismissal from the service. “it cannot be doubted that he could still be of service to the government in some other capacity” considering his achievements and mental aptitude. Likewise. granted judicial clemency to dismissed Judge Hermin E. GR No. who was perpetually banned from public office has been been allowed by the High Court to rejoin the government. Hon. as provided for in Section 7. Paneda et. Inc. Jocelyn C. The Court. Rempillo A dismissed judge. 2012) SC Grants Judicial Clemency to Reformed Judge Posted: December 7. he was bestowed the award Gawad Bunying Abogadong Bulakenyo last year. Branch 43 by lifting his disqualification from re-employment in any branch of the government. there must be a finding that they were remiss in directing the affairs of that company.” As to the last sentence of the second paragraph of Section 10. et. He submitted to the Court a Certificate of Good Moral Character issued by the Executive Judge of the Malolos City RTC and a Certificate of Favorable Endorsement from the Integrated Bar of the Philippines Bulacan Chapter President attesting to his reformation and recognizing his valuable contributions to the Bar and the Bench. To make them jointly and solidarily liable with their company. for each of the enumerated acts under Section 6. GR No. Inc. Pampanga RTC. GR No. 152710. Ventura.. it held that “the State under its police power may prescribe rules and regulations as in its judgment will secure or tend to secure the general welfare of the people. & GR No. Citing Castillo v. and to release the same to him. In 1996. It ruled that while Arceo. to protect them against the consequence of ignorance and incapacity as well as of deception and fraud. had already reached retirement age and can no longer be eligible for regular employment in the public service. the Court ruled that “Congress was within its prerogative to determine what individual acts are equally reprehensible” consistent with the State policy of according full protection to labor and deserving of the same penalties... The Court also found that Arceo was granted probation after his conviction by the Sandiganbayan in 2004 for violation of the Anti-Sexual Harassment Lawand Article 336 of the Revised Penal Code and finally discharged after having complied with . Hon. Tomas v. are guilty of illegal recruitment only if they commit any of the wrongful acts enumerated in Section 6. 152642. Pampanga Regional Trial Court. if any. The Supreme Court En Banc. December 5. 184298-99. 167590. including government-owned or –controlled corporations. 18297879. By Jay B. Talens-Dabon. which adopts the policy of close government regulation of the recruitment and deployment of OFWs. Spouses Cuaresma v. al. It held that the fixing of an alternative venue for violations of Section 6 of RA 8042 that differs from the venues established by the Rules of Criminal Procedure is “consistent with the law’s declared policy of providing a criminal justice system that protects and serves the best interest of the victims of illegal recruitment. through an eight page resolution by Justice Estela M. v. now 71. and close friends. Becmen Service Exporter and Promotion. the SC dismissed Arceo for gross misconduct and immorality on the complaint of Atty. al. Sto. Arceo engaged in private practice and most of his cases involve poor litigants. Perlas-Bernabe. Hon. Sto. PASEI. Reiterating People v. 2012. Salac. Calanog. the Court noted that the penalty of disqualification imposed on a judge dismissed for immorality in that case was lifted by the SC after the dismissed judge had shown sincere repentance and taking into account his contributions during his tenure in the Judiciary. In fixing uniform penalties. Tomas v. Jr.” The Court also declared that there is nothing unconstitutional with Section 9 of RA 8042. Spouses Cuaresma. at 71.

11.5-inch white bond paper. were restored. 11-9-4-SC (the Efficient Use of Paper Rule). By Bianca M. Judge Arceo. which will maximize the use of every sheet of paper in rulings to be issued by the court and in the pleadings to be filed by parties.all the conditions thereof.’” Moreover. save our forests. Every page must be consecutively numbered. of 14-size font. All decisions. (GR No. Lim then sought to expunge the motion for lack of the requisite explanation why the Arcinues resorted to service by registered mail rather than personal service. Rempillo Promoting a paper-less Judiciary to protect the environment. . the Court's Third Division unanimously held that both the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Lingayen. RTJ-96-1336. ensures as in this case receipt by the adverse party. Padilla The Rules of Civil Procedure do not provide for automatic sanction should a party fail to submit the required explanation for resorting to service by registered mail rather than personal service. all his civil rights which he had lost as a result of his conviction. A. motions. alleging that they owned and were in possession of one of the lots subject of the expropriation. the Supreme Court En Banc has recently issued the Efficient Use of Paper Rule. Private respondents Arcinue spouses filed a motion for leave to admit their complaint-in-intervention. By Jay B.” It noted that Lim’s counsel in fact even admitted to receiving a copy of the Arcinues’ motion 10 days before the scheduled hearing on the said motion. when adopted. Under AM No. and similar papers intended for the consideration of all courts and quasi-judicial bodies under the supervision of the Supreme Court shall be written in single space with a one-and-a-half space between paragraphs. has required that all pleadings. Lim v. Pangasinan (Branch 37) and the Court of Appeals did not gravely abuse their discretion when both courts ruled against the striking out of the motion for judgment by default filed by private respondent Roberto and Arabela Arcinue (Arcinues) against petitioner Natividad Lim (Lim) for failure of the Arcinues to submit the aforesaid required explanation. In a six-page decision penned by Justice Roberto A. 2012) SC: Failure to Explain Service By Registered Mail Not Automatically Subject to Sanction Posted: December 6. 2012) SC Issues Efficient Use of Paper Rule Posted: November 29. Thus. prompting her to file a petition with the Court. the Court. 2012. ruled the Court. In promulgating the Rule. and on a 13-inch by 8. shall comply with the said requirements. and a lower margin of one inch from the edge. Abad. including the right to be employed in the public service. It merely provides for that possibility considering its use of the term ‘may.2 inches from the edge. Both the RTC and the CA ruled against this. November 14. The Court thus directed the RTC to proceed with the hearing and adjudication of the case. The RTC granted the Arcinues’ motion and required both NPC and Lim to answer the complaint-in-intervention within 10 days from receipt of its order. All court-bound papers to be submitted by every party shall likewise maintain a left hand margin of 1. As for the accrued leave credits. a right hand margin of one inch from the edge.5 inches from the edge. and mitigate the worsening effects of climate change that the world is experiencing. 2012. the same “does not altogether prohibit service by registered mail when such service. NPC. as well as reports submitted to the courts and transcripts of stenographic notes. November 20. the Court noted that there is a need to cut the judicial system’s use of excessive quantities of costly paper. Because NPC and Lim failed to file their respective answers. using an easily readable font style of the party’s choice. Section 11 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure “does not provide for automatic sanction should a party fail to submit the required explanation. the Court noted that sec. 178789. avoid landslides. National Power Corporation (NPC) filed an expropriation suit against petitioner Lim for its Coal-Fired Thermal Power Project. The Court pointed out Rule 13. under Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P. To take effect on January 1 next year after its publication two newspapers of general circulation. resolutions. Sereno. the Arcinues filed a motion for judgment by default. (AM No. the Rule shall apply to all courts and quasi-judicial bodies under the administrative supervision of the Supreme Court. Talens-Dabon v. an upper margin of 1. and orders issued by courts and quasi-judicial bodies under the administrative supervision of the High Tribunal. paragraph 1 of Rule 140 of the Rules of Court explicitly exempts accrued leave credits from the penalty of forfeiture of benefits.

one original (properly marked) and eight copies with annexes. 2012) Supreme Court Reinstates Dismissal of Libel Cases Due to Procedural Defect Posted: November 9. an appeal therefrom on the criminal aspect may be taken only by the State through the Solicitor General… However. Ampoloquio. November 13. Parties before the trial courts are required to submit one original (properly marked) with the stated annexes attached to it. a party required by the rules to serve a copy of his or her court-bound paper on the adverse party need not enclose copies of those annexes that. Padilla The Supreme Court has recently ordered the reinstatement of the portion of the order of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in Mandaluyong. Bautista and Alcantara are Bandera’s Editor and Assistant Editor. which dismissed the libel suits filed by singer-actress Sharon Cuneta-Pangilinan against petitioners Lito Bautista and Jimmy Alcantara for the alleged defamatory articles against her published in the tabloid Bandera. the parties to cases before the Supreme Court are further required to submit. the author of the articles. In the event a party requests a set of the annexes actually filed with the court. the parties need to submit also two sets of annexes. based on the records of the court. The Court held that petitioners “can no longer be held liable in view of the procedural infirmity that the petition for certiorari [filed by Sharon Cuneta-Pangilinan] was not undertaken by the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG). In a 19-page decision penned by Justice Diosdado M. Branch 212. unless the case is referred to the Court En Banc. but instead by respondent in her personal capacity. For the En Banc. and in the Court of Tax Appeals.” (GR No. All members of the Court shall share the extra copies of annexes in the interest of economy of paper. 2012. as well as an extra copy. the parties need to submit only two sets of annexes. This additional requirement will be on a voluntary basis for the first six months following the effectivity of the said Rule and compulsorily afterwards unless the period is extended. soft or electronic copies of the same and their annexes (the latter in PDF format) either by email to the Court’s e-mail address or by compact disc. the petition filed before the CA by Cuneta-Pangilinan essentially questioned the criminal aspect of the RTC’s order of dismissal. Also. the interest of the private complainant or private offended party is limited to the civil liability… If a criminal case is dismissed by the trial court or if there is an acquittal. and on appeal to the En Banc. Santiago that “[i]n criminal cases where the offended party is the State. the party who filed the paper shall comply with the request within five days from receipt of such. 189754. the Court's Third Division unanimously granted petitioners’ petition for review of the CA’s decision. In the Supreme Court for instance. in which event. By Bianca M. although the conclusion of the trial court may be wrong. Efficient Use of Paper Rule. Cuneta-Pangilinan. In the Court of Appeals and the Sandiganbayan. one original (properly marked) and two copies with annexes. parties are required to file one original (properly marked) and four copies. simultaneously with their court-bound papers. respectively. Peralta. Respondent Cuneta-Pangilinan then filed a petition for certiorari to the Court of Appeals (CA) which the latter granted. 11-9-4-SC. October 24. show said party already has such. The CA also ordered the cases against petitioners to be remanded to the trial court. parties are required to submit one original (properly marked) and two copies with their annexes.” The Court found that in this case. Moreover. one attached to the original. the said offended party or complainant may appeal the civil aspect of the case despite the acquittal of the accused. (AM No.The Rule also specified the number of court-bound papers in a particular court that a party is required or desires to file unless otherwise directed by the court.” The Court reiterated the ruling in People v. The Court stressed that the granting of a Demurrer to Evidence is tantamount to a dismissal of the case on the merits and a “review of the order granting the demurrer to evidence will place the accused in double jeopardy. the parties shall file 10 additional copies. For the Division. Bautista v. 2012) . Also charged with libel is Pete G. The RTC Mandaluyong had ordered the libel suits dismissed insofar as petitioners are concerned after granting the Demurrer to Evidence filed by them alleging that the prosecution had failed to prove their participation as conspirators of the crime charged. In preparation for the eventual establishment of an e-filing paperless system in the Judiciary. to reverse and set aside the Order granting the demurrer to evidence would violate petitioners’ constitutionally enshrined right against double jeopardy. one attached to the original and one extra copy.

It also agreed with Rigonan that he had no other remedy but to file the certiorari before the RTC considering that the decision of BES is final and executory. GR No. By Jay B. has denied with finality the motions for reconsideration of its June 28. By Jay B. The BES also endorsed enforcement of its decision to nullify Rigonan’s proclamation and to declare vacant his position to the Provincial Office of the Department of Interior and Local Government. a Sunday. sec. SK Board of Election Supervisors of Subic Zambales v. On petition for certiorari by Rigonan to the RTC. The Court held that it was clear in its assailed order that the RTC has already made a final determination of the case before it not only on the ground of non-exhaustion of administrative remedies but also on the very ground that Rigonan’s allegation of deprivation of due process did not constitute grave abuse of discretion. Rigonan. Title II of the Local Government Code of 1991 nor an officer of thePederasyon ng mga Sangguniang Kabataan covered by sec. in accordance with Rule 22. the latter appealed to CA. Rempillo The Supreme Court. SC's Order for SEC to Probe PLDT for Violation of Filipino Ownership Requirement Posted: October 15. October 1. the CA reasoned that the rule that a motion for reconsideration is a condition sine qua non for the filing of a petition for certiorari admits of certain exceptions and that the relaxation of procedural rules is proper if only to promote the interest of justice. therefore. Zambales Stays Posted: October 18. Art. 2011 decision.. In its June 8. of the Memorandum Circular No. This after the Supreme Court’s Second Division affirmed the Court of Appeals (CA)’s ruling setting aside that of the SK Board of Election Supervisors (BES) of Subic.SC: SK Federation President of Subic. II. In a nine-page extended resolution. Zambales gets to keep his post. the CA denied the respective motions for reconsideration of the BES and Sawey. The Court of Appeals was. The CA had found that the SK BES committed grave abuse of discretion in ruling that Rigonan’s answer in the election protest against him was filed late as Rigonan’s answer was filed on the next working day after the due date on December 5. . voting 10-3. who garnered the second highest number of votes next to Rigonan. 2010. 202452. (PLDT) for possible violation of the constitutional limit on foreign ownership in utilities. which in turn ruled against Rigonan for allegedly violating sec. Zambales filed a protest before the BES. The Court also noted that the case does not involve an elective official under Chapter I. (Extended Res. 2012. 2012 resolution.” the Court held. Rigonan filed a petition for certiorari with prayer for a preliminary injunction against the BES and Sawey before the RTC of Olongapo City. 2011 decision that directed the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to investigate the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. When the RTC also denied Rigonan’s subsequent motion for reconsideration. The BES and Sawey thereafter filed a Motion to Dismiss which the RTC granted. Zambales. Fourteen of the 16 SK Chairpersons in Subic. 1 of the Rules of Court. 2012. Zambales and the Regional Trial Court of Olongapo City which had nullified the proclamation of Ray Mark Rigonan as SK Federation President of Subic. the Court denied the petition assailing the CA decision of the SK BES of Subic Zambales and Maureen Sawey. 2002-123 on the Implementing Rules and Guidelines for the Conduct of the SK Federation Elections. the RTC granted the motion to dismiss of both the Subic SK BES and Sawey. 252 of the Omnibus Election Code so resort to judicial review is an option from the BES ruling particularly since Rigonan’s petition for certiorari to the RTC raises pure questions of law and jurisdiction and also alleges deprivation of due process. In its February 20. which in turn ruled in his favor. 8. “Simply put…the Regional Trial Court had already ruled that the act of nullifying the proclamation of Rigonan as SK Federation president without taking into consideration the answer he filed did not amount to grave abuse of discretion. 2012) It's Final. Rempillo The Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Federation President of Subic. correct in reviewing the merits of the case and in so nullifying the assailed board resolution without remanding the case to the Regional Trial Court for further trial.

it was clear that the term “capital” refers to controlling interest of a corporation. to own and operate a public utility a corporation’s capital must at least be 60 percent owned by Philippine nationals. Villarama. The Court held that the 1987 Constitution reserves the ownership and operation of public utilities exclusively to (1) Filipino citizens. under Section 11. Peralta. Abad wrote a separate dissenting opinion. but well within the SEC’s statutory powers.’” The Court further held that the PLDT is only an indispensable party insofar as other issues. Justices Presbitero J. Article XII and RA 7042. It Thus the Court found that there exists no legal impediment against the proper and immediate implementation of its directive to the SEC. Jr.In a 51-page resolution penned by Senior Justice Antonio T. RA 7042. Carpio. or (2) corporations. Joining Senior Justice Carpio in his ponencia were Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P. Perlas-Bernabe did not take part due to prior participation in a related case. Article XII of the Constitution. or a domestic corporation at least “60% of the capital stock outstanding and entitled to vote” is owned by Philippine citizens. Under prevailing jurisprudence. It also held that SEC was properly impleaded in this case. Diosdado M. to construe broadly the term ‘capital’ as the total outstanding capital stock. at the start of the administrative case or investigation.” held the Court. Jose Portugal Perez. Further. Lucas P. Sereno and Justices Teresita J. The Court found that from the deliberations of the Constitutional Commission. Justice Estela M. A. once the 28 June 2011 Decision becomes final. Bersamin. indicating its submission to the Court’s jurisdiction.” added the Court. PLDT must be impleaded. Article XII of the Constitution and directed the SEC to apply such definition in determining the exact percentage of foreign ownership in PLDT. noted the Court. 1973. treated as a single class regardless of the actual classification of shares. Martin S.. “For its part. It noted that SEC has expressly manifested that it will abide by the Court’s decision and defer to the Court’s definition of the term “capital” in Section II. the Court En Banc declared that it “no further pleadings shall be entertained” in the case. “Thus. grossly contravenes the intent and letter of the Constitution that the ‘State shall develop a self-reliant and independent national economy effectively controlled by Filipinos. there is no dispute that it is only after the SEC has determined PLDT’s violation. wrote a dissenting opinion and was joined by Justice Bienvenido L. Jr. Article XII of the Constitution. in the proceedings before the SEC where the factual issues will be thoroughly threshed out and resolved. Brion. there is an existing violation of Section 11. The Court thus limited its decision on the purely legal and threshold issue on the definition of the term ‘capital’ in Section 11. the Foreign Investments Act of 1991 (FIA) can cure their deficiencies prior to the start of the administrative case or investigation. Justice Roberto A. The Court noted that the 1935. public utilities that fail to comply with the nationality requirement under Section 11. that the SEC may impose the statutory sanctions against PLDT. the SEC shall impose the appropriate sanctions only if it finds after due hearing that. It ruled that any deviation from this requirement necessitates an amendment to the Constitution as exemplified by the Parity Amendment. clearly defines a “Philippine national” as a Philippine citizen. particularly factual questions are concerned. Mariano C. or associations at least 60 percent of whose ‘capital’ is owned by Filipino citizens. like all its predecessor statutes. and in fact refrained from ruling on the question of whether PLDT violated the 6040 ownership requirement in favor of Filipino citizens in Section 11. and must necessarily be heard. In other words. The Court held: “As we held in our 28 June 2011 Decision.” the Court ruled. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution. which is generally outside the province of its jurisdiction. “In other words. Velasco. if any exists at the time of the commencement of the administrative case or investigation. and Jose Catral Mendoza. Reyes. Leonardo-De Castro. the SEC entered its special appearances in this case and argued during the Oral Arguments. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution as such question indisputably calls for a presentation and determination of evidence through a hearing. Arturo D. Del Castillo. and 1987 Constitutions have the same 60 percent Filipino ownership and control requirement for public utilities like PLDT. The Court clarified that it did not decide. .

liberty. and security from the military. cannot be granted. Sec. 2012) SC Denies With Finality Anakpawis Member's Petition for Writs of Amparo. hence. 2012. the reliefs prayed for. which may have different rights.” ruled the Court. Bernardo M. comprising the capital of a corporation. Under the Corporation Code. It held that the CA did not commit a reversible error in declaring that no substantial evidence exist to compel the grant of the reliefs prayed for by Saez. He wrote that the authority to define “capital” in the said provision belongs to Congress as part of its policy making power. October 9. privileges or restriction as stated in the articles of incorporation. XII already provides limitations on foreign participation in public utilities. Teves. Justice Velasco in his dissenting opinion opined that PLDT should be given time to undertake the necessary measures to make its capital structure compliant. Gamboa v. Art. common shares as well as preferred shares. XII of the Constitution. therefore. and the SEC should formulate appropriate guidelines and supervise the process. preferred non-voting. Art. Article XII of the Constitution refers only to shares of stock entitled to vote in the election of directors. that is. the evidence showed that Saez’s mobility was never curtailed that he had a mobile phone and thus can readily seek assistance. are not supported by independent and credible evidence. It found that the restraints and threats allegedly made against him “lack corroboration. By Jay B. For his part. Rempillo The Supreme Court has denied with finality the motion for reconsideration filed by a member of the party-list Anakpawis of its denial of his petition for review of the Court of Appeal (CA)’s decision denying his prayer for the issuance of the writs of amparo and habeas data and the dropping of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as a respondent in the case.” Moreover. and. Saez alleged that he was under surveillance as his name was included in the order of battle and other government records connecting him to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP). the 60-40 ownership requirement in favor of Filipino citizens must apply separately to each class of shares. XII of the Constitution. The SEC was thus directed to apply the Court’s definition of the term “capital” in determining the extent of allowable foreign ownership in PLDT and to impose the appropriate sanctions under the law if there is any violation of sec. He added that SEC should also adopt rules and regulations to implement the prospective compliance by all affected companies with the new ruling on the interpretation of Sec. 176579. In a 19-page petition penned by Justice Bienvenido L. regardless of nomenclature and category. 2011 decision. capital stock consists of all classes of shares issued to stockholders. engaged in a partially nationalized industry. “Given that the totality of the evidence presented by the petitioner failed to support his claims. Granting otherwise. 11. in the present case. Joaquin Bernas and Dr. 11. and thus stand on nebulous ground. at least 60 percent of the common shares and at least 60 percent of the preferred nonvoting shares must be owned by Filipinos. 11. The liberality accorded to amparo and habeas data cases does not mean that a . Justice Abad opined that Sec. Art. Habeas Data Posted: October 15. The Court stressed that its assailed decision “declares that the 60 percent Filipino ownership required by the Constitution to engage in certain economic activities applies not only to voting control of the corporation. but also to the beneficial ownership of the corporation.” It further held that it was “imperative that such requirement apply uniformly and across the board to all classes of shares. “The Court took a second look on the evidence on record and finds no reason to reconsider the denial of the issuance of the writs prayed for. In short. In its June 28.” The Court further explained that if a corporation. coupled with beneficial ownership. only to common shares and not to the total outstanding capital stock comprising both common and non-voting preferred shares. he opined that “capital” encompasses the entirety of a corporation’s outstanding capital stock and that the Court can simply adopt such interpretation of Constitution Commission by Fr.The Court explained that the right to elect directors. the Court need not add more by further restricting the meaning of the term “capital” when none was intended by the framers of the 1987 Constitution. the Court ruled that the term “capital” in Section 11. Reyes. preferred voting or any other class of shares. the Court En Banc ruled that no substantial evidence exists to prove the claim of petitioner Francis Saez that there was threat to his life. Villegas. (GR No. issues a mixture of common and preferred non-voting shares. translates to effective control. whether common.

or how his right to privacy was threatened by respondents. Macapagal-Arroyo. discussed. 2012 decision and shall be declared owned by the Government and be used only for the benefit of all coconut farmers and for the development of the coconut industry. On August 31. the 14 CIIF holding companies are wholly owned subsidiaries of the CIIF Oil Mills. These 14 CIIF holding companies used borrowed funds from the UCPB to acquire the SMC shares in the aggregate amount of P1.848. “[C]onsidering that the motion’s arguments are unsubstantial to warrant a reconsideration or at least a modification. 180705. For Military Gonzales III Posted: September 26. While the Court also ruled that while the President cannot be automatically dropped in a petition for the privilege of the writs of amparo and habeas datamerely on the basis of presidential immunity from suit. Thus. Saez has failed to establish accountability of the President as commander-in-chief under the doctrine of command responsibility. 2012) SC Reinstates Dep.’” the Court declared. September 4. The CA also correctly held that he failed to present substantial evidence that his right to life.” held the Court. et al. The Court further ruled that Saez’s claim that he was incommunicado lacks credibility as he was given a cellular phone and allowed to go back to Oriental Mindoro. the Court denied the petition for review. 177857-78. 17785758.312 SMC Series 1 preferred shares of the CIIF companies converted from the CIIF block of SMC common shares subject of its September 17. The Government owns the San Miguel Corporation (SMC) shares bought from the coconut levy funds. COCOFED v. 178193.656 billion bought using coconut levy funds and registered in the names of the Coconut Industry Investment Fund (CIIF) and its holding companies. (GR No. 1781933. Gonzales III who was dismissed by the Office of the President (OP) for . 2012 decision which affirmed the Sandiganbayan ruling that re-conveyed to the government shares in San Miguel Corporation (SMC) in the aggregate amount of P1. the CA denied on formal and substantial grounds the reliefs prayed for in the petition and dropped President Macapagal-Arroyo as respondent. which issued a writ of amparo commanding respondents to make a verified return and referred the case to the CA for hearing and decision. shall now be the subject matter of the aforesaid January 24. GR No. Velasco.656 billion. The Supreme Court En Banc has denied with finality for lack of merit the motion for reconsideration of the Philippine Coconut Producers Federation. 2008. the Court ruled. liberty and security. In a nine-page signed resolution penned by Justice Presbitero J. Omb. the Court also had held that since the CIIF companies and the CIIF block of SMC shares were acquired using coconut levy funds – funds. 2010. The Court also clarified that the 753. and GR No. Saez filed the petition the petition before the SC. (COCOFED). Tañada. of its January 24. In its January 24. Jr.. this Court finds no reason to modify or let alone reverse the challenged Decision. In the Matter of the Petition for the Writ of Amparo and the Writ of Habeas Data in Favor of Francis Saez v. they are accordingly owned by the Government. liberty and security were violated. 2012. On the other hand. The Court declared that no further pleadings shall be entertained and ordered that an entry of judgment on the case be made. Ursua v. ‘Indeed. Rempillo The Supreme Court En Banc has unanimously ordered the reinstatement with backwages of Deputy Ombudsman for the Military and Other Law Enforcement Office Emilio A. even the liberal standard of substantial evidence demands some adequate evidence. 2012 Decision. being government properties. (GR Nos. On July 9. 2009 Resolution in GR Nos. Rempillo It’s final. By Jay B. for the coconut industry pursuant to currently existing laws. the Court ruled that the said motion for reconsideration was but a mere reiteration or rehash of the arguments that had already been previously pleaded. It ruled that the CA correctly found that Saez’s petiion was bereft of any allegation as to what particular acts or omission of respondents violated or threatened his right to life. and resolved by the Court in its January 24. 2012. In March 2008.claimant is dispensed with the onus of proving his case. which have been established to be public in character – it goes without saying that the concerned acquired corporations and assets ought to be regarded and treated as government assets. GR No. Republic. By Jay B. 2012 decision. The six CIIF Oil Mills were acquired by United Coconut Planters Bank (UCPB) using coconut levy funds. Inc. 2012) It's Final: Gov't Owns SMC Shares Bought From Coco Levy Funds Posted: September 28. 183533. September 25.

Justice Brion declared that he disagreed with the majority in concluding that sec. but it is not proscribed by the Constitution. the disciplinary authority’s determination of the prosecutor’s administrative liability is based on whether the plea bargain is consistent with the conscientious consideration of the government’s best interest and the diligent and efficient performance by the prosecution of its public duty to prosecute crimes against the State.. and Bienvenido L. Jose Portugal Perez. the Deputy Ombudsman and Special Prosecutor would be consulting the OP or the Secretary of Justice before they act in any case in which the latter has interest. Nonetheless. or willfulness on the part of the prosecution. Leonardo-De Castro.” Because of the lack of a majority vote to invalidate the law. the Court denied the challenge to the constitutionality of sec. Jr.gross neglect of duty and grave misconduct relative to the case of the dismissed policeman who perpetrated the 2010 Manila hostage-drama which had left eight Hong Kong tourists dead. 8(2) of RA 6770. and Jose Catral Mendoza – for their part voted to declared unconstitutional sec. entering into an agreement which the government finds “grossly disadvantageous. Justice Abad said that in upholding assailed sec. Joining the ponente Justice Estela M. an elective official. The Court ruled that the approval or disapproval of the PLEBARA by the Sandiganbayan is of no consequence to an administrative finding of liability against Barreras-Sulit. 8(2) of the Ombudsman Act of 1989. Both Gonzales and Barreras-Suilt assailed the foregoing provision. Senior Justice Antonio T. The Court also affirmed the continuation of OP-DC Case No.” In its 50-page consolidated decision. and after due process. Lucas P. Garcia. there being no intentional wrongdoing of the grave and serious kind amounting to a betrayal of public trust. in accordance with sec. Seven justices also voted to uphold the constitutionality of sec. more particularly Barreras-Sulit. Villarama. Congress can even authorize the Department of Justice or the Office of the President to investigate cases within the jurisdiction of the Ombudsman. Brion. 8(2) of RA 6770 in accordance with sec. Senior Justice Carpio wrote a concurring opinion wherein he opined that “the Ombudsman is not constitutionally empowered to act alone. Del Castillo. 8(2). The latter was charged in connection with her handling of the plunder and anti-money laundering cases against former Major General Carlos F. and Justices Diosdado M. He wrote that he differed from the majority “only in allowing the President. which “is the ludicrous and unpalatable situation that the framers of the Constitution envisaged and sought to avoid when they granted the Office of the Ombudsman independence from others who wield governmental powers. the Court also ruled that the OP’s pronouncement of administrative accountability against petitioner Gonzales and the imposition upon him of the corresponding penalty of dismissal must be reversed and set aside. 2(d). Velasco. Barreras-Sulit and her staff had sought and was granted by the Sandiganbayan approval of a Plea Bargaining Agreement (PLEBARA) entered into with Major General Garcia. the Ombudsman Act of 1989.” In his dissenting opinion. the disciplining authority’s finding of ineptitude. 8(2) of RA 6770.. Perlas-Bernabe in upholding sec. whose position is primarily political. Similarly. in this case. the Court ruled that he is entitled to reinstatement to his former position as Deputy Ombudsman with backwages corresponding to the period of suspension effective immediately. as the findings of neglect of duty or misconduct in office do not amount to a betrayal of public trust. It held that while the court’s determination of the propriety of a plea bargain is on the basis of the existing prosecution evidence on record. Martin S. Sereno. A. . in failing to pursue or build a strong case for the government or. In his concurring and dissenting opinion. Mariano C. Consequently. held the Court. the President. Reyes. Mendoza was killed by responding policemen during the 2010 hostage-drama. Thus. notwithstanding court approval of the plea bargaining agreement entered into. 2010.” under which the OP instituted separate proceedings against Gonzales and Special Prosecutor Wendell Barreras-Sulit. On August 23. the Court deemed it appropriate to refer the case to the Office of the Ombudsman for further investigation of the charges against Gonzales. Jr. Peralta. to discipline or remove members of independent constitutional bodies such as the Office of the Ombudsman.” could result in administrative liability. cannot order the removal of petitioner as Deputy Ombudsman. Abad. Roberto A. Senior Inspector Rolando Mendoza held hostage a busload of tourists from Hong Kong in protest over his dismissal and the delay in the resolution of his motion for reconsideration. Seven Justices – Justices Presbitero J. Carpio. neglect. 8(2) of RA 6770 is constitutionally valid. Bersamin. Arturo D. the Ombudsman can investigate pubic officers and employees who are under the disciplinary authority of heads of other bodies and agencies…Duplication of functions may not at all times promote efficiency. Teresita J. in view of the OP’s factual findings of negligence and misconduct against Gonzales. while he may be vested with authority. 8(2) of RA 6770 were Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P. which grants the President the power to remove a Deputy or the Special Prosecutor “for any grounds provided for the removal of the Ombudsman. 11-B-003 against Special Prosecutor Barreras-Sulit for her alleged acts and omissions tantamount to culpable violation of the Constitution and betrayal of public trust. There being no existing ground for removal against Gonzales.” He stressed that “The absence of a constitutional provision providing for the removal of the Commissioners and Deputy Ombudsmen does not mean that Congress can empower the President to discipline or remove them in violation of the independence that the Constitution textually and expressly provides. Rule 12 of the Internal Rules of Court.

Ochoa. 2012) SC Clears Two Judges. order. the Court’s First Division unanimously held that respondents “could not be held to have violated” the rule on raffling being the exclusive method for the assignment of cases. chaired by Justice Secretary Leila de Lima and vice-chaired by then Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesus Robredo. GR No. thinking that what the Republic had filed was a petition for review. because item IV of Supreme Court Circular No. however. In the 15-page resolution penned by Justice Lucas P.The hostage-drama spawned the creation of the Incident Investigation and Review Committee.. 1974. due to its (the CA’s) own lapse. the Republic assailed the trial court’s denial of its urgent motion for a writ of possession and order for it to immediately pay private respondent St. and MidIslands Power General Corporation rulings. the Court’s Second Division. 196231. it granted the extension sought by the Republic. In dismissing the Republic’s petition for certiorari for being filed out of time. In this case. among others. By Bianca M. 196232.” (GR No. 100% of the value of the property the Republic had sought to expropriate for the construction of the Manila-Cavite Toll Expressway Project (MCTEP).” The Court ruled that “the urgent nature of a TRO and injunction case demands prompt and immediate attention thereby compelling the filing of the case in the proper court without delay.000. Padilla “[R]affle Committees of all multi-sala stations are reminded to strictly adhere to the procedure for assigning cases among the Branches in the stations. September 4. OP. MC08-3660 (where GSIS was a defendant). and a fining them P5. 2009 resolution adopting the recommendation of the Office of the Court Administrator (OCA) finding both judges guilty of violating OCA Circular No. Guerra The Supreme Court has recently ordered the Court of Appeals (CA) to reinstate and to proceed with dispatch as to the Republic of the Philippines’ petition for certiorari which the CA had earlier dismissed for late filing. August 22. Reyes. By Gleo Sp. the CA had relied on the SC's Laguna Metts Corporation ruling that the 60-day period to file a petition for certiorari is non-extendible. Labao. Bersamin. which had identified Gonzales as among those accountable for the crisis. Judge Cancino-Erum as Executive Judge of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in Mandaluyong City had assigned Civil Case No. 2012. reiterated that while under Rule 65. Inc.” As such. In a 12-page decision penned by Justice Bienvenido L. the general rule is that a petition for certiorari must be filed within 60 days from notice of the judgment. Republic v. and finally. i. the Plaintiff Belinda Martizano had applied for the issuance of a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) against GSIS. second. Charges were filed against Gonzales and on March 31. or resolution sought to be assailed. no undue prejudice or delay will be caused to the parties in admitting the petition. 2012. (GR No. The Court likewise dismissed the administrative charges filed against Judge Cancino-Erum and Judge Valenzuela by the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) for assigning without the benefit of a raffle as required in Section 2. St. MC08-3660 to Branch 213. 20. said period may be extended pursuant to the Domdom. 7. the Court held that the CA should have admitted the Republic’s petition since first. Clarifies Rule on Raffle Posted: September 21. In the said petition. 2011. In the said case. Vincent de Paul Colleges.” Thus stressed the Supreme Court as it recently granted the separate motions for reconsideration filed by Executive Judge Maria Cancino-Erum and Judge Carlos Valenzuela to set aside the Court’s June 3.00 each. 7.192908. expropriation of private property for public use (MCTEP). provides as an exception when “any incidental or interlocutory matter of such urgent nature that might not wait for the regular raffle. which is presided over by Judge Valenzuela.e. the “existing practice adopted by consensus among the RTC Judges in Mandaluyong whereby a branch to which a TRO was already raffled would be excluded from the . issued on September 23. Vincent de Paul Colleges. under exceptional circumstances and subject to the sound discretion of the Court. Gonzales III v. because of the public interest involved. Inc. Rule 20 of the Rules of Court Civil Case No.. Sulit v. sec. the OP dismissed him for “gross neglect of duty and grave misconduct constituting betrayal of public trust. which provides for the rules regulating the raffle of cases. subject only to the exceptions recognized in Circular No. 2012) SC Reinstates Republic's Petition for Certiorari in MCTEP Expropriation Case Posted: September 21. 4 and as applied in Laguna Metts Corporation.

Hon. which had declared as unconstitutional RA 9355. stressed that raffle should always be the rule rather than the exception. however. Castrence. 2010 polls and its concomitant effects would all be nullified and be put to naught. Galanida.. “Indeed. as well as nullified the aforesaid Article 9(2) for going beyond the ambit of Article 461 of the LGC as such exemption is not expressly provided in the law. and Rene Medina “as no substantial arguments were presented to warrant the reversal of the questioned (April 12. which provides. Leonardo-De Castro. The Court. sanctioned the recall of judgment in light of “attendant extraordinary circumstances” and that granting the recall of the entry of judgment in the case would allow it (the Court) to arrive at the correct interpretation of the provisions of the LGC with respect to the creation of local government units. and Justices Conchita Carpio Morales. Mariano C.” This.” The petitioners sought the Court to revert to its February 10. Bagundol’s motion for reconsideration of the resolution dated May 12. their reelection to their respective positions during the May 10. Matugas. Jr. Arturo Carlos A. movants-intervenors should not be left without any remedy before this Court simply because their interest in this case became manifest only after the case had already been decided…. Intervenors are the elective officials for the First Legislative District of Surigao del Norte. as the Court. the law creating the Province of Dinagat Islands. Hon. Laborte The Supreme Court resolution. dated April 12. raffle for the purpose of equalizing the distribution of TRO/injunction cases among several branches of the RTC” is an allowable practice.” the Court had held in the April 12. 2011 resolution. Margarito M. Cesar M.” ruled the Court. . Mamerto D. 2010 Resolution be not reconsidered. GSIS v.. The Court also declared that administrative charges for gross ignorance of the law. the proclamation of the said Province. Diosdado M. Concurring were then Chief Justice Renato C. 2010 denying their motion for reconsideration of the February 10. Corona. the Court had also granted the urgent motion to recall entry of judgment of said movant-intervenors. Nachura. September 5. Peralta. Jr. Roberto A. the Court. penned by then Justice Antonio Eduardo B. The same decision also had declared the proclamation of the Province of Dinagat and the election of its officials as null and void. Given their unique circumstances. Hon. The Court also directed the Court Administrator to disseminate this resolution to all trial courts for their guidance and strict compliance. Annie Rose A. In the same resolution. In the April 12. declaring as valid and constitutional RA 9355. Jose Portugal Perez. and Hon. grave misconduct and knowingly rendering unjust judgments must be dismissed because GSIS did not resort to any of adequate remedies available to it. 2011. Simeon Vicente G. 2011 resolution. Del Castillo. such that if the May 12. in a two-page resolution denied with finality the Motion for Reconsideration filed by petitioners former Surigao del Sur political leaders Rodolfo Navarro. On the other hand. Sol T. Judge Cancino-Erum. Carpio. 2010 decision. on several occasions. Hon. In the April 12. Teresita J. Hon. Francisco S. and now Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P. Abad. Sereno dissented. Bersamin. Lucas P. et al. Velasco. “The land area requirement shall not apply where the proposed province is composed of one (1) or more islands. and the election of the officials thereof stands. voting 9-5. Matugas. 2011 resolution. 2011) resolution.. RTJ-09-2182. Victor Bernal. “An administrative complaint against a judge is inappropriate as a remedy for the correction of an act or omission complained of where the remedy of appeal or certiorari is a recourse available to an aggrieved party. Villarama. and Justices Presbitero J. (AM No. Arturo D. 2012) It's Final: Law Creating Dinagat Province Constitutional Posted: September 20. The Court had declared that it had. Senior Justice Antonio T. 2010 decision. they (movant-intervenors) have sufficiently shown that they have a personal and substantial interest in the case. and Jose Catral Mendoza. Martin S. Longos. the Court had also declared valid the provision in Article 9 (2) of the Rules and Regulations Implementing the Local Government Code (LGC) of 1991. Brion. had also granted intervenors Rep.. 2012. Egay Jr.

000 and P1. The Court stressed that the UP is a government instrumentality performing the State’s constitutional mandate of promoting quality and accessible education and that all the funds going into its possession. The Court had added that “when the exemption was expressly provided in Article 9(2) of the LGC-IRR. Executive Secretary Ermita. et al. Specifically. the inclusion was intended to correct the congressional oversight in Section 461 of the LGC – and to reflect the true legislative intent.The Court had held in the April 12. P5. September 11.191.74 within 10 days from receipt of the decision. be in order for the Court to uphold the validity of Article (2) of the LGC-IRR. By Gleo Sp. They should bear in mind that the primary jurisdiction to examine. and settle all claims of any sort from the Government or any of its subdivisions. In sharp contrast.729 in actual damages. assailing the order of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. the University of the Philippines (UP). The RTC held the decision to have attained finality and subject to execution as UP’s notice of appeal was filed out of time.500 per appearance in attorney’s fees and costs of suit. stating that the creation of provinces should be “in accordance with the criteria established in the local government code…” They also claimed that the law failed to comply with Section 461 of the LGC. In November 2006. which have minimum land area requirements. not to all local government units aspiring to be a province. It had held that Dinagat is ready and capable of becoming a province and that it (the Court) should “not be instrumental in stunting such capacity. 1445 (Government Auditing Code of the Philippines). Guerra “Trial judges should not immediately issue writs of execution or garnishment against the Government or any of its subdivisions. are not subject to any minimum land area requirement. Res. agencies.” On October 2. The Comelec thus conducted a plebiscite for the ratification of the province under the LGC. then.462. The Court thus ordered Stern Builders. (2) land and (3) income. Senior Justice Carpio added. “Congress relaxed the rule on the minimum land area requirement for island cities and municipalities because these small units only host barangays which. directing the garnishment of the UP’s funds to satisfy the judgment holding it liable to respondents Stern Builders Corporation (Stern Builders) and the latter’s President and General Manager Servillano De la Cruz in the total amount of P16.191. to redeposit the P16. there is a greater likelihood that islands or group of islands would form part of the land area of a newly-created province than in most cities or municipalities. It would.000 in moral damages. Senior Justice Antonio T.74 relative to the parties’ agreement for the construction and renovation of the College of Arts and Sciences Building of UP Los Baños. and instrumentalities pertains to the Commission on Audit (COA) pursuant to Presidential Decree No. GR No. P150. 180050.000. Senior Justice Carpio further opined that RA 9355 “applies only to Dinagat Island. the petitioners filed before the Court a petition for certiorari and prohibition. additional accomplished work.” (Min. questioning the constitutionality of RA 9355. taking into account its average annual income. and instrumentalities to enforce money judgments. then President Arroyo signed into law RA 9355.” The Court had also held that Dinagat’s land area is not conclusive in showing that it cannot become a province. 2012) SC Annuls P16-Million Garnishment Against UP Posted: September 17. and retention money. Article X of the Constitution. but was inadvertently omitted in Section 461 (for provinces). and therefore could not have amended the requirements for the creation of provinces under the Local Government Code. agencies.716.370. 2012. audit. “It is therefore logical to infer that the genuine legislative policy decision was expressed in Section 442 (for municipalities) and Section 450 (for component cities) of the LGC.. Branch 80. 2006. which is four times more than the minimum requirement for the creation of a province. the UP was held liable to Stern Builders for P503. Congress intentionally fixed the minimum land area requirement for provinces because provinces host cities and municipalities. P10.370. In his dissent to present resolution.74 representing the third billing. Bersamin reversing and setting aside the decision of the Court of Appeals which had dismissed the petition for certiorari of petitioner. The Dinagatnons elected their new set of elective officials during the May 2007 synchronized polls. including interest from its bank deposits .” Thus reminded the Supreme Court in a 35-page decision penned by Justice Lucas P. under the Local Government Code. 2011 resolution that considering the physical configuration of the Philippine archipelago. Dinagat only meets only the income requirement set by the LGC. noting that the LGC mandates that a province must meet two of the three minimum requirements on (1) population. They alleged that the law failed to comply with Section 19. Carpio wrote.” Moreover. Navarro v.

hotelkeepers are bound to provide not only lodging for their guests but also security to the persons and belongings of their guests. more particularly on the failure to deploy sufficient security personnel or roving guards at the time the ghastly incident happened. In a 29-page decision penned by Justice Lucas P. “The hotel business is imbued with public interest. “Catering to the public. Article 2001. The Court also ruled that the COA must first adjudicate private respondents’ claim before execution should proceed as expressly provided in PD 1445. while that in Neypes was rendered in 1998. the Court deleted the awards of actual damages. It found that the period to appeal did not run from service of the RTC’s denial of the UP’s motion for reconsideration because the same was served not on the UP’s counsel of record. Specifically. It adopted the conclusion of the trial court and the appellate court that the negligence on the part of Shangri-La was grounded “mainly on the latter’s inadequate hotel security.” the disbursement of which should always be aligned with the UP’s mission and purpose. sec. The High Court agreed with the CA that Shangri-La failed to provide basic and adequate security measures expected of a fivestar hotel. the CA had ordered Shangri-La to pay Harper’s heirs P52.” Thus said the Supreme Court as it ruled that the negligence of the owner and operator of the 5-star Shangri-La Hotel in Makati City was the proximate cause which set the chain of events that led to the eventual demise of one of its guests in November 1999. Court of Appeals allowing a fresh period of 15 days within which to file a notice of appeal in the RTC counted from receipt of the order dismissing a motion for new trial or motion for reconsideration. It held that the remaining award of P503. the Court declared that it acted beyond its jurisdiction by authorizing the withdrawal of the garnished funds of the UP such that all its orders and issuances thereon were void and of no legal effect.” ruled the Court. that such ration had not been enough given the L-shaped configuration of the hotel that rendered the hallways not visible from one end or the other. It noted that the decision in question was issued on November 28. 2001. moral damages. Applying by analogy Article 2000. Bersamin. It held that Stern Builders. should first seek the approval of the COA of their monetary claim. the Supreme Court’s First Division found no reversible error on the part of the Court of Appeals (CA) when it affirmed with modification the October 25.50 as actual and compensatory damages. The adverse judgment rendered against the UP in a suit to which it had impliedly consented was not immediately enforceable by execution against the UP because suability of the State did not necessarily means its liability. 2012) SC Upholds 5-Star Hotel's Civil Liability to Heirs of Murdered Guest Posted: September 17.000 as temperate damages.462. UP v. August 23. Col. who revealed that the practice of the hotel management prior to Harper’s murder had been to deploy just one security or roving guard for every three or four floors of the building. Inc. Rodrigo de Guzman. P25. et al. and that he had recommended to the hotel management to post . (GR No. “Hence the funds subject of this action could not be validly made the subject of the RTC’s writ of execution or garnishment.702. As to the RTC. and to pay the costs of the suit. The Court also found the declaration of finality of judgment of the RTC to be without merit. and attorney’s fees as factually unwarranted and devoid of legal bases. the hotelkeepers would simply stand idly by as strangers have unrestricted access to all the hotel rooms on the pretense of being visitors of the guests.constitute a “special trust fund. 171182. Moreover. Otherwise. and that its omission was the proximate cause of Harper’s death. a Norwegian national who was a guest of the hotel. 2005 decision in Neypes v. 26.000 as attorney’s fees. P250. Dizon. 2012. we hold that there is much greater reason to apply the same if not greater care and responsibility when the lives and personal safety of their guests are involved.078. Finally.74 shall stand subject to the action of the COA. Martinez “The hotel owner is liable for civil damages to the surviving heirs of its hotel guest whom strangers murder inside his hotel room. By Anna Katrina M.” said the Court. the Court ruled that equity calls for the retroactive application in the UP’s favor of the “fresh-period rule” in the September 15. (Shangri-La) liable for damages for the murder of Christian Fredrik Harper. and should always be subject to auditing by the COA. without being held liable should anything untoward befall the unwary guest.” The Court gave weight to the testimony of the hotel’s Security Manager. 2005 judgment rendered by the Quezon City Regional Trial Court (RTC) holding Makati Shangri-La Hotel and Resort. and Article 2002 of the Civil Code (all of which concerned the hotelkeepers’ degree of care and responsibility as to the personal effects of their guests).

The RTC ruled in favor of the heirs and found Makati Shangri-La remiss in its duties and thus liable for Harper’s death. the presumption of innocence of a lawyer continues and the complaint against him must be dismissed. Atty. Manuel. but such recommendation had been disapproved by Shangri-La because it claimed it “was not doing well” at that particular time. Almario. 2011.” Harper came to Manila on a business trip in the first week of November 1999. Joseph C. lawyers enjoy the presumption of innocence. Respondents expedited Strong’s release from detention in the Bureau of Immigration as well as his departure from the Philippines. Atty. The High Court lamented that while the hotel repeatedly claimed that it is a five-star hotel. Lazaro. Rodica filed the disbarment compliant against the aforesaid Lazaro Law Office lawyers. Almario. he would “do something bad” against her and her family. It found that equitable considerations exist in this case. Michelle B. Undisputed records show that the RTC case was dismissed on March 29. with the modification. the Court’s First Division unanimously held that Rodica had failed to overcome the presumption of innocence based on the totality of evidence presented by her. Atty. Harper’s heirs commenced a suit in the RTC to recover various damages from Makati Shangri-La. there can be no relation between the deportation case of William Strong (Strong) and the withdrawal of the RTC case of Rodica.M.On appeal. and Atty. Tan. Manuel M. and Atty. he was murdered inside his hotel room by still unidentified malefactors. Espejo. the records did not show that at the time of Harper’s death. The Court held that it could be inferred from de Guzman’s declarations that Shangri-La was negligent in providing adequate security due its guests. Del Castillo.” it declared. and violation of the Code of Professional Responsibility. 2011. Michelle Lazaro are all lawyers of the M. the CA affirmed the judgment of the RTC. he informed her that unless she withdrew the RTC case against his client as part of their settlement package. Abel M. Edwin M. 2011. It applied the principle of substantial compliance which recognizes that exigencies and situations do occasionally demand some flexibility in the rigid application of the rules of procedure and the laws. In the early morning of that date. the lawyer of defendant Hillview Marketing Corporation in the RTC case. alleging she was deceived by them into withdrawing her RTC case for the recovery of her Boracay property as a condition sine qua non for Strong’s departure from the country. malpractice. Rodica’s live-in partner. however.” The Court agreed with the trial court that liability on the part of the hotel was based upon the fact that it was “in a better position that the injured person to foresee and prevent the happening of the injurious occurrence. “In suspension and disbarment proceedings. On May 5. He checked in at the Shangri-La Hotel and was due to check out on November 6. Tan for gross and serious misconduct. “foremost of which is that respondents had gone to great lengths to submit the documents. The Court also added that given the chronology of events. grossly immoral conduct. Atty. among others. deceit. Espejo. Atty. “it was exercising reasonable care to protect its guests from harm and danger by providing sufficient security commensurate to it being one of the finest hotels in the country. Rodica (Rodica) against. 1999. SC Dismisses Disbarment Case Against Lazaro Law Office Lawyers Posted: September 11. initiated the immigration case of Strong which led to his detention. and the burden of proof rests upon the complainant to clearly prove her allegations by preponderant evidence.” The Court further held that Harper’s heirs were able to competently establish their relationship and filiation to him by their documentary evidence. After the Bureau of Immigration granted Strong’s Motion to Voluntarily Leave the Country on May 25. By Bianca M. Lazaro and Associates Law Office and counsel of William Strong (Strong). In the 18-page resolution penned by Justice Mariano C. Lazaro. she alleged that Atty. Manuel Lazaro. Strong was arrested and detained. Padilla The Supreme Court has recently dismissed the complaint for disbarment filed by Jasper Juno F. Atty. he left . 2011 and Rodica filed for a motion for reconsideration on April 18. Allegedly conspiring with Atty. In her complaint. In the absence of preponderant evidence. 2012.a guard for each floor. Atty.

The Court held that petitioner Sobejana-Condon was disqualified from running for elective office for failure to renounce her Australian citizenship under oath contrary to the exact mandate of Sec. While the Court has previously declared that the filing by a person with dual citizenship of a certificate of candidate is already considered a renunciation of foreign citizenship. It added that “the fact that petitioner won the elections can not cure the defect of her candidacy” since “garnering the most number of votes does not validate the election of a disqualified candidate because the application of the constitutional and statutory provisions on disqualification is not a matter of popularity.A. Tabanar-Ibutnande as counsel for her in the said case. such ruling was already adjudged superseded by the enactment of RA 9255 on August 29. August 23. In the said Motion. The Court took into consideration that Atty. however. et.” the Court held. Lazaro. “The language of the provision is plain and unambiguous. La Union Regional Trial Court (RTC). Rempillo “Failure to renounce foreign citizenship in accordance with the exact tenor of Section 5(2) of Republic Act (R. definite. the Court held there is no evidence to show that Rodica retained the Lazaro Law Office to handle her case as Atty. it found that Rodica eventually executed a Deed of Absolute Sale in favor of Apostol over the Boracay property. The RTC case had already been dismissed long before Strong engaged the legal services of Lazaro Law Office.” “This Court is more inclined to believe that the Lazaro Law Office agreed to handle only the deportation case of Strong and such acceptance cannot be construed as to include the RTC case. 9259. who was not interested in buying the property unless it was cleared of all pending cases in order to protect himself as the buyer. Atty. Joan I. 2012. was warned to be more circumspect and prudent in his actuations after it was proven that upon Rodica’s request. 2011. 2012) SC: Dual Citizens Must Renounce Foreign Citizenship In Accordance with RA 9225 Before Running for Public Office Posted: September 6. (AC No. 2003 which provides for the additional condition of a personal and sworn renunciation of foreign citizenship. La Union Vice-Mayor. By Jay B. Reyes. Espejo. 2011 that affirmed the consolidated Decision dated October 22. and sensible meaning and must thus be read literally.) No. 5(2) that the renunciation of foreign citizenship must be sworn before an officer authorized to administer oath.” . al. The Court further held that the petitioner’s act of running for public office does not suffice to serve as an effective renunciation of her Australian citizenship.. It expresses a single. In a 24-page decision penned by Justice Bienvenido L.” ruled the Court. 2011 that Rodica filed her Manifestation to Withdraw Motion for Reconsideration. she admitted in her sworn affidavit that the lawyers from Lazaro Law Office “were engaged by Strong to handle his case with the Philippine immigration authorities. It was only on June 6.” It further noted that Rodica was not a client of the Lazaro Law Office nor was Strong a party to the RTC case. the Court held that it is clear that Rodica’s purpose in withdrawing the RTC case was to facilitate the sale of the Boracay property to Philip Apostol. In fact. the Court noted that the “RTC case was filed long before Strong was arrested and detained. In fact. Rodica v. Branch 33 that had declared Teodora SobejanaCondon disqualified and ineligible to her position as Caba. Espejo is newly admitted to the Bar and that he filed a Motion to Withdraw Appearance even before the filing of the disbarment complaint. The foreign citizenship must be formally rejected through an affidavit duly sworn before an officer authorized to administer oath. Thus. 9225 [Citizenship Retention and Re-Acquisition Act of 2003]renders a dual citizen ineligible to run for and thus hold any elective public office.” Thus held the Supreme Court as it dismissed the petition for certiorari of the winning vice-mayoral candidate of Caba. 2010 of the Bauang. Despite Atty. Based on preponderance of evidence submitted. all the billings of Lazaro Law Office pertained to the immigration case and not to the RTC case. Ibutnande was shown to be her counsel of record.the country on May 31. the Court En Banc affirmed in toto the assailed resolution of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) en banc dated September 6. Espejo’s participation in writing the Manifestation to Withdraw Motion for Reconsideration and putting Lazaro Law Office in the pleading. In fact. he drafted and affixed his signature to Rodica’s Manifestation and Motion to Withdraw Motion for Reconsideration of the dismissal of the RTC case despite Rodica having retained Atty. La Union who was unseated after being disqualified on the ground that her personal declaration of renunciation of her Australian citizenship was not under oath as required by RA 9225. he apologized and expressed remorse for wrongly employing the name of the Lazaro Law Office.

La Union. La Union vacant. 2010 ruled that petitioner’s failure to comply with sec. petitioner filed an unsworn Declaration of Renunciation of Australian Citizenship before the Department of Immigration and Indigenous Affairs. 198742. 253 of the Omnibus Election Code which allows the filing of quo warranto petition within 10 days after the proclamation of the election’s results. On September 18. the Court also held that execution pending appeal may be issued by an appellate court after the trial court has lost jurisdiction. Martinez The Supreme Court has upheld the validity of in-house computation made by the Property Division of the Court’s Office of Administrative Services (OAS) in computing the appraisal value that a retired Chief Justice and four retired Associate Justices of the Supreme Court paid to acquire the government properties they used during their tenure. et al. the appeal was reinstated by the COMELEC en banc in its September 6. The Court held also that the COMELEC en banc did not commit grave abuse of discretion when it proceeded to decide the substantive merits of the petitioner’s appeal after ruling for reinstatement. Canberra. It held that an appeal may be simultaneously reinstated and definitively resolved by the COMELEC en banc in a resolution disposing of a motion for reconsideration pursuant to Sec. Rule 39 of the Rules of Court. 2004. 2006 certifying that she has ceased to be an Australian citizen. She ran for Mayor in her hometown of Caba. On December 2. Unless she executes a sworn renunciation of her Australian citizenship. Art. The Court further held that the COMELEC en banc has the power to order discretionary execution of judgment which is expressly sanctioned by Section 1. 2005. 1997. as directed under the Court Resolution dated March 23. “Any kind of interference on how these retirement privileges and benefits are exercised and availed of violates the fiscal autonomy and . She ran again and won in the May 2010 elections. “(T)he use of the formula provided in CFAG Joint Resolution No.” held the Court. 35 dated April 23. 1984. which in turn issued the order dated September 27. 2010 decision of the RTC. Citing Sec. 2011 resolution. Bautista. La Union in 2007 elections but lost her the same resolution. this time for position of Vice-Mayor. On motion for reconsideration. Rule 41 of the COMELEC Rules of Procedure. was legal and valid. It also nullified her proclamation as winning candidate and declared the position of Vice-Mayor in Caba. However. all registered voters of Caba. Thus. 2010. private respondents Luis M. it dismissed petitioner’s instant appeal for lack of merit and affirmed the October 22. To do so would be a brazen encroachment upon the sovereign will and power of the people of this Republic. 2006. and took her oath on May 13. 35 is a part of the Court’s exercise of its discretionary authority to determine the manner the granted retirement privileges and benefits can be availed of. 5(c). she filed an application to re-acquire Philippine citizenship before the Philippine Embassy in Canberra. 2012. she is ineligible to run for and hold any elective office in the Philippines. 3 of RA 9225. the COMELEC en banc. 2005. as well as granted the Motion for Execution filed by private respondents. Australia. COMELEC. In a 13-page per curiam resolution. However.” Petitioner Sobejano-Condon was a natural-born Filipino citizen on August 8. Sobejana-Condon v. (GR No. filed separate petitions for quo warranto questioning her eligibility before the RTC on the issue of her dual citizenship and that she failed to execute “a personal and sworn renunciation of any and all foreign citizenship before any public officer authorized to administer an oath. 1944 but became a naturalized Australian citizen due to her marriage to one Kevin Thomas Condon on December 13.. By Anna Katrina M. the Court confirmed that the OAS-Property Division’s use of the formula based on Constitutional Fiscal Autonomy Group (CFAG) Joint Resolution No. Rule 3 of the COMELEC Rules of Procedure. concurred with the findings and conclusions of the RTC. 3. The Court held that private respondents are not estopped from questioning petitioner’s eligibility to hold public office pursuant to Sec.” The RTC on October 22. Sobejana-Condon appealed to the COMELEC and the poll body’s Second Division dismissed the same for failure to pay the docket fees within the prescribed period. The Court also held that it cannot read the Australian Citizen Act of 1978 under which petitioner claim she deemed to have lost her Australian citizenship into RA 9225 as the Court would be “applying not what the legislative department has deemed wise to require.” said the Court. Australia pursuant to Sec.“[Petitioner] is yet to regain her political right to seek elective office. 2. 5(2) of RA 9225 rendered her ineligible to run and hold public office. IX-C of the Constitution and Sec. which was approved and she took her oath of allegiance to the Republic on December 5. which was what private respondents did. August 10. 2012) SC Upholds In-House Computation of Appraisal Value of Properties Purchased by Retired Justices Posted: August 23.

particularly Section 501 of Title 7.50 resulted when five retired Supreme Court justices purchased from the Court the personal properties. the Court unanimously held that upon favorable recommendation from the OBC. 98-569A dated August 5. 1998.e. in upholding the in-house computation applied by the OAS-Property Division. (AM No. Epifanio B. bureaus. ruled that the constitutional provision regarding the COA’s authority to conduct post-audit examinations on constitutional bodies granted fiscal autonomy “must be read not only in light of the Court’s fiscal autonomy. he determines the manner and the conditions of disposition. In a six-page resolution penned by Justice Bienvenido L. as a general proposition. this authority is exercised by the Chief Justice in consultation with the Court En Banc. in compliance with the March 23. it must be able to command adequate resources for that purpose. 2012. the sale to the retired Justices of the specifically designated properties that they used during their incumbency has been recognized both as a privilege and a benefit. The Court emphasized: “As the usual practice of the Court. “If the judicial branch is to perform its primary function of adjudication. he had . as the head of the Judiciary. but also encroaches upon the constitutional duty and privilege of the Chief Justice and the Supreme Court En Banc to manage the Judiciary’s own affairs. the authority of legislatures to control the purse in the first instance in unquestioned. Atty.” In June 2010. 11-7-10-SC. 35 and its guidelines. and offices of the national government. 03-12-01 (Resolution Adopting Guidelines on the Purchase of Judiciary Properties by Retiring Members of the Supreme Court and Appellate Courts). The Court further directed the Office of the Bar Confidant (OBC) to draft the necessary guidelines for the re-acquisition of the privilege to resume the practice of law for the guidance of the Bench and the Bar. possesses the full and sole authority and responsibility to divest and dispose of the properties and assets of the Judiciary. 2004 Resolution of the Court En Banc in AM No. but also in relation with the constitutional provisions on judicial independence and the existing jurisprudence and Court rulings on these matters. July 31. Volume 1.” The High Court added that one of the most important aspects of judicial independence is the constitutional grant of fiscal autonomy. which states that “the full and sole authority and responsibility for the divestment and disposal of property and other assets owned by the national government agencies…shall be lodged in the heads of the departments.” The Court stated that by way of long standing tradition which is partly based on the intention to reward long and faithful service. when it should have applied the formula found in COA Memorandum No.” said the High Court.” adding that this has become an established practice within the Judiciary that even the COA has previously recognized. assigned to them. Re: COA Opinion on the Computation of the Appraised Value of the Properties Purchased by the Retired Chief/Associate Justices of the Supreme Court. In particular. i.” The Court said that this view finds full support in the Government Accounting and Auditing Manual. However.” lamented the Court. The COA alleged that the Supreme Court OAS-Property Division erroneously appraised the subject motor vehicles by applying CFAG Joint Resolution No. any form of interference by the Legislative or the Executive on the Judiciary’s fiscal autonomy amounts to an improper check on a co-equal branch of government. Office of the General Counsel of the COA issued an Opinion which found that an underpayment amounting to P221. Reyes. whether exercised by the Chief Justice or by the Supreme Court En Banc. By Bianca M. “While. as Head of the Office.independence of the Judiciary. Muneses satisfactorily complied with all the requirements sought by the OBC and met all the qualifications and none of the disqualifications for membership in the Bar.021. the grant of such authority and discretion in unequivocal and leaves no room for interpretations and insertions. which in this case relate to a benefit.” “This provision clearly recognizes that the Chief Justice. the Legal Services Sector. The Court. Padilla The Supreme Court En Banc has recently granted the petition of a lawyer to practice law in the Philippines once again after losing the said privilege to practice law when he became a citizen of the United States of America in 1981 and then reacquiring his Philippine citizenship in 2006 pursuant to RA 9225. motor vehicles and a television set. 2012) SC Allows Lawyer Who Reacquired Philippine Citizenship to Practice Law Posted: August 23. Chapter 3. the Citizenship Retention and Re-Acquisition Act of 2003.

The Court stressed that Article 48 of the Articles of War vests on the President. 3) Oath of Allegiance to the Republic of the Philippines. 2 had ordered his dishonorable discharge from service. Petitioner. Garcia was arrested and detained and continues to be detained at the maximum security compound of the National Penitentiary in Muntinlupa. 2010 of the IBP-Surigao City Chapter attesting to his good moral character as well as his updated payment of annual membership dues. In Re: Petition to Re-Acquire the Privilege to Practice Law in the Philippines. the power of the President to confirm. Muneses. Gloria Estenzo-Ramos. It also noted that the right to resume the practice of law.” the Court declared.submitted in compliance the following: 1) Petition for Re-Acquisition of Philippine Citizenship. On September 16. 2012) SC Upholds President's Confirmation of Sentence against Major Gen. tried by the Special General Court Martial NR 2. as Commander-in-Chief. was charged with and convicted of violation of the 96th Article of War (Conduct Unbecoming an Officer and Gentleman) and violation of the 97th Article of War (Conduct Prejudicial to Good Order and Military Discipline) for failing to disclose all his assets in his Sworn Statement of Assets and Liabilities and Networth for the year 2003 as required by RA 3019. However. as discussed earlier. forfeiture of all his pay and allowances. 7) Certificate of Compliance with the MCLE for the 2nd compliance period. Epifanio B. 2011. the power to approve or disapprove the entire or any part of the sentence given by the court martial. and 8) Certification dated December 5. 2012. a Filipino lawyer who becomes a citizen of another country but later re-acquires his Philippine citizenship under RA 9225 remains to be a member of the Philippine Bar. Garcia Posted: August 17. or a week after the OP confirmed the sentence of the court martial against him. It held that the General Court Martial had jurisdiction over the case since it was indisputable that Garcia was an officer in the active service of AFP when he committed the violations until his arraignment. 2008 of Atty. mitigate and remit a sentence of erring military personnel is a clear recognition of the superiority of civilian authority over the military. is not automatic and Section 5 of RA 9225 states that a person who “intends to practice his profession in the Philippines must apply with the proper authority for the license or permit to engage in such practice. The sentence handed down by the Special General Court Martial No.” held the Court. 2) Order (for Re-Acquisition of Philippine Citizenship). “The Court sees no bar to the petitioner’s resumption to the practice of law in the Philippines. to confirm the sentence. UC-MCLE Program. Peralta. as Commander-in-Chief. 4) Certificate of Re-Acquisition/Retention of Philippine Citizenship issued by the Bureau of Immigration. And since the General Court Martial has jurisdiction.” (BM No. while Article 49 of the same grants the President the power to mitigate or remit a sentence. the Court held that the President. College of Law attesting to his compliance with the MCLE. By Jay B. The Court reiterated that Filipino citizenship is a continuing requirement for the practice of law. although the law (Articles of War) which conferred those powers to the President is silent as to the deduction of the period of preventive confinement to the penalty imposed.” it added. Coordinator. . loss of which means the termination of one’s membership in the Bar and the privilege to engage in the practice of law. 5) Certification dated May 19. as amended in relation to RA 6713. 2011 Confirmation of Sentence by the Office of the President (OP). Garcia. Muneses re-take the Lawyer’s Oath and pay the appropriate fee. July 24. such is also the right of an accused provided for by Article 29 of the RPC. subject to the condition that Atty. 6) Professional Tax Receipt (PTR) for the year 2010. however. University of Cebu. Garcia that sought to annul the September 9. in lieu of the Identification Certificate. also acquired jurisdiction as mandated under Article 47 of the Articles of War. “Thus. and confinement for two years in a penitentiary. Garcia’s mandatory retirement on November 18. The Court upheld the authority of the President. 2112. Rempillo The Supreme Court has dismissed the petition of former Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) comptroller Major General Garlos F. 2004 did not divest the General Court Martial of its jurisdiction. the Court’s Third Division held that the OP did not commit any grave abuse of discretion in issuing the Confirmation of Sentence. In a 28-page decision penned by Justice Diosdado M. as Commander-in-Chief. “Thus.

alleging that the same violated its “environmental impact statement and environment compliance certificate (ECC). subject to the conditions set forth by the same law. Casino et al. with 6. involving environmental damage of such magnitude as to prejudice the life. and latter to the Camp Crame Custodial Detention Center. “[A]bsent any provision as to the application of a criminal concept in the implementation and execution of the General Court Martial’s decision.” (Min Res. as defined by the Rules of Court is a remedy available to a “natural or juridical person. certain provisions of the RPC. among others. Palmones in his petition. with the prayer to direct Department of Environment and National Resources (DENR) Secretary Ramon Jesus P. The Court held that “the General Court Martial is a court within the strictest sense of the word and acts as a criminal court. He was released on December 16. 202511. Paje and the Mt. ordered the respondents to make a verified return of the writ before the appellate court within 10 days. Executive Secretary. The petition also noted the consequences of the continuing environmental violations. or private individual or entity. to protect the Mount Apo Natural Park.. in issuing the writ. to stop the construction of a 300-megawatt coal-fired power plant in Subic. the Court found without merit Garcia’s contention that his right to a speedy disposition of his case was violated. The petition sought to stop the construction of the plant. such as illegal logging. Stop Subic Coal Plant Posted: August 10. specifically Article 29 should be applied.” The petition also alleged that the ECC was issued without complying with the condition of affected people and without prior approval of the local government units.” The Court further held that the application of Article 29 of the RPC in the Articles of War is in accordance with the Equal Protection Clause of the 1987 Constitution. sought the issuance of a writ of kalikasan. 2012) . entity authorized by law.” held the Court. the provisions of the Revised Penal Code. argued that the confirmation issued by the OP directing his two-year detention in a penitentiary had already been fully served following his preventive confinement. can be supplementary. Agham Party List vs. Inc.Garcia. The writ of kalikasan. non-governmental organization.” As such. In a separate resolution. What it simply requires is equality among equals as determined according to a valid classification. or threatened with violation by an unlawful act or omission of a public official or employee. He was initially confined at his quarters at Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo before he was transferred to the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (ISAFP) Detention Center. Indeed. 2012. however. July 31. Angelo B. DENR. the deduction of petitioner’s (Garcia) period of confinement to his sentence has been recommended in the Staff Judge Advocate Review. It noted that Garcia did not allege any delay during the trial only the delay in the confirmation of the sentence by the President. GR. Corsiga The Supreme Court has recently issued two writs of kalikasan: the first. Apo Natural Park-Protected Area Management Board to file charges against those suspected of conducting illegal activities.257 persons. and the second.071 injured and 182 missing. No. people’s organization. health or property of inhabitants in two or more cities or provinces. the Court ordered Secretary Paje. Apo National Park. 198554. as when “tropical storm ‘Washi’ (Sendong) ravaged Mindanao and caused the deaths of at least 1. The Court ruled that applying the provisions of Article 29 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) ( Period of preventive imprisonment deducted from time of imprisonment). 2012 and GR. the equal protection clause permits classification. within the protected area. (GR No. ordered the DENR and the Mount Apo Natural Park-Protected Area Management Board to make a verified return of the writ to the High Court within 10 days from receipt thereof. DENR. The Court found such delay to Garcia’s advantage because his sentence could not be served absent such confirmation. 2012) SC Issues Writs of Kalikasan to Protect Mt. insofar as those that are not provided in the Articles of War and the Manual for Courts-Martial. the time within which the petitioner was under preventive confinement should be credited to the sentence confirmed by the Office of the President. By Joachim Florencio Q. “[T]he concept of equal justice under the law requires the state to govern impartially. No. July 30. to answer allegations against the latter’s proposed Subic coal-fired power plant in the Subic free port zone. in referring the case the Court of Appeals. The Court. as well as the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority and Redondo Peninsula Energy. July 31. It. In fact. and it may not draw distinctions between individuals solely on differences that are irrelevant to a legitimate governmental objective. 2010 after a preventive confinement for six years and two months. or any public interest group accredited by or registered with any government agency. vs. Agham Party List president. Garcia v.. on behalf of persons whose constitutional right to a balanced and healthful ecology is violated.” The Court. 202493. does not require the universal application of the laws to all persons or things without distinction. Finally.

August 10. the Court En Banc held that it found no basis to proceed with the disbarment complaint against Senior Associate Justice Carpio in light of Article XI. (Re: Complaint-Affidavit for Disbarment Against Senior Associate Justice Antonio T. culpable violation of the Constitution. Adjudicatory. Padilla The Supreme Court En Banc has unanimously dismissed the petition of Prospero Pichay. Office of the President). Jr. Senior Associate Justice Carpio inhibited. 2012. currently a sitting Justice of this Court.” “Thus. In the 22-page decision penned by Justice Estela M.A. 2012) Supreme Court Upholds EO 13 Abolishing PAGC and Transferring its Functions to the ODESLA Posted: August 3. “In administrative proceedings. and conviction of.” The Court stressed that both offices belong to the Office of the President Proper. the High Court gave full effect to the exclusive terms of Art. while Justices Maria Lourdes P. questioning the constitutionality of EO 13 (Abolishing the Presidential Anti-Graft Commission and Transferring its Investigative.” As such. Vizconde. the Court explained.Investigative and Adjudicatory Division through which ODESLA could take on the additional functions it has been tasked to discharge under EO 13. The Court also ruled that IAD-ODESLA is a fact-finding and recommendatory body not vested with quasi-judicial powers since it did not have the power to settle controversies nor adjudicate cases. Perlas-Bernabe. EO 13 also does not usurp on the legislative power to appropriate funds even if it does not allocate a specific amount for the IAD-ODESLA in the annual budget of the Office of the President since the 1987 Constitution provides that “the President may augment any item in the General Appropriations Law for their respective offices from savings in other items of their respective appropriations. 2012. The Court likewise noted that EO 13 did not violate Pichay’s right to due process and equal protection.. 12-8-4SC. the President is merely allocating the existing funds previously appropriated by Congress for his office. Carpio filed by Lauro G. Moreover. By Jay B. The Court stressed that the authority of the Ombudsman to investigate elective and appointive officials in the government is not exclusive. on impeachment for. we are barred by no less than the Constitution from entertaining complainant Lauro G. Sereno and Estela M. By Bianca M. the Court held that the reorganization was done in good faith as it is done for purposes of economy and efficiency. other high crimes. (AM No. or betrayal of public trust.” Thus in In Re: Raul M. treason. XI. Gonzalez and Marcoleta v. Vizconde. and Recommendatory Functions to the Office of the Deputy Executive Secretary for Legal Affairs. economy and efficiency. graft and corruption. Res. Perlas-Bernabe were on leave. bribery. the filing of charges and giving reasonable opportunity for the person so charged to answer the accusations . Min. Neither does EO 13 encroach upon the jurisdiction of the Office of the Ombudsman as the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction is to investigate and prosecute criminal cases cognizable by the Sandiganbayan while IAD-ODESLA only deals with administrative cases. Carpio. In a two-page resolution. Section 2 by ruling that public officers such as members of the Supreme Court who are required under the Constitution to be members of the Philippine Bar and who may be removed from office only by impeachment “cannot be charged with disbarment during the incumbency of such public officer.. Borra. the Court ruled that Pichay failed to discharge the burden of proving the illegality of EO 13. Carpio Filed by Mr. Vizconde’s complaint against Senior Associate Justice Antonio T. Section 2 of the Constitution which provides that members of the Supreme Court “may be removed from office. The Court held that the reorganization was a mere alteration of the administrative structure of the existing structure of ODESLA through the establishment of a Third Division . It ruled that the abolition of OAGC and the transfer of functions to IAD-ODESLA is within the prerogative of the President as Section 31 of the Administrative Code of 1987 (EO 292) expressly “vests in the President the authority to reorganize the offices under him in order to achieve simplicity. former Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWAU).SC Dismisses Disbarment Complaint Against Senior Justice Carpio Posted: August 10. Rempillo The Supreme Court today unanimously dismissed outright the complaint-affidavit for disbarment against Senior Associate Justice Antonio T.” ruled the Court. Pichay was investigated for grave misconduct in the performance of his duties by Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa by virtue of the said EO. Lauro G.

By Joachim Florencio Q. 2012. Sereno. information. they enjoy the presumption of regularity.” it declared. making a resort to the extraordinary remedy of the writ of habeas data unnecessary and improper. and freedom of information of an individual. honor. Gamboa against the Philippine National Police in Ilocos Norte (PNPIlocos Norte) which had tagged her as a having a private army. the Court held that although the right of privacy protected by the writ ofhabeas data is considered a fundamental right. especially when the collection and forwarding by the PNP of information against her was pursuant to a lawful mandate. Office of the Deputy Executive Secretary. Executive Secretary. In any event. respondents sufficiently explained that the investigations conducted against her were in relation to the criminal cases in which she was implicated. the Supreme Court held that “the state of dismantling private army groups far outweighs the alleged intrusion on the private life of Gamboa. liberty or security is violated or threatened by an unlawful act or omission of a public official or employee. collecting or .” Moreover. it noted that along with the President’s power to remove and/or discipline presidential appointees comes the authority to investigate such public officials. As public officials. The Court ruled that Gamboa was unable to prove through substantial evidence that her inclusion in the list of individuals maintaining private armies made her and her supporters susceptible to harassment and to increased police surveillance. The writ is available to any person whose right to privacy in life. Pichay.” The Court explained that “the fact the PNP released information to the Zeñarosa Commission without prior communication to Gamboa and without affording her the opportunity to refute the same cannot be interpreted as a violation or threat to her right to privacy since that act is an inherent and crucial component of intelligence-gathering and investigation. Jr.against him constitute the minimum requirements of due process.” Pending the enactment of legislation on data protection. resulting in an undue encroachment on their competence. 196425. which was used to update information on individuals associated with private armies and ensure that the data mirrored the situation on the field. 2012) SC Denies Habeas Data Petition Filed by Dingras Mayor Posted: August 3. Ilocos Norte Mayor Marynette R. (GR No. or of a private individual or entity engaged in gathering.” In denying the petition for review. Corsiga The Supreme Court recently affirmed a Regional Trial Court’s decision insofar as it denied the petition for habeas data filed by former Dingras. July 24. The writ of habeas data is an independent and summary remedy designed to protect the image. Gamboa prayed for the “(a) destruction of the unverified reports from the PNP-Ilocos Norte database. Purportedly without the benefit of data verification. In a 20-page En Banc decision penned by Justice Maria Lourdes P. The Court also stressed that Gamboa failed to establish that respondents were responsible for this unintended disclosure. classifying her “as someone who keeps a private army group. v. “the right of privacy may nevertheless succumb to an opposing or overriding state interest deemed legitimate and compelling. (b) withdrawal of all information forwarded to higher PNP officials. the Court declined to make any further determination as to the propriety of sharing information during specific stages of intelligence gathering. and (e) restraining respondents from making baseless reports. The Court also noted that Gamboa herself admitted that the PNP had a validation system. it held that “the equal protection clause is not infringed by legislation which applies alike to all persons within such class.” The Zeñarosa Commission was created under former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to address the alleged existence of private armies in the country. In her petition. the Zeñarosa Commission released and submitted its report to the Office of the President. the Court said that “safeguards were put in place to make sure that information collected maintained its integrity and accuracy. In this regard.” In refuting Gamboa’s allegation that there was no validation process. there are other reliefs available to her to address the purported damage to her reputation. and to provide a forum to enforce one’s right to the truth and to informational privacy.” Gamboa filed the petition for the issuance of a writ of habeas data in the Laoag City Regional Trial Court (RTC) against the PNP-Ilocos Norte for allegedly violating her right to privacy and maligning her reputation when the latter submitted information to the Zeñarosa Commission. privacy. (d) ordering respondents to refrain from forwarding unverified reports against her. Citing Farinas v. (c) rectification of the damage done to her honor. To do otherwise would supplant the discretion of investigative bodies in the accomplishment of their functions. which she failed to overcome. The report was later leaked to third parties and the media. Upon the conclusion of its investigation. A.

Jr. Carpio and Justices Presbitero J. Chavez v. 2012 decision. Peralta. Peralta. 464. the law must be enforces even if it prejudices certain parties on account of an error committed by public officials in granting the benefit. the Court also suspended the effect of the second paragraph of the dispositive portion of the July 17. By Jay B. who presided the JBC panel interview of the candidates for the position of the next Chief Justice held from July 24 to 27.A. Leonardo-De Castro. Rep. Sen.. SC Justice Diosdado M. to both sit in the deliberations of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) on who would be included in the short list of nominees for Chief Justice to be submitted to Malacañang. (GR No. Escudero and Rep. The High Court’s directive came a day after it heard in oral arguments the motion for reconsideration of its July 17. Perlas-Bernabe. 193636. 2012 decision on GR No. and Maria Lourdes P. Chavez 10 days from notice within which to file their respective memoranda. Rempillo The Supreme Court today allowed Senator Francis Joseph G. Roberto A. Francisco I. Villarama. and Estela M. Gamboa vs P/SSupt Chan and P/Supt Fang. Jose Portugal Perez.39 by the National Housing Authority (NHA) to five of its project personnel. Jr. may simultaneously sit as ex officio members of the JBC and exercise the functions flowing therefrom. 2012. Tupas. 202242.storing of data information regarding the person. (Min. in their capacities as representatives of Congress. Del Castillo. Senator Escudero and Congressman Tupas. which reads: “This disposition is immediately executory.” held the Court. Brion. pending the final resolution of this petition. through Justice Maria Lourdes P. In a 14-page decision. Mariano C. GR 202242. By Anna Katrina M. be given the opportunity to take part in the final deliberations and resolution of the petition considering the risk of either under-representation or over-representation of Congress in the JBC. Jr. JBC. Judicial and Bar Council.. Res. Escudero. Sereno inhibited from the oral arguments as they are among those considered for nomination by the JBC to the Chief Justice post. on the Court’s July 17. and Francisco I. Tupas May Both Sit in JBC Posted: August 3. A.284. 2012. Also participating in the oral argument were SC Justices Bienvenido L.” Thus held the Supreme Court as it ruled as without legal basis the grant of incentive allowances totaling P401.. the Court En Banc. August 2... 2012.. Acting Chief Justice Antonio T. In the best interest of justice. “The Court finds it more equitable for the present members of the JBC to resume their task of selecting nominees for the vacant position of the Chief Justice. 2008. Escudero. also gave the JBC. Jr. The Court. Lucas P. Abad. Sen. Jr. Rep. Velasco. Martinez “Where there is an express provision of law prohibiting the grant of certain benefits. August 3. Tupas. In a three-page resolution. also presided during the oral arguments held on Wednesday. Martin S. dated October 24. family. Jose Catral Mendoza. in its latest resolution. which held that only one member of Congress can sit as representative in the JBC deliberations. Teresita J.Chavez v. dismissed the petition for review on certiorari filed by five project personnel of the NHA which sought to annul the decision of the Commission of Audit (COA). including those who in the meantime have inhibited themselves. the High Court also held that all its present members. Arturo D. Niel C. Bersamin. Escudero and Rep. Jr. home and correspondence of the aggrieved party. 2012) SC Upholds Disallowance of NHA Incentive Allowances Posted: August 2. 2012) SC: For Now. affirming the disallowance of the Incentive Allowance equivalent to 20% of their respective basic pay received by them under NHA Resolution No. 2012. . 2012 decision filed by the Office of the Solicitor General representing Sen. Sereno. July 24. Reyes. Tupas. Accordingly.

Jerry Baviera. including those located in Parañaque. auction sale and certificate of sale issued by Parañaque City Treasurer Liberato M. executive orders. the law itself provides that it is the policy of the state to provide equal pay for substantially equal work and to base differences in pay upon substantive differences in duties and responsibilities. Voids Auction Sale of Its Reclaimed Properties for Tax Delinquencies Posted: August 1.The Court held that at the time the NHA issued Resolution No. The Court also ruled that PRA could not be a GOCC since it was neither a stock nor non-stock corporation and did not operate commercially. Menelio Rucat.284. District Manager.” it declared. The reclaimed property assessed for real property taxes involves several portions of foreshore and offshore areas of Manila Bay. for certifying that the expenses were necessary and lawful. The Court added that RA 6758. further reinforced this policy by expressly decreeing that all allowances not specifically enumerated therein shall be deemed included in the standardized salary rates prescribed. stressing NHA Resolution No. By Bianca M. and Doris Siao. July 24. and that RA 6758 effectively repealed all laws and issuances that exempted agencies from the coverage of the system. Bernadette Laigo. and issuances that authorized the grant of allowance to groups of officials or employees despite the inconsistency of those allowances with the position classification or rates indicated in the National Compensation and Position Classification Plan. It pointed out under Section 234(a) of the Local Government Code. It added that properties of public dominion are not subject to execution or foreclosure sale. 2012. the Legal and Adjudication Office-Corporate of the COA haddisallowed the total amount of P401. “In this case. (GR No. for certifying the adequacy of the documentary attachments and fund availability. namely. It noted that a reading of RA 6758 shows that it does not distinguish whether allowances are permanent in nature or are provided to an entire class of government employees. such allowances can no longer be granted after the effectivity of RA 6758. and for being the payee. taxed for the years 2001 and 2002.” stressed the Court. It added that neither had there been any allegation that the allowances were specifically determined by the Department of Budget and Management to be an exception to the standardized salary rates. Finance Office. the Court declared all reclaimed properties owned by PRA exempt from real estate taxes since reclaimed lands are reserved lands for public use and properties of public dominion and that unless withdrawn from public use by law or presidential proclamation. Moreover. Abellanosa v. for approving the transaction. “In fact. the incentive allowances granted under Resolution No. Carmencita Pineda. 464 in 1982.” The Court ruled that the claim of the petitioners that RA 6758 does not apply to the incentive allowances because these are merely temporary in nature and are given only to few employees does not hold water. real property owned by the State is exempt from real property tax unless the beneficial use has been granted to a taxable person. 185806. 464 are clearly not among those enumerated under RA 6758. “Hence. Padilla The Supreme Court recently held the Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA) as a government instrumentality exempt from payment of real property taxes and thus declared void all real estate tax assessments. and all the other payees.” noted the Court. otherwise known as the Compensation and Position Classification Act of 1989. 464 was defective for having no legal basis since the power of the boards of government-owned and -controlled corporations and government financial institutions to grant compensation and incentives had already been repealed by Section 3 of PD 1597. representing the first and second tranches of the incentive allowance granted to the petitioners. “PRA is a government instrumentality vested with corporate powers and performing an essential public service pursuant to Section 2(10) of the Introductory Provisions of the Administrative Code. and found the following petitioners liable: Generoso Abellanosa. 2012) SC Declares PRA Exempt From Real Property Taxes. signing the check. In a 21-page decision penned by Justice Jose Catral Mendoza. This decision was later on affirmed by the COA. ownership of reclaimed lands remains with the State. and being the payee. On appeal. Section 3 of PD 1597 had already expressly repealed all decrees. the Court’s Third Division unanimously granted the petition for review on pure question of law of the PRA from the decision of the Regional Trial Court of Parañaque which had upheld the assessment of Parañaque City Treasurer Carabeo. Commission on Audit and National Housing Authority. the Adjudication and Settlement Board of the COA affirmed the disallowance. .39. Earlier. Carabeo over the PRA’s property.

Commission on Elections Commissioner Rene V. De Lima. Those scheduled on Friday are Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Teresita J. only 20 candidates are vying for inclusion in the JBC shortlist of nominees. 202242. Sarmiento. Atty. Mejia (academe). PRA provides a coordinated. Velasco. the Chair is SC Justice Peralta as the most senior SC Justice who is not a candidate for Chief Justice per the Court’s ruling in GR No. Morales. also an ex officio member but a candidate to the Chief Justice post. 2012) JBC: Two CJ Candidates No Longer Considered for Nomination Posted: July 25. is seating in the panel conducting the interview for the next Chief Justice following the High Court’s ruling in GR No. and retired Judge Manuel DJ. Jardeleza. SC Justice Teresita J. Rempillo The Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) today announced that it will not any more interview and consider for nomination private lawyer Vicente R. With the development. Dulay v. lawyer Rafael A. it noted that a GOCC created thru special charters must meet two conditions: that the GOCC is established for the common good and that it meets the test of economic viability. Valdez. July 26. 2012. Those to be interviewed on Thursday. July 18. the Court declared. The Chief Justice is the ex officio chair of JBC. Diokno. This is because the two candidates failed to comply with the documentary requirements in their application for the position of Chief Justice. Secretary De Lima. lawyer Soledad M. Velasquez and former Immigration Commissioner Rufus B. Atty. Bautista. Rodriguez on July 26 and July 27. dated July 3. De La Salle University Law Dean Jose Manuel I. respectively as originally scheduled.The Court differentiated a government-owned or controlled corporation (GOCC) vis-à-vis a government instrumentality. Vidal is ex officio secretary. SC Justice Arturo D. SC Justice Maria Lourdes P. . Pangalangan. 202143. The regular JBC members are retired SC Justice Regino C. Herbosa. former Executive Secretary Ronaldo B. former University of the Philippines law dean Raul C.A. and SC Justice Presbitero J. which held that only one member of Congress can sit as representative in the JBC deliberations. In contrast. Chavez v. government instrumentalities vested with corporate powers and performing governmental or public functions need not meet the test of economic viability since these instrumentalities perform essential public services for the common good. 191109. Brion. economical. Jr. (GR No. Jr. Siayngco. Justice Secretary Leila M. City of Parañaque. Lagman (private sector). Philippines v. Interviewed today were Supreme Court Justice Roberto A. while the Supreme Court En Banc Clerk of Court Atty. and efficient reclamation of lands and the administration and operation of lands belonging to the government with the object of maximizing their utilization and hastening their development consistent with public interest. 2012. Only Rep. Sereno. Niel Tupas. Acting Chief Justice Antonio T. Cagampang-De Castro. Abad. 2012. dated July 17. and retired CA Justice Aurora S. The JBC Panel has already interviewed Presidential Commission on Good Government Chair Andres B. By Jay B. Leonardo-De Castro. Court of Appeals. Carpio. and lawyer Maria Carolina T. Zamora. Maria Milagros Nolasco Fernan-Cayosa (Integrated Bar of the Philippines). which will be submitted to the President. and former Ateneo law dean Cesar L. Hermosisima (retired SC Justice). JBC. Jose V. JBC. With regard to the JBC proceedings as to the Chief Justice vacancy. is replaced in the JBC proceedings to select the CJ nominees by Undersecretary Michael Frederick Musngi. Citing Manila International Airport Authority v. Legarda. Jr. Enriqueta E. Villanueva. Solicitor General Francis H. are University of the East law dean Amado D.

Lokin. Jay Jay Yambao to negotiate and enter into contracts for consultancy services for consultants in the Sanggunian Secretariat for the period of June to December 2003. there is no inherent authority on the part of the city vice mayor to enter into contracts on behalf of the local government unit. Padilla The Court En Banc has unanimously affirmed the ruling of the Commission of Elections (COMELEC) to recognize the nominees listed in the Certificate of Nomination filed by Citizen’ Battle Against Corruption (CIBAC) Party List’s President Emmanuel Villanueva as the legitimate nominees of the party list and to expunge from its records the Certificate of Nomination filed by Pia Derla. 15-2003 authorizing City Vice Mayor Hon. 2012. Rule 64 expressly provides for only 30 days. It likewise denied the petition for certiorari filed by Petitioners Luis K.R. Vicencio v. Jr. Thus. unlike that provided for the city mayor. Tan declaring a state of emergency in the Province of Sulu and called on the Philippine National Police (PNP). Armed Forces of the Philipines (AFP) and Civilian Emergency Force (CEF) for assistance in providing peace and order in the vicinity. 15-2003 cannot be construed as a ‘continuing authority’ for any person who enters the Office of the Vice-Mayor to enter into subsequent.A. Planas. under Rule 64 of the Rules of Court for being filed outside the required 30 day period. they cannot be equated as they provide for different reglementary periods. whereas President Villanueva presented overwhelming evidence of his authority from CIBAC to do so. and Teresita E. the Court granted the petition for certiorari and prohibition of certain Sulu residents assailing the said Proclamation and its implementing guidelines. 182069. No. which upheld Audit Observation Memorandum (AOM) No. the Court held that “the authority of the vice-mayor to enter into contracts on behalf of the city was strictly circumscribed by the ordinance granting it. delos Santos. COMELEC also possesses the authority to resolve intra-party disputes as a necessary tributary of its constitutionally mandated power to enforce election laws and register political parties. representing the City Government of Malabon City. Sereno. It stressed that “while Rule 64 refers to the same remedy of certiorari as the general rule in Rule 65. 1 of Sulu Governor Abdusakur M.A. “The power to rule upon questions of party identity and leadership is exercised by the COMELEC as an incident to its enforcement powers. In this case. 2012.”(G. By Bianca M. Commission on Elections. which states the powers and duties of a city vicemayor. Padilla The Supreme Court En Banc has unanimously dismissed the petition for certiorari filed by former Vice Mayor of Malabon Arnold Vicencio seeking to annul Decision No. Amiana during the year 2005. Lokin. the nominees of Derla. and Marvin T. who allegedly served as acting secretary-general. Rule 65 provides for a period of 60 days while Section 3.” CIBAC Party-List is a multi-sectoral registered to fight graft and corruption and to promote ethical conduct in the country’s public service. As this is not a power or duty given under the law to the Office of the Vice-Mayor. appropriating P792.A. Sereno. In a 15-page decision penned by Justice Maria Lourdes P. The COMELEC ruled that Derla was unable to prove her authority to the Certificate of Nomination. Padilla The Court En Banc has unanimously declared null and void Proclamation No. Sereno. Jr.” the Court declared. By Bianca M. Commission of Elections. By Bianca M. Ordinance No. the Court En Banc held that no grave abuse of discretion may be imputed on the COA for the issuance of the decision as it was “made in faithful compliance with its mandate and in judicious exercise of its general audit power as conferred on it by the Constitution. In a 25-page decision penned by Justice Maria Lourdes P. the Court held that RA 7941 ( Party-List System Act) vested the COMELEC with “jurisdiction over the nomination of party-list representatives and prescribing the qualifications of each nominee” and that no grave abuse of discretion can be attributed to the COMELEC’s First Division and COMELEC En Banc which had declared President Villanueva the proper party to submit CIBAC’s Certificate of Nomination instead of Perla.000 of the city’s funds for these contracts. . 2005-12-019 declaring improper a disbursement for consultancy services contracted by Vicencio worth P384. (GR No.SC Upholds Comelec's Jurisdiction Over Cases Pertaining to Party Leadership and the Nominations of Party-List Representatives Posted: July 24. 193808. In a 13-page decision penned by Justice Maria Lourdes P.980 for the year 2005. 2012. albeit similar.” Former Vice Mayor Vicencio. the authority of the vice mayor to enter into contracts on behalf of the city is strictly circumscribed by the ordinance granting it. entered into contracts of consultancy services with Jennifer S. Villar. . 2008-022 of the Commission of Audit (COA). Atty. 15-2003 specifically authorized Vice-Mayor Yambao to enter into contracts for consultancy services. v. 2012) SC: Calling Out Powers Exclusive to the President of the Philippines Posted: July 19. Ordinance No. July 3. June 26. Rodolfo C. The Court clarified that under Section 456 of the Local Government Code. 2012) SC Upholds COA Disallowance of Disbursement for Malabon Consultancy Contracts Posted: July 19. contracts. As provided in Atienza v. He based his authority on City Ordinance No. Catindig.

Mere possession of a falsified letter is likewise not enough to apply the presumption of authorship. Governor Tan declared a state of emergency after the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) kidnapped three members of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Sulu and threatened to behead one of the hostages if the government continued to pursue their search and surround the ASG. In a 46-page decision penned by Justice Arturo D. shall be the responsibility of the National Government. taking advantage of it and/or profiting from such use also authorized the falsification does not apply in preliminary investigations. and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law. only exercises operational supervision over the police. By Bianca M. It stressed that the crime of introducing a falsified document in a judicial proceeding punishable under Article 172 of the Revised Penal Code requires that the accused has knowledge of the falsity of the document. and may exercise control only in day-to-day operations.” the Court stressed. held that . 1266 (4 November 1983) Concerning the Review by the Office of the President of Resolutions Issued by the Secretary of Justice Concerning Preliminary Investigations of Criminal Cases) of the Office of the President does not allow an appeal from the decision/order/resolution of the Secretary of Justice on preliminary investigation of criminal cases through petition for review unless the offense is punishable by reclusion perpetua or death. The Court. Kulayan v. As thus. 2012) Supreme Court Upholds Dismissal of Charges Against Reiner Jacobi. Brion. Crispin Reyes were not tainted with any grave abuse of discretion. (GR No. such as a provincial governor. the presumption that a person who has in his possession (actual or constructive) a falsified document and made use of it. As a rule. As discussed in the deliberation of the Constitutional Commission. conduct general search and seizures including arrests and other actions necessary to ensure public safety pursuant to Section 465 of the Local Government Code. Article VII of the 1987 Constitution. The Court likewise declared the creation of the CEF invalid as the Section 21 of Article XI of the Constitution does not authorize the provincial governor to organize private armed groups to help preserve the peace and order of a region. speedy. acting as Undersecretary of the Department of Justice (DOJ). The Court also held that Governor Tan’s reliance on Section 465 of the Local Government Code was unfounded because a kidnapping situation cannot be considered a calamity or disaster as contemplated by the Code. since offenses not punishable by reclusion perpetua or death have no plain. Governor Tan authorized the set up of checkpoints and chokepoints. 187298. invasion or rebellion. the Court's Second Division unanimously held that PCGG and Chairman Elma failed to establish the existence of grave abuse of discretion on the DOJ’s part justifying judicial interference. To justify judicial intrusion. The Court also held that since preliminary investigations is a determination of the existence of probable cause that a crime has been committed and the accused probably committed it and does not involve a determination of the guilt or innocence of an accused. the courts cannot substitute their own judgment for that of the Executive. only the President has “full discretion to call the military when in his judgment it is necessary to do so in order to prevent or suppress lawless violence. July 3. It stressed that the determination of probable cause is an executive function to which the Court has consistently adopted the policy of non-interference in the conduct of preliminary investigations and to leave the investigating prosecutor with sufficient latitude of discretion in the determination of what constitutes sufficient evidence to establish probable cause. which found no probable cause for falsification and use of falsified document existed against Reiner Jacobi and his attorney. it added. et al. 2012. a petition for certiorari becomes the only remedy available to the party. 58 (Reiterating and Clarifying the Guidelines Set Forth in Memorandum Circular No. In lieu of the state of emergency. An evacuation of the military camps and bases in the area was likewise demanded. It ruled that only the President is authorized to exercise emergency powers as provided under Section 23. Memorandum Circular No. Padilla The Supreme Court has dismissed the petition for certiorari filed by the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) and its then Chairperson Magdangal Elma against two resolutions issued by Merceditas Guiterrez. Posted: July 16. While the President exercises full supervision and control over the police. which is the responsibility of local police agencies as provided by law. however. Tan. a local chief executive. one must clearly show that the prosecutor gravely abused his discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction in making his determination. The Court also ruled that a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 and not Rule 43 of the Rules of Court was the proper remedy to question the DOJ’s determination of probably cause. The defense and security of the regions. on the other hand.The Court stressed that the calling out powers contemplated under the Constitution is exclusive to the President of the Philippines as Commander-in-Chief and that a provincial governor is not endowed with the power to call upon the Armed Forces at its own bidding. which allows the Chief Executive to “carry out emergency measures as may be necessary during and in the aftermath of a man-made and natural disasters and calamities”. Article VI and the calling out powers under Section 7.

Philippine International Air Terminals Co. After submitting these documents. the Court’s Third Division affirmed the decision and resolution of the Court of Appeals. Takenaka Corporation and Asahikosan Corporation.. 2012) SC Dismisses Graft Charges Against Enrile. Branch 58 of Makati of PIATCO’s motion to dismiss the complaint against it for enforcement of two Orders of the High Court of Justice. By Gleo Sp. Inc. The doctrine of hierarchy of courts must be respected because the Supreme Court is the court of last resort. Reyes. July 4. the Court held that even assuming this to be the case. Guerra The Supreme Court has recently denied the petition of Philippine International Air Terminals Co. (PIATCO) to reverse the decision of the Court of Appeals (CA) which had. DOJ’s Undersecretary Guitierrez overturned the findings. By Joachim Florencio Q. the Supreme Court En Banc. Ursua. In a 12-page decision penned by Justice Diosdado M.933. Jacobi and Atty. Rolando P. extinguishment or abandonment of the obligation are better threshed out during trial proper as it constitute “the meat” of PIATCO defense and would require the presentation of voluminous evidence.365. (GR No. Jose C.” The Court further held that the issues PIATCO seeks to tackle in the requested hearing on the motion to dismiss. it must first be filed in the Court of Appeals (CA). Mendezona.. Upon the filing of a motion for reconsideration. 155996. Queen’s Bench Division. it may relax the application of procedural rules for the greater interest of justice.789 and P116. Reyes later on sought the withdrawal of both letters because the authenticity of the documents were found to be questionable. Hermenegildo C. affirmed the denial by the Regional Trial Court.34. Atty. its premier international airport.343. among others. i.. Danilo S.825. it was established that PCGG had no record of the two letters submitted and the signatures and initials in one of the letters actually pertained to signatures and initials fixed to another letter which had nothing to do with the falsified letter. Jacobi. The two letters were also used in a complaint filed with the Office of the Ombudsman against Chairperson Elma for violations of RA 3019 (Anti-Graft And Corrupt Practices Act). et al. Technology and Construction Court in London. Cojuanco. Upon further research. whom PIATCO had contracted to construct and equip the Ninoy Aquino International Airport International Passenger Terminal III. The said Orders of the London Court ordered PIATCO to pay a total of US$34. 2012. Zayco. In an 11-page decision penned by Justice Roberto Abad. 2012. June 27. It noted that the case affects one of the country’s most important public utilities. Cojuangco. Iñaki R. novation. The National Bureau of Investigation also confirmed the falsified documents. “Therefore the Court sees it fit to relax the rules in this case to arrive at a full settlement of the parties’ claims and avoid further delay in the administration of justice. and 16 others (Jose R. the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Eleazar Jr.677. Jacobi. It is not an inflexible rule. Narciso M. Almeda. respectively. and US$46. It ruled that Enrile. Reyes filed a petition for mandamus against the PCGG and Chairperson Elma with the Sandiganbayan for the latter’s alleged failure to perform their mandated duty to recover ill-gotten wealth and unexplained or hidden deposits and assets of the former President Ferdinand Marcos. Crispin Reyes were accused of submitting two falsified letters from the PCGG as evidence when Mr. (GR No. 2012) SC Upholds Denial of PIATCO's Motion to Dismiss Complaint of Two Japanese Corporations for Enforcement of Judgment Posted: July 13. against. among others. payment.” it stressed. Posted: July 13.e. v. Dela Cuesta. Cojuangco. . Emmanuel M. Chairperson Elma filed an affidavit-complaint with the DOJ charging them with falsification and use of falsified documents under Article 171 and 172 of the Revised Penal Code. junked the government’s petition. by a vote of six against three. After receiving the confirmation that the letters were falsified. England (“London Court”). Jacobi and his attorney. however. and the Court may relax rules of procedure to avoid further delay in the interest of justice for special and important reasons and when proper and under justifiable causes and circumstances.before a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 can be filed with the Supreme Court. Corsiga The Supreme Court recently affirmed the Office of the Ombudsman’s dismissal of graft and corruption charges under RA 3019. through his counsel. Peralta. not finding “any reason to overturn the CA’s finding that there was no grave abuse of discretion on the part of the trial court in denying the Motion to Dismiss and the Motion to Set the Motion to Dismiss for Hearing” of PIATCO as “records reveal that both parties were given ample opportunity to be heard. Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Eduardo M.. Atty. The DOJ’s initial findings found probable cause against Mr. As to PIATCO’s argument that the complaint of respondent Japanese corporations should have been dismissed because of a defective verification and certification against forum shopping. Mr. Concepcion.49 to respondents Takenaka Corporation and Asahikosan Corporation. however. Pineda. 180245. Inc. Elma v.

The Court noted that there was also no allegation that the Securities of Exchange Commission (SEC) denied the public access to UCPB’s investment in UNICOM during martial law.” The PCGG then filed the case before the Office of the Ombudsman in line with the ruling in Cojuangco. the late Maria Clara L. from the day of the commission of the violation of the law. Desierto.. Teresita J.De Castro. Jose Portugal Perez.” The Court further explained that this provision provides “two rules for determining when the prescriptive period shall begin to run: first. The High Court explained that in the prosecution of behest loans. “to invest not more than P500 million from the fund in the equity of UNICOM for the benefit of the coconut farmers. Douglas Lu Ym. Eleazar. 1977. 1999. on May 14. Del Castillo. Concepcion. from the discovery therof and the institution of the judicial proceedings for its investigation and punishment. Acting Chief Justice Antonio T. Justices Presbitero J. while Justices Arturo D. Veloso. and Estela M. After the OSG’s motion for reconsideration was denied by the Ombudsman. 1979. and Jaime Gandiaga) could no longer be prosecuted on the ground of prescription. Escueta. Regala. A. if such commission is known. Regala. and the institution of judicial proceedings for its investigation and punishment. Eleazar. which provides. ruled that those circumstances were not present in this case. A few days later. Bersamin. on September 18. Pineda. Enrile. Maria Lourdes P. the prescriptive period must be reckoned “from the discovery of such loans. Leo J. Peralta took no part in the proceedings. and second. or estoppel. Enrile Lobregat. alleging that UCPB’s investment in UNICOM was “manifestly and grossly disadvantageous to the government since UNICOM had a capitalization of P5 million and it had no track record of operation. the Board of Directors of United Coconut Planters Bank (UCPB) composed of Cojuangco.” The Court. the Office of the Special Prosecutor ruled that while “it found sufficient basis to indict respondents for violation of Section 3(e) of RA 3019. Reyes concurred with the decision. What is rather involved here is UCPB’s investment in UNICOM. Velasco. On March 15. could be concealed from the public eye by the simple expedient of suppressing their documentations. Concepcion. while Justice Jose Catral Mendoza was on official leave. Leonardo. Villarama Jr. UNICOM again increased its capital stock to 1 billion shares. Brion. Inc.” On April 25. UNICOM increased its authorized capital stock to 10 million shares without par value. Mendezona. “For one thing. which corporation is allegedly owned by respondent Cojuangco. laches. Palma. Article XI of the 1987 Constitution provides that the right of the State to recover properties unlawfully acquired by public officials or employees is not barred by prescription. Reyes. Lu Ym. the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) filed a complaint for violation of Section 3(e) of RA 3019 against the respondents before the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG). The Court pointed out that because RA 3019 is a special law. however. approved by the new set of UNICOM directors which included Cojuangco.” the Court held. Almeda. The Court held that although Section 15. however. the OSG filed the present petition. theAdministrator of the Coconut Industry Investment Fund (CII Fund). Lazatin Reyes. Jr.Teodoro D. Jr. Dela Cuesta. v. the action has already prescribed. Perlas-Bernabe dissented. Victor P. Lobregat. Almeda. and if the same be not known at the time. Mendezona. “They could only have been discovered after the 1986 EDSA Revolution when the people ousted President Marcos from office. On August 29. if not known. Escueta and Palma incorporated United Coconut Oil Mills. the provision only applies to civil actions for recovery of ill-gotten wealth. by their nature. the Office of the Ombudsman approved the recommendation. 1990. and Ursua approved a resolution authorizing UCPB. Sereno. from its discovery.. Martin S. Sigfredo Veloso. as the aggrieved party could not have known that the loans existed when they were made. Lazatin. Zayco. That investment does not. Regala.” On September 4. 1979. and Diosdado M. and Gandiaga. Carpio. not criminal cases such as the complaint against the respondents as settled in Presidential Ad Hoc Fact-Finding Committee on Behest Loans v. and Bienvenido L. (UNICOM) with an authorized capital stock of P100 million. which had disqualified the PCGG from conducting preliminary investigation in the case. “prescription shall begin to run from the day of the commission of the violation of the law. supposedly a Marcos crony. Presidential Commission on Good Government. what is questioned here is not the grant of behest loans that. . Eduardo U. Eleazar B. the 10-year prescriptive period should be computed in accordance with Section 2 of Act 3326.” Subsequently. 1979. appear to have been withheld from the curious of from those who were minded to know like banks or competing businesses. About 10 years later or on March 1.” The reason for this is that the government. 1999. Lucas P. Justices Mariano C.

Leonardo-De Castro. if necessary. petitioner Boracay Foundation. citing the failure of the Provincial Government of Aklan to comply with the relevant rules and regulations in the acquisition of an Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) from the DENR-EMB RVI.” it added. the Province’s failure to conduct prior public consultations and secure approval of local government agencies. 2012. “Prescription of actions is a valued rule in all civilized states from the beginning of organized society. Enhancement and Recovery of Old Caticlan Coastline.which will entail an additional cost of P785M. its classification of the reclamation project as a single instead of a co-located project.” the Court held. and converted the Temporary Environmental Protection Order it had issued on June 7. It added that the questions of the agency’s approval of the Province’s classification of the project as a mere expansion of the existing jetty port in Caticlan instead of classifying it as a new project. “Petitioner had known of the investment it now questions for a sufficiently long time yet it let those four years of the remaining period of prescription run its course before bringing the proper action. and similar institutions as well as community organizations and environmental advocates in Boracay island. in the areas adjacent to the jetty ports. hotels. fully cooperate with the DENR-EMB RVI in its review of the reclamation project proposal and submit to the latter the appropriate report and study. its classification of the project as a single project instead of a co-located project. the Supreme Court En Banc partially granted the petition for issuance of an Environmental Protection Order in the nature of a continuing mandamus under the Rules of Procedure for Environmental Cases filed by the Boracay Foundation. instead of classifying it as a new project. 2012) SC Stops Execution of Boracay 'Marina Project' Posted: July 13. and Reclamation of a Portion of Foreshore for Commercial Purposes (“Marina Project”) involves the reclamation of foreshore areas in the vicinity of Boracay island from an original proposal of 2. a corporation composed of at least 60 owners and representative of resorts. costing around P260M.It thus concluded that the last day for filing the action “was. Inc.” In a 68-page unanimous decision penned by Justice Teresita J. Enrile et al. Inc. Barangays Caticlan and Manoc-manoc in the Municipality of Malay. 1990. and 4. 139930. based on the findings of the DENREMB RVI. 2011 into a writ of continuingmandamus ordering 1. Cojuanco.. 1990 is 10 years from the date of registration with the SEC by UNICOM of the paid-up subscription of UCPB. the Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA). its approval of respondent Province of Aklan’s classification of the projects as a mere expansion of the existing jetty port in Caticlan. led by Governor Marquez. b. due to the failure of the Province to submit specific documents to the PRA. Republic of the Philippines v. It is a rule of fairness.R. Boracay Foundation.64 hectares. However. and c. on February 8. which should forthwith be ordered by respondent DENR-EMB RVI. Inc.64 hectares of foreshore and offshore areas in Barangay Caticlan and Boracay Island. updated. Martinez The Supreme Court En Banc has ordered the Provincial Government of Aklan. and b. and the three respondents to submit their respective reports to the Supreme Court regarding their compliance with the requirements set forth in the decision no later than three months from the date of decision's promulgation. June 26.64 hectares. The Provincial Government of Aklan. and the . Inc. at the latest. opposed the implementation of the project.” February 8. respondent DENR-EMB RVI to revisit and review: a. to 40 hectares. (G. the subject matter area of the case had been limited to the original proposal of 2. and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Environmental Management Bureau Regional Office VI (DENREMB RVI) to “immediately cease and desist” from continuing the implementation of the reclamation project involving 2. The subject Renovation/Rehabilitation of the Caticlan Passenger Terminal Building and Jetty Port. 3. respondent PRA to closely monitor the submission by respondent Province of the requirements to be issued by the DENR-EMB RVI in connection to the environmental concerns raised by the Boracay Foundation.. It maintained that a full Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was needed to ensure that such projects are in line with sustainable development of natural resources. 2. the impact of the reclamation project to the environment based on new. By Katrina M. and to coordinate with respondent Province in modifying the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) they entered into concerning the reclamation project. known as the Boracay “Marina Project. entered into a MOA with the PRA in 2009 in the implementation of the reclamation of a total of 40 hectares in the areas adjacent to Boracay. The Court found “problematic” respondent DENR-EMB RVI’s evaluation of the reclamation project. respondent Province of Aklan to a. and comprehensive studies. alleging that any project involving Boracay requires a full EIA since it is an Environmentally Critical Area (ECA). secure approvals from local government units and hold proper consultations with non-governmental organizations and other stakeholders and sectors concerned as required by Section 27 in relation to Section 26 of the Local Government Code. about four years after martial law ended.

and the Department of Energy. It also ruled that the payment of per diems was clearly contrary to Section 13. 2012) . It further stated that the EIA report submitted by the Provincial Government of Aklan in its application for ECC did not cover the new proposed constructions and their environmental effects. 1897767. COA. COA held that the last paragraph of Section 11 of RA 7916 (Special Economic Zone Act of 1995) authorizing the members of the PEZA Board to receive per diems was deleted in the amendatory law. Executive Secretary that a public official holding an ex officio position as provided by law has no right to receive additional compensation for the ex officio position. June 26. the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. subject to the more rigorous environmental impact study requested by petitioner Boracay Foundation. 2009-081 dated September 15. which upheld the Notice of Disallowance for the payments of per diem to ex officio members of the PEZA Board for the period 2001–2006 amounting to P5.00 issued by PEZA Auditor Corazon V. the information dissemination conducted (by the Province) months after the ECC had already been issued was insufficient to comply with this requirement under the Local Government Code. Españo.500. Jr.. 2012. Otherwise Known As The "Special Economic Zone Act of 1995"). (GR No. It ruled that since Civil Liberties Union v. It added that the “Marina Project” could be classified as a national project that affects the environmental and ecological balance of local communities. 2009. Amounts collected in the form of a per diem. (GR No.” The Court further ruled that the question as to whether the proposed reclamation is a new project or a mere expansion of the existing jetty port facility must be answered by the respondent DENR-EMB RVI as the agency with the expertise and authority to do so. 10 years before payments of per diems by PEZA were disallowed. and is covered by the requirements found in the Local Government Code provisions requiring prior consultations with the affected local communities. “which were both undoubtedly achieved at the urging and insistence of respondent Province. as to the classification of the “Marina Project. They include the Undersecretaries from the Department of Finance. Boracay Foundation. In a 13-page decision penned by Justice Martin S. The High Court also noted that the Local Government Code establishes the duties of national government agencies in the maintenance of ecological balance.) in a contiguous area managed by the Provincial Government of Aklan. the Court En Banc unanimously held that COA properly issued COA Decision No. The Court reiterated its ruling in Civil Liberties Union v. the Department of the Interior and Local Government. It should have acted with caution in the disbursement of per diems knowing jurisprudence does not entitle ex officio position to these benefits.451. The Court also held that. or as a single project. v.lack of comprehensive studies regarding the impact of the reclamation projects to the environment put in question the sufficiency of the evaluation of the project by respondent DENR-EMB RVI. Article VII of the 1987 Constitution prohibiting double compensation to public officers. Executive Secretary was promulgated in 1991. the Department of Agriculture. 2012. The Court lamented that the lack of prior public consultation and approval was not corrected by the succeeding endorsement of the reclamation project by the Sangguniang Barangay of Caticlan on February 13. The reason is that these services are already paid for and covered by the compensation attached to the principal office. serving in an ex officio capacity are not entitled to per diems for every attendance in a Board meeting. Villarama. By Bianca M. The Province of Aklan. July 3. the Department of Public Works and Highways.” stressed the Court. The Court also denied the request of the Undersecretaries serving in the PEZA Board to retain the per diems already received by them for the period Notice of Disallowance was issued. and the Sangguniang Bayan of the Municipality of Malay on February 28. etc. RA 8748 (An Act Amending Republic Act No. building. 2012) SC: Ex Officio Members of PEZA's Board of Directors Not Entitled to Per Diems Posted: July 10. “Accordingly. the Department of Science and Technology. the Department of Labor and Employment. Padilla The Supreme Court En Banc has recently dismissed the petition of the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) assailing the ruling of the Commission of Audit (COA) that Members of the PEZA Board of Directors.” the DENR-EMB RVI should conduct a thorough and detailed evaluation of the project to address the question of whether this could be deemed a group of single projects (transport terminal facility. the prior public consultation should have considered the ecological or environmental concerns of the stakeholders and studied measures alternative to the projects. Inc. PEZA v. 7916. PEZA cannot say it acted in good faith. and was a mere reiteration of the old studies it previously submitted for the construction of the original jetty port in 1999. 2012. 196870. and requires them to secure prior public consultation and approval of local government units for the projects such as the proposed reclamation in Boracay. and prior approval of the project by the appropriate sanggunian. honorarium or allowance is considered additional compensation prohibited by the Constitution. to avoid or minimize adverse environmental impact or damage. Had they been conducted properly. Inc.

like his alleged lack of the required residence. claiming that Jalosjos made material misrepresentations in that COC when he indicated in it that he resided in Ipil. Voting unanimously. Jr. Sr. Veterans Village. any issue regarding his qualification for the same. the COMELEC acted without jurisdiction when it still passed upon the issue of his qualification and declared him ineligible for the office of Representative of the 2nd District of Zamboanga Sibugay. Sibugay for transfer of his voter’s registration record to Precinct 0051F of Brgy. In a nine-page decision penned by Justice Roberto A. will stay as Representative of the Second District of Zamboanga Sibugay. and qualifications of the proclaimed Representative in favor of the HRET. respectively. “The Court has already settled the question of when the jurisdiction of the COMELEC ends and when that of the HRET begins. The Court also dismissed Erasmo’s petition questioning the validity of the registration of Jalosjos as a voter and the COMELEC’s failure to annul his proclamation. Zamboanga Sibugay. Jr. excluding Jalosjos from the list of registered voters in question. Jalosjos applied with the Election Registration Board (ERB) of Ipil. While serving as Tampilisan Mayor. 2010. 2012. Jalosjos then elevated the matter to the Court of Appeals. Zamboanga del Norte and won. Ipil Zamboanga.” In May 2007. In May 2009. It also dismissed for lack of jurisdiction the petition in GR No. 2009. Sibugan and occupied the same in September 2008. Abad. Jalosjos filed Certificate of Candidacy for the position of Representative of the 2nd District of Zamboanga Sibugay for the May 2010 elections. It further held that the last standing official action in his case before the election day was the ruling of the COMELEC’s Second Division that allowed his name to stay on the voters’ registration list. 2010 order that granted the motion for reconsideration of his rival Dan Erasmo. Jalosjos had already been proclaimed on May 13.” ruled the Court. which affirmed the MCTC decision. 192704 and GR No. The Court held that when the COMELEC en banc issued its order dated June 3. the COMELEC SecondDivision dismissed Erasmo’s petition for insufficiency in form and substance. the Court also reinstated the COMELEC Second Division’s resolution dated February 23. Erasmo later filed a petition to exclude Jalosjos from the list of registered voters of the above-named precinct before the First Municipal Circuit Trial Court of IpilTungawan-R. ruling that “the Court cannot usurp the power vested by the Constitution solely on the HRET. The MCTC. ruled that he did not abandon his domicile in Tampilisan since he continued even then to serve as its Mayor. since it had ceased to have jurisdiction over his case. and declared Jalosjos ineligible to seek election in his current post for failing to satisfy the residency requirement. On November 28. Jalosjos won and was declared winner as Representative of the Second District of Zamboanga Sibugay in the May 2010 elections. The Court held that the COMELEC en banc exceeded its jurisdiction in declaring Jalosjos ineligible for the position of representative for the said post. Jalosjos appealed his case to Regional Trial Court of Pagadian City. The proclamation of a congressional candidate following the election divests COMELEC of jurisdiction over disputes relating to the election.” ruled the Court. On February 23. Veterans Village.SC: Jalosjos Stays as Second District Zamboanga Sibugay Representative Posted: July 6. which issued a writ of preliminary injunction enjoining the trial courts from enforcing their decisions. 2010. the Supreme Court En Banc reiterated the demarcation line between the jurisdiction of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) and the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET) as it granted the petition of Jalosjos (GR No. 192474) to reverse and set aside the COMELECen banc’s June 3. which he had won in the elections. Thus. 193566 concerning the COMELEC’s failure to annul Jalosjos’ proclamation and his exclusion from the voters’ list. “With the fact of [Jalosjos’] proclamation and assumption of office. he bought a house and lot in Brgy. returns. While Eramos’ motion for reconsideration was pending before the COMELC en banc. The ERB approved Jalosjos’ application and denied Erasmo’s opposition thereto. Jalosjos. 2010 as winner in the election. ran for Mayor of Tampilisan.T. By Jay B. Lim (MCTC). Erasmo filed a petition to cancel Jalosjos’ COC before the COMELEC. was solely for the HRET to consider and decide. Jalosjos. 2010 dismissing Erasmo’s petition to cancel Jalosjos’ Certificate of Candidacy (COC) for insufficiency in form and substance. Zamboanga. . Jalosjos won as Representative of the Second District of Zamboanga Siguay in the May 10. Rempillo Romeo M. 2010 elections and was proclaimed winner.

(GR No. Jr. Jalosjos. 1969 and the Local Government Code of 1991. Sr. the COMELEC en banc granted Erasmo’s motion for reconsideration and declared Jalosjos ineligible to seek election as Representative of the said district. 2012) SC: Angeles University Foundation Not Entitled to a Refund for Payment of Building Permit and Real Property Taxes Posted: July 6. the Court ordered the consolidation of the three related petitions. and exclusively used for. And For Other Purposes) when it was promulgated in August 4. Erasmo v. 2012) SC: President Can Appoint CJ.. and exclusive use of the property is direct and immediate and actual application of the property itself to the purpose of which the charitable institution is organized. 192474. 2012. City of Angeles. Erasmo. v.. A charge of a fixed sum is an exercise of police power if the purpose is primarily to regulate. on June 2. It held that the land of Angeles University Foundation was correctly assessed for real property taxes for the taxable period during which the land is not being devoted soly for the latter's educational activities. The Court stressed that exemption of “other charges” to include the payment of building permits and locational clearance fees as claimed by the Angeles University Foundation is improper because Sec. GR No. building fees are not impositions on property but instead are regulatory impositions on the activity the government regulates. holding that the lower courts erred in excluding Jalosjos from the voters list of Barangay Veterans Village in Ipil since he was qualified under the Constitution and RA 8189 to vote in that place. 2012. (GR No.99. Padilla The Supreme Court affirmed the ruling of the Court of Appeals (CA) that Angeles University Foundation is not entitled to a refund for the payment of its building permit and locational clearance fees as well as real property taxes amounting to P 826. v. are exempt from payment of these types of taxes. Earlier.” In effect. Angeles University v. directly. Erasmo assails the COMELEC en banc’s failure to annul Jalosjos’ proclamation as election Representative of the Second District of Zamboanga Sibugay despite his declared ineligibility. 2010. June 27. directly. the real property must “actually.Subsequently.662. Angeles University Foundation sought for a refund on the ground that the building permit and other fees are really taxes considering they are used to generate revenue.. 193566. educational purposes”. even though revenue is generated incidentally. . June 26. COMELEC. Jalosjos. HRET. The Court also ruled that for exemption from real property tax under Sec. 189999. direct. Jr. By Bianca M. Directing The Government Service Insurance System. Jr. As clarified in Lung Center of the Philippines v. 193 of the Local Government Code of 1991 which provides that non-stock and non-profit educational institutions. and exclusively used for educational purposes. Rempillo The Supreme Court has dismissed the petition questioning the President’s constitutional power to appoint the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and arguing that only the incumbent Chief Justice can head the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC). The Social Security System And The Development Bank Of The Philippines To Assist In Such Conversion. the CA had reversed the decision of the Regional Trial Court of Angeles City.. 8 of RA 6055 is qualified by the words “imposed by the Government on all property used exclusively for the educational activities of the foundation. In the 16-page decision penned by Justice Martin S. Branch 57 declaring Angeles University Foundation exempt from payment of building permit and other fees and ordering the City of Angeles to refund the same with interest at the legal rate. Subsequently. The Court found Angeles University Foundation was not entitled to a refund for its payment of real property tax because it was not able to prove that its real property is actually. et. such as itself. Meanwhile. 234(b) of the Local Government Code of 1991 to apply. Jalosjos. Eramo filed a petition for review of the CA decision with the Court. the CA rendered judgment in the voter’s exclusion case before it. the Court's First Division unanimously held that CA committed no reversible error in finding Angeles University Foundation liable to pay the protested permit and fees since the exemption from payment of regulatory fees was not among the incentives granted it under RA 6055 (An Act To Provide For The Conversion Of Educational Institutions From Stock Corporations To Non-Profit Foundations. By Jay B. al. In GR 192704. JBC Can be Headed by Most Senior Justice Posted: July 5. citing Roces v.. GR No. what is meant by actual. which it had paid under protest. 192702. Jalosjos challenges the COMELEC’s finding that he did not meet the residency requirement and its denial of his right to due process. The use of the income from the real property is not determinative for tax exempt purposes. In GR 192474. Both Jalosjos and Erasmo came up to this Court on certiorari. Quezon City. and Sec. Villarama.

therefore. the Court unanimously held that the Senate did not commit any grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction for approving the said Committee report. The challenged Committee report was submitted to the Senate on June 7. Andal was not violated in this case because this right can only be invoked by a person under custodial investigation and not in a situation where one is merely invited to public hearings as resource persons. the JBC submits to the President a list of at least three nominees and the President may not appoint anybody who is not in the list. 2007 by respondent Senate Committees on Government Corporations and Public Enterprises and on Public Services after finding in an inquiry conducted in aid of legislation “overwhelming mismanagement by the PCGG and its nominees over POTC. Thus the respondent Senate Committees cannot be said to have acted with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or in excess of jurisdiction when it submitted Committee Report No. 2012. PHILCOMSAT.” “A plain reading of the constitutional provisions on the Judicial Department in Article VIII of the 1987 Constitution clearly shows that the phrase ‘Members of the Supreme Court’ and the words ‘Members’ and ‘Member’ are repeatedly used to refer to the Justices of the Supreme Court without distinction whether he be the Chief Justice or any of the Associate Justices or all fifteen Justices. Article VIII of the Constitution. should participate in the deliberations for the selection of nominees for the said vacant post and preside over the proceedings in the absence of the constitutionally named ex-officio chair. It noted that in the consolidated cases of In the Matter of the Petition for Habeas Corpus of Camilo Sabio. 312 recommending the privatization and transfer of jurisdiction over the shares of the government in the Philippine Overseas Telecommunications Corporation (POTC) and the Philippine Communications Satellite Corporation (PHILCOMSAT) from the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) to the Privatization Management Office under the Department of Finance and the replacement of the PCGG government nominees as directors of POTC and PHILCOMSAT. Locsin and Manuel B. or the Judiciary Act of 1948. 2012) SC Upholds Senate Committee Report Finding "Overwhelming Mismanagement" by PCGG Posted: June 27. It ruled that the most Senior Justice of the High Court. By Bianca M.” The Senate approved the Report that very same day. Padilla The Supreme Court En Banc has recently dismissed a petition assailing Senate Committee Report No.” ruled the Court in its seven-page resolution. For every vacancy. which reads: “In case of vacancy in the office of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. the JBC can still operate to perform its mandated task of submitting the list of nominees to the President even if the constitutionally named ex-officio Chair does not sit in the JBC. July 3. The Court also ruled that the right to be assisted by counsel of petitioners Enrique L. Dulay v. it should not be deprived of representation. GR No. The Court held that considering that the complete membership in the JBC is preferable and pursuant to its supervisory power over the JBC. 455 directing the conduct of the said inquiry in aid of legislation in view of the losses incurred by POTC. Locsin and Andal are both directors and corporate officers . and PHC. the Court also found that petitioner Famela Dulay is wanting in legal standing to institute the instant petition as she did not explain her capacity in instituting the petition whether as citizen or taxpayer filing on behalf of the public who are directly affected by the issues. until such disability is removed. 312 given its constitutional mandate to conduct legislative inquiries nor can the Senate be faulted for approving the report on the very same day the report was submitted. Any vacancy in the SC is required by the Constitution to be filled within 90 days from the occurrence thereof. (Extended Res. who is not an applicant for the position of Chief Justice. 455.There the Court ruled that the legislative power to conduct inquiries in aid of legislation must carry with it all powers necessary and proper for its effective discharge. pursuant to Section 12 of RA 296. The Court explained that the JBC’s principal function is to recommend appointees to the Judiciary. and that PCGG was negligent in performing its mandate to preserve the government’s interests in the said corporations. the Court stressed that the Constitution provides that “The members of the Supreme Court and the judges of lower courts shall be appointed by the President from a list of at least three nominees prepared by the Judicial and Bar Council for every vacancy. This provision shall apply to every Associate Justice who succeeds to the office of the Chief Justice. it had already upheld the respondent Senate Committees’ power of inquiry in relation to PSR No. Although it would be preferable if the membership of the JBC is complete. PHILCOMSAT. Perlas-Bernabe. The Court also held that it does not agree with petition that the JBC can only be headed by the incumbent Chief Justice and no other. It cannot. and [PHILCOMSDAT Holdings Corporation] PHC. be compromised only because the constitutionally named Chair could not sit in the JBC.” In addition. or another Chief Justice is appointed and duly qualified. or of his inability to perform the duties and powers of his office. JBC. they shall devolve upon the Associate Justice who is first in precedence. It was Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago who had earlier introduced Proposed Senate Resolution (PSR) No..Citing Section 9. 202143. In an 8-page decision penned by Justice Estela M. the Court stressed.

07-9-12-SC. the Court will definitely not hold the government or its agents either as responsible or accountable persons. The petitioner in an amparo case has the burden of proving by substantial evidence the indispensable element of government participation. government involvement in the disappearance remains an indispensible element. none of its agents. and Andrew Buising were mere security guards at Grand Royale Subdivision in Brgy. Voting unanimously.’” In probing enforced disappearances. officials. was aimed at providing an expeditious and effective relief ‘to any person whose right to life. Senate. a writ of amparo may lie against a private individual or entity.Philippine Act on Crimes Against International Humanitarian Law. Branch 20. Lugam. On March 31. Navia v. (G. “It is now clear that for the protective writ of amparo to issue. promulgated to arrest the rampant extralegal killings and enforced disappearances in the country. However. Malolos City and their principal. No. The Rule on the Writ of Amparo. the Supreme Court has dismissed for being fatally defective a petition for writ of amparo filed by the family of a man who had allegedly disappeared after he was mauled for committing a misdemeanor by the security people of a subdivision in Malolos. Ruben Dio. government involvement in enforced disappearances and extra legal killings is an indispensable element. 2012.of PHC as well as nominees of the government to the board of directors of both POTC and PHILCOMSAT. and security is violated or threatened with violation by an unlawful act or omission of a public official or employee. Pardico. 180308. 2012) SC: State Participation Indispensable Element in Amparo Case Posted: June 27. was a private entity. or governmental operation. allegation and proof that the persons subject thereof are missing are not enough. In fact. the SC held that courts should read The Rule on the Writ of Amparo in relation to RA 9851. The Court stressed that petitioners Edgardo Navia. 184467. Lapore was subsequently released after signing a waiver in the subdivision security logbook that he was being released unharmed and without any injury. By Jay B. who also purportedly signed the same waiver. Bulacan. liberty. June 19. the Court underscored that even if the person sought to be held accountable or responsible in an amparo petition is a private individual or entity. The Court ruled that the indispensable element of State participation was not present in this case. Under Section 1 of AM No. however.” the Court held. “Thus is the absence of an allegation or proof that the government or its agents had a hand in Ben’s disappearance or that they failed to exercise extraordinary diligence in investigating his case. military. It held that the petition does not contain any allegation of State complicity. Ben and Enrique Lapore were accosted by the petitioners for alleged theft of electric wires and lamps in the subdivision. the Court En Banc reversed and set aside the July 24. Del Castillo. It further held that they do not work for the government and nothing has been presented that would link or connect them to some covert police. which had issued a writ of amparo and ordered the production of the body of Benhur Pardico before the trial court. Genocide. still. and none of the evidence presented tend to show that the government or any of its agents orchestrated Ben’s disappearance. 2012) . 2008 decision of the Malolos City Regional Trial Court. reportedly was never seen again. (GR Nos. Philcomsat v.R. or of a private individual or entity. June 19.” held the Court. Ben. 2008. In a 15-page decision penned by Justice Mariano C. Rempillo In a writ of amparo case. and Other Crimes Against Humanity. the Asian Land. or employees were impleaded or implicated in amparo petition whether as responsible or accountable persons. The Court noted that The Rule on the Writ of Amparo.