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Ching, Catherine

13, 2010
Dinaque, Keren
Espiritu, Nikka
Guzman, Clarisse


The Third Republic

On April, 1946, elections were held in the Philippines. The Democratic Alliance
won the election but they were not allowed to proceed to their seats for the
accusation that the election was manipulated by the use of coercion. The United
States ceased its sovereignty over the Philippines on July 4, 1946 by the power of
the Treaty of General Relations signed by the US and the Philippines. Manuel Roxas
(from the Liberal Party), having been inaugurated as President, and strengthened
political and economic ties with the United States. The Philippines remained highly
dependent on the US markets as evident in the controversial Philippine-US Trade
Act. In March, 1947, the Philippines and the United States signed a military
assistance pact which allowed the US to participate equally in the exploitation of the
country's natural resources and rented sites for 23 military bases to the US for 99
World War II had left the Philippines demoralized and severely damaged. The
seven congresses under the Third Republic were expected to play a significant role
in uplifting the country from its unfortunate devastation and in strengthening the
nation politically, economically, and even culturally as a newly-independent country.
The congresses of the Third Republic were among the most influential legislatures in
the Third World and exhibited significant performance in crafting rules and policies
that served as the foundation of the Philippine rule-making body The Third Republic
covered five Philippine presidents, excluding the tendentious dictator, Ferdinand
Marcos whose ascension to the seat for presidency marked the end of the Third
The first president of the newly-independent state was Manuel Roxas who
ran as the nominee of the liberal wing of the Nacionalista Party. He won 54 percent
of the vote and the Liberal Party won a majority in the legislature. He was able to
get rehabilitation funds from the US and was forced to concede military bases. He
imposed trade restrictions for the Philippine citizens and grant special privileges for
foreign property owners and investors. His administration was accused of graft and
corruption and the wrongdoings of the provincial military police led to the rise of the
Huk rebellion. He died of heart attack which led to the succession of his vicepresident, Elpidio Quirino (LP) in office in 1948. The following year, he ran for
presidency against Jose P. Laurel (NP) in which he won in a four-year term. The
Quirino administration was highly characterized by the prevalence of communist
HUKBALAHAP movement. In the election of 1953, Magsaysay won over the

incumbent Elpidio Quirino. Carlos P. Garcia was seated as president right after
Magsaysay's death. His administration was famous for the Filipino first policy
arguing that the Filipino people should be given the chances to improve the
country's economy. His administration lost popularity because of issues of
corruption. Diosdado Macapagal was the last president of the Third Republic whose
foreign policy sought closer relations with neighboring Asian nations. It was in this
administration that Independence Day was changed from July 4 to June 12 in
commemoration of Emilio Aguinaldo's proclamation of independence in 1898.
The second Congress of the Commonwealth was the existing congress when
the Philippines was granted its independence. By the approval of Republic Act No. 6,
this present congress was known as the First Congress of the Republic of the
Section 1. As of the date of the proclamation of the Republic of the Philippines on
the fourth day of July, nineteen hundred and forty-six, the present Congress of the
Philippines shall be known as the First Congress of the Republic of the Philippines.
Sec. 2. All laws enacted by the said Congress on or after said date shall be serially
numbered beginning with number one and shall be known as Republic Acts.
Sec. 3. This Act shall take effect as of July four, nineteen hundred and forty-six.
Approved, August 5, 1946.
Throughout the transition of seven congresses during the entire period from
1946 to 1972, over 6,000 acts were passed into law.
The amendment of the 1935 Constitution, supported by Manuel Quezon,
which took place in 1939 resulted to a shift from a unicameral model to a bicameral
model of legislature. It separated the government into three branches namely:
executive, legislative and judiciary. The system of checks and balances featured a
bicameral legislature. It is composed of two Houses namely:
1. Lower House composed of not more than 120 representatives elected by
district according to population for a term of four years. As the population of
the Philippines increased and the creation of, various attempts have been
made to increase the size of the House of Representatives. One attempt was
the Redistricting Bill of 1961 (RA 3040) which was passed by the Fourth
Congress, but was later declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.

No person shall be a Member of the House of Representatives unless he is a

natural-born citizen of the
Philippines and, on the day of the election, is at
least twenty-five years of age, able to read and write, and,
except the party-list
representatives, a registered voter in the district in which he shall be elected, and a
resident thereof for a period of not less than one year immediately preceding
the day of the election.

Upper House composed of 24 senators elected at large by qualified voters.

Each senator has a term of 6 years with 8 senators elected every 2 years.

No person shall be a Senator unless he is a natural-born citizen of the

Philippines and, on the day of the
election, is at least thirty-five years of age,
able to read and write, a registered voter, and a resident of the Philippines for not
less than two years immediately preceding the day of the election. (Section 3,
Article VI
of the 1987 Constitution)
1. Legislators are not allowed to hold any other office in the government
concurrent with their term as elected legislators. If they prefer another job in
government office, they must give up their seats in the legislature.
2. Legislators were also not allowed to have any financial interest in any
contract with the government.
3. They are immune from arrest except in cases involving treason, felony and
breaches of peace.
4. Legislators may enact laws but is limited with regards to laws which may
possibly go against the freedom of the people. Laws which are explicitly
biased (i.e. religion) are prohibited.
5. Legislators are not allowed to appropriate money to any religious group.
6. The legislature is not allowed to pass any law creating aristocracy and
7. The constitution also prohibited the Congress from passing any law which
impaired the obligations imposed by contracts.
8. The Congress was prohibited from passing laws which made certain crimes
punishable even if they were committed before the specific law punishing
that crime was passed.
1. The power to determine the character, structure or mode of operation of the
government. A joint session is assembled by the vote of all the members of
the Senate and the House of Representatives voting separately they could
propose amendments to the Constitution or call a convention for that
purpose. These amendments were incorporated into the Constitution after
the ratification by the people in an election.
2. The power of impeachment, the proceedings of which consist of:


Indictment: the impeachment of the accused by at least 2/3

vote of all the members of the House of Representatives.


Trial of the accused by the Senate where conviction required at

least vote of all the members.


1. The power to ratify treaties entered into by the executive the concurrence of
2/3 of all the members of the Senate was necessary before a treaty negotiated
by the President or his representatives could have force and become part of the
laws of the land.
2. The sole power to declare war. - Section 29, Artivle VI of the 1935
Constitution, Congress with the concurrence of 2/3 of all the members of each
3. The power to pass upon the appointments made by the President.
The Congress of the Philippines followed a certain schedule for the session of
both houses. They commenced their regular sessions every fourth Monday of
January, although this could be changed as Congress saw fit. Every Congress had
four regular sessions lasting for 100 days, excluding Sundays. The continuity of the
sessions could be broken for a time in agreement of both Houses.
Special sessions could be called by the President before or after the regular
session could not be longer than 30 days exclusive of Sundays.
1. Standing
Appropriations, Banks and Corporations, Civil Service, Codes, Commerce and
Industry, Education)
2. Special temporary committees
3. joint committees (i.e. joint canvassing committees every election)
4. sub-committees tasked to parcel the work of standing or special
During the First Republic, the Malolos constitution provided for a legislature
stronger than the executive. Manuel Quezon tried to altered it to a system where
the legislative body is subordinate to the executive. However, during the Third
Republic, most of the members of the legislature, and the elected presidents came
from the same party fostering cooperation in both branches of the government.
This was not always the case for the reason that some personal reasons caused
members of the legislature to block the president's legislative agenda. The last
three congresses of the Third Republic wound up with a president at odds with the
majority in Congress. Party politics was also very rampant during the era of the
Third Republic. The Liberal Party was born in this era when Manuel Roxas ran for
president. The Third Republic was pretty much characterized by an arch rivalry
between the Nacionalista Party and the Liberal Party. A two-party system was in
effect although both parties, NP and LP had similar platforms which are antiCommunist. These parties became machines for elections rather than supporting
specific policies or stands on issues.
First Congress (1946-1949)
Since the Philippines was just starting to recover from the devastation of
World War II, relief and rehabilitation were the primary issues. The government was

also dealing with the domestic insurgency of the Huks who were asking for social
justice. Many prewar legislators were jailed and accused of collaboration with the
Japanese, thus reducing the number of skilled legislators who could serve the First
Congress. One significant legislation during the First Congress was the Bell Trade
Act, linked with the Tydings Rehabilitation Act which needed constitutional
amendment which would grant the Americans the same rights to exploit Philippine
natural resources. Another was the Military Bases Agreement which leased
Philippine bases to the Americans.
The first post-war election took place on April 23, 1946. The Liberal Party
fielded Manuel Roxas (for president) and Elpidio Quirino (for vice-president) to go
against Nacionalista Party's Sergio Osmea (for president). Aside from the
candidates fielded by both parties for the Congress, the Democratic Alliance which
was supported by the Huks and the Popular Front ran for seats in the Congress.
Manuel Roxas won the position for presidency and the Liberal party dominated the
The decline of the First Congress was brought about internal party politics.
The Nacionalist Party spoke out against Roxas (a member of the Liberal Party) and
accused him of setting up a dictatorship. There were also issues of corruption in his
administration and not geared towards service for the people. Roxas died in 1948
and his vice president, Elpidio Quirino took over.


President of the Senate: Jose D. Avelino (LP)
Mariano Jesus L. Cuenco (LP), elected February 21, 1949
Senate President ProMelecio Arranz (LP)
Majority Floor Leader:
Tomas L. Cabili (LP)
Minority Floor Leader:
Carlos P. Garcia (NP)
Eugenio P. Perez (LP, 2nd District Pangasinan)
Speaker Pro-Tempore:
Francisco Ortega (LP, 1st District La Union)
Majority Floor Leader:
Raul Leuterio (LP, Lone District Mindoro)
Minority Floor Leader:
Cipriano P. Primicias, Sr. (NP, 4th District Pangasinan)
The First Congress of the Philippines
First Regular Session: July 5 to September 18, 1946
First Special Session: September 25 to September 30. 1946
Second Regular Session: January 27 to May 22, 1947
Third Regular Session: January 26 to May 20, 1948
Second Special Session: June 14 to June 26, 1948
Fourth Regular Session: January 24 to May 19, 1949
Special Joint Session: December 13, 1949

421 laws passed: Republic Act No. 1 to 421



RA No. 1

An act of appropriating funds for the operation of

the government.

RA No. 2

An act of appropriating fifty thousand pesos to

defray the expenses of a state funeral for Manuel
Quezon and for the erection of a mausoleum.

RA No. 3

Allowed the continuation of the Philippine Tariff

Law of 1909

RA No. 5

The establishment of the National Coconut


RA No. 7

An act to establish the foreign funds control office

and for other purposes.

RA No. 9

Republic of the Philippines Military Assistance Act

RA No. 10

An act penalizing usurpation of public authority

RA No. 11

Act to prohibit the slaughtering of male and

female carabaos, horses, mares and cows.

RA No. 16

An act authorizing the president of the Philippines

to obtain such loans or incur indebtedness with
the government of the United States and its

RA No. 65

Created Veterans Board in the Dept. of National


RA No. 71

An act requiring price tags or labels to be affixed

on all articles of commerce offered for sale.

RA No. 73

An act to submit to the Filipino people, for

approval or disapproval, the amendment to the
Constitution of the Philippines.

RA No. 85

Rehabilitation Finance Corporation

RA No. 115

Reforestation of parts of the Philippines

RA No. 265

Created Central Bank

RA No. 296

Systematized the judiciary (Judiciary Act of 1948)

RA No. 311

Abolished the People's Court

RA No. 330

Authorized the president of the Philippines to

establish a system of import controls

RA No. 337

Regulation of banks

RA No. 343

Required the teaching of Spanish language in

high school.
Market Stalls Act of 1946

Nationalized retail trade in markets by granting

Filipino citizens preference in leasing public
market stalls.

Second Congress (1950-1953)

The elections held on November 8,1949, during the Second Congress was
said to be fraudulent. Quirino was proclaimed president, Fernando Lopez as the Vice
president by the outgoing Congress. The person who was handling the Senate
president kept on being changed. From Jose Avelino who was replaced after 17 days
to Quintin Paredes, to Osias who was then replaced by Jose Zulueta also in 1952. In
1953, Osias became SP as again who was then replaced by Jose Zulueta. Paredes
became the pro tempore chair but he was also replaced by Esteban Abada. Abada
was replaced by Manuel C. Briones, and then Briones by Jose C. Zulueta. Domingo
Veloso was speaker pro tempore, Eugenio Perez was speaker of the lower house
while Raul Centeno was majority floor leader, Jose Laurel Jr. was the minority floor
Quirinos party, the Liberal Party was able to grab the 8 seats which were
open in the Senate, they were also able to win 68 out of 102 seats in the House of
Representatives. The legitimacy of Quirino administration was slowly declining due
to the previously held elections which was said to be dirty. So in 1951, National
Movement for Free Elections (NAMFREL) was created by the citizens and was
assigned to look after the ballots. Here the Nacionalista candidates won all the eight
available seats for senator.

President of the Senate:
Mariano Jesus L. Cuenco (LP)
Quintin B. Paredes (LP), elected March 5, 1952
Camilo O. Osias (NP), elected April 17, 1952
Eulogio A. Rodriguez, Sr. (NP), elected April 30, 1952
Camilo O. Osias (NP), elected April 17, 1953
Jose C. Zulueta (NP), elected April 30, 1953
Eulogio A. Rodriguez, Sr. (NP), elected May 20, 1953
Senate President Pro-Tempore:
Quintin B. Paredes (LP)
Esteban R. Abada (LP), elected March 5, 1952
Manuel C. Briones (LP), elected May 7, 1952
Jose C. Zulueta (NP), elected April 17, 1953
Manuel C. Briones (LP), elected April 30, 1953
Majority Floor Leader:
Raul Centeno (LP)
Minority Floor Leader:
Carlos P. Garcia (NP)

House of Representatives
Eugenio Perez (LP, 2nd District Pangasinan)
Speaker Pro-Tempore:
Domingo Veloso (LP, 2nd District La Union)
Majority Floor Leader:
Ral Leuterio (LP, Lone District Oriental Mindoro)
Minority Floor Leader:
Jose B. Laurel, Jr. (NP, 3rd District Batangas)
First Special Session: December 30, 1949 January 5, 1950
First Regular Session: January 23 May 18, 1950
Second Special Session: August 1 August 25, 1950
Third Special Session: December 4, 1950 January 6, 1951
Fourth Special Session: January 8 January 19, 1951
Second Regular Session: January 22 May 17, 1951
Fifth Special Session: May 21 May 29, 1951
Third Regular Session: January 28 May 22, 1952
Sixth Special Session: June 23 July 15, 1952
Seventh Special Session: November 4 November 8, 1952
Fourth Regular Session: January 26, 1953 May 21, 1953
Joint Session: December 8, 1953

Committees established:
NAMFREL (created by the
Cattle Industry
Social and Agrarian Problems
National Capital
Town Planning
Guerilla Affairs
Blue Ribbon Committee

To guard ballots
Support economy
Consider setting up a new area at QC
Creation of cities, municipalities and
Handle communism threats and radical
groups such as the Huks
Handle threats
Investigate corruption

The Second congress successfully made 552 acts from 1950 until 1953. Most of
these acts were geared towards the creation of public utilities, cities and
municipalities as well as barrios. The second congress also amended some of the
acts which were created by the First congress. Some of the important acts included:
- R.A. 422 authorization of the government for the reorganization of executive
departments, bureaus and offices
- R.A. 541 increased the AFP to fight/control the Huks
- R.A. 602 Minimum Wage Law
- R.A. 613 Export Control Law
- R.A. 634 - Filipino citizenship for Sen. Tydings and Mcduffe
- R.A. 875 Magna Carta of Labor (enabled workers to form unions)

The second congress also agreed to the sending of Philippine forces to Korea
(PEFTOK) for the Korean War.
Third Congress (1953-1957)
Ramon Magsaysay, a former LP, became president of the Philippines after the
November 11, 1953 elections. The NP became dominant both in the executive and
the legislative branches. NAMFREL along with some pressure from the US,
prevented the reoccurrence of dirty elections which happened in 1949.Magsaysays
closeness with the US did not prevent him from being popular with the people, this
is probably because his administration focused on socioeconomic reforms.
Eulogio Rodriguez became the Senate president. Manuel Briones was
president pro tempore while Jose Laurel Jr. was speaker of the house. Daniel
Romualdez was speaker pro tempore. Arturo Tolentino became majority floor leader,
while Eugenio Perez (the only one from LP) became minority floor leader. Aklan was
established as a province in 1956 which added another member to the House of
Representatives making it 103. The first regular session was held on January 25,
The third congress made 1077 acts from 1954 until 1957.Most of them were about
economic and social reforms. Committees were also established in order to further
address socioeconomic problems.
President of the Senate:
Eulogio A. Rodriguez, Sr. (NP)
Senate President Pro-Tempore:
Manuel C. Briones (NP)
Majority Floor Leader:
Cipriano P. Primicias, Sr. (NP)
Minority Floor Leader:
Lorenzo N. Taada (CP)
House of Representatives
Jose B. Laurel, Jr. (NP, 3rd District Batangas)
Speaker Pro-Tempore:
Daniel Z. Romualdez (NP, 4th District Leyte)
Majority Floor Leader:
Arturo M. Tolentino (NP, 3rd District Manila)
Minority Floor Leader:
Eugenio Perez (LP, 2nd District Pangasinan)
First Regular Session: January 25 May 20, 1954
First Special Session: July 19 August 3, 1954

Second Regular Session: January 24 May 19, 1955

Second Special Session: July 7 August 10, 1955
Third Regular Session: January 23 May 17, 1956
Third Special Session: June 21 July 25, 1956
Fourth Regular Session: January 28, 1957 May 23, 1957
Joint Session: December 10, 1957

Some committees which were established:

Court of Agrarian Relations
Abaca Corporation of the Philippines
National Marketing Corporation
Board of Travel and Tourist Industry
National Civil defense administration
Commission on National Integration
Board of National Education
Philippine Nuclear Energy Commission

Ensure justice in agrarian reforms

Protect abaca farmers and workers
Address problem of stabilizing prices
Monitor tourists (foreign and local)
Peace and order problems, and Huk
Address problem of lack or
representation of minority groups
Monitor the status of national education
in the country
Monitor amount of nuclear energy, find
new sources

Some of the important acts included:

- R.A. 1130 Anti-dummy act (prevent foreigners from using Filipinos in
avoiding Phil. laws)
- R.A. 1294 Artisan Well act of 1955
- R.A. 1909 Phil. Coastwide shipping act of 1956
- R.A. 1180 Retail trade nationalization law (establishment of Filipino
Retailers Fund)
- R.A. 1700 outlawed the Communist Party of the Phils.
- R.A. 1792 Social Security Act
- Rizal Act included studying of Noli Me tangere and El Filibusterismo in High
school curriculum
- R.A. 1789 Reparations Act (national policy for procurement and utilization of
war reparations from Japan)
The congress did not really recognize Magsaysay as the president because of
his switching of parties (From LP to NP) and because of his close ties with the US.
This resulted to a conflict in the passing of bills. While Magsaysay wanted to focus
on land reform, the congress targeted the discouragement of foreign investments
by passing nationalization proposals.
Fourth Congress (1958-1961)
As the 1957 elections proclaimed Carlos P. Garcia as the 8 th president of the
Philippines, the bicameral legislature continued its experimentation with the
Philippine government.
The fourth congress started in 1958 up until 1961. It was primarily led by
senate president Eulogio A. Rodriguez Sr., the president pro tempore which would
entail the replacement of the senate president role in case of absence, Manuel
Briones. The majority floor leader is Cipriano P. Primicias Sr. All of which came from

the Nacionalista Party. Ferdinand Marcos, the minority leader, who was later
replaces by Ambrosio Padilla are both from the Liberal Party. The lower house on the
other hand has Daniel Romualdez from 4 th district Leyte as the House Speaker. The
Speaker pro tempore, Constancio Castaneda of Tarlacs second district, Jose
Aldeguer of Iloilo as the majority leader and Cornelio Villareal as the minority leader.
Among all the said leaders of the House of Representatives, only Villareal was a
member of the Liberal Party, the rest were part of the Nacionalista Party.
The domination of the Nacionalista Party is also very much evident on the
members of the senate themselves. Senators such as Oscar Ledesma, Arturo
Tolentino, Gil Puyat, Claro M. Recto, Emmanuel Pelaez, Alejandro Almendras,
Lorenzo Tanada (whos actually a member of Nationalist-Citizens Party thats
slightly influenced by the NP) and many more. Out of 24 seats, 23 are members of
the Nacionalista Party. And Out of 103 seats from the lower house, 77 were
members of the NP. Also, during the 1959 senatorial elections, five seats were taken
by the party members.
The Congress all in all, has produced 1,401 laws namely the Republic Acts
2050 to 3450. And that it was composed of four regular sessions, three special
sessions, one informal meeting and one joint session. Some of it are focused on the
Filipinos incentives to contribute to the economy. But what the laws focused upon is
President Garcias Filipino First Policy. The legislature has supported this.
One of its noted laws passed is the R.A. 2259, saying that it is an Act making
elective the offices of the mayor, vice-mayor and councilors in chartered cities,
regulating the election in such cities and fixing the salaries and tenure of such
offices. The law basically eradicated the appointive means of selecting local
leaders. But the law, at that time, did not apply to certain cities like Manila, Cavite,
Trece Martires and Tagaytay. The bill was approved last June 19, 1959. In relation to
this aspect, the RA 2264 allowed the reconstruction of the governance of the local
governments through the grant of autonomy and therefore autonomous hold on
finances. This act is called the Local Autonomy Act. Smaller units like the barrios
were also given power with R.A.2370 called the Barrio Autonomy Act. Such are the
political improvements made by the 4th legislature.
Regulating professions is also one of the key feature of the laws passed by
the 4th congress. There are two acts pertaining to this subject, the R.A. 2260 and
R.A. 2382. Civil Service Act and Medical Act, respectively. The laws posed guidance
and requirements on such professions especially the indications of minimum wages.
Medical Act distinctly emphasized the requirements for the admissions.
On other economic aspects, the R.A. 2081 established the Development Bank
of the Philippines. It channels a better development for the credit system by
extending it to the city and provincial development banks. Its ultimate intention
though is to increase the productivity of corn and rice by the accessible credits. It is
made to be a replacement for Rehabilitation Finance Corporation.
In alignment with the Filipino First Policy, the legislature passed R.A. 2664 to
take good care of the Filipino World War II Veterans by giving benefits and pensions.
With the US veterans presence in the country, it was also agreed upon in the Joint
Resolution No.1 to include the US veterans in the Philippines as beneficiaries. Along

with this, the Veterans Foundation of the Philippines was established to organize
these veteran organizations in one whole system. Other laws passed, that can be
seen until the present congress originated from this time. One of those is the
establishment of the Board of Censors for Motion Pictures or R.A. 3060 that screens
the movies and designating ratings upon them. And lastly, the 14 th Congress was
able to make a feedback system in order to keep the public informed. Under the
committee on Good Government, the subcommitteeof Government operations
made inquiries on the governance to compare it with the public clamor.
The Fifth Congress (1961-1965)
The Fifth Congress was the meeting of the legislature of the Republic of the
Philippines, composed of the Senate and House of the Representatives from January
22, 1962 until December 17 1965. The Liberal Party was brought back to power in
the presidency, but not in the Legislature in the 1961 election. During this time,
Diosdado Macapagal was elected in the presidential seat with the plans to eradicate
corruption in the government, effect genuine land reform and a socioeconomic
program in order for the nation to flourish.
The leaders of the Fifth Congress include:
President of the Senate:
Eulogio A. Rodriguez, Sr. (NP)
Ferdinand E. Marcos (LP), elected on April 5, 1963
Senate President Pro-Tempore:
Fernando Lopez (NP)
Majority Floor Leader:
Cipriano P. Primicias, Sr. (NP)
Arturo M. Tolentino (NP)
Minority Floor Leader:
Estanislao A. Fernandez (LP)
House of Representatives
Daniel Z. Romualdez (NP, 4th District Leyte)
Cornelio T. Villareal (LP, 2nd District Capiz), elected March 9, 1962
Speaker Pro-Tempore:
Salipada K. Pendatun (LP, Lone District Cotabato)
Majority Floor Leader:
Justiniano S. Montano (LP, Lone District Cavite)
Minority Floor Leader:
Cornelio T. Villareal (LP, 2nd District Capiz)
Daniel Z. Romualdez (NP, 4th District Leyte) elected March 9, 1962
The Senate was divided between Nacionalista Party and Liberal Party, but the
lower house had 72 NPs out of the 103 representatives. In the Senate, Amang

Rodriguez continues as the Senate President, but he was then replaced by

Ferdinand Marcos in 1963. Fernando Lopez was Senate president pro tempore
throughout the term. Daniel Z. Romualdez, from Nacionalista Party, continued on as
the speaker of the House until March 1962, when he was replaced by Cornelio
Villareal, of the LP, after party switching and realignments. The speaker pro
tempore was Salipada K. Pendatun, from Liberal Party, and Justiniano Montano was
the majority leader. The House of Representatives was enlarged to 106 members
with the separation of Samar into 3 provinces, namely Northern Samar, Eastern
Samar and Western Samar as stated in R.A 4221. R.A 3040, was an attempt to
apportion an allowed 120 seats by the Constitution throughout the country, but
unfortunately the act was declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court of the
The sessions of the Fifth Congress of the Philippines include:
First Regular Session: January 22 May 17, 1962
Second Regular Session: January 28 May 23, 1963
First Special Session: June 10 July 12, 1963
Third Regular Session: January 27 May 21, 1964
Second Special Session: May 22 June 25, 1964
Third Special Session: June 26 July 8, 1964
Fourth Special Session: August 3 August 15, 1964
Fourth Regular Session: January 25 May 20, 1965
Fifth Special Session: May 21 June 24, 1965
Sixth Special Session: June 30 July 12, 1965
First Joint Session: March 1 May 5, 1965
Second Joint Session: December 14 December 17, 1965
A crisis was developed during the first session of this Congress because of the
impasse in the Senate. In 1920, two Commissions on Appointments came into
existence because of the power struggle between the Nacionalistas and the
Liberals. The Liberal Party was the ruling party at the time with Macapagal as the
president, but the House of Representatives was split. A number of NPs defected to
the Liberal Partys Allied Majority without giving up their party membership. The LP
managed to obtain a majority with the NPs defectors, but not until after the NP
members of the House organized various committees and elected their people to
the Commission of Appointments. The Liberal Party then after gaining the majority
seats, reorganized the House and the Commission on Appointments that is why
there existed two commissions, one NP and the other LP, until the Supreme Court
upheld the validity of the first Nacionalista Party commission.
The new committees that was created during the term of office of the lower house
of the Fifth Congress were those on Economic Affairs, Foreign Trade and Tourism,
Constitutional Amendments, Games and Amusements, Good Government,
Immigration and Naturalization, National Minorities, Reparations, War Veterans and
Scientific and Technical and Scientific development.
Despite the crisis in party control, the Fifth Congress was still able to pass a total of
1,192 acts during its regular and special sessions from 1962 to 1965.
Many of the laws passed dealt with the economy. These include:
R.A 3591, which created the Philippine Deposit and Insurance.
R.A 3601, created the National Irrigation Administration.
R.A 3627, established the Bureau of Agricultural Economics to systematize

research and the compilation of statistics relating to agriculture.

R.A 3765, the Truth in Lending Act.
R.A 3844, the Agricultural Land Reform Code which provided for the
government to buy private farm lands for redistribution to landless tenants on
easy terms.
R.A 3850, the Philippine Investment Incentives Act.
R.A 4041, an act to develop the dairy industry of the Philippines.
R.A 4093, the Private Development Banks Act
R.A 4132, creation of the Northern Samar Development Authority, which is an
example of how the Congress created regional development authorities to
assist underdeveloped areas in the country.

Some of the laws passed also regulate various professions and businesses
which had direct relations with the public. These include:
R.A 3720, The Food, Drugs and Cosmetics Act set standards which would
protect the public in these important areas.
R.A 4209, regulated the professions of geologists.
R.A 4226, required hospital to secure government licenses.
R.A 4274, regulated mining engineering.
R.A 4373, regulated social work
R.A 4419, regulated the dental profession
R.A 4566, required contractors to be licensed.
R.A 3931, created the National Water and Air Commission
R.A 4136, comprehensive Land Transportation and Traffic Code.
Laws are also passed in the field of education:

R.A 3562, government policy to promote the education to blind.

R.A 3661, created the Philippine Science High School
R.A 4368, the National Historical Commission
R.A 4379, the U.P Institute of Mass Communications
R.A 3870, the U.P. Law Center
R.A. 4165, National Commission on Culture
R.A 368, converted the Philippine Nautical School into the Philippine
Merchant Marine Academy
R.A 4176, authorized the City of Manila to create the Pamantasan ng Lungsod
ng Maynila
The Fifth Congress also gave attention to Filipino veterans, armed forces, ecology,
and helping Southeast Asian ally. These laws include:
R.A 3518, created the Philippine Veterans Bank
R.A 3835, authorized the Womens Auxiliary Corps and Carp Murphy and Fort
were renamed as Camp Aguinaldo and Fort Bonifacio.
R.A 3571, prohibited the cutting of trees in plaza, public roads, parks, schools,
and other areas.

R.A 4162, allowed the sending of the Philippine Contingent Vietnam

(PHILCON), which is composed of doctors, nurses and civic action personnel.

More lasting and important acts were not passed for the reason that the adversarial
relationship between the President and the Congress. The Congress blocked
legislation of new taxes and related laws to carry out Macapagals Five Year
Socioeconomic Program. The Agrarian Reform Act of 1963 was passed only after
great effort and lobbying by Macapagal; even so he had to call the Congress to
seven special sessions in order to get it passed.
The Sixth Congress (1965-1969)
This congress starts from January 17, 1966 to June 17, 1969. In the 1965
election, Nacionalistas recapture the presidency, with the victory of Ferdinand
Marcos, formerly from Liberal Party. This time, the lower house had increased to 109
members with the division of the Mountain Province into four provinces namely,
Ifugao, Kalinga, Apayao and Benguet, pursuant to R.A 4695.
In the case of the Legislature, there was a party shift again. The Liberals
dominated the House of Representatives. In the Senate, Arturo M. Tolentino was
elected Senate President, with Lorenzo Sumulong as president pro temper. In 1967,
however, a reshuffle of power when a Nacionalista majority ensued from the Senate
elections led to their replacement by Gil Puyat and Camilo Osias, and Osias would
late be replaced by Jose J. Roy in 1968. Cornelio VIllareal, from LP, continued on as a
Speaker of the House until February 1967, when he was replaced by Jose Laurel Jr.,
from NP. Salipada Pendatun continued on as Speaker Pro Tempore, later replaced by
Jose Aldeguer. Justiniano Montano, NP, as the majority floor leader, was replaced by
Marcelino Jose.
President of the Senate:
Arturo M. Tolentino (NP)
Gil J. Puyat (NP), elected January 26, 1967
Senate President Pro-Tempore:
Lorenzo M. Sumulong (NP)
Camilo O. Osias (LP)
Jose J. Roy (NP)
Majority Floor Leader:
Jose J. Roy (NP)
Rodolfo T. Guanzon (NP)
Arturo M. Tolentino (NP)
Minority Floor Leader:
Ambrosio Padilla (LP)
House of Representatives
Cornelio T. Villareal (LP, 2nd District Capiz)
Jose B. Laurel, Jr. (NP, 3rd District Batangas), elected February 2, 1967
Speaker Pro-Tempore:
Salipada K. Pendatun (LP, Lone District Cotabato)
Jose M. Aldeguer (NP, 5th District Iloilo)

Majority Floor Leader:

Justiniano S. Montano (NP, Lone District Cavite)
Marcelino B. Veloso (NP, 3rd District Leyte)
Minority Floor Leader:
Jose B. Laurel, Jr. (NP, 3rd District Batangas)
This Congress was the most productive of the Congress of the Third Republic,
passing a total of 1,482 acts during its regular and special sessions from 1966 to
1969. It also had the most number of special sessions nine in all.
First Special Session: January 17 January 22, 1966
First Regular Session: January 24 May 19, 1966
Second Special Session: May 20 June 18, 1966
Third Special Session: August 15 August 27, 1966
First Joint Session: April 25, April 25, June 1, 1966
Second Regular Session: January 23 May 18, 1967
Fourth Special Session: June 1 July 5, 1967
Fifth Special Session: July 17 August 18, 1967
Second Joint Session: January 30, February 13, February 27, March 8,
March 14 March 16, 1967
Third Regular Session: January 22 May 16, 1968
Third Joint Session: February 20 March 1, 1968
Sixth Special Session: May 17 May 28, 1968
Seventh Special Session: July 8 August 10, 1968
Eighth Special Session: August 12 August 31, 1968
Fourth Regular Session: January 27 May 22, 1969
Ninth Special Session: June 2 July 5, 1969
Fourth Joint Session: June 11 June 17, 1969
Acts was passed by this Congress dealt with economic problems plaguing the
R.A 5724, sought to develop the metal industry of the Philippines and push
the Philippines towards industrialization.
R.A 4850,6042,6070, separate acts, created development authorities for
Laguna Lake, Ilocos Sur, Sulu and other areas.
In 1968, the lower house established the Congressional Economic Planning Office
(CEPO) to make studies on industrial, fiscal, monetary, and foreign trade policies,
with the aim of drawing up a long range socio economic plan. This was a major
development and was seen as an attempt by the Congress to address the Magna
Carta of Social Justice and Economic Freedom in 1969, which proposed a selfsufficient economic system which gave more importance to the countrys needs
rather than the needs of a select few.
Other acts sought to make government more efficient , such as:
R.A 6040, amended the civil service act of 1959.

Other laws reflected the need to regulate important and sensitive professions such
R.A 5921, regulated the pharmacy in the country
R.A 5166, regulated the profession of accountants.
Other laws passed in this Congress include;
R.A 4652, to build and operate monorail system in the cities of Manila and
- However this act did not push through.
R.A 4726, defined the word condominium and set appropriate standards.
R.A 4881, created council for the protection of children.
R.A 5416, creation of the Department of Social Welfare
R.A 6111, provide all government employees with medical insurance, the
Medical Care act of 1969.
R.A 5092, promotes the development of geothermal energy, natural gas and
methane gas.
R.A 6038, created the National Electrification Administration to oversee the
governments plan to bring electricity to every barrio.
R.A 5173, created the Philippine Coast Guard
R.A 5435, authorized the president to reorganize the executive branch of
government with the assistance of as special commission.
R.A 4664, authorized the president to send increased Philippine economic and
technical assistance to South Vietnam
R.A 4913 & R.A 4914, establishment of constitutional convention which would
amend the 1935 Constitution.
Actual amendments were discussed among which was the increasing the number of
representatives from 120 to 180. The amendments were submitted to the people in
a plebiscite timed with the 1967 elections, but the public rejected them.
Seventh Congress (1970-1972)
Ferdinand Marcos, now a member of the Nacionalista Party was reelected for
the second time and launched the seventh congress of the third republic. The
seventh congress will mark the last time where the 1935 constitution will take its
place on the bicameral legislature as Ferdinand Marcos will declare Martial Law in
1972, ending the third republic. The congress lasted from 1970 to 1972.
The senate president then was Gil Puyat, its pro tempore, Jose Roy with
majority and minority leaders, Arturo M. Tolentino and Gerardo Roxas, respectively.
The House of Representatives on the other hand has been more prone to reelections
(of the congressional leaders). The House Speaker was Jose Laurel Jr. of Batangas
until Cornelio Villareal of Capiz was elected in April 1, 1971. Jose Aldeguer of Iloilo
on the other hand maintained its position as speaker pro tempore. The same thing
happened with the majority leader, Marcelino Veloso of Leyte. On this particular
congress, however short it may seem, has elected three minority floor leaders. The
first one is Justiniano Montano of Cavite, the other one was Ramon Mitra Jr. of
Palawan elected last June 12, 1971 and Ramon Felipe Jr. of Camarines Sur elected

last January 24, 1972. All of the minority leaders are from the Liberal Party. The
legislature however, was still dominated by the Nacionalista Party. The congress,
with its short time span, achieved three regular sessions and nine special sessions.
The latter ones are said to be intervened by the president Marcos due to the
violence taking place and the lack of time (on Marcos side).
At this time, the 7th congress established new committees namely, Social
Amelioration, Electrification, Power and Water resources, Housing and Public Order
and Security. The congress not only added some but has also taken way some of the
previously existing committees. In total, there were 43 committees left. The 512
acts it passed, if one will closely look at it are slightly directed towards a socialist
view. Every law passed is striving for and egalitarian way of living. For example,
excluding R.A. 6597 to 6635, as these are signed by Marcos and not by the
legislature, there are acts that are directed towards the regulation of the
professions. How different it is from the other congressional acts is that there is a
fixed uniform standard of living. There must be a minimum wage wherein everyone
complies despite the variety or level in his/her profession. R.A. 6124 and 6361
stated a slightly fixed pricing (as it is the maximum amount that was controlled) and
R.A. 6129 on the other hand stated the Minimum Wage Act. In turn, these led to the
Price Control Council and the Wage Commission. Health and safety measures were
also taken by the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1970 and National Building Code of the
Philippines. And yet even though the laws are quite linient on the domestic and
internal development, the 7th congress also encouraged some exports by the R.A.
Here are some of the first few Republic Acts made.
Republic Act No.
Rent Control Regulation
Rehabilitation and Modernization of the
Philippine National Railways
General Appropriations Act of 1972
National Power Corporation Charter
Regulation of Tuition and other school
fees of private educational institutions
Serving History. (n.d.). 7th Congress of the Philippines: Legislation. Retrieved last
The period was filled with mass violence and student demonstrations that
eventually took a primary issue for the legislature. They eventually have to do
something about it. Hence R.A. 6132 drafted the Constitutional Convention of 1971
and urged the legislators to draft a new constitution for the country. However, the
support for Marcos has extremely lessened and therefore resulted to failure.
September 23, 1972 when President Ferdinand Marcos declared Martial Law.

Arellano Law Foundation. (n.d.). The LawPhil Project. Retrieved last October
08, 2010 from
Serving History. (n.d.). 7th Congress of the Philippines: Legislation. Retrieved last
October 08,
Wikipedia.(n.d.). Congresses of the Philippines. Retrieved last October 08, 2010