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In Atong Paglaum v. COMELEC (G.R. Nos. 203766, et al.

, April 2, 2013), the latest in the series of party list cases,
the pendulum now points to the opposite side.
The New Ruling
Atong Paglaum involved 54 Petitions for Certiorari and Petitions for Certiorari and Prohibition filed by 52 party-list
groups against COMELEC for disqualifying them from participating in the May 13, 2013 party-list elections. One of the
main reasons for the disqualification was their failure to represent the marginalized and underrepresented.
Two issues were presented:
(1)

Whether COMELEC committed grave abuse of discretion in disqualifying the petitioners from participating in

the May 2013 elections; and
(2)

Whether the criteria for participating in the party-list system laid down in Ang Bagong Bayani v.

COMELEC (ABB) and BANAT v. COMELEC (BANAT) should be applied by the COMELEC in the coming May 2013
elections.
The Supreme Court ruled that COMELEC did not commit grave abuse of discretion because it merely followed the
rulings laid down in ABB and BANAT. However, the Court decided to abandon these rulings and adopted new
parameters for the upcoming elections; thus, it remanded the case to COMELEC so the latter can determine the
status of the petitioners based on the following new guidelines:
1. Three different groups may participate in the party-list system: (1) national parties or organizations, (2) regional
parties or organizations, and (3) sectoral parties or organizations.
2. National parties or organizations and regional parties or organizations do not need to organize along sectoral lines
and do not need to represent any “marginalized and underrepresented” sector.
3. Political parties can participate in party-list elections provided they register under the party-list system and do not
field candidates in legislative district elections. A political party, whether major or not, that fields candidates in
legislative district elections can participate in partylist elections only through its sectoral wing that can separately
register under the party-list system. The sectoral wing is by itself an independent sectoral party, and is linked to a
political party through a coalition.
4. Sectoral parties or organizations may either be “marginalized and underrepresented” or lacking in “well-defined
political constituencies.” It is enough that their principal advocacy pertains to the special interest and concerns of their
sector. The sectors that are “marginalized and underrepresented” include labor, peasant, fisherfolk, urban poor,
indigenous cultural communities, handicapped, veterans, and overseas workers. The sectors that lack “well-defined
political constituencies” include professionals, the elderly, women, and the youth.

5. A majority of the members of sectoral parties or organizations that represent the “marginalized and
underrepresented” must belong to the “marginalized and underrepresented” sector they represent. Similarly, a
majority of the members of sectoral parties or organizations that lack “well-defined political constituencies” must
belong to the sector they represent. The nominees of sectoral parties or organizations that represent the
“marginalized and underrepresented,” or that represent those who lack “well-defined political constituencies,” either
must belong to their respective sectors, or must have a track record of advocacy for their respective sectors. The
nominees of national and regional parties or organizations must be bona-fide members of such parties or
organizations.
6. National, regional, and sectoral parties or organizations shall not be disqualified if some of their nominees are
disqualified, provided that they have at least one nominee who remains qualified.
It is clear from the foregoing that a new rule has been set: not all parties in the party-list system have to represent a
sector that is marginalized and underrepresented.
According to the Supreme Court, the framers of the Constitution never intended the party-list system to be reserved
for sectoral parties. The latter were only part of the party-list system not the entirety of it. There were two more groups
composing the system — national and regional parties. This is evident from the phrasing of Section 5, Article VI of the
Constitution, which states that:
The House of Representatives shall be composed of not more than two hundred and fifty members,
unless otherwise fixed by law, who shall be elected from legislative districts…and those who, as
provided by law, shall be elected through a party-list system of registered national,
regional, and sectoral parties or organizations. (emphasis supplied)
National and regional parties are different from sectoral parties such that the former need not organize along sectoral
lines and represent a particular sector. Hence, it is not necessary for these parties to be representative of the
marginalized and underrepresented. In fact, Republic Act No. 7941, the enabling law of the party-list elections under
the Constitution, does not require these parties to fall under this criterion. The Supreme Court emphasized that the
phrase ‘marginalized and underrepresented’ appeared only once in R.A. No. 7941, particularly in the Declaration of
Policy. The section provides:
The State shall promote proportional representation in the election of representatives to the House of
Representatives through a party-list system of registered national, regional and sectoral parties or
organizations or coalitions thereof, which will enable Filipino citizens belonging to marginalized and
underrepresented sectors, organizations and parties, and who lack well-defined political
constituencies but who could contribute to the formulation and enactment of appropriate legislation
that will benefit the nation as a whole, to become members of the House of Representatives. Towards
this end, the State shall develop and guarantee a full, free and open party system in order to attain the
broadest possible representation of party, sectoral or group interests in the House of Representatives
by enhancing their chances to compete for and win seats in the legislature, and shall provided the
simplest scheme possible.

” both in economic and ideological status. as well as sectoral parties of professionals.The oft-quoted phrase neither appeared in the specific implementing provisions of R. the elderly. fisherfolk. overseas workers. handicapped. limiting to the “marginalized and underrepresented” the sectoral parties for labor. urban poor. women and the youth. and other sectors that by their nature are economically at the margins of society. The rules for their participation are found under guideline number three. organizations. Based on the Court’s ratiocination. For national. overseas workers. economically “marginalized and underrepresented. No.” even as they attend sessions in Congress riding in SUVs. and sectoral parties of professionals. since political parties are essentially national and regional parties. how then should the broad policy declaration in Section 2 of R. or parties to fall under the criterion as well. This interpretation will harmonize the 1987 Constitution and R. need not be “marginalized and underrepresented” will allow small ideology-based and cause-oriented parties who lack “well-defined political constituencies” a chance to win seats in the House of Representatives. veterans. will have the opportunity to send their own members to the House of Representatives. urban poor. indigenous cultural communities. by their nature. veterans. peasant. the Supreme Court categorically stated that they may participate in the party-list elections. indigenous cultural communities. women and the youth. On the other hand. fisherfolk. . No. only sectoral parties for labor. bearing in mind the applicable provisions of the 1987 Constitution on the matter? The Supreme Court answered in this wise: The phrase “marginalized and underrepresented” should refer only to the sectors in Section 5 that are. This interpretation will also make the party-list system honest and transparent. or must have a track record of advocacy for the sector represented… The recognition that national and regional parties. destitution and infirmity. and other sectors that by their nature are economically at the margins of society must comply with the criterion of representing the marginalized and underrepresented. peasant. veterans. handicapped. peasant. and other similar sectors.A.A. it is sufficient that they consist of “citizens who advocate the same ideology or platform. eliminating the need for relatively well-off party-list representatives to masquerade as “wallowing in poverty. regional. 7941 nor did it require sectors. overseas workers.A. handicapped. fisherfolk. No. the elderly.” These sectors are: labor. 7941 be harmonized with its specific implementing provisions. urban poor. For these sectors.”The nominees of the sectoral party either must belong to the sector. regardless of their economic status as citizens.” Consequently. In this regard. a majority of the members of the sectoral party must belong to the “marginalized and underrepresented. indigenous cultural communities. or the same governance principles and policies. 7941 and will give rise to a multiparty system where those “marginalized and underrepresented. will give the “marginalized and underrepresented” an opportunity to likewise win seats in the House of Representatives.

it would desecrate the spirit of the party-list system. No. It is essential for these parties to be consistent with the purpose of the party-list system. The Supreme Court stressed that the party-list system cannot be exclusive to marginalized and underrepresented because if the rich and overrepresented can participate. In ABB and BANAT. Hence. the doctrine in Atong Paglaum is in stark contrast with the former interpretation of the party-list system. No wonder this decision has sparked intense debate and passionate reaction from the stakeholders. the goal is to give voice to the voiceless — to enable Filipino citizens belonging to the marginalized and underrepresented to become members of Congress. The Supreme Court’s reasoning in both decisions also sits at opposite sides of the scale. it does not mean that any political party — or group for that matter — may do so. it focused on the letter of the law and the intent of the Constitution’s framers and Congress. blindfolded like lady justice. the purpose of the party-list system is clear: “to give genuine power to the people.R. the Supreme Court recognized that even major political parties may join the party list elections. as laid down in the Constitution and R. 2009 . The case is still.” Essentially.Evolution of Party-List Cases ABB and BANAT were the prevailing jurisprudence prior to Atong Paglaum. Clearly. by a vote of 8-7. the Supreme Court concentrated on the spirit and purpose of the party-list system while in Atong Paglaum. but more so by enabling them to become veritable lawmakers themselves. subject to a motion for reconsideration. Which then is correct? Should the spirit of the law prevail over the letter? Should the party-list system be really open to all? Should the court engage in sociopolitical engineering as it did in the first two cases or should it remain as neutral magistrates of the law. 179271 April 21. not only by giving more law to those who have less in life. it categorically declared. In ABB.A. According to the Supreme Court. It is still possible for the pendulum to swing back to its former side or it may remain suspended where it is now. Republic of the Philippines SUPREME COURT Manila EN BANC G. that major political parties are barred from participating either directly or indirectly from the party-list elections. These party-list cases constitute three decisions with two exceptionally different doctrines. In BANAT where the Supreme Court again had the opportunity to deal with the matter. the Supreme Court went on saying that although they may participate. 7941. only parties representing the marginalized and underrepresented may join the party-list elections. No. interpreting the letter of the law strictly according to its words? The decision in Atong Paglaum is not yet final and executory. if not already. However.

3 assails NBC Resolution No... Head of the National Board of Canvassers (NBC) Legal Group. and Coalition of Associations of Senior Citizens in the Philippines. .1 assails the Resolution2 promulgated on 3 August 2007 by the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) in NBC No.. (Senior Citizens). BANAT filed before the COMELEC En Banc. ARTS BUSINESS AND SCIENCE PROFESSIONALS. or coalition in accordance with Veterans Federation Party v.. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS (sitting as the National Board of Canvassers). Respondent. 07-041 (PL)."7 There were no intervenors in BANAT’s petition before the NBC. would apply the Panganiban formula in allocating party-list seats.. to deny the petition of BANAT for being moot.Intervenor. COMELEC5 (Veterans). 2009 BAYAN MUNA.. The COMELEC counted 15. INC. docketed as NBC No. No. BANAT filed a memorandum on 19 July 2007. Intervenor. 07-041 (PL) before the NBC. Nos. organizations and coalitions that obtained at least two percent of the total votes cast under the Party-List System. upon completion of the canvass of the party-list results. organization. 07-604 promulgated on 9 July 2007. No.6 On 27 June 2002. Alioden D.. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS. 179271 and 179295.. The following are intervenors in G.R. The COMELEC announced that. ADVOCACY FOR TEACHER EMPOWERMENT THROUGH ACTION. vs. INC.-x G. No. acting as NBC. Dalaig.. it would determine the total number of seats of each winning party. Petitioners in G. COALITION OF ASSOCIATIONS OF SENIOR CITIZENS IN THE PHILIPPINES.BARANGAY ASSOCIATION FOR NATIONAL ADVANCEMENT AND TRANSPARENCY (BANAT). AANGAT TAYO.. Inc. 179295 April 21. J. Abono. DECISION CARPIO. 07-60 made a partial proclamation of parties. in her capacity as President and First Nominee of the Veterans Freedom Party.R.. 07-041 (PL) approved the recommendation of Atty. Cooperation and Harmony Towards Educational Reforms (A Teacher) — in a petition for certiorari with mandamus and prohibition.R. Petitioner. BANAT filed its petition because "[t]he Chairman and the Members of the [COMELEC] have recently been quoted in the national papers that the [COMELEC] is duty bound to and shall implement the Veterans ruling.. a Petition to Proclaim the Full Number of Party-List Representatives Provided by the Constitution.R.. The COMELEC’s resolution in NBC No. NBC No... The Facts The 14 May 2007 elections included the elections for the party-list representatives. Respondent. 179271: Arts Business and Science Professionals (ABS)..: The Case Petitioner in G... (SENIOR CITIZENS). 179271 — Barangay Association for National Advancement and Transparency (BANAT) — in a petition for certiorari and mandamus.900 votes cast for 93 parties under the Party-List System. that is.. and Advocacy for Teacher Empowerment Through Action. BANAT filed a Petition to Proclaim the Full Number of Party-List Representatives Provided by the Constitution. and ABONO.. No. filed a motion to intervene in both G. Petitioners. Aangat Tayo (AT).. 179295 — Bayan Muna.R. x . vs.. Estrella DL Santos. Intervenor. COOPERATION AND HARMONY TOWARDS EDUCATIONAL REFORMS.950.

that each party.218 2 BAYAN MUNA 972. in open and public proceedings. organization or coalition receving more than the required two percent (2%) votes. 7941 (Party-List System Act) provides in part: The parties. for the 2007 Elections.462) votes. in Citizen’s Battle Against Corruption (CIBAC) versus COMELEC. Alliance of Rural Concerns (ARC). Bayan Muna. Alagad.723. 07-60 in its entirety below: WHEREAS. Lanao del Norte. promulgated NBC Resolution No. Cooperative-Natco Network Party (COOP-NATCCO). Maximum party-list votes (based on 100% outcome) from areas not yet submitted for canvass (Bogo. based on the above projected total of party-list votes.163. a total of fifteen million two hundred eighty three thousand six hundred fifty-nine (15. sitting as the NBC. Pantar. that those garnering more than two percent (2%) of the votes shall be entitled to additional seats in proportion to their total number of votes: provided. the study conducted by the Legal and Tabulation Groups of the National Board of Canvassers reveals that the projected/maximum total party-list votes cannot go any higher than sixteen million seven hundred twenty three thousand one hundred twenty-one (16.260 . the Commission on Elections sitting en banc as National Board of Canvassers. organizations. and Pagalungan. Bais City. the Supreme Court.730 3 CIBAC 760. Cebu. Total party-list votes remaining uncanvassed/ untabulated (i. Akbayan! Citizen’s Action Party (AKBAYAN).283. stating that the same shall be determined only after all party-list ballots have been completely canvassed.121 WHEREAS.430 16. the parties. Gabriela’s Women Party (Gabriela). Section 11 of Republic Act No. WHEREAS.On 9 July 2007. WHEREAS. the presumptive two percent (2%) threshold can be pegged at three hundred thirty four thousand four hundred sixty-two (334. WHEREAS.337. Total party-list votes already canvassed/tabulated ii. the COMELEC.659) votes under the Party-List System of Representation.659 1. organization. namely: Buhay Hayaan Yumabong (BUHAY).462) votes are as follows: RANK PARTY/ORGANIZATION/ COALITION VOTES RECEIVED 1 BUHAY 1. had officially canvassed.032 102. finally. We quote NBC Resolution No. Maguindanao) Maximum Total Party-List Votes 15. in connection with the National and Local Elections conducted last 14 May 2007. Association of Philippine Electric Cooperatives (APEC). and coalitions that have thus far garnered at least three hundred thirty four thousand four hundred sixty-two (334. A Teacher. 07-60. and coalitions receiving at least two percent (2%) of the total votes cast for the party-list system shall be entitled to one seat each: provided. thru its Sub-Committee for Party-List.e.283.121) votes given the following statistical data: Projected/Maximum Party-List Votes for May 2007 Elections i. WHEREAS. Luzon Farmers Party (BUTIL). or coalition shall be entitled to not more than three (3) seats. Anak Pawis. NBC Resolution No. and Abono. organizations. Citizens’ Battle Against Corruption (CIBAC). reiterated its ruling in Veterans Federation Party versus COMELEC adopting a formula for the additional seats of each party. canvass deferred) iii .723. 0760 proclaimed thirteen (13) parties as winners in the party-list elections. as of 03 July 2007.

7 Akbayan! Citizen’s Action Party AKBAYAN 8 Alagad ALAGAD 9 Luzon Farmers Party 1 0 Cooperative-Natco Network Party 11 Anak Pawis BUHAY BAYAN MUNA CIBAC GABRIELA APEC A TEACHER BUTIL COOP-NATCCO ANAKPAWIS . Cooperation and Harmony Towards Educational Reforms.451 5 APEC 538. 144. by virtue of the powers vested in it by the Constitution. against which anURGENT PETITION FOR CANCELLATION/REMOVAL OF REGISTRATION AND DISQUALIFICATION OF PARTY-LIST NOMINEE (With Prayer for the Issuance of Restraining Order) has been filed before the Commission.052 10 COOP-NATCO 390. docketed as SPC No. organizations and coalitions included in the aforementioned list are therefore entitled to at least one seat under the party-list system of representation in the meantime. sittingen banc as the National Board of Canvassers. the Omnibus Election Code. except for Bagong Alyansang Tagapagtaguyod ng Adhikaing Sambayanan (BATAS). the following parties. the Commission on Elections. organizations and coalitions participating under the Party-List System: 1 Buhay Hayaan Yumabong 2 Bayan Muna 3 Citizens Battle Against Corruption 4 Gabriela Women’s Party 5 Association of Philippine Electric Cooperatives 6 Advocacy for Teacher Empowerment Through Action.036 7 AKBAYAN 470. NOW.029 11 BATAS 386. subject to certain conditions set forth below. all the parties.971 6 A TEACHER 476.872 8 ALAGAD 423. 7941. Executive Order No. 7166. hereby RESOLVES to PARTIALLY PROCLAIM. 07-250. THEREFORE. 6646. Inc.036 13 ARC 338. and other election laws.361 12 ANAK PAWIS 376. Republic Act Nos.4 GABRIELA 610.046 WHEREAS.194 14 ABONO 337.076 9 BUTIL 405.

Lanao del Norte. is 16. organizations and coalitions with pending disputes shall likewise be held in abeyance until final resolution of their respective cases.723. which declared the additional seats allocated to the appropriate parties. all proclamation of the nominees of concerned parties.190 .121.747 2 BAYAN MUNA 977.369 7 AKBAYAN 462.462 votes from the projected maximum total number of party-list votes of 16.718 5 APEC 622. SO ORDERED. organization or coalition shall be determined pursuant toVeterans Federation Party versus COMELEC formula upon completion of the canvass of the party-list results. in order not to render the proceedings therein moot and academic. or coalitions which may later on be established to have obtained at least two percent (2%) of the total actual votes cast under the Party-List System. and maximum votes expected for Pantar. 07-250. as of July 11. 2007. votes received but uncanvassed. and that the projected maximum total votes for the thirteen (13) qualified parties. furnishing a copy thereof to the Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Philippines. 07-72: WHEREAS.964 4 GABRIELA 621. promulgated NBC Resolution No. organizations. We quote from the COMELEC’s interpretation of the Veterans formula as found in NBC Resolution No. Finally. 2007.489 6 A TEACHER 492. organizations and coalition[s] are as follows: Party-List Projected total number of votes 1 BUHAY 1.178. WHEREAS. 07-60.674 8 ALAGAD 423.1 2 Alliance of Rural Concerns 1 3 Abono ARC ABONO This is without prejudice to the proclamation of other parties. per Report of the Tabulation Group and Supervisory Committee of the National Board of Canvassers. the COMELEC. acting as NBC.8 (Emphasis in the original) Pursuant to NBC Resolution No. votes canvassed but not included in Report No. The proclamation of Bagong Alyansang Tagapagtaguyod ng Adhikaing Sambayanan (BATAS) is hereby deferred until final resolution of SPC No. the projected maximum total party-list votes. based on the votes actually canvassed. 29. Let the Clerk of the Commission implement this Resolution. the Commission on Elections sitting en banc as the National Board of Canvassers proclaimed thirteen (13) qualified parties. on July 9. 07-72.261.476 3 CIBAC 755. organization[s] and coalitions based on the presumptive two percent (2%) threshold of 334. and were thus given one (1) guaranteed party-list seat each.369. The total number of seats of each winning party.

261. of additional seats allocated to first party .9 BUTIL 409. making it the "first party" in accordance withVeterans Federation Party versus COMELEC. Buhay obtained the following percentage: 1. WHEREAS.298 10 COOP-NATCO 412.165 12 ARC 375. the correct formula as expressed in Veterans and reiterated in CIBAC is. WHEREAS. as follows: Additional seats for a concerned party No. of votes of concerned party = x No.151 WHEREAS.920 11 ANAKPAWIS 370. based on the above Report.369 which entitles it to two (2) additional seats. organizations and coalitions.178. reiterated in Citizen’s Battle Against Corruption (CIBAC) versus COMELEC. organizations and coalitions participating under the party-list system of representation that have obtained one guaranteed (1) seat may be entitled to an additional seat or seats based on the formula prescribed by the Supreme Court in Veterans. organizations and coalitions.846 13 ABONO 340.07248 or 7.2% 16. WHEREAS. in determining the additional seats for the other qualified parties. in determining the additional seats for the "first party". qualified parties. is: Number of votes of first party Proportion of votes of first party relative to total votes for party-list system = Total votes for party-list system wherein the proportion of votes received by the first party (without rounding off) shall entitle it to additional seats: Proportion of votes received by the first party Additional seats Equal to or at least 6% Two (2) additional seats Equal to or greater than 4% but less than 6% One (1) additional seat Less than 4% No additional seat WHEREAS.747 = 0. applying the above formula. of votes of first party No. the correct formula as expressed in Veterans. Buhay Hayaan Yumabong (Buhay) obtained the highest number of votes among the thirteen (13) qualified parties.

Let the National Board of Canvassers Secretariat implement this Resolution. the Commission on Elections en banc sitting as the National Board of Canvassers. organizations or coalitions as entitled to additional seats.WHEREAS.71 0 BUTIL 0.28 1 GABRIELA 1. as it hereby RESOLVES. to wit: Party List Additional Seats BUHAY 2 BAYAN MUNA 1 CIBAC 1 GABRIELA 1 APEC 1 This is without prejudice to the proclamation of other parties. 7166.69 0 COOP-NATCO 0. Finally. Executive Order No.63 0 ABONO 0. all proclamation of the nominees of concerned parties. 6646. 144.57 0 NOW THEREFORE. organizations and coalitions with pending disputes shall likewise be held in abeyance until final resolution of their respective cases. furnishing a copy hereof to the Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Philippines. the results are as follows: Party List Percentage Additional Seat BAYAN MUNA 1.78 0 ALAGAD 0. Republic Act Nos.83 0 AKBAYAN 0.05 1 A TEACHER 0. SO ORDERED. to proclaim the following parties. by virtue of the powers vested in it by the Constitution. or to the appropriate percentage of votes to entitle them to one (1) additional seat.05 1 APEC 1. applying the above formula. Omnibus Election Code.65 1 CIBAC 1. organizations or coalitions which may later on be established to have obtained at least two per cent (2%) of the total votes cast under the party-list system to entitle them to one (1) guaranteed seat. 7941 and other elections laws. hereby RESOLVED.69 0 ANAKPAWIS 0.62 0 ARC 0.9 .

twenty percent (20%) -. Initially. shall be used for [the] purpose of determining how many seats shall be proclaimed. National Board of Canvassers Legal Group submitted his comments/observations and recommendation thereon [NBC 07-041 (PL)]. In the alternative. should be harmonized with Section 5.Acting on BANAT’s petition. SO ORDERED. 07-60 promulgated July 9. Paragraph (b). 07-88 on 3 August 2007. 7941 and that the procedure in allocating seats for party-list representative prescribed by Section 12 of RA 7941 shall be followed. to approve and adopt the recommendation of Atty. ANNEX "A" of COMELEC RESOLUTION 2847 dated 25 June 1996.10 . Let the Supervisory Committee implement this resolution. Atty. Dalaig. as it hereby RESOLVES. The 3-seat limit prescribed by RA 7941 shall be applied. Dalaig. Alioden D. which reads as follows: This pertains to the Petition to Proclaim the Full Number of Party-List Representatives Provided by the Constitution filed by the Barangay Association for National Advancement and Transparency (BANAT). the National Board of Canvassers RESOLVED. Article VI of the Constitution and with Section 12 of the same RA 7941 in that it should be applicable only to the first party-list representative seats to be allotted on the basis of their initial/first ranking. to wit: 1. in proportion to the percentage of votes obtained by each party-list group in relation to the total nationwide votes cast in the party-list election. 3. to DENY the herein petition of BANAT for being moot and academic. after deducting the corresponding votes of those which were allotted seats under the 2% threshold rule. Section 11 of RA 7941 which prescribes the 2% threshold votes. Article VI of the Constitution shall be proclaimed. that is. 2. Acting on the foregoing Petition of the Barangay Association for National Advancement and Transparency (BANAT) party-list. 2007 re "In the Matter of the Canvass of Votes and Partial Proclamation of the Parties. NBC Legal Group. Alioden D. to declare as unconstitutional Section 11 of Republic Act No. In fine. premises considered. R E C O M M E N D A T I O N: The petition of BANAT is now moot and academic. The Commission En Banc in NBC Resolution No. the NBC promulgated NBC Resolution No.of Party-List representatives as mandated by Section 5. Organizations and Coalitions Participating Under the Party-List System During the May 14. which reads: COMMENTS / OBSERVATIONS: Petitioner Barangay Association for National Advancement and Transparency (BANAT). all party-list groups shall be given the number of seats corresponding to every 2% of the votes they received and the additional seats shall be allocated in accordance with Section 12 of RA 7941. and 4. organization or coalition shall be determined pursuant to the Veterans Federation Party versus COMELEC formula upon completion of the canvass of the party-list results. That the full number -. the formula/procedure prescribed in the "ALLOCATION OF PARTY-LIST SEATS. 2007 National and Local Elections" resolved among others that the total number of seats of each winning party. 5. Head. which party-list groups are entitled to representative seats and how many of their nominees shall seat [sic]." 1awphi1 WHEREFORE. Head. in its Petition to Proclaim the Full Number of Party-List Representatives Provided by the Constitution prayed for the following reliefs.

On the same day.8 Alagad 1 1. Bayan Muna.11 Anak Pawis 1 1. Is the twenty percent allocation for party-list representatives provided in Section 5(2).3 CIBAC 2 1. the COMELEC proclaimed three other party-list organizations as qualified parties entitled to one guaranteed seat under the Party-List System: Agricultural Sector Alliance of the Philippines. Issues BANAT brought the following issues before this Court: 1.14 Per the certification15 by COMELEC. Article VI of the Constitution mandatory or is it merely a ceiling? 2. to reconsider its decision to use the Veterans formula as stated in its NBC Resolution No. 07-88.13 Abono 1 1.BANAT filed a petition for certiorari and mandamus assailing the ruling in NBC Resolution No. Is the two percent threshold and "qualifier" votes prescribed by the same Section 11(b) of RA 7941 constitutional? . On 9 July 2007. Is the three-seat limit provided in Section 11(b) of RA 7941 constitutional? 3.1 Buhay 3 1.A.11 Aside from the thirteen party-list organizations proclaimed on 9 July 2007. Inc. 07-60 because the Veterans formula is violative of the Constitution and of Republic Act No.10 Coop-Natco [sic] 1 1.14 AGAP 1 1. BANAT did not file a motion for reconsideration of NBC Resolution No.12 ARC 1 1. was deferred pending final resolution of SPC No. 7941).12 Anak Mindanao (AMIN). 07-88. and A Teacher asked the COMELEC. 7941 (R.7 Akbayan 1 1. (AGAP).9 Butil 1 1. the COMELEC denied reconsideration during the proceedings of the NBC. against which an Urgent Petition for Cancellation/Removal of Registration and Disqualification of Party-list Nominee (with Prayer for the Issuance of Restraining Order) has been filed before the COMELEC. No.15 AMIN 1 The proclamation of Bagong Alyansang Tagapagtaguyod ng Adhikaing Sambayanan (BATAS). Abono. of Seat(s) 1.4 Gabriela 2 1. acting as NBC.2 Bayan Muna 2 1. 07-250.6 A Teacher 1 1.13 and An Waray. the following party-list organizations have been proclaimed as of 19 May 2008: Party-List No.5 APEC 2 1.

on the other hand. acting as National Board of Canvassers. For easy reference. The proportional relationships under the First Party Rule are different from those required under RA 7941. et al. . the same being merely in consonance with the ruling in Veterans Federations Party. Is the twenty percent allocation for party-list representatives in Section 5(2). 3. How shall the party-list representatives be allocated?16 Bayan Muna. B. including those elected under the party list. C. Violates the provisions of RA 7941 particularly: 1. 2. Presuming that the Commission on Elections did not commit grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction when it implemented the First-Party Rule in the allocation of seats to qualified partylist organizations. COMELEC. How shall the party-list representative seats be allocated? 5. one for the "First Party" and another for the qualifying parties. The 2-4-6 Formula used by the First Party Rule in allocating additional seats for the "First Party" violates the principle of proportional representation under RA 7941. v. raised the following issues in their petition: I. v.17 Considering the allegations in the petitions and the comments of the parties in these cases. we defined the following issues in our advisory for the oral arguments set on 22 April 2008: 1. these are: First. Violates the constitutional principle of proportional representation. Does the Constitution prohibit the major political parties from participating in the party-list elections? If not. II. 07-60 to implement the First-Party Rule in the allocation of seats to qualified party-list organizations as said rule: A. Respondent Commission on Elections. COMELEC. The use of two formulas in the allocation of additional seats. and Abono. can the major political parties be barred from participating in the party-list elections?18 The Ruling of the Court The petitions have partial merit. A Teacher. the instant Petition is a justiciable case as the issues involved herein are constitutional in nature. committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction when it promulgated NBC Resolution No. Violates the "Four Inviolable Parameters" of the Philippine party-list system as provided for under the same case of Veterans Federation Party. We maintain that a Philippine-style party-list election has at least four inviolable parameters as clearly stated in Veterans. et al. violates Section 11(b) of RA 7941.4. Is the three-seat limit in Section 11(b) of RA 7941 constitutional? 3. involving the correct interpretation and implementation of RA 7941. the twenty percent allocation — the combined number of all party-list congressmen shall not exceed twenty percent of the total membership of the House of Representatives. Is the two percent threshold prescribed in Section 11(b) of RA 7941 to qualify for one seat constitutional? 4. Article VI of the Constitution mandatory or merely a ceiling? 2. and are of transcendental importance to our nation.

on the other hand. (1) The House of Representatives shall be composed of not more than two hundred and fifty members. proportional representation— the additional seats which a qualified party is entitled to shall be computed "in proportion to their total number of votes. cities. and the Metropolitan Manila area in accordance with the number of their respective inhabitants. — The party-list representatives shall constitute twenty per centum (20%) of the total number of the members of the House of Representatives including those under the party-list. the two percent threshold — only those parties garnering a minimum of two percent of the total valid votes cast for the party-list system are "qualified" to have a seat in the House of Representatives." this Court is compelled to revisit the formula for the allocation of additional seats to party-list organizations. 7941 reads: Section 11. thus: Number of seats available to legislative districts x . Article VI of the Constitution states that the "House of Representatives shall be composed of not more than two hundred and fifty members. No. we do not deviate from the first formula in Veterans.A. (2) The party-list representatives shall constitute twenty per centum of the total number of representatives including those under the party-list. states the ratio of party-list representatives to the total number of representatives. 1avvphi1. . because the formula in Veterans has flaws in its mathematical interpretation of the term "proportional representation. regardless of the number of votes it actually obtained. there are 55 seats available to party-list representatives.80 This formula allows for the corresponding increase in the number of seats available for party-list representatives whenever a legislative district is created by law. and such other sectors as may be provided by law. peasant. unless otherwise fixed by law. Number of Party-List Representatives. Number of Party-List Representatives: The Formula Mandated by the Constitution Section 5. Article VI of the Constitution provides: Section 5.Second. and sectoral parties or organizations. urban poor. indigenous cultural communities.zw+ Section 5(2). youth. the three-seat limit — each qualified party. except the religious sector. one "qualifying" and two additional seats.20 = Number of seats available to party-list representatives . by selection or election from the labor. who shall be elected from legislative districts apportioned among the provinces. Article VI of the Constitution. Since the 14th Congress of the Philippines has 220 district representatives. regional. as provided by law. and those who. xxx Section 5(1). shall be elected through a party-list system of registered national. as provided by law. is entitled to a maximum of three seats. The first paragraph of Section 11 of R. unless otherwise fixed by law. and on the basis of a uniform and progressive ratio. one-half of the seats allocated to party-list representatives shall be filled. women." The House of Representatives shall be composed of district representatives and party-list representatives."19 However. On this point. Third. Fourth. that is. The Constitution allows the legislature to modify the number of the members of the House of Representatives. We compute the number of seats available to party-list representatives from the number of legislative districts. For three consecutive terms after the ratification of this Constitution.

The Constitution left to Congress the determination of the manner of allocating the seats for party-list representatives.A. the Constitution left the manner of allocating the seats available to party-list representatives to the wisdom of the legislature. provided. organizations. as well as on the formula to determine the guaranteed seats to party-list candidates garnering at least two-percent of the total party-list votes. — x x x In determining the allocation of seats for the second vote. and coalitions shall be ranked from the highest to the lowest based on the number of votes they garnered during the elections. .22 the following procedure shall be observed: (a) The parties. That those garnering more than two percent (2%) of the votes shall be entitled to additional seats in proportion to their total number of votes: Provided. That each party. Veterans produced the First Party Rule. 7941. and coalitions receiving at least two percent (2%) of the total votes cast for the party-list system shall be entitled to one seat each: Provided. No. or coalition as against the total nationwide votes cast for the party-list system.20 and Justice Vicente V. Since there are 220 District Representatives in the 14th Congress. there shall be 55 Party-List Representatives. rank them according to the number of votes received and allocate party-list representatives proportionately according to the percentage of votes obtained by each party.A. Procedure in Allocating Seats for Party-List Representatives.) of RA 7941 and Comelec Resolution No.A. 2847 dated 25 June 1996. (b) The parties. Mendoza’s dissent in Veterans presented Germany’s Niemeyer formula21 as an alternative. paragraphs (a) and (b) of Section 11 and Section 12 of which provide: Section 11. Allocation of Seats for Party-List Representatives: The Statutory Limits Presented by the Two Percent Threshold and the Three-Seat Cap All parties agree on the formula to determine the maximum number of seats reserved under the Party-List System.80 After prescribing the ratio of the number of party-list representatives to the total number of representatives. 179271. 7941 on the allocation of "additional seats" under the Party-List System. Article VI of the Constitution. Section 11 (1st par. organization. (b) All party-list groups shall initially be allotted one (1) seat for every two per centum (2%) of the total partylist votes they obtained. 7941. organization. RA 7941). No.R. Congress enacted R. BANAT presents two interpretations through three formulas to allocate party-list representative seats. BANAT described this procedure as follows: (a) The party-list representatives shall constitute twenty percent (20%) of the total Members of the House of Representatives including those from the party-list groups as prescribed by Section 5. Number of Party-List Representatives. No. Section 12.220 x . organizations.20 = 55 . or coalition shall be entitled to not more than three (3) seats. there are numerous interpretations of the provisions of R. — The COMELEC shall tally all the votes for the parties. However. All seats shall have to be proclaimed. or coalitions on a nationwide basis. (Emphasis supplied) In G. The first interpretation allegedly harmonizes the provisions of Section 11(b) on the 2% requirement with Section 12 of R. organizations. finally. No. that no party-list groups shall have more than three (3) seats (Section 11.

541 4 GABRIELA 621. or remainders. No. Ranking of the participating parties from the highest to the lowest based on the number of votes garnered during the elections. The second interpretation presented by BANAT assumes that the 2% vote requirement is declared unconstitutional. In G.26 We examine what R.424 5 APEC 619. 7941 prescribes the ranking of the participating parties from the highest to the lowest based on the number of votes they garnered during the elections. Table 1. but accept the 2% threshold.27 Rank Party 1 BUHAY Votes Garnered 1.169. BANAT states that the COMELEC: (a) shall tally all the votes for the parties.386 3 CIBAC 755. the remaining seats shall be allotted proportionately to all the party-list groups which have not secured the maximum three (3) seats under the 2% threshold rule."25 Thirty-four (34) party-list seats will be awarded under BANAT’s second interpretation.327 6 A TEACHER 490. No. After determining the qualified parties. No.234 Rank Party Votes Garnered 48 KALAHI 88. and apportions the seats for party-list representatives by following Section 12 of R. After all the qualified parties are given their seats. They claim that both formulas do not factor in the total number of seats alloted for the entire Party-List System. Abono.24 BANAT used two formulas to obtain the same results: one is based on the proportional percentage of the votes received by each party as against the total nationwide party-list votes. (b) rank them according to the number of votes received. (c) allocate party-list representatives proportionately according to the percentage of votes obtained by each party.039 49 APOI 79. Section 11(a) of R. 7941. or coalitions on a nationwide basis. in accordance with Section 12 of RA 7941.379 53 PMAP 75. after deducting the seats obtained by the party-list groups under the immediately preceding paragraph and after deducting from their total the votes corresponding to those seats. organization or coalition as against the total nationwide votes cast for the party-list system. and. Abono.A. Bayan Muna. and A Teacher reject the three-seat cap. There will be a first round of seat allocation.A. and the other is "by making the votes of a party-list with a median percentage of votes as the divisor in computing the allocation of seats. organizations. 179295. from the whole integers are ranked from highest to lowest and the remaining seats on the basis of this ranking are allocated until all the seats are filled up.23 Forty-four (44) party-list seats will be awarded under BANAT’s first interpretation. a second round of seat allocation is conducted.200 .R.686 50 BP 78. a second percentage is generated by dividing the votes of a qualified party by the total votes of all qualified parties only. limited to using the whole integers as the equivalent of the number of seats allocated to the concerned party-list. The fractions. 7941 prescribes to allocate seats for party-list representatives. The number of seats allocated to a qualified party is computed by multiplying the total party-list seats available with the second percentage.657 52 BIGKIS 77.171 51 AHONBAYAN 78.A. and A Teacher criticize both the COMELEC’s original 2-4-6 formula and the Veterans formula for systematically preventing all the party-list seats from being filled up. Bayan Muna.868 2 BAYAN MUNA 979. No.(c) The remaining seats shall.

691 30 BANAT 177.058 73 ASAP 34.288 59 NELFFI 57.903 29 ANAD 188.980 81 HAPI 25.086 68 ADD 45.920 83 SM 20.098 27 AT 197.112 54 AKAPIN 74.382 67 BAHANDI 46.282 24 ABA-AKO 218.801 79 AANGAT KA PILIPINO 29.185 62 BANDILA 54.923 66 SPI 50.261 60 AKSA 57.637 70 ABAY PARAK 42.993 11 BATAS 385.503 64 ASAHAN MO 51.810 58 A SMILE 58.062 23 KABATAAN 228.624 22 KAKUSA 228.220 10 BUTIL 409.544 9 COOP-NATCCO 409.896 31 ANG KASANGGA 170.160 57 BTM 60.999 69 AMANG 43.612 21 ABS 235.889 65 AGBIAG! 50.747 80 AAPS 26.522 17 AN WARAY 321.822 72 SB 34.012 14 ABONO 339.872 13 ANAKPAWIS 370.751 16 AGAP 328.946 36 COCOFED 155.531 78 ALMANA 32.883 56 GRECON 62.837 19 FPJPM 300.744 .686 8 ALAGAD 423.478 20 UNI-MAD 245.271 34 1-UTAK 164.521 76 VENDORS 33.724 63 AHON 54.990 61 BAGO 55.7 AKBAYAN 466.717 12 ARC 374.130 33 ABAKADA 166.818 71 BABAE KA 36.872 74 PEP 33.781 35 TUCP 162.028 77 ADD-TRIBAL 32.846 15 AMIN 338.647 82 AAWAS 22.938 28 VFP 196.149 55 PBA 71.266 75 ABA ILONGGO 33.512 25 ALIF 217.722 18 YACAP 310.255 32 BANTAY 169.835 26 SENIOR CITIZENS 213.

445 43 ASSALAM 110.375 93 KASAPI 6.14% 1 3 CIBAC 755.406 46 SANLAKAS 97.28 Rank Party 1 BUHAY Votes Garnered Votes Garnered over Total Votes for PartyList.57% 1 11 BATAS29 385.471 45 ANC 99.171 3.89% 1 5 APEC 619.288 2.42% 1 12 ARC 374.241 41 AVE 110.916 38 ANAK 141. the total number of votes cast for all party-list candidates.379 3.88% 1 6 A TEACHER 490.65% 1 9 COOP-NATCCO 409.57% 1 10 BUTIL 409.686 4.058 TOTAL 15.915 44 DIWA 107.169.07% 1 7 AKBAYAN 466.032 84 AG 16.636 92 AA-KASOSYO 8.149 2.769 88 ATS 14. Table 2.221 47 ABC 90.950.021 91 LYPAD 8.37 AGHAM 146.421 40 PM 119.234 7.900.161 42 SUARA 110.054 87 BIYAYANG BUKID 16. In Table 2 below.950.732 89 UMDJ 9.33% 1 2 BAYAN MUNA 979.657 3.74% 1 4 GABRIELA 621.356 86 APO 16.900 The first clause of Section 11(b) of R.92% 1 8 ALAGAD 423. No. 7941 states that "parties. The first 20 party-list candidates and their respective percentage of votes garnered over the total votes for the party-list.440 90 BUKLOD FILIPINA 8.160 2.35% 1 .A." This clause guarantees a seat to the two-percenters.039 6.729 39 ABANSE! PINAY 130.810 2.112 2. organizations. in % Guaranteed Seat 1.817 85 AGING PINOY 16. and coalitions receiving at least two percent (2%) of the total votes cast for the party-list system shall be entitled to one seat each.883 2. we use the first 20 party-list candidates for illustration purposes. The percentage of votes garnered by each party is arrived at by dividing the number of votes garnered by each party by 15.

No.A. Because of the operation of the two percent threshold.A. The parties.261 2.889 1.13% 1 15 AMIN 338.724 2. this situation will repeat itself even if we increase the available party-list seats to 60 seats and even if we increase the votes cast to 100 million. or the two-percenters. . the following procedure shall be observed: 1. organizations. we distributed 17 guaranteed seats. gets a guaranteed seat.382 1. No.54% 0 From Table 2 above. 7941. 2. 7941 provides that "those garnering more than two percent (2%) of the votes shall be entitled to additional seats in proportion to their total number of votes. The 17 qualified party-list candidates. The second clause of Section 11(b) of R. To illustrate: There are 55 available party-list seats.A.923 1.A. No."30 In determining the allocation of seats for party-list representatives under Section 11 of R. Only 50 parties get a seat despite the availability of 55 seats." This is where petitioners’ and intervenors’ problem with the formula in Veterans lies.02% 1 Total 17 18 YACAP 310. Thus. sectoral or group interests in the House of Representatives. This Court finds that the two percent threshold makes it mathematically impossible to achieve the maximum number of available party list seats when the number of available party list seats exceeds 50." or the guaranteed seat. A party that has two percent of the votes cast. the continued operation of the two percent threshold for the distribution of the additional seats as found in the second clause of Section 11(b) of R. We therefore strike down the two percent threshold only in relation to the distribution of the additional seats as found in the second clause of Section 11(b) of R. We rule that. In this first round of seat allocation. organizations. No. and coalitions shall be ranked from the highest to the lowest based on the number of votes they garnered during the elections.990 2. we see that only 17 party-list candidates received at least 2% from the total number of votes cast for party-list candidates.12% 1 16 AGAP 328.89% 0 20 UNI-MAD 245. This interpretation is contrary to the express language of R. Suppose there are 50 million votes cast for the 100 participants in the party list elections. are the party-list candidates that are "entitled to one seat each.185 2. 7941. The continued operation of the two percent threshold in the distribution of the additional seats frustrates the attainment of the permissive ceiling that 20% of the members of the House of Representatives shall consist of party-list representatives. or one million votes. in computing the allocation of additional seats.32% 1 14 ABONO 339. and coalitions receiving at least two percent (2%) of the total votes cast for the party-list system shall be entitled to one guaranteed seat each. 7941. Veterans interprets the clause "in proportion to their total number of votes" to be in proportion to the votes of the first party. The two percent threshold presents an unwarranted obstacle to the full implementation of Section 5(2). 7941 is unconstitutional.503 2. No. even if the maximum number of parties get two percent of the votes for every party. it is always impossible for the number of occupied party-list seats to exceed 50 seats as long as the two percent threshold is present.13 ANAKPAWIS 370. Article VI of the Constitution and prevents the attainment of "the broadest possible representation of party.06% 1 17 AN WARAY 321.95% 0 19 FPJPM 300.A. The parties. Let us further assume that the first 50 parties all get one million votes.

17 2 N. Thus.42% 1 1 2 N.A. Those garnering sufficient number of votes.950. Fractional seats are disregarded in the absence of a provision in R.810 2.A. in whole integers (D) Applying the three seat cap (E) 1 BUHAY 1.039 6. organization.A.3. We distributed all of the remaining 38 seats in the second round of seat allocation. we do not limit our allocation of additional seats in Table 3 below to the two-percenters.149 2.33% 1 2.65% 1 1. 3 CIBAC 755.01 2 N. 7 AKBAYAN 466. the remaining available seats for allocation as "additional seats" are the maximum seats reserved under the Party List System less the guaranteed seats. to every two-percenter.160 2. Thus: Table 3. The percentage of votes garnered by each party-list candidate is arrived at by dividing the number of votes garnered by each party by 15. In computing the additional seats.11 2 N. the guaranteed seats shall no longer be included because they have already been allocated.234 7.89% 1 1. or coalition shall be entitled to not more than three (3) seats. 4. we assign one party-list seat to each of the parties next in rank until all available seats are completely distributed. .A.261 2.88% 1 1. 13 ANAKPAWIS 370.07% 1 1.57% 1 1 2 N. In declaring the two percent threshold unconstitutional. First.35% 1 1 2 N. 7941 allowing for a rounding off of fractional seats.92% 1 1.A. 10 BUTIL 409.657 3.74% 1 1.A.57% 1 1 2 N.A.80 2 N.A. 931 COOPNATCCO 409. we apply the three-seat cap to determine the number of seats each qualified party-list candidate is entitled. Distribution of Available Party-List Seats Rank Party Votes Garnered Votes Garnered over Total Votes for Party List.32% 1 1 2 N. the percentage is multiplied by the remaining available seats. shall be entitled to additional seats in proportion to their total number of votes until all the additional seats are allocated.48 2 N.33 3 N. There are two steps in the second round of seat allocation.A. the total number of votes cast for party-list candidates.883 2. 38. in % (A) Guaranteed Seat (First Round) (B) Additional Seats (Second Round) (C) (B) plus (C).A. according to the ranking in paragraph 1. 11 BATAS 385. 12 ARC 374. 2 BAYAN MUNA 979.379 3. Finally.686 4.A.A.A. at one seat each.A. 5 APEC 619. which is the difference between the 55 maximum seats reserved under the Party-List System and the 17 guaranteed seats of the two-percenters. Each party.169.79 3 N.288 2.14% 1 2.900.48 2 N. The whole integer of the product of the percentage and of the remaining available seats corresponds to a party’s share in the remaining available seats.171 3. 4 GABRIELA 621. No. Second. 8 ALAGAD 423. 6 A Teacher 490.112 2.

21 ABS 235.920 0.43% 0 1 1 N. 26 SENIOR CITIZENS 213.086 1.A.382 1.266 1. 18 YACAP 310.89% 0 1 1 N. All 55 available party-list seats are filled.A. The additional seats allocated to the parties with sufficient number of votes for one whole seat. there are 55 party-list representatives from the 36 winning party-list organizations.A.A. The deliberations of the Constitutional Commission clearly bear this out. 20 UNI-MAD 245.37% 0 1 1 N.A. 24 ABA-AKO 218.521 1.822 1.889 1.06% 0 1 1 N.A. 33 ABAKADA 166.531 1.A.A.647 1.185 2.A.801 1. 30 BANAT 177. 32 BANTAY 169.980 1.98% 0 1 1 N. 25 ALIF 217.A. 31 ANG KASANGGA 170.A.923 1. Total 17 55 Applying the procedure of seat allocation as illustrated in Table 3 above. 23 KABATAAN 228. 36 COCOFED 155.A.872 1.A.34% 0 1 1 N. in no case to exceed a total of three seats for each party.A. 27 AT 197.990 2.A.18% 0 1 1 N.A.47% 0 1 1 N.999 1. 35 TUCP 162.13% 1 1 2 N.A.37% 0 1 1 N.95% 0 1 1 N.A.A.A.058 1. 28 VFP 196.637 1.44% 0 1 1 N. 16 AGAP 328.03% 0 1 1 N.02% 0 1 1 N.028 1.05% 0 1 1 N.07% 0 1 1 N. 34 1-UTAK 164. 17 AN WARAY 321. 22 KAKUSA 228. 15 AMIN 338.724 2.A.14 ABONO 339.11% 0 1 1 N.503 2.747 1.818 1.02% 1 1 2 N.06% 1 1 2 N.54% 0 1 1 N. Participation of Major Political Parties in Party-List Elections The Constitutional Commission adopted a multi-party system that allowed all political parties to participate in the party-list elections.24% 0 1 1 N.A. thus: .12% 1 1 2 N.A. are shown in column (D).23% 0 1 1 N. 29 ANAD 188. 19 FPJPM 300.

Lalamunin mismo ng political parties ang party list system. MONSOD. Madam President. What the Commissioner is saying is that all political parties can participate because it is precisely the contention of political parties that they represent the broad base of citizens and that all sectors are represented in them. TADEO. May I be clarified on that? Can UNIDO participate in the party list system? MR. Yes. MONSOD. MR. MR. UNIDO may be allowed to register for the party list system. Political parties. Kung titingnan natin itong 198 seats. MR. x x x. pag pinayagan mo ang UNIDO na isang political party. Suppose Senator Tañada wants to run under BAYAN group and says that he represents the farmers. would he qualify? MR. and we would like very much for the sectors to be there. MR. In reply to that query. I just want to say that we suggested or proposed the party list system because we wanted to open up the political system to a pluralistic society through a multiparty system. why not? For as long as they field candidates who come from the different marginalized sectors that we shall designate in this Constitution. Why not? When they come to the party list system. Who would pass on whether he is a farmer or not? MR. Likewise. No. VILLACORTA. TADEO. VILLACORTA. MR. the Christian Democrats can field district candidates and can also participate in the party list system? MR. But my question to Commissioner Villacorta and probably also to Commissioner Tadeo is that under this system. would UNIDO be banned from running under the party list system? MR. VILLACORTA. they can also field sectoral candidates for the 20 percent or 30 percent. Gusto ko lamang bigyan ng diin ang "reserve. VILLACORTA. they will be fielding only sectoral candidates. of the seats that we are allocating under the party list system. Kay Commissioner Monsod. No. I think these parties that the Commissioner mentioned can field candidates for the Senate as well as for the House of Representatives. But UNIDO can field candidates under the party list system and say Juan dela Cruz is a farmer. xxx MR. Would the Commissioner agree? MR. Senator Tañada would not qualify. it will dominate the party list at mawawalang saysay din yung sector. gusto ko lamang linawin ito. MONSOD. as I said. In other words." Hindi ito reserve seat sa marginalized sectors. UNIDO may field sectoral candidates. MONSOD. That is why one of the ways to do that is to put a ceiling on the number of representatives from any single party that can sit within the 50 allocated under the party list system. MR. MONSOD. reserved din ito sa political parties. Madam President. Hindi po reserved iyon kasi anybody can run there. . My question is this: Are we going to classify for example Christian Democrats and Social Democrats as political parties? Can they run under the party list concept or must they be under the district legislation side of it only? MR. x x x We are for opening up the system. MONSOD. the candidacy for the 198 seats is not limited to political parties. Ang punto lamang namin. particularly minority political parties. VILLACORTA. whichever is adopted. On that condition alone. MONSOD. are not prohibited to participate in the party list election if they can prove that they are also organized along sectoral lines.MR. MONSOD.

MR. The same. this will be true of others like the Partido ng Bayan which is now being formed. but at the same time. and more institutionalized way. . So that we may. It is a national party when its constituency is spread over the geographical territory of at least a majority of the regions. Component parties or organizations of a coalition may participate independently provided the coalition of which they form part does not participate in the partylist system. MONSOD. it challenges the sector to rise to the majesty of being elected representatives later on through a party list system. although it is open to all the parties. to become actual political parties capable of contesting political power in the wider constitutional arena for major political parties. pero sa sectoral lines. regularly nominates and supports certain of its leaders and members as candidates for public office. I see no reason why they should not be able to make common goals with mass organizations so that the very leadership of these parties can be transformed through the participation of mass organizations. reenforce. VILLACORTA. and even beyond that. distribute themselves either in the Social Democratic Party and the Christian Democratic Party in Germany. 7941 provided the details for the concepts put forward by the Constitutional Commission. It installs sectoral representation as a constitutional gift. In the opposition parties to which we belong. It is a regional party when its constituency is spread over the geographical territory of at least a majority of the cities and provinces comprising the region. this will also create the stimulus for political parties and mass organizations to seek common ground. meaning that there is no reason at all why political parties and mass organizations should not combine. we have the PDP-Laban and the UNIDO. as the most immediate means of securing their adoption. (a) The party-list system is a mechanism of proportional representation in the election of representatives to the House of Representatives from national. No. (d) A sectoral party refers to an organized group of citizens belonging to any of the sectors enumerated in Section 5 hereof whose principal advocacy pertains to the special interests and concerns of their sector.A. and their very presence there has a transforming effect upon the philosophies and the leadership of those parties. 7941 reads: Definition of Terms. there will be a stimulus for us to contact mass organizations so that with their participation. in time. And the party list system is certainly available. May I inquire from Commissioner Tadeo if he shares that answer? MR. for example. develop this excellent system that they have in Europe where labor organizations and cooperatives. Puwede po ang UNIDO. I support this [Monsod-Villacorta] amendment. influence and interact with each other so that the very objectives that we set in this Constitution for sectoral representation are achieved in a wider. Section 3 of R. (c) A political party refers to an organized group of citizens advocating an ideology or platform. But the businessmen. No. regional and sectoral parties or organizations or coalitions thereof registered with the Commission on Elections (COMELEC). It is also a fact well known to all that in the United States. most of them. (b) A party means either a political party or a sectoral party or a coalition of parties. always vote with the Republican Party. It is understood that the parties will enter in the roll of the COMELEC the names of representatives of mass organizations affiliated with them. x x x In my opinion. OPLE. the policies of such parties can be radically transformed because this amendment will create conditions that will challenge both the mass organizations and the political parties to come together. And if this is true of the administration parties. x x x 32 (Emphasis supplied) R. For example. the AFL-CIO always vote with the Democratic Party. xxxx MR. There is no question that they will be attractive to many mass organizations. TADEO.MR. principles and policies for the general conduct of government and which. more lasting. Therefore.A.

7941 and the deliberations of the Constitutional Commission state that major political parties are allowed to establish. The three-seat cap. sectoral organizations for electoral or political purposes. No. employment. 7941. In fact. if the nominee represents the fisherfolk.33 In defining a "party" that participates in party-list elections as either "a political party or a sectoral party. he must at least be twenty-five (25) but not more than thirty (30) years of age on the day of the election. as a limitation to the number of seats that a qualified party-list organization may occupy. remains a valid statutory device that prevents any party from dominating the party-list elections.A. There should not be a problem if. Excluding the major political parties in party-list elections is manifestly against the Constitution. he or she must be a fisherfolk. or form coalitions with. Any youth sectoral representative who attains the age of thirty (30) during his term shall be allowed to continue until the expiration of his term. No. 7941: Qualifications of Party-List Nominees. by a vote of 8-7.A. The other major political parties can thus organize. in enacting R. (f) A coalition refers to an aggrupation of duly registered national. and this fisherfolk wing can field its fisherfolk nominees. R. and is at least twenty-five (25) years of age on the day of the election. it is not necessary that the party-list organization’s nominee "wallow in poverty. In case of a nominee of the youth sector. he or she must be a senior citizen. directly or indirectly. — No person shall be nominated as party-list representative unless he is a natural born citizen of the Philippines. unless otherwise fixed by law." The 20% allocation of party-list representatives is merely a ceiling. for example. Those who voted to continue disallowing major political . able to read and write. and in the alternative the reservation of the party-list system to the sectoral groups. No. No. No. Under Section 9 of R. or affiliate with. the Court decided to continue the ruling in Veterans disallowing major political parties from participating in the party-list elections.A. left the determination of the number of the members of the House of Representatives to Congress: "The House of Representatives shall be composed of not more than two hundred and fifty members. Read together.(e) A sectoral organization refers to a group of citizens or a coalition of groups of citizens who share similar physical attributes or characteristics. To further illustrate.A. a resident of the Philippines for a period of not less than one (1) year immediately preceding the day of the elections. Neither the Constitution nor R. the framers of the Constitution clearly intended the major political parties to participate in party-list elections through their sectoral wings. 7941. 7941. destitution and infirmity"34 as there is no financial status required in the law. bona fide member of the party or organization which he seeks to represent for at least ninety (90) days preceding the day of the election." R. we cannot allow the continued existence of a provision in the law which will systematically prevent the constitutionally allocated 20% party-list representatives from being filled. the members of the Constitutional Commission voted down. 7941 mandates the filling-up of the entire 20% allocation of party-list representatives found in the Constitution. the Nacionalista Party can establish a fisherfolk wing to participate in the party-list election. x x x. No. Seats for party-list representatives shall thus be allocated in accordance with the procedure used in Table 3 above. On the contrary. the intent of the Constitutional Commission. its sectoral youth wing. or if the nominee represents the senior citizens. It is enough that the nominee of the sectoral party/organization/coalition belongs to the marginalized and underrepresented sectors.35 that is. The Constitution. 19-22. in paragraph 1. a registered voter. regional.A. 7941 also clearly intended that major political parties will participate in the party-list elections. their chosen sector or sectors. the Liberal Party participates in the party-list election through the Kabataang Liberal ng Pilipinas (KALIPI).A. and R. Congress.A. However.A. Neither the Constitution nor R. No. This Court cannot engage in socio-political engineering and judicially legislate the exclusion of major political parties from the party-list elections in patent violation of the Constitution and the law. any permanent sectoral seats. The qualifications of party-list nominees are prescribed in Section 9 of R. interests or concerns. party-list representatives cannot be more than 20% of the members of the House of Representatives. sectoral parties or organizations for political and/or election purposes. put the three-seat cap to prevent any party from dominating the party-list elections. Section 5 of Article VI. Kabalikat ng Malayang Pilipino (KAMPI) can do the same for the urban poor. No. 7941 prohibits major political parties from participating in the party-list system. However.

We SET ASIDE the Resolution of the COMELEC dated 3 August 2007 in NBC No. ANTONIO T. Puno in his separate opinion. 07-60. On the formula to allocate party-list seats. the Court is unanimous in concurring with this ponencia.parties from the party-list elections joined Chief Justice Reynato S. 07-041 (PL) as well as the Resolution dated 9 July 2007 in NBC No. SO ORDERED. Major political parties are disallowed from participating in party-list elections. CARPIO Associate Justice . This Decision is immediately executory. We declare unconstitutional the two percent threshold in the distribution of additional party-list seats. The allocation of additional seats under the Party-List System shall be in accordance with the procedure used in Table 3 of this Decision. No pronouncement as to costs. WHEREFORE. we PARTIALLY GRANT the petition.